ideas

GUERNICA

PABLOParis, spring of 1937: Pablo Picasso wakes up and reads. He reads the newspaper while having breakfast in his studio. His coffee grows cold in the cup.

German planes have razed the city of Guernica. For three hours the Nazi air force chased and machine-gunned people fleeing the burning city. General Franco insists that Guernica has been set aflame by Asturian dynamiters and Basque pyromaniacs from the ranks of the Communists.

Two years later in Madrid, Wolfram von Richthofen, commander of the German forces in Spain, sits beside Franco at the victory parade: killing Spaniards was Hitler’s rehearsal for his impending world war.

Many years later in New York, Colin Powell makes a speech at the United Nations to announce the imminent annihilation of Iraq. While he speaks, the back of the room is hidden from view, Guernica is hidden from view. The reproduction of Picasso’s painting, which hangs there, is concealed behind an enormous blue cloth.

UN officials decided it was not the most appropriate backdrop for the proclamation of a new round of butchery.

* From Mirrors: Stories of Almost Everyone by Eduardo Galeano

THIRTEEN

Waking up the morning of the 31st, it has occurred to me that I haven't given a lot of thought to my new years resolutions. It's something I usually love to do, and something that has been good for me - I feel like resolutions are good intentions, ways of thinking and being that I hope will carry me through the year with a little more grace or fortitude. I usually give myself just three - three important things I want to consciously work at. Without being too personal, the year ahead for me will be a hard one. There is a lot of uncertainty and a lot of big changes ahead and a whole lot of things that are out of my control. And I'm doing pretty well at being OK with that, at taking each day as it comes, but it still worries me. So I'll be thinking today of three things that I can do, three positive changes I can bring into my life and the year ahead.

It's a nice time to reflect too, and I have to say that this last year has been a very special one - a year I didn't see coming and would never have believed, and a year that has seen me move a little closer to the things that are important to me. I feel especially grateful that my life is full of so many wonderful people, people that love, support and inspire me endlessly and make my world a happier one. To those dear friends and family, thank you - YOU ARE AMAZING...  CA AHD

* This big, colourful and wondrous image is courtesy of British artist Chrissie Abbott, in a range she designed for my favourite stationers and yours, AHD Paper Co - it's available as a gift card and poster and is easily the best thing I can think of to send to the people you love.

OF NOTE

One of my big time internet crushes is the amazingly talented artist Lisa Congdon. She illustrates all kinds of gems and this past year, has been working on a hand lettering project. Her 365 Days of Hand Lettering is up on her blog, Today is Going to be Awesome and I could pour through it for hours (or days, as it were).

My two favourites are below - favourite quotes and favourite illustrations...day240_lowres

day176_lowres* Day 240 * Day 176