22 May 2011


In one week today, Minto Park in Centretown Ottawa will transform into a celebration of art, music, skill-sharing and kindness toward women.  In other words, the Ravenswing Craft and Zine DIY Fair will take over for an afternoon. 

In June 2005, Festrell (aka Faye) and I began Ravenswing as a monthly craft and zine fair at Jack Purcell Community Centre.  With a mutual love for zines and independent art, we brought together a small community of zinesters and crafters and poured our time and love into organizing the fair. 

In January 2006, Festrell made a zine for Ravenswing with vendor's bios, a list of skill-sharing workshops and short articles by her and me.  Reading this issue was nostalgic for me.  Following is an excerpt of my impressions of our second-ever Ravenswing fair:

"Everybody's spirits at the fair was uplifting and positive.  Throughout the afternoon, I was surrounded by the fantastic buzz of people chatting.  Nothing compares to that sound of several conversations merging into the noise of an event.  You can get lost in it, trying to imagine what each conversation is about.  And people were talking about all kinds of things: crafting, writing, music, weddings, the art of culture in Canadian cities, and much more. 

I have high hopes for Ravenswing.  I can dream it as a space for people to gather, to share their creations, and to make a few bucks for a drink, for groceries, or for a new project to be unveiled at the next fair.  Nothing compares to the excitement of something green and wanted by the community.  I feel gloriously grateful to be helping organize an event that creates a space for us as artists to breathe in the city."

The zine itself was well designed by Festrell, filled with great backgrounds of found images in a cut-n-paste feel.  This year, we are going into our 5th annual outdoor fair and we are fortunate to have Festrell designing its program.  We will be giving out a limited number of copies throughout the day, so come early to make sure you get your copy.

See you there!  Fore more information on Ravenswing, see www.ravenswingottawa.com.