Category Archives: Alphabet of Desire

Happiness is a Warm Mandala

Apparently it has been 3 weeks since QWERTYvsDvorak has featured an irregular crayon mandala. This travesty cannot stand. I present to you: a golden brown flower themed mandala, a tempting treat for a paper honeybee.

A soothing 6-sided mandala

A soothing 6-sided mandala

Something kind of earthy about this one. The center part reminds me of the sunflowers The Man sometimes brings home, and the green circles in the middle remind me of malachite beads.

Not much art news to report, although I’ve been thinking about some recent projects that I haven’t touched in a while. Does the graphic novel need 5 parts, or is it now complete in 3? Can I possibly redo some of the work on Alphabet of Desire that I accidentally lost somewhere in my house? Losing this paper really put the brakes on the project, and due to its spiritual nature, I worry that I won’t get the same results if I do the work again, and furthermore, although I lost the physical sheet of paper, I know it’s somewhere in this house, that I specifically put it someplace that it would turn up again in the future, when I wasn’t looking for it. That seems to be the project my brain wants to get back to.

Advertisements

A Truly Splendid Otter Can Grace Your Wardrobe

I was asked if I could print the Truly Splendid Otter on a tote bag, a pair of thigh high socks, or a pair of women’s underpants. Sadly, RedBubble does not offer the latter 2 options (yet). There are certainly places where I could have them printed, but I like RedBubble because they host your page, and, more importantly, the shopping engine. Of course, if more people bought merch, I would have more incentive for expanding my options…

OK, so if you want a Truly Splendid Otter in your wardrobe, or on your stationary, or adorning your new iPhone, Otter is now available for purchase on a fine variety of projects.

The colors are actually a bit brighter in reality than in this screencap.

The colors are actually a bit brighter in reality than in this screencap.

If Otter is not ridiculous enough for you, I promise you that no one else is wearing this original Giralicorn shirt. Be the first on your block. Or in your time zone. Or your continent.

It just doesn't get more original than this.

It just doesn’t get more original than this.

You might think that you’re too old to wear graphic tees. And quite frankly, if you think this, then you are. Which means you are the perfect age to send snail mail! You probably even write thank you notes! If you do, and your name starts with one of the first 4 letters of the alphabet, consider a fancy monogrammed greeting card, available in color or black and white.

The butterfly and the blade

The butterfly and the blade

Granted, I am not actually starving, but that’s because my husband works, and I know how to shop and cook. But even so, you could support a hungry artist.

Ereshkigal, Mesopotamian Goddess of the Underworld

Just finished and uploaded a new design to the shop, and I’m pretty satisfied. Ereshkigal is a section out of the Scroll of Wisdom, the second goddess, after Athena, in the Alphabet of Desire.

Ereshkigal, Mesopotamian Goddess of the Underworld

Ereshkigal, Mesopotamian Goddess of the Underworld

She’s a little bit creepy, but she’s an embodiment of death, so, what’s she supposed to do?

This drawing gave me a lot of trouble, both the original and the digital version. I sort of felt like she was watching me with her hypnotic eyes, as if to say, “Soon enough, you’ll come to me.”

I first met Ereshkigal in Alan Moore’s Promethea, where he retells the story of Ereshkigal having her younger sister, Ishtar/Inanna brought low. The goddess of the heavens is forced to give up all her clothes in order to descend into the land of the dead, in much the same way, I imagine, as a seeker of knowledge must shed certain thoughts and ideas that have adorned her in the past in order to unfold new mysteries.

 

Alphabet of Desire Part 2

Athena, goddess of wisdom, offers the Scroll of Wisdom. She bears the head of Medusa, encircled by the ouroboros, on her girdle, and carries the sword of the Tarot, which is a symbolic tool for cutting through illusion to reveal truth.

Athena, goddess of wisdom, offers the Scroll of Wisdom. She bears the head of Medusa, encircled by the ouroboros, on her girdle, and carries the sword of the Tarot, which is a symbolic tool for cutting through illusion to reveal truth.

The idea of alphabets in general has always fascinated me, long before I ever even hear the term “font.” I read calligraphy books in grade school and often wrote out fancy alphabets as a centering technique. I liked the idea of decorative caps, and wanted to write an acrostic story with twenty-six chapters, which I would illuminate with twenty-six initial letters.

Inking the illustration for chapter C: the magical rowan tree. Mandalas feature prominently in the scroll.

Inking the illustration for chapter C: the magical rowan tree. Mandalas feature prominently in the scroll.

Illustrating the Scroll of Wisdom was a new challenge for me. Graphic storytelling had become fascinating to me in recent years, but my ability to draw in a regimented way, maintaining a consistent style and moving a character through a magical landscape, seemed overwhelming. However, the mission seemed clear. After spontaneously drawing Pallas Athene on a sheet of butcher paper, I realized that, rather then cutting her free from the roll, I should utilize this old method creating a text and simply let one drawing follow the next on a continuous sheet of paper.

rowan tree

The completed tree

The story gradually revealed itself: a journey from initiation to mastery. The magician’s journey. The journey of the will. We’ll get back to this in a little while….

Alphabet of Desire Part 1

Title for the Alphabet of Desire. The lettering is based on Gothic Versals.

Title for the Alphabet of Desire. The lettering is based on Gothic Versals.

I don’t remember where I first heard the term “Alphabet of Desire,” a magical device invented by artist Austin Osman Spare, but it was something that synchronistically popped up here and there, until it occupied a firm space in my mind. I went so far as to sketch out the ideas I would use in my own Alphabet of Desire, and would find them every couple months or so.

The first initial cap for my acrostic novella. The wood symbolizes the Tarot wands and the concept of generation. A sprouting stick signifies new beginnings and earthly ventures. The snake represents the mystic male generative principle.

The first initial cap for my acrostic novella. The wood symbolizes the Tarot wands and the concept of generation. A sprouting stick signifies new beginnings and earthly ventures. The snake represents the mystic male generative principle.

At the same time, I had also been long kicking around an idea of writing a story whose plot was based on the Tarot’s journey of the Fool (i.e. a work of twenty-two segments, each based on a Major Arcana).

For every chapter of the Alphabet of Desire, I also do a page of hand drawn letters in various fonts, which serves as a centering exercise.

For every chapter of the Alphabet of Desire, I also do a page of hand drawn letters in various fonts, which serves as a centering exercise.