Posted in handmade, my heart wanders January 16th, 2008 by piablog

image from the Underwood Photo Archives

I have a rather special announcement to make!

If you’ve wandered the rooms of the (blog)house you may have noticed that one room seems, well, a little empty, be that my Artist Studio (apologies for the funny language, I’m currently reading Robinson Crusoe be that written by such one Daniel Defoe who writes in the tongue of the 17th century man, viz. almost unreadable English).

So although the Artist Studio has been a little vacant, it is only because I have been busy writing and planning my next art project and I am very pleased to reveal that it will be collective and it involves ALL OF YOU. So now, I invite you to come for a little wander with me as I pour my heart out and tell all…

Image by Clarence S. Bull c. 1925, from the Underwood Photo Archives

Some 10 years ago, I made a pact to myself that I would create an artwork each year. I allowed myself to work in any medium be it painting, sketching, shooting still or moving images, sewing, knitting, woodwork or sculpture. And that no matter how consuming my career became, I would endeavor to fulfill my little goal.

about1.jpgoriginal photograph exhibited in the COFA alumni exhibition 2006

And then about a year ago something very peculiar happened.

My heart wandered.

It simply packed its suitcase and wandered away. I wrote it a letter in heart language but it never responded…


And what does one do when one’s heart wanders? Follow. For a soul without a heart is to be no longer alive in my view. And as I went searching for my heart, I learnt that it actually knows what the future holds and it wandered for a very special reason.


And so as I travelled in search of my heart, I caught glimpses of it everywhere – little signs of it in the streets, in the landscapes, in my work, on set, in the many homes that I visited.

And then I saw it amongst you.

The direction of my little wandering heart became apparent and it is my pleasure to now pull the red velvet curtains back and make welcome my first collective blog art project…

image from Maureen DuLong’s flickr collection, click here for more.

my heart wanders: a collection of subtle hearts in special spaces will be a collective book project where ANYONE can enter a work. You do not have to be a professional photographer or artist, just have an eye for beauty (and a heart too!). While I’ve been roaming the blogosphere and meeting my blogging neighbours, I’ve noticed some great unearthed talent out there amongst you, and I would like to think this project might inspire you to try your hand at producing something for this collective project. With the ultimate goal to publish a beautiful hand held book, the concept is based on our favourite things: design, interiors, nature, love, lifestyle and beauty. It will be a collection of subtle hearts from all over the world.

maditi11.jpgMaple Syrup Only found on Maditi Likes.

heart-shapes.jpgcan’t remember who the image on the left belongs to, i will try to find

janoid-flickr-a-snow-heart1.jpgheaps of heart inspiration at janoid’s flickr page, click here.

So what can you enter? Here are the criteria:

  • It needs to include a heart shape of sorts
  • It needs to be handmade or ‘found’ by you
  • It needs to mean something to you, or displayed in a space that means something to you, that has your heart in some way.
  • It needs to be photographed in a space – so if it is an object that you have made, it needs to be photographed in an interesting space – not necessarily a plush-deluxe room, but just a space (it can be inside or outside, but preferrably inside)
  • It needs to be subtle, not loud and overbearing – but inviting and gentle. Remember the ‘where’s wally?’ books? Well think of that as a guidance. Imagine looking at an image and trying to find where the heart is in it.
  • The image needs to be a certain size and quality to be able to be published – I will write up the dimensions needed in coming posts.
  • Some ideas:

    I won’t go into too much detail here but just enough to get you thinking about your own direction…

  • You could make a little pillow out of some of your dad’s old shirts and place it in a bedroom setting.
  • You might love music and have a crappy old retro radio – you could cut a heart shape into the speaker and ‘place’ it in an interior setting.
  • A little heart shape cut out of your favourite fabric and stuck on your favourite wall of your home.
  • An example of a perfectly befitting image for the book from Maria Stijger, can you see the heart?


    Some tips:

    If you are a crafty person but feel you are no good at photography then ask a friend who is good at photography and ask them to help you to best display your piece. The image is very important as the final picks will be chosen from the quality of the image that best showcases your work.

    Use my moodboard (it will stay posted in the Artist Studio) to inspire you with the colour preferences – images will be chosen and edited with these colour preferences in mind. The look will be neutrals with splashes of colour, but if you feel you just want to send something in anyway that doesnt fit the colour preference do so – I will consider it on its ability to fit into the project as a collection and it just may fit perfectly. And you can give me permission to play with the colours in post-production or if you want the image to remain true to your original then state so.

    Use your strengths – if you have a passion for drawing then draw, if you fancy yourself a painter then paint, if you cook then cook, if you love woodworking, then woodwork!

    Think of your heart as a ‘happy accident’ and work with that in mind.

    Use inspiration from this post – I have included links to some great flickr collections and photographers that are very inspiring.

    Multiple submissions are accepted, as well as multiple images as the best of the best will be chosen. Close-up images of your piece will also be accepted if it is with an image of the object in a setting. Series are also accepted, as is text.

    Put your heart into the work. Sloppiness or laziness, or simply just entering something to get your name in the collection is easily recognised by myself and my team, and most likely will not be chosen.

    I will endeavor to offer advice and guidance when I can to individuals through posts and comments.

    So if you bake, get baking!

    photographed by Petrina Tinslay, courtesy of the F8 photo Library.

    If you love taking pictures, take pictures! In time you will begin to see heart shapes in the most peculiar yet magnificent of spaces…
    beaumitchell-flickr-heart-grass.jpgimage by beau mitchell.

    see the simple things and happy heart accidents around your own home…


    flickr-i-love-sociology-meh.jpgimage by Mehran Heidarzadeh.

    be patient and thoughtful and your ideas will start to flow…

    lejson-flickr-heart-cloud.jpgImage by Lejson.

    Final Notes:

    Not all work will be able to be in the final compilation, but all work submitted that is of a high standard I will display in posts and you will always be linked back. The final compilation will be submitted for publication once the selection is complete. There will be a good notification of deadline dates in posts. Entries are open to ALL, with or without blogs but people with ease to internet access and good contact details for purchases will be preferred so that readers will be able to buy your work. All photographs will be credited accordingly and a reference guide will be included at the end of the book so that all readers can contact you, your shop, or company. The purpose of this collective is to showcase creative individuals to a worldwide audience, to promote handmade and the reuse of materials, to promote and to bring awareness to sustainable growth. This is a not-for-profit project. Any profit generated directly from funds of the book will go to the curator’s chosen foundation for promoting basic human rights. Details of this will be posted about in the lead up to publication.

    And the more who know about this project the better it will be, so please post about this project and send to your friends, family, colleagues, and whoever! This is a collective project which means it is about sharing and giving, it will shine with each of our input.

    Thanks everyone, I am so hoping you will participate, it is going to be alot of fun and I’m more than excited to be creating something that involves all of you. Happy hearting!

    « « « Leave a comment » » »


    1. Uncle Beefy says

      Well, Pia…it sounds like a marvelous concept! Is there a proposed deadline or am I just jumping the gun? I’ll keep my camera in hand and we’ll see what happens. Thanks for such creative thoughtfulness. ๐Ÿ™‚

      January 16th, 2008 | #

    2. alyson says

      oh I love this idea!! I hope to join in.

      January 16th, 2008 | #

    3. Caroline says

      I look forward to hearing more! This is an intriguing project. ๐Ÿ™‚

      January 16th, 2008 | #

    4. Mag says

      What an idea!!! I’ll find myself looking for hearts everywhere now…

      January 16th, 2008 | #

    5. Mary-Laure says

      Hi Pia, I haven’t read Robinson Crusoe but the South African writer JM Coetzee, in his novel ‘Foe’, imagined that a woman was stranded with Robinson and Friday, and he tells the story from her point of view. It’s a book I really love.
      Also, I just left you a comment in your post on Kenya (the picture of the little boy in front of the wall) but for some reason it still says ‘No Comments’ after the post so I am pasting hereunder what I wrote there:
      Hi Pia. this is indeed a beautiful and moving picture. I spent 2 BLISSFUL years in Kenya as a child, so I am very upset and distraught about what is going on there right nowโ€ฆ Kenya always has been and always will be in my heart of hearts.
      I really like it that your blog features not just gorgeous images but also reminders of whatโ€™s going on in the world. I also discovered the blog Afropolitan through your blog, and itโ€™s great so thank you!

      January 17th, 2008 | #

    6. Pia says

      I’m so thrilled you all like this idea! Uncle Beefy, I haven’t proposed a deadline yet as I’d like to see what comments we get, and get an idea of who might get involved and as soon as a few submissions come through we can see what direction we head in and then I will deadline it – I want this to be really divine. The stylist in me will be wanting to make this as spectacular as possible.

      Mary-Laure, I did get your previous comment thank you so much. I have my comments on ‘awaiting moderation’ to avoid spam so there might be a time delay. I loved reading about your time in Kenya, and love your comments in general, they are so full of detail and very inspiring and thought provoking. I will have to get that book you mentioned and read it after i finish robinson, thank you for letting me know!!

      January 17th, 2008 | #

    7. joslyn says

      i have been in a creative slump…this is just the thing to break it…

      January 17th, 2008 | #

    8. Viola says

      I love how you introduced the concept, with your trove of inspirations and thoughts. I’m ready to jump in…

      January 17th, 2008 | #

    9. French boy says

      There is also a very good version of Robinson Crusoe by french author Michel Tournier: “Vendredi ou les Limbes du Pacifique”. It exists in a version for kids “Vendredi ou la Vie sauvage”.

      January 17th, 2008 | #

    10. mo says

      i love this idea and it is so perfect for my current wandering heart.

      January 17th, 2008 | #

    11. Liberty Post Editor says

      Hello from Canada! I would be thrilled to participate. Thank you so much for the invitation.

      January 17th, 2008 | #

    12. victoria says

      to where should i direct my heart shape?

      January 17th, 2008 | #

    13. marie says

      ooh i can’t wait!

      January 17th, 2008 | #

    14. amy says

      what a fabulous idea. heart.

      January 17th, 2008 | #

    15. Meredith says

      Hello! How would you like the submissions to be routed? I have one on hand right now that I would love to send to you. I just happened to find your blog via this project via Design*Sponge, and I would like to share my favorite found heart photo with your project!

      January 17th, 2008 | #

    16. kelly rae says

      this is such a great idea. i have a small flickr set of heart-shapes here:

      January 17th, 2008 | #

    17. jo says

      oh what a wonderful project! i hope i can participate ๐Ÿ™‚ i will start searching for my heart this minute!

      January 17th, 2008 | #

    18. Anna Spiro says

      Love the idea of this Pia – thanks for letting me know! I have just posted about the project on ABT today! I’ll try to come up with something to submit. Where do we email the submissions to as I can’t see an email address?? Thanks again!

      January 17th, 2008 | #

    19. Pina says

      A great idea, Pia! I would like to participate.
      Anyway, one of my photos with a heart shape is already posted on my blog (January 11, 2008).

      January 17th, 2008 | #

    20. Sarah Walker says

      Found this via ABT and have posted details on my blog – along with a couple of images that I knew I had lurking in my albums. Not up to the standard required but you have inspired me to go searching……. thank you.

      January 17th, 2008 | #

    21. Laura says

      Hi Pia,
      I love your blog and this wandering heart idea. The strange thing is, I found a heart today while cooking after reading about your idea yesterday. Thank you for sparking my creative side again. I may not have even noticed the heart the onion.

      January 18th, 2008 | #

    22. Julie Neill says

      my heart leaps up at the idea of this! what a wonderful project.
      i am thinking…………….

      January 18th, 2008 | #

    23. hrsj says

      Pia- This is a beautiful and intriguing concept. I would love to be part of this project.
      {I found you through a link of Perfectbound blog}
      Your blog is beautiful and I look forward to returning.

      January 18th, 2008 | #

    24. Peggy says

      Hi Pia. I discovered your link from midcenturyjo. Reading about looking for your heart brought tears to my eyes. I really felt what you are saying. It’s only in the last several years that I have acknowledged that I am an artist. I will be making a submission to this project. Thanks so much for the inspiration!

      January 19th, 2008 | #

    25. Aja says

      This is such a wonderful, wonderful idea. Like Peggy I got linked here by Desire to Inspire, and I’m so glad I did. I’m going to post about this on my blog and encourage all my artist friends to do this – and maybe we can do a spontaneous creative project of our own, inspired by yours. Yay. ♥!!!!!

      January 20th, 2008 | #

    26. Vicki S. says

      I love this project. I started collecting photos of hearts (not man-made) that started showing up in my life just as my first son was leaving to go away to college. I was hurting so much at that time and I just thought that they were showing up to help me through. They are so meaningful to me as I don’t look for them anywhere, they simply show up. I would love to share them with you. Just tell me how.

      January 21st, 2008 | #

    27. Marta Figueroa says

      i have a flickr heart set, too ๐Ÿ™‚

      January 21st, 2008 | #

    28. Jen says

      hi pia jane. thanks for checking out my site. i would love to be a part of this project. i am so excited to have something to work on. i’ll be on the lookout for a special heart.

      January 24th, 2008 | #

    29. Trudi Sissons says

      Hurray!!! A girl after my very own hearts! I already have two photographed! What are the next steps~?



      February 15th, 2008 | #

    30. David Gerritsen says

      Dear Pia,

      I gladly enter my Valentine. You can find it at the URL in the website address above.

      Best regards, David

      February 16th, 2008 | #

    31. dalhia says

      I love your hearts and look forward to entering a piece. Hearts have been a topic in my art work for a while. I have a series where Hearts have taken center stage in a number of mixed media paintings. I have just finished creating a hat call (fascinator: I carry my heart on my head)I also create a pin cushion called (warm heart) made out of felted old wool sweaters. My biggest issue will be getting nice photographs. Please put me on your list, you can see my pieces at

      February 16th, 2008 | #

    32. Cheri Clarke says

      I am going to use this to motivate my high school Advertising Design students to “think outside the box!”. They are so into love and relationships, I hope they buy into this! They have SOOOO much talent!

      February 23rd, 2008 | #

    33. Love « Jenipher’s Blog says

      […] Photo Source […]

      February 22nd, 2010 | #

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