Friday, March 1, 2013

Challenge of Music Reveal!

It's here! The day has arrived for the Challenge of Music Reveal put on by Erin at Tesori Trovati or This challenge was all about letting the music move you to design or create or draw or in some way allow your artistic talent to flow.

To begin with I went to Pandora to listen to instrumental music, but nothing I heard really moved me. So next I dug through all my CD's. I found a CD that was a gift from a friend from South Africa back in 2009. The music is in the Xhosa (pronounced Cosa) language. It is one of the national languages of South Africa. While many in South Africa speak Africaans, Xhosa is a beautiful tonal language of clicks. There are five different types of clicks, each unique, which indicate vowels or consonants.

For an example of this very interesting language, go to this link, Xhosa. 

Now imagine hearing this in music. It is extremely interesting and beautiful. Something unique to hear.

As I listened to the music, I thought about our experiences in South Africa; the people we met, the places we went, the countryside & animals we saw. The singing has rises and falls with a variety of clicking. It brings to mind a variety of emotions; sadness, happiness, joy, and peace. All of these emotions were depicted in the land and people we saw.

This was the beautiful countryside at the game preserve where we stayed for a week north of Johannesburg in Mabula. We went on many game drives to take pictures. One day we were able to ride horseback through many acres and get close-up and personal with the wild animals. It was exciting and exhilarating!

There were many animals on this game preserve that in the U.S. we only see in zoos; such as, rhinoceros, hippos, zebras, elephants, giraffes, monkeys, warthogs, snakes, etc.. We had to keep the windows closed or the monkeys would come inside & get into everything, including the food. Also we didn't want the snakes to come inside either! The snakes there are ALL poisonous! We were happy the lions were in another area separate from the people and other animals.

These lions were at a different game preserve in Krugersdorp further south. We were able to watch this pride feed on a cow from one of the local farmers. We were in a small 4 door VW Golf car. The lions were as long as the car & almost as big. Needless to say, we stayed IN THE CAR! with the windows UP! But we were able to take many pictures from about 50 feet away. At one point, the male lion walked by our car & if we had put our hand out the window we could have touched him. However, we weren't that stupid!

Later we traveled further south to the Southern Cape, where we saw Right Sided Whales, Sharks, Great Whites, Penguins, Seals, Walrus, and other animals. This is a picture of Seal Island. It was beautiful! The water was so clear! The whales were as big as our boat but friendly. The sharks had no interest in the people swimming in the water, which we found very interesting! They feed only on the baby seals. :( It was baby season & we saw lots of babies! They were so cute. :)

Another area we visited was in Capetown. This was an area just outside of the city. On the one side is the mountains and on the other side of the city is the ocean. So diverse and so beautiful!

The people in South Africa are also diverse. Due to the political controversies and wars in neighboring countries, many people have been displaced to this country. There were immigrants from Angola, Cameroon, Malawi, Burundi, and more. 

We were in South Africa for 3 weeks. It was not long enough to see it all, but we thoroughly enjoyed our trip and would love to return.

My Challenge Project

I used copper wire, jade, blue multifaceted iridescent crystals, a variety of copper beads and iolite. All of these reminded me of the vibrant colors in South Africa of the land, the sky, the animals and the people. I also tried to depict the starts and stops (clicking) of the Xhosa language in the joining of the beads & elements. The focal is a round lapis piece. In South Africa, the people believe life on earth began there. So the circle is to represent the circle of life, in honor of their beliefs.

Here are the participants in this wonderful Musical Challenge by Erin! She is an inspiration to many & I hope you enjoy "hopping" from one blog to another to see how each was "inspired by the music". I know I will!

The Challenge of Music participants
Erin Prais-Hintz
Alenka Obid
Ali McCarthy
Alicia Marinache
Amy Severino
Amy Grass
Carolyn Lawson
Cece Cormier
Cynthia Riggs
 Ema Kilroy (bowed out)
Emanda Johnson
 Emma Todd
Erin Kenny
Evelyn Shelby
Evie and Beth McCord
 Gerd Andersson
Holly Westfall
 Jennifer Justman
 Jenny Davies-Reazor
 Jess Green
Judy Campbell
 Karla Morgan
Kay Thomerson (bowed out)
Kristina Johansson
Lola Surwillo
Lynn White (bowed out)
Malin de Koning
Mallory Hoffman
Mary K McGraw
Melissa Meman (bowed out)
Melissa Trudinger
 Michelle Escano
Michelle Bourbonniere
Michelle Heim (bowed out)
Michelle Mach
 Molly Alexander
Molly Schaller (bowed out)
Monique Urquhart
Niky Sayers
Pam Farren
Rebecca Anderson
 Sally Russick
Sharon Palac (bowed out)
Sharon Driscoll
Susan Kennedy
Tari Kahrs
Tracy Stillman (bowed out)
Veralynne Malone

Erin is already planning other Challenges: May is Literature, August is Travel, and November is Color. These should be interesting, inspiring, and, of course, CHALLENGING! Happy blogging and creating! Hope to see you soon!


  1. That sure is one interesting language (and an interesting country for that matter -- looked like you got to experience a lot in just a few weeks).

    The necklace is lovely and vibrant. I like how you wanted to weave in images from South Africa and elements of the Xhosa language in you creation.

  2. What a fun photojournal of SA! Your piece is so pretty too!!

  3. I tell you, I am learning soooo much from the hops. Such different music and inspiration. I went and watch the video clip. How cool is that! Makes me want to go to Africa....I can see the representation in the necklace, great work!!!! They would be proud! Thanks for the insight and new knowledge!

  4. What a profound journey to take - in my dreams only I am afraid - but I sure would love to go. I know the language that you speak of and have heard it before. The clicking sounds with their variances have a striking but lyrical quality to them. Thank you for sharing the photos and your necklace is a great representation of what you've seen and heard.

  5. Great post and great piece. Love all the nuances in the music that you described and the variety of life, people and colors that you depicted in your jewelry piece.

  6. This blog hop is so much fun and I am learning so much. Enjoyed your pictures of your trip and the description of Xhosa. Your necklace is lovely.

  7. What a wonderful trip, and experience. I can see why you selected that, as it is close to your heart. Your piece looks great - does it click a little when it moves?

  8. Thanks for sharing your African experience, Karla. The wonderful places, animals and especially the people! I would love to visit someday. Your necklace looks very ethnic... that lapis circle is a beautiful representation of the bonds we all share as tribes of this planet.

  9. Interesting post. Your necklace tells a story about the music of the Xhosa and the nature and the peoples of Southern Africa. I love the colors and the materials. It is a beautiful peace.

  10. You captured the spirit of the music and your trips!! Love the necklace!

  11. Such a cool story behind the design and music. I think your design is a perfect representation of the music, people and culture of South Africa. Beautiful job!

    :) Molly

  12. What a cool language (I had to go and listen). I love how you took your piece to interpret it - fabulous design!

  13. What an exquisite piece! Tribal and Elegant at the same time. Thanks for sharing the video about the clicking language.

  14. What great photos! That must of been the trip of a lifetime. I like all the symbolism that you used in your pretty necklace.

  15. Wow what an experience you had! I had to smile at the though of reaching out to pet the lion. I have a toddler with an active imagination and for at least the last six months she has been most convinced that she pet baby tigers. I assure you she has not! Anyway I think you have a beautiful piece to relay this expetience and musical language

  16. Amazing, the copper and blue/ green beads evoke the savanna and rich blue skies of SA so well :) Xhosa is such a fascinating language - so unique and almost otherworldly!

  17. I get excited when I see a heron or a deer... I can't even imagine seeing a rhino or a zebra roaming wild!

    Your necklace is quite beautiful. It's clear to see that you've been inspired by this beautiful environment and its people.

  18. What a wonderful post! I really enjoyed your explanations, descriptions, photos... it felt like a journey :) And your piece is just lovely! Thank you so much for sharing!

  19. What an amazing journey you experienced! Thank you for sharing such spectacular photos. Your necklace is so lovely, rich with all those wonderful colors in your photos:) My favorite part is how you used green on one end of your closure and blue on the other-fabulous!!!

  20. What a great post! I have learned so much through your experience in South Africa. What a beautiful land, beautiful people, beautiful wildlife! My daughter desperately wants to go on a safari someday and I would love to make that happen for her. Thank you for sharing this experience with us! I love your piece. I can see the bright blue skies and the colors of the veldt. The way you represented the Xhosa language is awesome! I am so glad that you played along with me! Enjoy the day. Erin


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