Tuesday, December 20, 2011

Winter's Tapestry

Days before the solstice, I'm so busy with end-of-year freelance deadlines that I can only snatch bits and pieces of time for myself. Trying to enjoy mild weather and the beauty of the season, weaving a tapestry of images and inspiration for the grey months to come. All I need is a unicorn!

From my recent trip to Boston, animals at Winslow Farm Animal Sanctuary - so lovely, I felt I'd stepped through a magic portal into a Loreena McKennitt song:)

This may be one of the favorite photos I've ever taken.

Taken yesterday in the park near my home. Unfiltered, abstract nature!

Remnants of autumn at the lake's edge.
Mr. Hawk, hunting in my yard on Saturday evening. Hope my birds and squirrels were safe.

Speaking of songs, The Mediaeval Baebes are working on a cd called The Huntress, due out early next year. Until Christmas, they are offering a free download of Veni Veni Bella. Visit the website and follow the links to beauty!!! Also enjoy the YouTube video. Could Emily BE any prettier!!!

Thursday, December 8, 2011

From Medieval to Morris

Last week, visited dear friend Jen Parrish in Boston and one outing was to see MAKING HISTORY: ANTIQUARIES IN BRITAIN at the McMullen Museum, Boston College. It was glorious early-winter weather on the collegiate Gothic campus, filling me with endless delight — so much so, I now feel I dreamed most of it.

One highlight (at least for me) of the collection included seeing this box!!! The back was open showing wooden drawers that pulled out and an extra key (amazing not lost in the pages of time) - one was in the front lock. Larger than I imagined - about a foot wide.

Medieval-style jewel casket belonging to Jane Morris, Dante Gabriel Rossetti (1828–1882) and Elizabeth Siddal (1829–1862), c 1859, wood bound with studded iron bands
Society of Antiquaries of London, Kelmscott Manor 202

This St. Catherine wall hanging was over the staircase going down to the second level of the exhibit space, hanging beside one of Morris' acanthus leaf wall hangings. Some areas are in relief, giving dimension to the details of garment and tree, positively glowing on the bronze velvet.

In addition, woodcuts illuminating Morris' Kelmscott press pages were on display with his own tools — beautifully simple, oak-handled stamps used for book binding decoration. A Burne-Jones cartoon for stained glass in a special Gothic-edged frame, Pugin architectural and furniture drawings were also breathtaking. Other works in this dreamlike landscape include a copy of the Magna Carta, the Lindsey Psalter, an enamel on copper Becket Casket, a gorgeous wood panel diptych of St. Paul's Cathedral and last, but not least - Edward Burne-Jones' tiles for The Legend of Good Wimmen.

No photography was allowed, so I made up for it outdoors, stunned by the ornamentation and Gothic spires of this place. 

This is the McMullen Museum!

St. Mary's Hall

Certainly not as ornate, but this reminds me a bit of Watts Chapel, Compton. The interior of the chapel was so dark, I couldn't see this with the naked eye, so I pointed the camera and got lucky.
Facade of St. Mary's
After drinking in all this beauty, Jen took me to The Publick House - yet another Gothic/Medieval-infused space with great pub fare (we had goat cheese + grape salad), washed down with dark ale and perfect company. Thank you once again.

Tuesday, December 6, 2011

Magick Indeed!

Many of you are likely aware of the auction on Live Journal to benefit Terri Windling — mythic author, artist and woman of too-many-talents to list with mere words. You can read all about it here. Many of my friends and online acquaintances are offering goods and services! Go shopping!!!

This just listed by Parrish Relics.


Dear friend Robin Wallace is offering reproductions of fine art original photography, and also tarot explorations.
Visit her newly created Violet Hour Tarot here and her auction here.
I nearly forgot about my own!!!
Up for grabs is a Celtic Tree of Life embroidered purse in a soft cotton velveteen in an earthy green.

All the auctions end December 15th, so you've time to buy for the holidays.
Or treat yourself!

Thursday, November 24, 2011

William Morris and Pre-Raphaelite puzzles

I recently bought BRITAIN magazine for a special feature on Scotland (for future travel inspiration - more on that as plans take shape) - this issue has an article celebrating 150 years of William Morris. In addition to the editorial, there are a few ads for products with his designs ranging from puzzles to needlepoint. I couldn't find Strawberry Thief offered on Wentworth's site although pictured in the ad (above), but did find a few other Morris favorites, like The Lion from his forest series. Really love this one. There is also at least one Rossetti and a Waterhouse currently on offer. As these puzzles are crafted from wood, they'd certainly provide years of enjoyment.

Monday, November 21, 2011

October, wherefore art thou?

I begin this post with a head-scratching lament of what happened to October. Where did she go? Now, we are nearly done with November and I must guess the time-snatching Goblins are at work here. In North Carolina, we've had some truly glorious autumnal weather and I've wandered my local woods as much as I can. Week before last, I attended the Carolina Renaissance Festival beneath the most perfect blue sky. Some highlights from hawks to hounds.

Birds of prey show by Sky Kings.

Lenore, the raven.
Igor, the vulture. These birds were amazing and fly, untethered, above the audience!

Merlin, I'm sure of it!

Music as beautiful as she is - harpist, Sarah Mullen.

Tuesday, October 25, 2011

Guardian of the White Deer

Inspiration board for future costuming: This one an ivory-moonlight-shadow toned Guardian of the White Deer gown. 

Wednesday, October 12, 2011

and so I wander...

In The Forest
Oscar Wilde
Out of the mid-wood's twilight
Into the meadow's dawn,
Ivory limbed and brown-eyed,
Flashes my Faun!
He skips through the copses singing,
And his shadow dances along,
And I know not which I should follow,
Shadow or song!
O Hunter, snare me his shadow!
O Nightingale, catch me his strain!
Else moonstruck with music and madness
I track him in vain!

The perfect soundtrack for woodland wandering.

Monday, October 3, 2011

Parrish Relics SALE!!!

What's better than shopping at Parrish Relics’s Etsy? A 20% off sale.
Go over and have a look-see.

Friday, September 30, 2011

For autumn

 The Fall.
Once more the many-coloured Being pales
And falls in ruin under its own breath:
Once more the all-encircling Spirit veils
Its glorious presence in a mask of death:
Once more the tide of life in this dear land
Ebbs to stagnation: while with stricken hearts
And eyes sad fixed upon its vacant strand,
We watch and watch, until our joy departs.
Once more we strive to gain from this high scene
Of tragic woe and deep significance,
A clue to what shall be from what hath been:
Striving with Thought that leaves the mind in trance
Deep-awed, because the living mystery
Seems to resign its life and cease to be.

George Earle

Photo taken by me on 11/2007, a local wood.