Thursday, December 8, 2011

A Memorable Turn of Events

A little while back, just as I was getting ready start up Fool’s Gold Bears again after a long hiatus, something very special happened. I had not yet taken steps toward opening for business, but had given some thought to it, when all of a sudden, out of the blue, an email arrived from a lady I had never met. She had somehow come across my abandoned website, where she saw a bear that interested her. Unable to contact me from my site because of an outdated email link, she had gone out of her way, through my BearPile account to reach me.

The bear she had seen on my website was long gone. She asked if I would consider making another similar bear for her. I respectfully declined, noting that commissions are against my policy. As she began describing her vision to me of a little bear with felt forget-me-not flowers, I could see the bear in my mind‘s eye. Her idea appealed to me, so policy aside, I agreed to make the bear for her. Immediately, a name for the piece entered my mind - “I Shall Ne’er Forget Thee“. Later, as I worked on the bear, I pondered a name for the little character, but could not help feeling that the bear should not be named - only the entire piece as a whole.

Just as I was putting the finishing touches on the bear, suddenly I was taken aback. The little creature looked exactly as I had envisioned it from the outset! This is a rare occurrence for me. Normally I picture a vague image to start and it evolves as I go. The end product may have little resemblance to my initial vision.
I was very happy with the way the bear turned out, but it had taken quite longer to make than I had anticipated. At first I was fearful to charge for the extra labor, but eventually found the courage to quote the full price to the customer.

How relieved I was to learn that she loved the picture I’d sent. She commented that it looked just as she had imagined it in her mind. What a coincidence! The lady divulged that the bear was to be a birthday/Christmas gift to her from her husband. Although the price was higher than expected, she declared that the bear was worth the price and they would pay it.

After about an hour, another email arrived from my new collector, announcing that she had just learned that her elderly Grandmother was ill. She said she realized just how much the new little bear would always remind her of her Grandma, whose favorite flower is forget-me-not. A smile warmed me inside as I recalled how I’d felt that the piece was to be named, "I Shall Ne'er Forget Thee". Incidentally, just a day or two after the customer’s initial email, my entire website disappeared from cyberspace forever because I had not renewed the web hosting.

When so many coincidences come together, as in this case, I tend to think they may not be coincidences at all. In light of that transaction, I'm feeling very validated in what I'm doing. It feels as if God took a moment to coordinate the whole event just to bless this dear lady, and so I would know that he is using my art for his purposes, as I had truly hoped he would.

Here she is, sweet as can be.

"I Shall Ne'er Forget Thee"