I’m an artist.
There are ways you can say that sentence so that you sound very pretentious, and also ways to say it that sound broke and poverty-stricken. When I think, “I’m an artist”, I’m thinking it in a fulfilling way. I’m an artist, so there is a purpose to what I do.
When I first realized I was an artist, my best friend was writing her applications to grad school for art history. I was editing her personal statement over and over again. She wrote about her ideas for research projects, mainly how the physical body is connected to art through plastic surgery. The idea that art can take non-traditional forms like plastic surgery caused me to ponder my passions in life. Were any of them art forms?
My passion in life is healthy cooking and decisions. I prefer a holistic approach to health, and believe that food should strengthen our bodies and allow us to heal ourselves. Sometimes health food has bad connotations; people can assume things like “healthy” granola and flax muffins can be devoid of any good texture and taste. What I try to do is prove them wrong.
We can find enjoyment in health food, as well as nourishment.
When I invite people over for dinner, I am keenly aware that I am inviting them into my world. People often have preconceived notions about wholesome, vegan food that can negatively affect how they experience it. When people come over, I will often make a huge pot of curry sweetened with sweet potatoes, or tacos with tempeh and fresh, homemade corn tortillas. I don’t let them know its vegan until after they’ve taken a few bites and start complimenting me on the wonderful meal. The satisfaction I get after seeing their surprised looks as they realize its vegan makes me realize I am like an artist enjoying admiration for an exquisite painting.
Healthy food that tastes as good as it is for you is my art form. Nutrition, healthy choices, and a holistic approach to health are my mediums.
The other morning a friend of mine had spent the night. I got up before the sunrise to grind wheat and buckwheat and make butter-soymilk for pancakes. As my friend stumbled into the kitchen and grabbed a fresh mug of dark, robust coffee, I mixed the pancake batter so it could rest. The sun was dark orange in the window, and I sliced bananas and strawberries for the pancakes. While they browned in the warm pan, my friend picked out some melodies on his banjo in the morning light. Setting a plate with a crisp, golden pancake in front of him, I thought to myself, “This beautiful moment I’ve created—this is a piece of art I have formed.”
Everyone wants to be an artist, secretly. We are attracted to the carefree, bohemian lifestyle. A lack of talent, creativity or simply fear of the broke loft-living connotations cause us to believe we are not really artist potential.
But if we look deep within ourselves, I think we will all find the art medium we are passionate about. We are all artists, no matter how pretentious or broke that sounds.
- 1 Cup of some combination of wheat, buckwheat and oat flours (I like to grind mine fresh, but any will do)
- 1 Cup soymilk with a teaspoon of apple cider vinegar added
- 1 Teaspoon of ground flax seeds
- 1 Tablespoon baking powder
- 1 Teaspoon cinnamon
- 1 Teaspoon cornstarch (organic if possible)
- 1 Teaspoon coconut sugar
- 1 Teaspoon vanilla extract
- Sliced bananas and strawberries
- Mix vinegar into soymilk while you measure and mix dry ingredients so the soymilk has time to sour. Once the dry ingredients have been mixed, add the vanilla to the soymilk and stir into the dry ingredients. Don’t over stir, as soon as it is fully incorporated let it sit while you heat up the pan.
- In an oiled pan over medium heat, drop ¾ cups of batter at a time. You may have to use a spatula and help them spread out. While the first side is browning, arrange the bananas and strawberries in the top. After around 3-4 minutes, they’ll be ready to flip. Once you flip them, let them sit for another 4-5 minutes so the fruit can caramelize on the bottom, then remove and enjoy!
Love elephant and want to go steady?
Assistant Editor: Holly Horne/Editor: Bryonie Wise
Photo: Yarden Sachs, Flickr