This is only a small part of a larger sketch made as our last assignement for school; we were meant to imagine a "room of nature" that we knew well and felt something for and then recreate that place on paper. I had a hard time coming up with an idea because even though there are plenty of beautiful green memories to choose from, I couldn't at the top of my head think of one that was more than that.
But then I remembered my days in kindergarden: located in a very rural area of the suburb and surrounded by woods, we had plenty of nooks to explore as kids, but there was this one spot that everybody always could agree on.
At the very far end of the main play area - where the swings were and from where one could swoosh down the hill with our skateboards or, in winter, our sleds, back towards the house - there was a small gate leading into the trees.
The kindergarden was situated on a ridge and the treeline here at the back grew on a slope which we had to move down by way of gingerly paths around slippery tree roots and boulders large as trolls. But at the bottom of that slope, the trees suddenly opened up to a meadow that seemed always to be in bloom, even in winter (if only in our minds); somtimes we'd play in the tall grass, petting ladybuds and other creeping things, and sometimes we'd venture even further, through an opening at one end of the field, that led through an even denser forest, where light and shadow would play with us, and opened up a world just edging our comfort area and where the largest pine tree we knew lived.
I took the word "kernel" to mean "core", "essence", "heart"; "origin" et cetera. And I meant for this story to show how small, seemingly unimportant things can live on and grow into something of magical proportions. I don't know how much of that experience is due to my own personality or how much of my self now is in response to experiences such as that, but I do know (or think I do) that those isolated, half invented memories, are still influencing me today.
This sketch was actually only a small part on a much larger paper, and I only discovered it by chance while photographing the developement of the painting, hidden as it was among the rubble.
I've got to show you a classmate's interpretation - she had a similar thought, with a memory of walking through a forest and suddenly coming across a shaft of light sweeping down through the trees, and birds and butterflies playing in that suspended moment.
I thought she caught that moment beautifully, the moment when you feel you've glimpsed the essence of what this world can be:
Painting by Annika Elvnäs.