Celebrating Olympic Aya

August 5, 2012

 

Runner design by Vector GraphicsThis week I have been blessed to be able to follow all the amazing physical feats of the athletes in London for  2012 Olympics.  Seeing the wonderful array of countries  represented has been a true treat for this “student of the world” !!  One of  the things we all admire about the Olympic athletes is how much they have gone thru and endured to get to the level of performance we see during the games. This concept of endurance and resourcefulness  is expressed in the Adinkra  symbols as Aya. If the Olympics had been developed in Ghana the medals probably would have  had the  Aya symbol engraved on them.   It is said that those who wear the symbol  have truly endured many adversaries and outlasted much difficulty – something I am sure the Olympians could easily discuss with us. 

Aya represents endurance

Adinkra symbol Aya represents endurance

 

I have  enjoyed seeing the tweets of support for these amazing athletes from around the world in my Twitter timeline.  This morning I received  several  RT ‘s  from @Afridiziak that she received via the UK Postal Service (@PostOffice) about the stamps they have created celebrating UK gold medalists.  Here is the stamp they have created for the UK Olympian Mo Farah.  He truly is an athlete that exemplifies  the concept of the Aya symbol during his career as a long distance runner. 

So this is a salute to celebrate the wonderful athletes and the strong message they tell the world  — Wave the flag of Aya over  all you do and you will see amazing results.

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Ok so here we are at the end and I had a really hard time with Z!!!   So I leave you with a ZoomDo – a  craft to create your very own Adinkra t-shirt to sport this summer.   It is a pretty simple activity and over at PBS kids they have instructions for creating a  an Adinkra stamp and then use fabric paint to design your t-shirt.    The design process can be used for other creative projects like wall art.    Enjoy!!

 

 

Adinkra t-shirt craft

Zoom Do

I came across this cute Adinkra Magnet  craft over at the blog  Sacred Arts.  I love that it is simple but allows the crafter to create a colorful  Adinkra magnet as beautiful dimensional expressions.   Cori Lynn  offers a great tutorial with pictures on how to create these magnets using inexpensive coasters glue and a magnetic sheet.   The most time-consuming part of this project is allowing the glue to dry.  I have put this one on our list of crafts to include when we study West Africa!!  I think you could take this craft and use it to create many different unique magnets…Chineese letters, Yoruba numbers,  Swahili words and sooooo much more.  So head over to Sacred Arts and get started !  Please share the pics of all your beautiful creations and I promise to update here as we create our magnets too!!

Adinkra symbol Magnets

Adinkra Magnets from Sacred Arts

United from A to Z

April 26, 2012

As this A to Z challenge rolls on and heads towards its close I am inspired to remark on the sense of unity  I have discovered.   Despite having a very difficult time keeping pace this past week due to illness…..I have continued to feel a part of this A to Z train!   Seeing all the #atozchallenge tweets and reading posts has been what made me try so hard to find a way to push through!  And now that I am feelin’ better  I am so glad and thankful for all the A to Z pull!! 

Unity togetherness

Adinkra symbol Bese Saka represents Unity, power and togetherness

 So for the letter U – I stand United with my fellow a to z bloggers.  Tha adinkra symbol BESE SAKA represents unity, power and togetherness.   I think it is the symbol that most accurately represents this challenge.  The symbol visually represents cola nuts which is an agricultural product with an important role in Ghana and has influence in bringing people together.  That is how I see the A to Z challenge an important influencer to bring folks together – So powerful!!

Heres to a fantastic finish!

One of the reasons I love Adinkra symbols and have committed to “studying” them is their long history.  It fascinates me that these symbols have been passed down for so many generations in Ghana. They are some what unique because they are a printed form of communication and historically many African traditions are oral.   This is not to say that there are not other traditional written or printed expression on the African continent because there are others for sure!!  I plan to one day explore those too!   

Available at Africancraft.com
Adinkra Stamps

The methods used to print the Adinkra symbols have been passed down too.   Traditionally the symbols are carved into calabash.  The symbol is then printed on fabric using beautiful dyes.   The cloth that is created is a beautiful expression from the printer.   We now have many ways to “create” the Adinkra symbols but it is really important to remember the traditional ways and not lose this knowledge.   One day soon I would like to try my hand at printing on some cloth –  I will be sure to share the fun here.   

Here is a video featuring the Adinkra printing tools with explanation of some of the symbols.  Unfortunately I could not embed the video but click the link and Enjoy!

Getting this up a little late…..had to spend a lot of time last night working on a video for my girls group at church!  So sending out my apologies but now for the task at hand….. the letter F!

Fawahodie is the Adinkra symbol the symbolizes freedom!  It has become my favorite because when we have true freedom we live without restriction or inhibition!!  It is a concept that I am always striving to move forward…..As a Christian I believe I should walk easier because Jesus offers me freedom….As an African-American I believe my ancestors worked so that I can experience a life without boundaries in this country……as an Artist I believe a free mind is the place where creativity blooms. I think have to work together to further Freedom around the world for men women and children.

As we move into the Spring season I think we all feel a sense of freedom from the cold winter……what are you doing to express your freedom?

 

 

Adinkra symbol for Freedom

Fawahodie Adinkra symbol

Sankofa Art

March 7, 2012

The Adinkra symbol Sankofa is a powerful statement to many across the African Diaspora.  For many of us it represents  our strong desire to reach back…way back to our ancestral home and learn about the culture our forefathers and mothers had to leave behind.  We have much of that culture within us and we don’t even know it!

As a salute to this powerful symbol that stands as  a strong reminder of our journey to African knowledge I would like to share this photo of the artwork by Goddess Angelika   I am so happy to see my enlightened Brothers and Sisters sharing the knowledge of the beautiful Adinkra symbols. This trend of sharing is the key for us all to join the powerful Sankofa journey.

Sankofa by Goddess Angelika

Adinkra symbol Sankofa

For more African cultural expressions thru poetry and art visit Goddess Angelika Tumblr

Sankofa thoughts

July 14, 2011

Sankofa Adinkra symbol

Sankofa- return and obtain what was left behind

Beautiful words to remind us about

the importance of embracing the concept of

Sankofa

For Africa to me… is more than a glamorous fact. It is a historical truth

  No man can know where he is going unless he knows exactly where he has been

and exactly how he arrived at his present place”

………Maya Angelou

Maya Angelou

Maya Angelou

Adinkra symbol for Change

Mmere Dane is the Adinkra symbol for Change

Just learned about a great organization  that is working to support positive change around the globe!!  Sevenly is a fantastic organization focused on supporting Charities that make a difference.  Each week Sevenly partners with one charity to raise funds thru the sale of a unique t-shirt design.   This week  (July 3) they have partnered with Hope International to offer families in Congo a chance to change their lives and escape poverty.   

Please consider supporting this organization with the purchase of a t-shirt!   For every shirt sold $7  is donated to the charity of the week. 

Also be sure to link up with them on twitter and facebook to see the new charity t-shirt each week!

Charity of the week - Hope International

Sevenly -t-shirts that make change happen

Photo Fun
Dumpr – Photo Fun

Dedicating this post to the celebration of Women during the Month of March!   Ladies we all must remember that Duafe is a special thing !  We know that being a woman is so much more than wearing a skirt or curing our hair!   As women  God has given us very special gifts!  We nurture  the world and make it beautiful in sooo many ways…..THIS is OUR POWER!  Remember that anything that interferes with your ability to nurture self and those you cherish ……it is wrong!   Stay positive, peaceful and beautiful!

Are you planning anything special this month to celebrate women?  I would love to hear about it ….pls share here!

Also – Get your own copy of this Sisters design here –>

http://www.zazzle.com/sisters_mug-168950139092428477?gl=KAMAU66&lon=0