This image came to me immediately when I read the caption Dana had invented. It lends itself well to the vector line tools in Illustrator. Two parallel lines heading off into the distance, but powered magically by something this girl, Stella, posesses. I enjoyed drawing Stella almost completely with the pen tool in illustrator after doing a quick pencil tool sketch on a layer below. using these perfectly calculated curve tools is an amazing pleasure after trying to perfect brush line drawings or technical pencil drawings to the point of precision. I’m still not sure why there is so much interest in mechanical line for me, right now, but I’m going to run with it. Maybe I’m just enjoying the new tools.
Here’s another story about Kildeer from my childhood, just to help put the name in perspective: My mom reminded me that the kildeer in our backyard used to make quite a lot of noise when she would hang the laundry. I remember we had dug a huge semi circle out of our hill where we were going to install one of those large above ground pools that were all the rage in the 80s. Friends of ours didn’t want it and we bought it off of them cheap. But by the time we were to set it up, our dog had chewed through a great deal of it. So instead of hustling to buy another pool (or get too upset at the dog), we turned the carved landscape into a “rock garden.” In addition to hanging our clothesline there, this place became a sanctuary for a beautiful poplar tree and beneath it on the ground the camouflaged nest of our beloved kildeer family.
Not able to leave well enough alone, however, my neighbor, Jeff Brogle, and I decided to “help” the kildeer mother (while she went off pretending to have a broken wing, see the first post: The Story of Kildeer) by keeping her eggs warm with our hands. These eggs are really hard to find in a rock garden because they look exactly
like rocks. But once we had, I proceeded to carefully place my hands over them. Jeff became impatient and decided to help. I’m sure in his account, he would say that I crushed them, but I distinctly recall him pressing down on my hands with a murderous grin. I was broken hearted, and relented to add this to my list of confusing interactions with my poor friend, Jeff. Needless to say, that kildeer family didn’t grow very large that summer. May Stella, in the drawing above with her immense imagination, pay tribute to that unfortunate bird, and may I learn to forgive Jeff for those many years of animal abuse. I hope if he has children by now, that he’s corrected what was irking him that day.