By Erika Swinson from Elkton, MD
Dream Theme: Health
What is the story behind your panel?
“My dream for a better future has evolved during the making of this panel. At first I was thinking about the role nutritous foods play in so many of the themes explored in the Dream Rocket project. If everyone had nutritious food to eat, a basic need would be met that might lead to healthier more productive and happy people all over the world. In my mind, this sentiment covered health, poverty, peace, science/technology, community, etc. Starting from this point I created the background of my panel.
The background is done in shades of yellow with triangles of red, orange, and yellow radiating around the edges and is symbolic of sunlight and joy, the perfect background for my vision. The four birds are blue with sqirling white lines and I think of them as the wind and rains that nurture and provide. I wanted to use bright colors not just so that they can be seen from far away on the rocket but also as a symbol of my hope for a brighter tomorrow.
Rather than food for the center, I came up with the idea of baskets. The baskets appealed to me both as a more traditional quilting symbol and as a broader symbol fo all that we might share with each other. In this way my thinking moved from food to any of the gifts, skills, or talents people might share to help make all the burdens of living more manageable. Thus, they are different colors and can be broadly seen as whatever abundance the viewer envisions as their gift for others.
So my dream for the future is wrapped up in the idea of abundance, the abundance of almost anything we can share with each other in order to end poverty, encourage health, push for the positive progress of science and technology, grow our communities, spread the value of peace, etc. I believe that the abundance of the unique gifts each of us brings to our lives, when shared with others, is most promising foundation for a better world to come. In this way, my dream is for a better tomorrow by working each day with what all of us can contribute for a better today.”