Raven and Sun, 5x7 coloured pencil on sketch paper.
There are some memes in my art that just keep coming back and back at me. I don’t analyse (except maybe after the fact), I just do. So I don’t really know why the raven and the sun keep turning up together on the page. After the fact, I did what everyone does at the start of the twenty first century and googled it. Sure enough, there is a native American legend about Raven stealing the sun. I don’t know if this is what the image is about. I very much doubt it, as I was raised on Germanic/Celtic legends (aka fairy tales) and Judaeo-Christian beliefs (Catholic school). Ravens, on that side of the pond, are harbingers of evil (exception, Huginn and Muninn, thought and memory in Norse mythology which makes them the most important thing in the universe).
Last weekend, I went to Killarney Provincial Park as usual. I took no photographs, and drew no images. I did do a lot of walking in the woods, swimming in the water, and sitting in a chair. The sitting was accompanied by the sound of ravens, mostly baby chatter, which, issued from an adolescent raven sounds a lot like an old woman squawking, continuously (and pardon, or not, the political incorrectness of THAT statement). It’s hard not to watch, and or listen, to ravens and not think they are sentient creatures. How odd that this belief was a given in hunter gatherer cultures, only to be forgotten or denied colonial cultures. This belief has only recently been resurrected by the scientific community that is actually willing to question, look and listen to the world around them. And so, once again, it is acceptable to refer to these and other creatures as sentient creatures, that have wants and wishes and the means to carry them out. And so I love to hear and see them and feel less alone, not just as person, but as a species. There are other thoughts out there, other interpretations, other eyes that view the world from a very different lens. And there is nothing better in this world that fresh perspectives.
So I look to the ravens, and I wonder, what are they thinking, what are they saying. And if they are thinking, that block of shade over there might be hiding a tasty hunk of dead fish, and what they are saying is ‘over here, good eats’, well then we have much in common, because what I am thinking is tonight I’m having burgers and fries, and what my husband and I say to each other, is ‘Yay! It’s FRY – day!’ so we are not really all that different when you come right done to the basics of things. Which is something to think about when we a bulldozing over the ‘animal kingdom’ and considering ourselves oh so special.