For example - did you know that each of those crazy little shapes on the outside of a pineapple is a "berry" - and that they are considered "multiple fruits" - not one delicious ring-shaped thingy?
It's also sort of a mathematical miracle.
The fruit of a pineapple is arranged in two interlocking helices, eight in one direction, thirteen in the other, each being a Fibonacci number.
When I was an early teen, I worked at the health food store my mom worked at - and I learned many amazing things (and also some completely made up things, if I'm going to be honest) about the medicinal properties of natural foods, and one of the things I learned was that bromelain - which is extracted from a pineapple and concentrated - is a powerful meat tenderizer AND can really reduce the appearance of a bruise. #truefactsofthepineapple
I think the first time I was introduced to it as a symbol was through someone in our church - I believe a German or possibly a Scandinavian - our pastor was Norwegian - who told me it was a symbol to welcome people into your home.
As a person whose life mission it is NEVER to have anyone ring either my doorbell or my cell phone (cue the misophonia), I can't really appreciate that aspect of the pineapple BUT I love the origin of that symbolism, which is that sailors who traveled to tropical lands, would post a pineapple on a stick at their homes to tell people they were back temporarily from their dangerous sailing adventures and were accepting visitors for a brief time.
The difference is they didn't have a loud clangy doorbell back then screwing up their voiceover and scaring their animals. People probably saw the pineapple and softly knocked, like civilized residents of the planet Flat Earth. I wonder what the opposite of a pineapple on a stick is? What fruit or veggie would tell people to quit ringing your doorbell and go away - okra? Green bell peppers? Durian?
ANYWAY - the pineapple is gorgeous in both form and function - it is perhaps my first memory of eating fruit in my life, and I'm still a huge devotee. I love it any way anyone wants to prepare it - fresh, canned, grilled, on or off pizza, upside-down in something, on a sundae - it's all good.
I do also love its stately nature and it's terrific as an art project.
So I wanted to hop with a few uber-talented friends of mine today to celebrate the pineapple. Be sure and visit all the blogs, because my sweet friends at Hero Arts will have prizes if you do - some in the form of pineapples, if you so choose :).
When I got their color layering pineapple bundle, I was super torn. I had an idea in mind with the coordinating pineapple die, but I kept coming back to the idea of the pineapple as a symbol of connectedness to other people, and I really had a specific person in mind when I settled on a design for my card. So I grabbed one of my favorite dies in the world and tried it out.
The pineapple stamp is a 3-step layering stamp, a.k.a. a MISTI ideal set, and they have little ink cube packs that coordinate with this set and others, so I grabbed the one for this set and used it to create a sort of muted pineapple.
With the MISTI, lining it all up and getting it right was easy - my challenge came with the die cutting. I was scared to death!
But I lined up the prayers die across the pineapple after stamping in what looked like the center to me, although I'll freely admit that's not really my spiritual gift.
Then I die cut it, and carried the whole sandwich - both plates and all to my desk so that I didn't lose any of the pieces, and I left them on the sticky side of a post-it note while I worked on the main part of the die cut.
After that, I smooshed Versamark onto the die cut sentiment and embossed it in clear just so that it would stand out a bit, even though I wasn't making it dimensional. I really wanted the image to be the star.
Die cut inlay is one of those zen-inducing craft activities like zentangling or swatching your watercolor. You have to focus enough that you forget everything else, but also relaxing and not frustrating. It's like jigsaw puzzles for papercrafters.
So go see what my friends are up to today!
The Hero Arts Blog