Monday, November 29, 2010

Astrolabe Mandala

Last year I got interested in medieval navigational instruments, particularly astrolabes. Their forms were intricate and exotic. I drew several of them for my "Dreamscape" series, using whimsical interpretations. Because they are generally circular I decided it would be fun to include one in my mandala series.
The constellations along the ecliptic were critical to navigation and usually inscribed in the instruments. I included them along the edge of this mandala created from artemisia foliage.

Tuesday, November 23, 2010

Winged Scarab Mandala

Whenever I visit the Metropolitan Museum of Art in NYC I find myself drawn to the Egyptian section. I love the designs and motifs that are both esthetically pleasing and mysterious.
The Scarab was considered sacred and linked to Kephri, the god of the rising sun. It is often depicted rolling the sun across the sky.
I drew this scarab amulet using complimentary colors from the purple orchid in this mandala. I added some bevel shadowing to make it more jewel-like.

Sunday, November 21, 2010

Orchid Sunburst

This botanical mandala, made from yellow orchids, reminded me of a sunburst motif that I had seen in India. It was stunning on its own and didn't need much embellishment, so I added a few simple flame motifs drawn with some beveling to complete the piece.

Thursday, November 11, 2010

Seashore Mandala

As the weather turns colder my mind turns to delightful times spent at the beach last summer. I decided at the time to make a mandala with a seashore theme, but didn't get around to doing it for several months.
But this botanical mandala, created from a hydrangea blossom inspired me. I photographed the hydrangea in one of the beach house gardens and was reminded of my project.

Sunday, November 7, 2010

Scorpius Ascending

One of the most memorable moments of a recent trip to Costa Rica was a painful encounter with a scorpion. I reached down to pick up a sock on the floor and experienced a stunning jolt. It felt like the sting of a thousand hornets. My thumb was numb for several days.
Despite the pain, I continue to be fascinated by scorpions. I find they have a certain menacing beauty. And one of my favorite constellations is Scorpius. I always look for it on the southern horizon on summer nights.
I created this oval mandala from an artemesia, and decorated the lower edge using a photograph of the actual culprit that caused me so much pain.