Creating a death Goddess, it's harder than you think and yet flowed smoothly. When Jon asked me to create a painting of Hela for him, I knew immediately I had no control over the situation. We talked about what needed to be incorporated. I scribbled notes onto a blank piece of paper and waited for the offerings to arrive. While waiting i collected reference.
Sketches are always playtime for me. Ever since I stopped doing them manually and do them digital, it has been a world of difference. I can be more free, play around, and adjust colors until I have it just right. That way I have the perfect map to work from.
Jon sent me roses with blood and bits of bone to mix into the paint. I'll often mix offering into the paint if it's a portal of sorts. When I'm doing devotional paintings, I want the painting to become alive, so as I mix and add offerings I'll often listen to music associated with that Deity. Gabby Young was visiting town and all while painting I couldn't get this song out my head. So "We're All In This Together" it became the song I worked to and frankly, I think Hela had something to do with that as well. When you know your clients history and it meshes so deeply with yours, then yes, you are in this together.
I mashed the bloody roses and the bone into the paint. The images I had taken earlier have somehow disappeared off the computer. I'm taking it as a sign they weren't meant to be shared. But all in all the blood mixed with paint, breathing life onto the canvas mixed with paper. Slowly through the process Hela's features began to speak, the painting began to breathe. During these times, you must simply stand back and let the piece do what it needs to do. A painting will tell you when it's finished, it will stop you dead in your tracks. And this one did. Since it was going to be used for ritual purposes I coated it with extra glaze, you never know what can happen, let her dry and then, when the time was right, a rather cold, rainy wet, day in the Fall, sent it off.
It got to Jon one day later. It normally takes two to three days.
Jon says : "Just wanted to let you know that you just basically created a portal. of sorts, to Helheim.That is not *just* a painting ...it's alive."
I was going to post one more of the finished piece images with goldleaf but that too has dissapppeared from the computer. I see Hela is being selective. There are some things that must remain sacred.