So today I will share with you a glimpse into my mind's creative process. Above, you will see the Water Goddess tile as it was yesterday morning. It was about halfway done. I got stuck at the bottom. Now, I think the getting stuck part was a mental block and not a process or aesthetic block, like I thought originally. It was the tail. First I thought I didn't like it because it was too symmetrical, too static. But Chuck and I went out for dinner and we started talking about mermaids (what lively dinner conversation!) and I realized that it was the mermaid thing that was tripping me up.
I think I was having a problem because I want these tiles to be entirely positive, representations of goddesses, women, and their connection to the earth, air, and sky. I guess thinking about mermaids and sirens was bothering me, because you might say that they have a history of having a negative effect on man. The whole idea of the folklore of the mermaid, luring men to her, using sexuality to destroy men...it bothers me a bit, making the image not quite a pure and beautiful one for me. Chuck argued that mermaids do this to protect the sea and the land from men who would destroy it, sort of like Nature's army. And that is positive in a certain sort of way, but I also know that some stories have mermaids lure and kill out of spite. I do like the idea of the mermaid as woman warrior, and I think I could work with it in the future, but it is not the feeling I wanted for these tiles. I think I need to research and think about mermaids some more before using the imagery.
So I changed the tile to have the Water Goddess swirling up from the ocean. I had this remembrance yesterday of this video below, Waterfalls by TLC. I think it is very beautiful, although I have never really considered myself a TLC fan. Maybe I should be, they have some great messages, and I love their whole presentation. Anyway, here is the video:
Sorry to the mermaid fans out there! Had to go with my gut though. I would welcome any positive mermaid stories, or water fairies or sprites, that you may have, so I can turn around my thinking on this. I am very interested in the classic Little Mermaid story, because I don't know it. I don't' think I have even seen the Disney version of it, not that it would necessarily be true to the story. I would really love to use mermaid imagery, I just need to find a story fits my vision a little more. But for now, here is the finished tile, and I am happy with her, and plan to pour the mold today.