Tuesday, March 5, 2013

The Fairies' Nest

With all this talk about female artists and Lilly Briscoe, I decided to paint something from "To The Lighthouse". I chose the boar's skull wrapped in Mrs. Ramsay's scarf, and I put some fairies and flower vines in it for a touch of whimsy. I really enjoy fairy tales, so this part of the novel was of particular interest to me as Mrs. Ramsay makes up a little magical narrative on the spot to help her daughter fall asleep. It is a really sweet moment that shows what a skilled mother she is. She may not write books like her husband, but she sure can tell a story to please her children, and this is the kind of thing they will remember her for. They are not likely to remember the books their father wrote when they were children which is ironic because his greatest fear is not being remembered.

I had no idea what a boar's skull looked like before this project, and surprisingly there are not a lot of pictures on google images of them with horns which I was expecting since Cam complains so much about how scary they are. Apparently, boars can have really long tusks, and it's still legal to hunt them for their tusks with proper licences, but I drew small ones since my paper was not very large.

In this piece I used watercolor paper, watercolor paints, water soluble colored pencils, and some illustrating markers for details. I wanted to take a photo that had my supplies and myself in it because this novel focuses heavily on the female artist. In this case I am that artist, so I though I should show it. The picture to the left is a close image so you can see some details. I think an interesting side note to add is that the skull itself without the shawl was probably the most phallic thing I have ever drawn. The long snout section that connects to the mouth just felt very much that way when I was drawing it, and I think that might be why I subconsciously decided to drape over that section in the end. Perhaps this says something about me, but I'm not sure what. Either way, I am very pleased with the outcome as I think it gets the message across that women can be creative and artistic in the same and in different ways than men. Art, including writing, is not designated to a specific gender.

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