Hey Fool!

"The Fool", The Medieval Scapini Tarot

“The Fool”, The Medieval Scapini Tarot

I’ve been posting different images of The Hermit from various tarot decks on or around New Years for the last few years, because The Hermit has always reminded me of father time. The movement from one year to the next.

This year though, I think it is more appropriate to post an image of The Fool. This Fool is getting ready for a new journey out into the unknown, with all of his possessions slung over his shoulder, and some weird-ass dog/lion/cat/hybrid/deal-ie-o biting him on the butt and pulling his pants down.

Yep, that seems better and more accurate ūüôā

… so long 2016. There were some good things about ya for sure, but overall, you were a mean son-of-a-bitch.

Happy New Year!

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Thank You

528691main_super_moon

For the last six months or so, maybe even a bit longer, it has been hard for me to write regularly here on ArtDuh. The truth is, my mind has been focused on other things.

The world has been getting stranger and stranger for a long time. This world has been weird for as long as I can remember, but man-o-man, it is really damn weird at this point in time. 2016 is just… so weird! Seems to me we’ve all,¬†the human race has, collectively gone a bit crazy. No need to go into details, because pretty much every person I know can see and would agree. We all know and feel how strange it has become.

Still, there is every reason to hope too. This life, this world, and the people in it are beautiful.

See… I have so many things running through my mind, all the time, but I just don’t know how to articulate my thoughts properly. So that is why I haven’t been writing very regularly here on ArtDuh. And, although I am sure I will be back and writing more often at some point, I won’t be posting a whole lot for now¬†and for a little while.

Not to worry though. My mind and imagination are filled with ideas and new artwork. I’ve never felt so inspired to create. I already have so much artwork I am proud of, I work on new art every day, and I have so many ideas I look forward to completing. I expect it’ll take me the rest of my life to finish everything I want to make. Two, probably three lifetimes, really. So much to do, so little time.

I will say this… please, please, please get out in nature as much as you can. Walk under the trees, meet some animals, look at the mountains. That is our hope. If we can’t all, individually and together, develop an appreciation for the natural world that we are a part of then we are truly fucked. If we can’t see that a healthy natural world trumps any economic model, then we are doomed. Nature is not simply a commodity… a resource to be exploited, extracted or harvested, repackaged, and sold back to you with tax and interest… until its dead. Nature is our life, our breath, our water, our health. It is you.

Anyway, if you’ve read this far, thank you. I’ve really enjoyed ArtDuh, and have liked writing and posting. I will still upload and share new artwork from time to time, but I’ll change the name of the blog here soon. You’ll always be able to get to this blog using ArtDuh.com as the web address, but I will probably change the name and branding. I started this here blog with Anna about six or seven years ago. Anna stopped writing a few years later, focused on other things, and that’s cool. I found I still liked writing, and tried to maintain my weekly posts the best I could, but I always kind of thought of ArtDuh as Anna’s.

So maybe I’ll change the name to songsfromtheearth.com. Seems like the name might be a little long, but maybe it’ll do for now…

I’d also invite you to check out my personal website, toddpowelson.com. Check out some of my past work, and look there for new artwork too. Also, if you’re able and have a few sheckles to spare, please consider buying some artwork. That kind of support always means a lot to any artist. If you don’t have any spare coins, that is a-okay too. Take a look around and enjoy.

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So why the picture of the moon?

I started writing this post under that November ’16 super-moon (Ha! Took a long time to finish). I walk every day, and in the winter months I usually find myself walking after dark.¬†I’d walk up into the hills, thinking on¬†the strange way America has gone, is still going, and see the weird things developing in my personal life… and there was the moon looking down on it all. This huge super-moon shining its silver light, illuminating us all. That was over a month ago now, but the moon has a brand new significance for me…

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A Message from Horus?

Horus

It may be obvious if you scroll through my recent posts, but I’ll just restate that I’ve got ancient Egypt on my mind. I haven’t really sought it out, but Egypt keeps popping up in documentaries and in the books I’ve been reading. Well, maybe I have sought it out a bit because I did read the Corpus Hermeticum¬†twice this week. But still, Egypt has been popping up spontaneously in other places too.

I wrote a couple of weeks ago about a dream of Osiris and his family that I had a while back, and explained that it seemed I needed to use that dream in some way. Work with it creatively somehow. Well, I have a pretty good idea on how to use the idea now, and it keeps unpacking itself in my mind and becomes more and more interesting to me all the time.

The truth is though, as an artist, it can be easy to question yourself. Is this idea really a good one?  Is it worth my time? Where do I start? Etc.

Recently, while I was walking up in the hills, I was having these sort of questions. But I was also thinking of my new idea¬†too. Thinking of Osiris. Thinking of his son Horus. What’s weird is, while I was thinking about Horus there was this birds in the trees on my right. I could sort of see it and hear it moving, but it flew away pretty quickly too. Then, about a half an hour later or so walking the other way back down the canyon, having these same questions, thinking of Horus, Osiris and my new idea…

This great big shape came flying down¬†at me on the trail. A bird. So close, at first I thought it’d fly right into me. But it didn’t hit me. Instead, it called out and flew into the trees to my left and perched there about 15 feet or so away from me. A hawk. We just watched each other for a while, a few minutes at least. Usually, I find that the birds I come across¬†up close don’t really want me to take their photo, but this hawk didn’t care. Even after¬†a few minutes of watching each other, it stayed patiently in the tree to¬†let me take a blurry photo (below), and then flew away.

As I walked on, I¬†saw¬†the hawk flying overhead through the trees, and over the next few minutes and could hear it calling out. I could also hear another hawk replying from further away. I started wonder if I might have been by a nest or something, and maybe that was why the hawk flew down and me and stuck around. I don’t know, but I wondered.

A little side experience that I also liked… about 20 minutes later a deer also came charging up from the stream below, running right in front of me. We didn’t spend time looking at each other though. The deer was off and away, running up into the trees.

I wasn’t sure if I should write this post. To try and explain this encounter and what¬†the hawk¬†meant to me. What it meant to me is personal after-all, and I don’t expect it to mean much¬†to anyone else. Also, it might seem silly to a lot of people, but I guess I don’t mind. The modern world likes to tell us that in our materialist world, these things just happen and really have no significance. And maybe they don’t rationally… but the world isn’t completely rational.

For me, in my own mind and imagination, these things always have meaning. On a personal level, I think everybody should pay attention and listen to these kind of experiences. When a hawk comes to you and hangs out for a bit while you’ve been thinking about Horus, and whether or not you should pursue a creative idea involving him… well, I think that is important.

Aristotle said, “Art completes what Nature cannot finish.” There is some truth there. But that completion cannot happen if we don’t listen to those personal messages that Nature is sending our way, no matter how subtle.

Maybe that hawk is just kinda saying “go for it kid. Why not?” And I agree, why not. It may take me some time to get to the idea, I’ve got so many other things I am working on, but I am excited to put Horus down on paper (even if¬†Horus is really a falcon).

blurry hawk photo

blurry hawk photo

Happy New Year!

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I’ve said before that the Hermit Tarot card always reminds me of Father Time, winding down the old year, and bringing in the New Year. I’ll post another Hermit this year, this time from Led Zeppelin IV¬†(which is basically the Hermit from the Rider Tarot Deck), and wish you a very Happy New Year!

The Mary-el Tarot

"Temperance"

“Temperance”

I got a new set of tarot cards this week called the The Mary-el Tarot, and they have quickly become my new favorites. So beautiful! I honestly only have a small handful of decks, but when one stands out for me, I usually get it.

To be honest though, that wasn’t the case with the Mary-el. I came across it the first time quite a while back, but decided I didn’t need it. Then I saw it again. And again. And finally the images became too beautiful to resist and I bought it.

The cards are interesting and powerful. I’ve always loved symbols. Always. And tarot are typically among the most powerful symbols around. These Mary-el… the artist and creator Marie White did a great job interpreting those symbols in her cards. I’ve posted a few images here, but you can visit her site and check the rest out (I guess I should give a warning though, there is some nudity, in case you’re sensitive to that sort of thing or at work or something)!

mary-el.com

amazon.com | The Mary-el Tarot

"Death"

“Death”

"King of Wands"

“King of Wands”

"Strength"

“Strength”

"Hermit"

“Hermit”

"9 of Wands"

“9 of Wands”

"8 of Wands"

“8 of Wands”

"2 of Disks"

“2 of Disks”

"4 of Wands"

“4 of Wands”

"Knight of Cups"

“Knight of Cups”

"8 of Disks"

“8 of Disks”

A Murder of Crows

Todd Powelson

Todd Powelson

I have been seeing a lot of crows lately. I learned a long time ago to pay attention to them. Many cultures have seen them as omens of some sort. Its never really clear whether or not the omen is good or bad. But they fly between worlds. Watching. Bringing messages. Memory and Dream. All I know is when I see one I pay attention.

About a year ago I was walking along and I saw this crow flying overhead being chased by three smaller birds. I imagine that crow got caught trying to invade the smaller bird’s nest. Those little birds chased the crow around, herding it to and from different branches, dive bombing and squeaking at it. I must have watched ¬†them for about an hour. It seemed that way at least.

A few days ago I saw something similar again. A crow flew over my head, and then about thirty seconds later it flew over me again in the other direction being chased by a single small squeaking bird. I wasn’t able to watch their drama for long though because that little bird chased the crow out of my view pretty quickly. You tell ’em birdie!

I think I have seen at least one or two crows everyday for the last few weeks. I like that. Yesterday I was walking along and there must have been ten or more flying around. Circling around really. A murder of crows and their carrion.

I also saw a hawk today. I liked that too.