In many ways this "community" themed piece has been my favorite (so far) of the Taking Flight projects; it began with a base collage made from letters and notes and return addresses and cancelled stamps and postmarks... a very valuable commodity to me, after many years of moving away and long-distance friendships. I actually didn't realize, when I started looking for written pieces to include, that I had so many letters from a few important women in my life. I was lucky to find one bit in particular that ended up becoming very central in the piece--a sweet little "p.s." from my college roommate Leah (we nicknamed her "Leha"), who was killed in a car accident at Thanksgiving 1998. I am so, so glad I was able to make her such an important part of this work.
The heart shape is made from florist's foam, covered with Rigid Wrap, covered with plaster of Paris, and then painted with acrylic paints (and dusted a bit with silver pigment powder). The initial inspiration for this began with a pencil sketch of the three women, embraced by wings. (Truth: I still prefer my basic pencil sketch to the finished, painted image... I'm pretty comfortable with a good ol' No. 2 pencil, but I get nervous when paints get involved! LOL)