Tuesday, May 17, 2016

Little Robins and the Guardian Patrol

"The Guardian Patrol" The Illustrated Fairy Gazette, ©FrancesTyrrell
The robins are back and busy with nestlings.  It's the time of year for finding broken shells of beautiful robin's egg blue in the garden.  For "daring fledglings who test their wings too soon" Guardian Patrol fairies will come to the rescue with "stretchers of twigs and last year's spiders' webs", according to (who else) Dr. Flora Fauna of (what else?)  The Illustrated Fairy Gazettes, Spring edition.

There is a beautiful Saskatoon Berry tree in my parents' back yard and a nest with robins nearby.  They have taken to nesting over the back door and come back every year. Here is one of them, part of a demo piece from my watercolour classes.
Robin, watercolour, Frances Tyrrell ©2016
"A blessed and enchanted Spring to fairies everywhere"

Sunday, May 1, 2016

Fairies' May Day

from "The Illustrated Fairy Gazette" Spring edition
Here are some fairy garlands for the month of May. The May Pole Dance is from the Spring edition of the Fairy Gazettes, where it is accompanied by an article on the etiquette of folded wings. Should it be "Wings Up" or "Wings Down"? Just ask Fairy Faux Pas!
Spring Garland, © Frances Tyrrell 2016
Above, a fairy garland woven from the spring flowers that have naturalized in my garden - forget-me-nots, lily of the valley, and primroses.  The flowers of the poem won't show up here until June.
Snowdrops, © Frances Tyrrell 2016
The snowdrops are gone by now. The scillas still abound in wide blue drifts.  And here come the trillums, crimson and white.

 "A blessed and enchanted Spring to fairies everywhere"

Sunday, April 24, 2016

A Fairy in Lakeshore Woods

Scilla Fairy
 The woods nearby are carpeted with Scilla, masses of them  in sweeps of heavenly blue.  Of European origin, the little blue flowers have naturalized here and become as integral to the landscape as the native Trout Lilies and Trillium. Where there are flowers there must be fairies, hence this Scilla Fairy in Lakeshore Woods, just a short walk from home.
The first blossoms were snowed over early in April
 and the preliminary sketch showed the wintry scene, every blossom capped with snow. But that is another painting.
We've had enough snow for a while.

Wednesday, December 23, 2015

Twenty-fourth Day of Advent - Come to the Manger

The Adoration, The Huron Carol
"Come kneel before the radiant Boy
Who brings you beauty, peace and joy.
Jesus your King is born,
Jesus is born.
In excelsis gloria!"

Tuesday, December 22, 2015

Twenty-third Day of Advent

Huron Madonna and Child, The Huron Carol

"The star stopped not far from where Jesus was born
Having found the place it said,
"Come this way"
Jesus, he is born.
(Huron Verses, The Huron Carol)

Monday, December 21, 2015

Twenty-second Day of Advent

Huron Child, The Huron Carol
Is any child in history without some sort of doll or plaything?  Huron children made dolls from corn husks, which were stuffed and padded with leaves, had limbs made from braided husk, were adorned with corn silk hair or real hair, and were clothed with more corn husks, animal hide or cloth. A traditional doll had no face, because of the legend about a beautiful corn husk person who lost her face through vanity.
"There was little formal training for children, but they learned skills from their games. Girls helped their mothers with their work. Boys were expected to be hardy, brave and self-reliant."  Sainte Marie Among the Hurons

Sunday, December 20, 2015

Twenty-first Day of Advent

Little Chapel, The Huron Carol
The little girl here is pictured with a cradle board, or baby carrier.  During the day an infant would be wrapped in furs and secured to the cradle board, which stood up on the floor of the lodge inside, or outside was carried on the mother's back or carried in front.  "Wrapped in furs, the babies were carried in cradleboards filled with soft warm down from bullrushes."

This I was pleased to read from several sources, "With their great sense of dignity, the Huron Wendat felt it was wrong to coerce or publicly humiliate anyone, especially a child.  Physical punishment was never used as a discipline." (Sainte Marie Among the Hurons)

"...and even those who were at a distance of more than two days journey met at a given place to sing hymns in honour of the new-born child.."  The Jesuit Relations, 1642

Huron Cradleboard, The Huron Carol