It's Tasha Tudor's birthday today and since I've always been a big fan of her books and art and the way she celebrated holidays, I decided to celebrate! Clarice from Storybook Woods is hosting Tasha Tudor Day again this year so if you would like to see what others around the world are doing to celebrate this day, check in and read her blog comments.
I honored Tasha Tudor by playing in my watercolors. I am fairly certain that she did not "play" in her paints since she was a commercial artist who used her art to "feed the wolf" as she once said. But I'd like to think that once in awhile she took time to just enjoy her painting as a means of recreation and inspiration. I painted four small cards and I must say that even though they are very simplistic, they took quite a little time to do. It makes me appreciate the time and effort that artists take to produce a worthy piece.
Our children grew up on Tasha Tudor books. I was always grateful that our library had an extensive Tasha Tudor book collection and I'm sure we checked out every single one of them. I always liked the way Tasha created borders around her pictures. Tasha said:
I've always done borders of sticks or ribbons or flowers around my illustrations and I don't even know why I decided to. I don't even remember when I didn't. People like to find things in them. Another appeal of my drawings, I think, is that they are done from actuality, not imagined. I know which side a cow is milked from, and what side you should mount a horse from, and how to make a haystack. It's not made up. The people in my pictures are my own grandchildren and friends, and the surroundings are drawn from my surroundings. The flowers are growing wild in my fields or are from my garden. People who come to visit say, "Oh, it's like walking into one of your illustrations."
This picture comes from a book I own called The Private World of Tasha Tudor
I love to identify all the wildflowers and garden flowers from Tasha's borders, and I know that the flowers she chooses for her borders are the very ones blooming during that time of year. She doesn't just slip in a daisy or a strawberry because it would look pretty. If it isn't in the season of the illustration, it does not belong.
This afternoon I enjoyed a simple Tea for One -- Chai tea served in a kitten china mug and banana bread with butter. I imagined that Tasha would have fixed herself a simple tea like this after a morning of painting illustrations. Do you think she would have liked my kitten mug?
Happy Birthday, Tasha! It's been fun knowing you!