ABOUT

I am going to my own hearth-stone,
Bosomed in yon green hills alone, —
A secret nook in a pleasant land,
Whose groves the frolic fairies planned;
Where arches green, the livelong day,
Echo the blackbird’s roundelay,
And vulgar feet have never trod
A spot that is sacred to thought and God.

Ralph Waldo Emerson, ‘Good-Bye’

The moral law lies at the center of nature and radiates to the circumference. It is the pith and marrow of every substance, every relation, and every process. All things with which we deal preach to us. What is a farm but a mute gospel? The chaff and the wheat, weeds and plants, blight, rain, insects, sun—it is a sacred emblem from the first furrow of spring to the last stack which the snow of winter overtakes in the fields.

Ralph Waldo Emerson, ‘Nature’

Welcome! Thanks so much for visiting – I’m Kristin Haakenson, and I’m an artist & farmer telling stories with seasonal, liturgical illustrations through the lens of folklore.

I’m inspired by the interweaving of seasonal rhythms with liturgical celebration, a dynamic that has been illuminated and deepened by farm life for me. From this vantage point, I use my art to share stories using whimsical, woodland creatures as my storytellers – creating quiet little scenes that look with wonder at the sacred world.

An old soul at heart, I dive into rabbitholes of folklore and historical agrarian traditions that were grafted into liturgical celebrations. (The Medieval and Tudor periods are my favorite to look to!)

We farm a beautiful patch of land in Washington state, bordered on one side by a winding river, a wooded hillside on the other, and snow-capped mountains in the distance. In this valley, we raise a variety of animals and grow a plethora of fruits, vegetables, flowers, and grains. We also have pumpkin patches for harvest celebrations in October (and as a Halloween spirit myself, this is one of my favorite times of year on the farm!)

For Cecilia, the natural cycles of the year – light and dark, warm and cold, work and leisure – were strongly echoed in the ritual calendar. For many of us, religious rituals are comforting but somewhat distant from our everyday lives. For Cecilia, they often spoke not only about holy events and holy persons but also about her own life and her own experiences…

Judith M. Bennett, “A Medieval Life: Cecilia Penifader of Brigstock, c. 1295-1344”)

I’m a self-taught artist working in acrylics, colored pencil, & watercolor. My creating happens in a cozy studio, sheltered by a couple of maple trees that were planted at one of the original homestead sites here over a hundred years ago.

I also create other art series inspired by a sense of place + past – you can find my other work at khaakensonstudio.com.

All of my art is created in memory of my mother, Judy, and my sister, Kathy – the most effervescent, joyous, inspiring women. The world is a brighter place because of them. Their strength taught me to look for pockets of wonder everywhere, even when times are hard, and that’s what I hope to share through my work.

Thanks for following along on my journey – please reach out with any questions or thoughts!

Best wishes,
Kristin