Hello everyone out there in Cyberland! It’s me again, Margaret. I know it has been a Very long time, and while I may not have been updating, I’ve never forgotten you blog!

So I decided it was time to get back into this thing (kind of). By that I mean, I’ve started an art series that centers around Disney princesses, and I wanted to share.

So here is part 1 in “A Series of Princesses”

Let me know what you think (unless you don’t like it, in which case, you can totally just hang onto that thought for yourself).

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A New Series

The story of Sleeping Beauty has been around for a little while. The earliest version, (that I could find) was Perceforest, dating somewhere in the 1300s-1400s. So, like a lot of fairy tales, it has lots of different versions and was at first passed down orally. The famous fairy tale writer, Charles Perrault wrote a version in 1697. Here I have written a very, very short version of Sleeping Beauty.

 

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The Jenner Fairytale

I heard Maria Tatar, a leading expert on fairy tales compare the Kardashians with a modern day fairy tale. Here is the article with the interview http://www.onbeing.org/program/maria-tatar-the-great-cauldron-of-story-why-fairy-tales-are-for-adults-again/transcripthttp:// The reason for this was because of constant competition between mother and daughter. That is a very common theme in fairy tales. Oftentimes mothers would compete or be jealous of their daughters. And unlike what Disney would like us to think, it wasn’t always a step parent. That was created to make the story seems less harsh. The idea of a story where a parent doesn’t love their child seems too cruel for children. Stepmoms or dads dilutes this cruelty.

In the vein of fairy tale elements, The Kardashians are prime examples of this. Maria Tatar also talked about how fairy tales change over the years based on what the collective thinks of as a threat. Fairy tales involve the darkest fears we have. Sometimes we defeat them, and sometimes we don’t. When Grimm fairy tales were just being put together, the woods were an actual threat. Although some people believe that the wolf trying to eat Red Riding Hood is a symbol of some kind of darker sexual metaphor, wolves really were a threat at that time. The story warns people not to go into the woods alone because dangers like wolves were literal. Even the story of Haesel and Gretl personifies a possible real danger. In some parts of Europe, famine would be so terrible that desperate people would abandon or sell their children. There are even reports of starving people kidnapping and eating children because they were the easiest pray.

With time, cultures and people’s fears of threats change. For instance, Maria Tatar gave the example that we are no longer trying to defeat the wolf, but rather we’ve befriended it. In the show Grimm, the main character did just that. Grimm’s most trusted and loyal ally is the infamous big bad wolf. Modern day fears have involved to suit the times.

Shows like Game of Thrones highlight the conflicts between people. The characters on that show are often put in the circumstance of living their greatest fears. These fears may seem fictional to the viewer who knows that dragons aren’t real. The idea of winter coming is a prime representation of the possible impeding misfortune that some of us often feel is just around the corner.

Another very real fear that people everywhere are dealing with currently right now is civil rights, the equal and fair rights of every one. The right to marry who you want affects every one, in some way. The fear of truly being yourself is universal.I think the fear of not being loved or accepted is truly a worse fear. I know that I’ve felt it. The LGBT community has it pretty rough in terms of legal rights and protection. At a time when gay marriage stirs up hot emotions from both sides, being transgender can be a really scary thing to do for so many reasons. Friends and family could leave you.  Depending on the state you live in, you could lose your job or  literally have no protection against unfair treatment because there aren’t a whole lot of laws out there to protect you. Or worse, you could be physically harmed in a hate crime.

At a time when this is a major fear and danger comes Caitlyn Jenner, once called Bruce Jenner , the stepfather to the Kardashians who underwent the transformation and has today, or yesterday now, emerged as Caitlyn Jenner. She’s beautiful and lovely and brave. Despite the possibility of being scrutinized, hated, or made fun of, she rose to the challenge to be who she really wanted to be. She fought off the fears and has become the person on the outside that she always was on the inside. Now that’s a modern day fairy tale with a happy ending.

Calamity Jane with Guest Star Melissa Henry

Everybody knows who Calamity Jane is right? Well if not she was a famous frontierswoman who rode around with Wild Bill Hickok. She supposedly fought a lot of Indians and was this great adventurous woman. She was also pretty much in love with Bill Hickok. And it is debatable about whether or not he loved her back. (How Sad) Also she may or may not have made up all the stories about herself. Including where she got her name from. This is the story of where she got her nickname. I’m taking it straight from Wikipedia.”It was during this campaign [in 1872–1873] that I was christened Calamity Jane. It was on Goose Creek, Wyoming where the town of Sheridan is now located. Capt. Egan was in command of the Post. We were ordered out to quell an uprising of the Indians, and were out for several days, had numerous skirmishes during which six of the soldiers were killed and several severely wounded. When on returning to the Post we were ambushed about a mile and a half from our destination. When fired upon Capt. Egan was shot. I was riding in advance and on hearing the firing turned in my saddle and saw the Captain reeling in his saddle as though about to fall. I turned my horse and galloped back with all haste to his side and got there in time to catch him as he was falling. I lifted him onto my horse in front of me and succeeded in getting him safely to the Fort. Capt[.] Egan on recovering, laughingly said: ‘I name you Calamity Jane, the heroine of the plains.’ I have borne that name up to the present time.”

The photos you see here are of Calamity Jane played by Melissa Henry. A huge thank you to Melissa for being a part of this. Melissa is an actress, improviser, comedienne, and a licensed real estate agent. You can find Melissa here.And without further ado, I give you Calamity Jane.

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Ursula Portraiture

About a week ago  it was the 25th anniversary of Disney’s The Little Mermaid. As a child this was always one of my favorite Disney cartoons. (Although I never owned that one on VHS for some reason…) But anyways, recently I was thinking about the character of Ursula and her origin story.

For those of you who do not know, the original story of The Little Mermaid is not as quite as happy as Disney’s version. The princess Aerial wants to marry the prince, not just so that she can be human, but because Mermaids do not have souls. When they die, they become the foam of the ocean.  So Ariel has about three days to make the prince fall in love with her, and if she doesn’t not only does she lose her chance at having legs. She loses her chance of having a soul. In the original story, her prince falls in love with some other walking biped, and she dies in the end, returning to the foam of the ocean.  OH, it’s sad.

However, in the original tale, Ursula is not so evil. In fact, she’s pretty impartial. She does help Aerial get to land, but she doesn’t trick the Prince into falling in love with someone else. He did that on his own. So, I recently took a portrait of myself as Ursula, and then I found out that it was the 25th anniversary! How fortuitous!

There was quite a bit that went into the making of Ursula in the Disney cartoon, and I can’t find the website that I was reading last week that went into details about it. If I can find it, I will post it later, In the meantime, here is my rendition of Ursula, the sea witch goddess.

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Persephone

Hello, and welcome back. Or rather, I guess I should be welcoming myself back. It’s been quite awhile. So much for posting a photo everyday! My schedule got a little too hectic for that .And I had a death in the family, so this blog sort of got put on the back burner.
But here I am again, trying to get back into the swing of things, trying to remember what was so damn important about stories that I wanted to dedicate a blog to in the first place. And honestly I haven’t been thinking about it that much. When I took a break from it, I really did take a break from it, mentally, and physically.

However, on most of my days off at home, I do end up thinking, what character do I feel like today? Whose story can I most relate to? A few weeks ago, the Goddess of the Underworld was stuck in my head. I did a little, itsy-bitsy research (Wikipedia) and discovered that what I remember from 7th grade English class is pretty much the same story.

Here is the short version for those of you who are not familiar with this tale. Hades sees Persephone playing in the meadow, or something super maiden-y like that, and decides to ravage her and take her down to the underworld.

Now Persephone isn’t just your run of the meadow maiden, she’s also a goddess. She’s the daughter of Zeus, and Demeter, the harvest goddess. So when young fair Persephone goes missing, her mamma is not too happy about it. She pitches a big fit to Zeus and says that she will freeze the earth over if she cant have her daughter back.

So Zeus is like, woah, there, Nelly, we need food and stuff, don’t be getting all crazy. Why don’t you go down and talk to Uncle Hades (because ZEUS called Hades Uncle for some reason that goes way back to a game of uncle when they were kids)

So Persephone’s mamma goes down there and tells Hades a thing or two, and he was gonna have to do what she said except for one thing……Persephone ate two pomegranate seeds from a pomegranate in the underworld. And everyone knows that if you eat the food down there, you are stuck for all eternity (or unless someone comes and gets you)

So Persephone kind of screwed that one up, but somehow good ol Papa Hades (that’s what all the kids are calling him) made a deal with the mom anyways. Every 9 months she must stay with him in the underworld, and then the three months left in the year are spent above ground. When she arises from the underground, she brings spring with her.

So there is the abridged story, and the photos I bring to you are representational of Persephone and her time spent in the underworld. It was actually very hard for me to let these images go up, as i couldn’t decide if I was 100 percent ready to part with them. But the perfectionist part in me would never have let me post anything ever. Therefore I am posting them. Please tell me if you have any thoughts about the photos reflecting the story? Do you think it complements it well, and if you think it doesn’t, then by all means please tell me why you think so.

And one more thing, I guess the “why it’s important” part. Some days I think bah, I’m simply adding whatever meaning I want into a tale, legend, fable, etc, etc, and therefore giving it more power. But no, I think these stories give US power. Lately all I’ve wanted to do was escape, and I think Persephone has some escaping themes. You could probably pull out all kinds of lessons, allegories, and what have you from it. But for me, it was simply about escaping. Persephone gets to escape the world for nine months out of the year. Sure it may be dark down there, but I hear Hades treated her pretty well. And I heard she could throw a killer party whenever she was so inclined. Or was that Eva Brun? Oh, another tale for another day. Adieu

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The Mother

 

I’ve been reading about mothers characters tonight for Mother’s Day. I found a really great blog that I can’t wait to read more of. The author writes about several topics I can’t wait to read about. The blog is http://talesoffaerie.blogspot.com/

And I read and learned about Carl Jung and his archetypes. I learned that Mr. Jung and I share similar ideas.

I love it when that happens. When I have thoughts and ideas about subjects and then I learn that someone else has already had the same thoughts, theorized about them, wrote essays o them, and even named them. I think aha! I knew it!

Also I love how things connect. In the first blog I found, the different posts in the blog are on things I have thought about writing! And it’s good to see that someone else has had similar ideas.

This used to bother me. If I had an idea for something, and someone else did something similar, I would think, oh what’s the point not?

But now I think I’ve changed my mind. I like to find similar things, because I can draw inspiration from it, and whatever I had originally wanted to do wasn’t exactly what they did anyways.

 

Jung says that “The mother archetype is symbolized by the primordial mother or “earth mother” of mythology, by Eve and Mary in western traditions, and by less personal symbols such as the church, the nation, a forest, or the ocean. According to Jung, someone whose own mother failed to satisfy the demands of the archetype may well be one that spends his or her life seeking comfort in the church, or in identification with “the motherland,” or in meditating upon the figure of Mary, or in a life at sea.” That quote is taken from http://webspace.ship.edu/cgboer/jung.html

Tonight I give you a picture of my mother!  Happy Mother’s Day!Image