"Drumbeat" - mixed media on masonite, 16" x 12". Sold.
Last Friday, I had a great adventure in creativity - this time building a Native American hand drum (or CANCEGA) from poplar, elk hide and sinew. There is nothing easy about building a drum. Piercing the hide, stretching the hide lacing, creating the lacing pattern, binding with sinew...my hands and shoulders felt like blocks of aching cement all weekend afterward. But the process is mystical and awe-inspiring. The hide and lacings are kept wet until ready to use. With good reason, as we could see it drying on the drum frame as we threaded the lacing and pulled it tight. Our instructor, Rick McBride, was patient and encouraging, even as some of us (ok, it was me) had to unlace and re-lace after messing up the over-over-under-under pattern.
Rick brought reverence and awe to the process, as he explained the personal nature of drums. Intended for ceremonial use, the finished drums will not be played by anyone other than their creator, and will be "awoken" in a sacred ceremony after they are dry. In the meantime, we were instructed to keep our hands off of them for at least five days. I can tell you, that's going to be tough. Even now, I hear my drum calling me...
Jen Walls and her imaJENation