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Empty boxes of baby formula food with nice pictures, fancy ribbons any queer thing that ensured to keep my baby daughter occupied while I fed her things which she won’t be interested in eating otherwise, like mashed bananas or vegetable soup; often found way into her pram. The odd stuff that actually cannot be categorized as toys kept her occupied, during meal time; till her bowl was empty and cardboard box was ripped and shifted to its last resting place i.e. the paper recycling box.
I was not surprised when her fascination with cardboard boxes, did not recede with age (after all she had grown up with them). When she was a few years old, she developed a keen sense to make stuff with things which were of little use to others. The process was subtle but unwavering. Her urge to create something made her see things from a completely different point of view, which only comes naturally to those blessed with an innate sense of creativity and beautiful imagination.
I remember once we were having a walk in the evening and the sky looked beautiful with magnificent clouds splattered all over the horizon; mild golden sun rays added a wonderful luminosity to the scene. “Look Mumma, the gates to heaven are opening,” she excitedly said watching a broad beam of light gushing through a huge chasm in the fluffy clouds. It has been years since she expressed that wonderful thought, but it never goes out of my mind.
She challenges her creativity and makes stuff like a butterfly using walnut shells, a candy with coiled pink rope, a cart with a soap pack and her favourite Pokémon with an empty matchbox. Her creations born out of sheer imagination and creativity is a testimony to her natural leaning towards art and crafts. Her best pals to help her generate fresh ideas are the hosts of TV art and craft shows; her recently purchased book on craft making is her guide too.A firm believer in the axiom “turn trash into treasure” she often ransacks our recycling box, to look for a straw, empty juice packs or bottle cap to finish her next creation.
When with paper and a pen/ pencil, she draws cartoon characters with deep interest, diligently colouring them as beautifully as she could. The ones, not fully up to her expectation, with any minute flaw, are secretly sent to the dustbin, with a strong will to immediately draw a better one.
As a mother, I have always admired her pride in her creations and the vivacity with which she describes its inception. The sparkle in her eyes, the eagerness in her tone when she conveys the story behind comics or craft items, fills me with absolute joy. Her real focus lies in becoming an artist and the conviction with which she states her choice of profession, shows clarity of thought and identification of natural talent.
She may be miles away from finally becoming one, but she has already taken her baby steps towards her goal and it is rightly said, every great journey, begins with a single step.
This article is an entry to the contest ‘Early Starter Contest’ by Aviva."