For the last year, having undergone training with the Fellowship of Independent Celebrants, I have been working as a celebrant creating and delivering ceremonies for momentous occasions in people’s lives, such as weddings, vow renewals and funerals. I love the work – it’s an honour and a privilege to do it, and it’s rewarding on so many levels, particularly the funerals, where I meet people at what is often the most devastating times in their lives, and create for them a personal and meaningful farewell ceremony for their loved ones. I believe in offering choice and creating ceremonies that reflect THEIR values, beliefs and lifestyle. One of the roles I usually have as a celebrant is to write and read a eulogy or tribute for the departed, so I spend a while with their family finding out about their loved one’s life, achievements, attitude and hearing some great anecdotes. This has consolidated my belief that EVERYONE has a story, and I like to tell that as best I can at the funeral service with words.
But after the event, those stories are staying with me, and I find I am starting to tell them in images too – these anecdotes have started to feed my art work. I’m not 100% happy with the work so far and I’m not sure where I’m going with it, if anywhere, but I am enjoying honouring the people I never met in pictures as well as words, and hope they would be chuffed that a little bit of their life was being illustrated. Here’s what I’ve done so far….