Kim Stewart

Canadian Métis Artist

not for the faint of heart

my opinionsKim StewartComment

My days have settled into a peaceful routine. I have finished two large freelance jobs and I now have time to relax. I am still teaching Digital Art and Media at the College of New Caledonia, but the class will finish by the end of April. What will I do with all that free time? My kids are still in school until June 29th and there will only be me and the dogs here most days. I am thinking this would be a great time to finish smoke-tanning my deer hides. It is an unusual hobby, but one that I really enjoy. Nothing feels softer, or smells better than homemade leather. I am hoping to finish 3 deer, one moose, a buffalo robe and a bear skin rug. The deer, moose and buffalo were killed by others for food, and it seemed a shame to waste the hides so they brought them to me. Sorry, I guess this post is not for the faint of heart. This work can be messy and smelly. And those of you who have emotional feelings about using animal skin for clothing may not like what you hear. In my defense, I am doing the same work that my great-grandmother and her family did when my dad was a boy. The resulting garments are ecologically congruent in that they will wear long, and return to organic material to nourish the earth when we are done with them. In contrast, think about what happens to those lovely synthetic garments once they hit the landfill. Post a comment and tell me about your own interesting projects you've planned for this spring.