Flow and Art and Fear and Flow Again

Posted October 2, 2014 by JJ
Categories: Miscellaneous Cards, Oracles - General

Tags: , ,

I am up at 2:30 a.m. and just browsing through my card database. I was talking to someone about animal art yesterday so thought I’d post a couple of samples from my database.

This is Sue Lion’s lovely Spirit Animals card deck (click to enlarge.)

SpiritAnimalsCardDeckBck

 

This bit of eye candy is from the ever-nice Pathfinders deck (click to enlarge.)

PathfindersBack

I’ve got a 5 x 7 piece of art planned. I am hoping I can flow a bit since I’ve been stuck lately with art, completely frozen up. I was reading a book called Taking the Leap: Freeing Ourselves from Old Habits and Fears by Pema Chodron and that has some deeply resonant thoughts on being stuck in various destructive patterns.

I still don’t quite understand what it is about art for me. I desperately need to draw and paint but can’t do it. It reminds me of the sort of blockages of flow in general in my physical body. I don’t think it’s too much of a stretch to say creativity gets blocked with physical blockages in circulation.

So, I’m hoping some of the ideas from this book sift in. It’s a library book and I can renew it and reread it several times. In fact, I’ll go have a quiet read now at 3:48 a.m. and see if it flows me to sleep.

 

 

Cretan Knowledge

Posted October 1, 2014 by JJ
Categories: Lenormand Oracle

Tags: , ,

One lone Lenormand card today.

26 – BOOK

Book_Illustrative

I always like this lady as she looks like she has a secret. Messages from aliens in her new book from the library perhaps? Yes, you know how subversive libraries are.

I put the spectacles in this image because I wanted to highlight enhancing the vision, for knowledge and study, to see the secrets. I find it hard to relate to this card particularly as it’s a bit spooky and I am not a spooky person.

It could be someone is hiding something from me as well. I have been consulting books yesterday and today as I’m embroidering something for a deck review. It’s not complicated but you have to build it up with layers and balance the colour. I have to be careful of my hand, so it’s more of a book consulting day, learning the secrets of the Cretan stitch.

 

 

Hank Finds Some Friends

Posted September 29, 2014 by JJ
Categories: Tarot - General

Tags: , ,

In my younger years when we were camping and boating, my family christened all chipmunks we met “Hank” and I loved them so much. I’ve been looking for a suitable chipmunk figure to go with the Badgers Tarot deck.

Today, while out shopping at a larger town, I bought one. I would have bought two but for the same price I also found a donkey with a dorsal stripe—I’ve always wanted a real donkey like that, so the spouse bought the figure, leaving Hank alone for now.

Now I am still trying to hunt up the Papo brand 2013 Red Fox and the Safari brand O’possum with Babies. Very scarce they are here, but maybe one day I will stumble across them.

VI – THE LOVERS

Lovers_Badgers

I found a suitable wolf which looks remarkably like the Knight of Crows in this deck, and a bison that is on the Death card from the Badgers, was also found at Michael’s and purchased with a 40% off coupon. There is some crossover of animals in this deck and The Messenger Cards I have on order, so here is a sneak preview of the collection (minus the donkey who has found a friend on a bookshelf upstairs.)

Animals_Sept2014

They will be turning up on the blog in a few weeks. Cerberus was rather annoyed at the noise they were making as you can see in this image. I was going to buy Cerberus a 3-headed chimera friend at Michael’s but it was $25, I nearly choked.

The Lovers today is for my caring spouse, who lovingly let me spend $25 on his retirement gift card and gave me the donkey as a gift for $3.99, and drove me to and fro.

 

The Cthulhu Viking Challenge

Posted September 28, 2014 by JJ
Categories: Art Postcards

Tags: , , , ,

We welcome the Vikings to the blog today in the way of a postcard:

JORVIK Viking Centre
Coppergate
York

A GLASS BEAD FOUND AT COPPERGATE

VikingBeadPostcard

Isn’t this amazing, it’s glass! The Vikings made glass beads!!

Get me excited with a postcard why don’t you Steve. This card measures a whopping 5.75 x 8.25 inches, it’s a piece of art.

I scanned this in to make a digital jigsaw of 408 pieces out of it and the spouse said “That’s too hard” and I smiled my secret smile, knowing that I specialize in seemingly unsolvable solid-coloured backgrounds. The trick is in the subtle variations of black. The gauntlet has been thrown.

While I was making tentative steps on the outside border, the spouse, who was sitting behind me, said he liked my hair and I said “Why, what’s it doing?” and he said it was forming fountains. Yes, it’s me in my Cthulhu guise again, a sign that Cthulhu wants me to show my husband that I can finish this puzzle successfully.

VikingJigsaw

Would a Viking give up? NO!!

Okay, back to glass and Vikings. While they could make glass from quartz (sand) and soda (natron) from the Mediterranean, it was difficult. Natron was a mineral salt (which contained soda ash, sodium chloride and sulphate, and baking soda) from dry saline lake beds. The Egyptians used it for embalming, cleaning, as soap when mixed with oil, an antiseptic, insecticide, teeth cleaner and mouthwash, and at some point the Romans figured out how to mix it to get glass, a technique which the Vikings learned. Clever humans.

[Imagine that, when we clean our teeth with baking soda, we have the Egyptians to thank.]

The Vikings had their own glass furnace at Coppergate and it was more usual for them to use waste glass to fashion new items. If they wanted a colour they often used mosaics from the continent of Europe, and melted them to tint clear glass. They did know how to add minerals to basic glass to give it colour, but the process was more difficult than melting down mosaics I expect. Tin could be used to make the glass opaque.

I was also surprised to learn that they knew how to blow glass to make goblets and bowls. They liked cups and beads and finger rings made of glass. Beads were made much like today by being formed on metal rods and dropped off. The Vikings picked up this knowledge from other civilizations via trading and adapted it for the objects they wanted.

The Vikings as chemists? Far from the stupid, blood-thirsty lunatics they are often depicted as. Coppergate comes from Koppari-gata which in Old Norse means “street of the cup makers” or “street of the wood-turners.”

I never knew all this, and this is why postcards are important.

Happy Sunday!

 

 

What a Fool Believes About Messengers

Posted September 26, 2014 by JJ
Categories: Oracles - General, Tarot - General

Tags: , , , ,

Money is pretty tight and most free dollars go toward fixing our 45 year-old house. However, I had been looking at a deck called The Messenger Cards by Sandra Kunz (a fellow Canadian) for about 17 months and finally decided that if I could buy it later toward the end of October, I could afford it as an early Christmas present. I hope to write about it and do some projects inspired by it.

I so rarely buy new decks that it has to be something special, something that speaks to me, and often animal or nature decks are what I opt for. This is like that with an added blend of spirituality that you might expect in an oracle.

MessengerCards

After reading about another deck on Chloe’s Inner Whispers blog and hearing that my friend Steve was interested in it, I browsed around online and showed it to my husband. For us, this artwork is very unusual and totally different to what I have. So after thinking about it for a day I placed a pre-order. I’m out of money but by the time this comes in October I will be able to squeak out $17 for a treat.

It reminded me of Stella’s Tarot, perhaps more in colour than style of line and figure, but I liked it, one of those unexpected things.

0 – THE FOOL

NicolettaCeccoli_Fool

I think most of these cards were adapted from pre-existing artwork by Nicoletta Ceccoli, but she is a book illustrator and I love that type of illustration. I have several decks that were created from pre-existing art and I don’t mind that as long as I can work with it. The main problem people may see with this deck is that it only has women depicted, but these are characters rather than realistic people, so it seemed charming to me.

I was interested to read that Nicoletta works in pastel and acrylic for her illustrations but has a degree in cinematic animation and does work with 3-D figures and digital painting in Photoshop as well. Steve noticed the influence of Mark Ryden on her work (which she acknowledges) but the spouse and I both thought of Tim Burton. It also seems that M.C. Escher, one of my favourite artists, was a big influence on her.

Who knows? It’s different and I like different.

My Thumb Drops Anchor

Posted September 26, 2014 by JJ
Categories: Lenormand Oracle

Tags: , , ,

Gosh, my right hand was swollen when I got up this morning, particularly the thumb. I thought it was getting better but obviously it’s still inflamed. No embroidery for me for a few days yet.

4 – HOUSE
35 – ANCHOR

House_Anchor_Illustrative

I really am having an anchored week. The House as you might expect means home and security, being safe. I put a lyre clip art in the background to symbolize harmony underlying the home.

Stability of the Anchor and security and a safe haven at home is what I need. We dashed out to the library yesterday so I got two other books and I’m still slogging along on the last 200 pages of the William Morris biography.

Refuge and comfort. My book says the House represents the frame, the skeleton, so due to my pain in bones and tissue, seems a good thought for comfort. I wonder sometimes if the spouse thinks I’m whingeing for nothing but he actually saw my swollen hand this morning so can actually see I’m having trouble holding and gripping.

Poor thumb. Oh well, another day of rest to try and rebound.

 

 

Ants in My Pants, Anxiety in My Head

Posted September 25, 2014 by JJ
Categories: Tarot - General

Tags: , , , ,

I started a project two days ago and after completing my stint, my husband painted the new garage door. I went out to admire his work and we noticed the ants were swarming. They have done this every year for about four years. Probably because of changing weather patterns in Ontario, this province seems to be having problems. They are apparently Cornfield Ants, and are not dangerous and don’t live indoors, but they do ruin lawns and create holes everywhere when they swarm. They normally are not noticeable until they swarm in the third week of September. It’s only been the last four years I have noticed them at all.

Anyway, it caused me a lot of anxiety. I felt bad because we sprayed them with insecticide. It probably won’t kill the queen and the nest but it will stop most of the swarm and many new colonies from developing. I felt like a thoughtless human thumping around slaughtering the Earth. Then I worried about my property and house and garage getting wrecked and on and on it went, leaving me unable to sleep until 5 a.m. I was up all night and only had three hours of sleep. Yesterday I still felt hopeless and overwhelmed.

My husband says it’s nature, it’s the way it is, but I feel anxious. The whole thing took over my mind, and left me churning and sick for hours and hours. I managed to sleep for five hours last night, but feel defeated, like Nature has betrayed me and I her.

Let’s see what some cards say about this.

KING OF RABBITS (King of Wands)
XIV – TEMPERANCE (Doe)
XI – JUSTICE (Hound)

Badgers3

All Kings are rather arrogant I find, although wise. When I think of this King today I see impatience, temper, anger, relentlessness. In fact, the very human traits I felt I embodied fighting against Nature. He can also mean stoicism and logic, so that leads to Temperance. He also seems to be hiding, peeking out with alarm.

Temperance of course tells me there is a balance to life and Nature, a natural balance and harmony. It could be my dire killing efforts provided a necessary balance to ant proliferation, since Nature seems to have lost that balance lately. It could also mean the Nature will eventually provide some sort of balance. Things are skewy here. Frogs are dying, probably because of a worldwide fungus. Birds are not around as much, nutcases on ATVs have taken over the woods. I feel afraid, like this deer looks startled, but I have to realize that a balance of energy lives around me.

The Hound of Justice is also about fairness and facts, logical balance. The deer in the background looks alarmed at the dog introduced by humans, the hunter, looking at ants swarming in the grass. Eventually perhaps it will all work out? Learning to be fair, and allowing insect life in the garden, allowing wild animals in the country.

It’s all about balance and cycles and the way I overemphasize one side, forgetting the other side. If I am fair, then Nature will be fair to me.

I still feel bad. Sigh.

 

 


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