|The Hand Album|
This afternoon, whilst sitting on a sunny wall eating my lunch I looked down at my hands. At first I was cross with myself for not having washed them, and once again a bit more manganese entered my blood stream (I often smudge in paint with my fingers when painting). As the inward tut-tutting subsided, I then began to study the lines. I turned my right hand edgeways, where, since I was 8, I have had a splinter. It's been entombed in a mass of skin at the base of my little finger since I rubbed my hands along an old wooden flap-desk in Miss Brullhard's class at Rose Green Junior School and has over the years made a home for itself in an underground bubble. It's a tiny little thing, but evidently there. However, this week I could see that rather suddenly it has decided to tunnel its way out and with a helping left hand that splinter of wood saw the Spanish sun for the first time. It's been embedded in there for 23 years.
|My hand in 2010|
|Alex's hands out of their pounch|
I love hands. To me there is something slightly obscene about them, providing a window that looks straight onto the soul. Just think of all the things they've touched. You can tell a lot from someone's hands. The texture, the lines, the muscle. Mine are very dry, scarred from both too much gardening without gloves and over picking scabs at times when I have been anxious. The joints bend where they shouldn't, there's a callus from writing and painting and freckles on the top from spending so much time outside. There's soot under my nails from scrubbing the fireplace. Yes, you can tell a lot.
|Matthew's and Dad's hands. Matthew's are big and thin, Dad's, chunky|
|Henry's hands - which didn't come out very well sadly|
|Katie's hands in their pounch|
My hand prints are kept in a yellow book which I later started to use for my Bare Necessities Project, which I will one day, when I am old lady, have time to actually paint. It was always meant to be a project about time - looking back, looking forward - a comparison of diets over the years and what makes me - me. On reflection, it is quite a special book this one. It's full of the souls and food that nourished me. This book, in a way, has become my identity, my own digital print.
|Bare Necessities Project - packaging album number 1 (there are 3 for the year)|