I just received word that a good friend, Witt Pratt, a dear deep luscious soul of great beauty and creativity, is no longer alive in this world. I'm in a state of shock with the news. He was such a delight in my life and even though I didn't know him long before he moved from the city, he gave of himself with every interaction. He was the sort of guy who would light up every room he walked into.
I had the chance to interview him for White Crane a few years ago. I so loved interviewing him for the issue, which was on "Craft." He was a friend, but he was more importantly, a man who had dedicated his life to making beauty without making any excuses for it:
Well, I think that whether its hobby or salvation or occupation or preoccupation, it depends on how we look at it. I do believe that as difficult as it may be that it is possible for us to decide that we would rather spend our lives expressing ourselves in that way. In my case the expression is with knitting, in somebody else’s case with making really amazing cakes, or whatever. Sometime ago I decided to do that. But it took a conscious decision and it took a lot of conscious effort to bring what had been a hobby or a pastime into a more enriching and focal position in my life.
By its own being, it is creation in motion. Like so many things if we take the time to notice, when you’ve got a ball of yarn, which to many of us represents nothing short of infinite possibility, the world just opens up before you. I consider myself extremely fortunate to have found this for myself. Knitting can be practical, it can be nonsensical, it can be insanely complex or completely simple. There’s beauty in all of it if you take the time to notice it. I’m thankful to be able to notice that and just want for everyone to find something in the world that they can notice that enriches them similarly.
The excerpted interview is here: http://www.whitecranejournal.com/65/art6510.asp
In his memory, whether you knew him or not, I invite you to pay attention to your surroundings, to speak about the beauty you see, to go out of your way to make others happy in their day. This was what he taught me by his presence and his example. My thoughts are with his beloved Gary who I know is deeply missing his fere, his companion, his heart. I know he was so close to his beloved mother Bobbie, and my heart goes out to her as well.