Thursday, July 12, 2012

The Song of Wandering Aengus

I wanted to draw an illustration for the Poem The Song of Wandering Aengus, by WB Yeats, since long ago. I especially love the song version by the Italian folk singer Branduardi.
The part depicted here is when the girl comes out from the silver trout (in italic below). It is not said in the poem itself, but I took the freedom to made her coming out from fire. Hers mermaid appearance comes from the silver trout.
My interpretation is that the Aengus quest is the Quest for Life itself, where Life is symbolized by the girl, born from all the four elements of nature: the fire, the water with the trout, the bright air where she disappears, the earth where apple trees are blossoming.
Well, just my two cents :) Hope you like the painting, anyway.

I went out to the hazel wood,
Because a fire was in my head,
And cut and peeled a hazel wand,
And hooked a berry to a thread;
And when white moths were on the wing,
And moth-like stars were flickering out,
I dropped the berry in a stream
And caught a little silver trout.
When I had laid it on the floor
I went to blow the fire a-flame,
But something rustled on the floor,
And some one called me by my name:
It had become a glimmering girl
With apple blossom in her hair
Who called me by my name and ran
And faded through the brightening air.
Though I am old with wandering
Through hollow lands and hilly lands,
I will find out where she has gone,
And kiss her lips and take her hands;
And walk among long dappled grass,
And pluck till time and times are done
The silver apples of the moon,
The golden apples of the sun.

Sunday, July 8, 2012

The Snow Maiden (Snegurochka)

Long time, no blog, and very slow painting in the background of my life occupied by small children.
I started this one when the snow still covered the Scandinavian woods, and now it is finished only in the middle of summer.
This is my personal interpretation of a classic character of Russian folklore, the Snegurochka, or Snow Maiden, daughter of Frost and Spring. Despite she's typically depicted as a merry and kind girl, I wanted to show her sadness, since the legend tells her heart will melt, and she'll die, when she will first fall in love.