illustration

Meeting My Medicine Dolls through Alice Savage

StagWoman Sacred Familiar doll drawn by Alice Savage

'I believe in beauty.

I love animals and think they are the best part of us.'  

Alice Savage

I find it very hard to explain to people the full magic of the medicine doll because they are so personal. Each doll has her own personality and medicine and it is so unique and authentic to the doll herself that it will be felt by everyone differently. Just like meeting someone new - we aren't all going to get along in the same way. If I have to put it in a nutshell or acorn shell! I would say that they are magical friends. They are wee medicine women who come to walk beside you for a little while in your life when you need a friend. It sounds simplistic and it is but it is also essentially very true. What I didn't know when I began opening this ancestral medicine again 12 months ago was how many new friends the dolls were going to bring to me.
Last month I was contacted by Italian artist, Alice Savage who told me she was inspired by the dolls and asked me if she could make a drawing based on one. I was so honoured that an artist as skilled and talented as Alice would be inspired by the medicine of the dolls. And I was excited to see through Alice's eyes the spirit of my own dolls. I see the personality and spirit of the dolls clearly as I am making them but I do not put a deep or outlined expression into their faces because I want the new keeper to see her as she needs to see her. The faces are there but they are more etheric, ephemeral - as if behind a veil.
When Alice began to send her drawings through to me by email I was astonished because they had the faces that I had already seen but were also interpreted through Alice's own spirit and because of this they had become a new being at the same time. I don't see them as separate from my dolls but as seen from a different realm and sometimes it's very helpful to me to understand their medicine even more. This happened particularly when Alice drew the DeathDoula as a figure in a madonna-like pose. I was touched that she could feel the grace and compassion that this doll carried in her sacred medicine as midwife to the dying. Alice told me that the dolls were doing their healing on her own spirit as she drew them. They are speaking to her and I love that because they speak to me as I weave them too.

'This one so far speaks to me of the circle of time. It's like if she told me that she is very ancient, that she saw all the ages, and knows everything - she is fierce, not scared, not worried, because she saw all the seasons happening. I put a symbolized moon with the rays of the sun on the corners of the drawing to depict it. There are also some drop shapes (something I use often) to express the tears, but she is no more touched by them. She is sweet, and with the power of survival'. Alice's conversation with MossWitch

As the drawings have grown, I have fallen more and more in love with this collaboration of medicine with Alice. We have had lovely chats about Vali Myers, our love of animals - especially Foxes! We are now creating a project together to raise money for the Koalas at the Southern Ash WIldlife Shelter. I will have more information about purchasing prints of the medicine dolls for the koalas as the collaboration blossoms.
Dear Alice, thank you. It's such a delight to be weaving together across the oceans.
MossWitch medicine doll
MossWitch by Alice Savage
Stagwoman medicine doll by Sacred Familiar
DeathDoula - midwifing the dying

Song to the Siren - Victor Nizovtsev

Victor Nizovtsev
"Sleeping mermaids provoke a very deep response from the viewer. I believe this is because humans have always wanted to possess some magic power from the surrounding animal world, like large feathery wings that would allow them to fly or a scaly tail to propel them through the water like a fish. My mermaid seems surprisingly human because she is peacefully resting after a long day. Her face is peaceful, her dreams tranquil, her body’s position radiates calm and happiness. The painting captures these feelings.". Victor Nizovtsev

Victor and Anya

Animal Spirits: Patricia Ariel

Animal Spirits: Deer
Patricia Ariel 

 Our dear sister Patricia Ariel has been creating these beautiful Animal Spirit paintings over the last month. Patricia has created so many of the artworks you see in our healing space and in our Swan Blessing including our mandala. She is available for commission work and you can see more of her beauty here. You can see the full series of Animal Spirits and what she still has for sale at her StorEnvy site too. Love you Patty! You always inspire me xx

Animal Spirits: Hummingbird  
Animal Spirits: Cat 
Animal Spirits: Dragonfly
Animal Spirits: Crow

Amy Dover's Noble Creatures


Click to enlarge image And in that moment-web-filtered.jpg

Amy Dover is a UK based and internationally recognised artist and illustrator.

I love the nobility of Amy Dover's finely drawn creatures. So many messages for us all here. Who are the beasts?
Amy Dover: 'In her intricate, and beautifully executed graphite drawings she explores primal and human desires, complex narratives, and traditional tales. Through dark characters, melancholy tones and the anthropomorphization of animals, Dover invites the view to enter a world which challenges traditional perceptions, and nature becomes the central focus. 
Her influences come from growing up in a small village in the North of England, playing in the woods and reading folk tales. As well as a love of Victorian paintings, Natural History books and Nature itself.'


Run Around


Stop the Cull

Echo

The Seed Keeper by Nadia Turner

I was so happy to wake in the cold, green forest after returning from travelling to my sun sisters in Queensland last night. Thank you to all of the amazing women who came to unbind their wisdom in Swan Blessing on Mt Tamborine. What a beautiful journey of connection and weaving of new friendships. And what a joy to return to my home in the green - from 35 degrees to 10 degrees - Australia is indeed made of many countries.
And I awoke to see this new illustration, The Seed Keeper, by our friend and forest neighbour, Nadia Turner. This is her entry in the Illustrators Australia annual exhibition and you can view and bid on this and other artworks here:  www.illustratorsaustralia.com/events/upcoming/ias_18th_annual_9x5_exhibition_flouris
Today I feel like the seed keeper, I will share more soon of the amazing dolls and medicine birthed on magic Mt Tamborine but today I will rest and hold the seed of return.

III - Joao Paulo Alvares Ruas

circlestarunderline:  * image from pasalavida  Joao Paulo Alvares Ruas
Dawn I - Joao Paulo Alvares Ruas

" What divides the sacred from the mundane? Is that an universal or a personal matter? Can a moment, a place or a person in your life ever be sacred? These questions were the starting point of obsessive and transforming thoughts and drawings which resulted in this series of works. Iconography obviously plays a big part in the aesthetic being explored but so does everyday life, everyday dreams and everyday fears. "

Re-Enchantment - the Art of Lucy Hardie

Turandot - by Lucy Hardie

For christmas one of my oldest friends told me he had art to share with me and here she is: Turandot by Lucy Hardie. This exquisite print on luscious cotton paper sits in her new home beside the work of another dear friend of mine, Australian artist, Vali Myers. I could see instantly that Vali had been an inspiration, a seed from which this beautiful flower had blossomed. When I spoke to Lucy Hardie today she told me that she had visited Vali's Melbourne studio as a thirteen year old with her sister and she remembered vividly that bells tinkled as Vali walked. I loved hearing that, I had forgotten that memory, that sound. And I love that Vali Myers had influenced young artists who are now becoming masters of their own crafts. And Lucy's mastery is wonderfully evident in her work. I can only imagine how long it would have taken to create every fine line, every dot...how Vali would have loved to sit with Lucy and discuss her beautiful creations (and her deepest wishes - Vali had a talent for getting to the truth).

When I sit and look into the direct gaze of Turandot I am drawn into those magnificent eyes, full of mystery and story. She is like a proud and beautiful gatekeeper. I am thrilled that in this time of evolving spirit we are seeing the return of story, the return of enchantment. I believe 2013 will herald the time of the Intuit and the Artisan and I am thrilled to be discovering such skilled craftspeople every day. Can you hear the roar of the wave of change? It will be artists who are surfing this wave, dancing at the edge and teaching us all - let them guide you to explore your own creativity this year and find an expression for your own unique voice.

"I am driven by the desire for my work to facilitate in others the connection with the part of us that has been, and always will be, free. And in the experience of freedom, the knowing that we are enough". Lucy Hardie

To see more of Lucy's intricate beauty please go to her website and contact her personally for all requests for prints. If you buy anything for yourself this year, let it be art. 
Thank you Lucy!
Mary (Portrait of Great Grandmother)
The Gift of Death

Woman and Wolf
Bo Peep