The darkness between stars has form and function. It holds the worlds we move within in its branches, weaving time and matter into lives, holding wyrd in pace in the tapestry of space. In the darkness, light is born.
I begin with blobs of colour, a canvas and a sense for the atmosphere I am searching for. My brush spreads the paint, thick and textured, across the woven surface. A space emerges, like an ocean from the pearl-white ground.
As the sun sets in the distance, mimicking the turn to the darkness we know will come again, a song hums through the waves and carries our thoughts into the depths.
When I finished writing my Faery Heart book I had a dream for the artwork on the cover – a gateway between two trees through which the magic of Faery would shine. I took up my brush and painted the first of my Faery Gates series, pouring magic into each brush-stroke as a prayer in pigment to bridge the worlds and allow enchantment to pour through for each person that gazed upon it.
My flat is now full of these gates, they flow from my brush and feel like coming home. But the second that I began… it remained formless for two years. I painted the faery-light but there was something missing. So I painted others and waited.
And then my bunny died.
She reappeared in the painting. Finally, it was complete.
Domino was a rabbit, but in the picture she also becomes a moongazing hare, carrying the magic of the ability to burrow into the dark places for healing and the sacred swiftness and stillness which is twinned in each of the long-eared Goddess-beasts across the neo-pagan world.
The hare has long been seen as a familiar, or a form, of the witch, wise-woman, magic-worker, the one who crosses the gap between the worlds beneath the full moon’s light to bring back knowledge and power into our realm. This picture is one of reflection, of becoming aware of other worlds and other possibilities deep within ourselves and within the heart of the world. It is an image of love and the peace before action. As a painting it holds all that I poured into it and all that you find within it. As a prayer, a spell, it carries the magic of the otherworlds and the blessings of the spirit-world into our lives. And it honours the hare, the rabbit, the Goddess and those that we have loved and lost who are never far away…
I am producing a limited run of 50 canvas prints, hand-made, mounted, numbered and signed by me. When they’re gone I won’t be printing any more like this!
I’ve been painting more now, when I have to travel to my studio, than I ever expected. Having a dedicated space encourages me to set aside time for painting and encourages focus. I’ve got at least five paintings in progress now, including ones I’ve not worked on for almost a year which are suddenly talking to me again!
The more I paint the more truth I find in the thought that painting is prayer and prayer is conversation with the divine. I’m finding my magic leading me deeper into art and further into working with the magic of the land I live upon and the people I am descended from. The stories of Y Mabinogi resonate in this landscape and the Norse tales echo in my bones. I find myself painting Blodeuwedd and Freya side by side.
My own work with the Faeries is still central to all that I do and it is becoming clear that my path is taking me deeper into exploring the magic of this land. As I open to listening, the responses come back clearer and clearer…
I find myself stepping back magically from other traditions (though they still inform my practice) and deepening the connections within my heart, working directly with the spirits and gods who are walking with me. Its an exciting time and I do not know quite where this path is heading but I know it is enchanted!
It is wonderful, the magic that occurs when you make space for it.
How are you making space for the things you love? And what path opens up to you when you do so?
Bottom line; I’m skint.
And I believe in magic.
So I’ve created a spell… in a piece of art.
In creating this artwork I mused on the nature of wealth, and She showed me the simple truth that clinging too tight does not allow money to flow. Money is like water, it flows in and out, there are times of drought and times of flood and times when it all balances… but it can’t be held too tightly.
This picture needs to flow.