My Vision Wall

So horrible was the dream I found myself in last night that when I woke up I thought to myself, ‘Well, that’s my day ruined. Might as well just stay here.’ But I knew I’d end up stewing in my despair, and then that despair would end up bleeding into tomorrow and I’d spend tomorrow being a miserable fuck too. So I got up.

Like the tide, the dream kept coming back (the worst ones always do, don’t they?) so I thought that, instead of writing about what I was going to write about – the complicated relationship I have with my face – I thought posting something ‘joyful’ would help me ease up and maybe slow down the incessant dreadful feelings I was sinking deep into.

So I decided to create a vision wall. I’ve been meaning to piece one together for months but I’ve been putting it off, saying to myself ‘Time is precious, and I don’t know where the blu tack is…and it takes ages to stick everything up…and…*insert another shitty excuse here.*’

Turns out the blu tack wasn’t difficult to find, and I enjoyed (very much actually) the process of choosing the postcards, pictures and photos that were speaking to me the loudest, then arranging them on the wall above my writing desk. It was a thoroughly good use of my time.

Now whenever I look up from whatever sentence I’m wrangling with, I’m greeted with imagery that invigorates my heart, reminds me of why I do what I do, and inspires me to keep moving North, until I get to a place cold enough to call home.

*A Place Cold Enough To Call Home – I think I’ll have to use this as a book title.

Had to sit on my desk to take this picture. Rebel is my middle name.
My view. I might not have forests and snow peaked mountains just yet, but this will do for the time being.
And another angle. Just because.
I found this card at Christmas in TKMaxx and was like ‘this is probably the most Katie Christmas card I’ve ever seen.’ It came in a pack of five. I ended up keeping four. The artwork is adapted from images and objects held within the collections of the Natural History Museum in London.
I received this postcard from my school teacher on my 8th birthday. I was obsessed with Native American Indians and firmly believed I’d been an Indian in a past life who died in a teepee fire. The photograph, which was taken in 1898 by John A Anderson, is of eight year old Katie Roubideaux Blue Thunder.
I picked up this postcard in 2010 when I was traveling in Sweden and went to the John Bauer exhibit in Jönköping County Museum. It’s my favourite Bauer artwork.
I’ve had this Lorna Graves ‘Animal With Moon’ postcard for almost 15 years.
This is actually a postcard I sent to my parents from Iceland when I was there back in 2011. I’ve since stolen it back. The photo is called ‘Heading Home’ and is by one of my very best-loved photographers, Ragnar Axelsson.
Another photograph by Ragnar Axelsson – ‘Thórsmörk In Autumn.’ I spent a couple of weeks here in 2011 when I was working as a conservation volunteer. We hiked the Laugavegur Trail from Landmannalaugar to Thórsmörk. If you ever get the opportunity to do it, do it! (We actually used to traverse that ridge you see in the middle of the photo twice a day to get to our work site.) Of all the places I visited in Iceland, Thórsmörk is the one I think about most often. It’s rarely far from my thoughts. I don’t think it’ll be long until I’m back there.
When I wasn’t at school or at home, I spent most of my time in the farmhouse you can see at the back of the picture, and in the barn on the far right hand side. This is Falcon Farm in Botton Village and it’s where one of my best friends lived. The hills you see behind it are the North Yorkshire Moors. In the barn we used to tunnel our way into the hay bales and build the most epic of dens. I can’t remember the name of the artist who painted it, but she would visit the farm often when I was a kid.
Winter Night In The Mountains (1914) by Harald Sohlberg. I picked up this postcard from the Nasjonalmuseet in Oslo when I was there in Winter 2011.
One of my favourite Elsa Beskow illustrations. It’s from one of my most loved childhood books, Children Of The Forest. I found this postcard not in Sweden, where Beskow is from, but in a little toy shop in Copenhagen when I was there in 2010.
I’ve had this Rima Staines postcard for the longest time. The artwork is called ‘Telling Stories To The Trees.’
Nenets. Yamal Peninsula, Siberia, Russia, 2011. This photograph was taken by Sebastião Salgado. I found it when I was visiting The Fram Museum in Oslo in 2014. It’s traveled all over with me.

What I Listened To While Writing This Post

I started off listening to First Aid’s Kit cover of Fever Ray’s When I Grow Up which was nice. Then I thought I’d listen to some more First Aid Kit, which was not a good idea. It just made me really sad.

4 thoughts on “My Vision Wall”

  1. I love the idea of a vision wall. And I love the fact that so many of these have such backstories and connections, like the one of the farm and barn where you spent time as a kid. I think my favourites might be the Bauer and Sohlberg pictures (the moonlight in the Sohlberg one…), and the Rima Staines one (‘Telling Stories to the Trees’… I like that title as much as the artwork!). Thorsmork looks so beautiful – I would love to visit that place. Am intrigued by the conservation volunteering you mentioned; I’d like to know more about that!

    1. Thank you so much for this lovely comment Abi! 🙂 I think about that farm (and the barn!) almost everyday, and all the wonderful memories that were made there. I’ll probably talk more about it in a future post. Oh my goodness, the moonlight in the Sohlberg one, yes!!! My heart sings whenever I look up at it. Rima Staines is such a magickal woman. I’ve been following her creative journey for quite a while now. I adore everything she makes. Volunteering in Iceland was one of the BEST experiences of my life. If you can do it, DO IT! Here is a link to the website: https://ust.is/english/volunteers/ Please do let me know if you end up doing it! x

      1. I’d be interested to read a post about the farm and barn and all if you do decide to write one. Have been looking at more of Rima Staines’ art this past weekend. Pleased to see her depicting the likes of Baba Yaga. 🙂 Thank you for the link to the Iceland volunteering – my instinctive reaction is ‘aaah, no no no, I’m too much of a wuss for that, couldn’t possibly’ but well, I’m going to hold on to the information about it. Who knows. 🙂

      2. Her depictions of Baba Yaga are some of the most wonderful I’ve ever seen. I’m so happy you like them. ❤ Please do hold into the information…and I really hope you investigate further into it. Honestly, the experience changed my for the better in so many ways. I want to do it all over again! x

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