Flower Goddess of Spring detail

Flower Goddess – Music From The Ground

When the Flower Goddess came along, the seventh in my Nature Goddess Suite, I was quite excited. Watercolor is the perfect medium for painting flowers. Each of my paintings have to take form in my mind before I begin, and I let my thoughts ramble until a cohesive form appears. Painting is a very meditative process for me, and tranquility is key for me.

The Tulip of Willendorf

Of all the flowers, the tulip is one of the most important heralds of Spring for me, so that’s the form she took. Her pose is quite intentionally inspired by the paleolithic figure of the Venus of Willendorf, and I am thrilled at how she turned out. Once the sketch started taking form, she really captured my heart. You can view all the Nature Goddesses in the Art Gallery as well.

Flower Goddess of Spring watercolor painting by Beth Hansen-Buth

Flower Goddess watercolor original art by Beth Hansen-Buth

 

from earth’s lips spoken without sound”
– Edwin Curran

The Flower Goddess and Music

I love that verse by american poet Edwin Curran, it brings the music of flowers to life. There is so much beauty in the world that is soft and simple and delicate. Tulips are the herald to Spring, and they are gone so quickly. If you are anything like me, you have a crazy busy life. Flowers have also inspired many composers to create music to describe their beauty. Mother nature’s glorious art form inspires artists of all ages. Whether you want to tiptoe through the tulips with Tiny Tim and his ukulele, or do the Dance of the Flowers with Tchaikovsky, it’s up to you. Please feel free to share how you express your own harmony with flowers in the comments below.

Flower Goddess pencil sketch by Beth Hansen-Buth

Goddess Sketch – Goddess Art Creation

Today you are getting a sneak peek at my latest Goddess Sketch: the Flower Goddess. Each painting starts out in pencil on paper, where I work out the idea and the basic shapes. Any shading is minimal, because that all happens during the painting process. With watercolor, you have to let the paint decide for itself where to go, there’s less control but more flow working this way. For this painting, I’m using mostly watercolors with a couple of guache colors to keep it bright.

Flower Goddess Sketch by Beth Hansen-Buth

On the drawing table, Flower Goddess Sketch

Goddess Sketch to Painting

Yes, my drawing table is usually quite messy as I work. I keep my brushes in a mug whose handle is broken off, and my palette is a piece of glass. This work in progress is an 8×10 watercolor on aquabord. I’m looking forward to adding her to my gallery when the painting is complete. When I begin a painting, I keep it loose, with edges not clearly defined. It’s very messy at this stage, so you won’t ever see me share anything until it’s complete. The sketch is complete, so that’s why I’m sharing it today. I took the photo with my cel phone, which is the only camera I currently have, something I’d like to change in the near future.

There are so many aspects to creating art these days. With all the technology we have, it makes it easy to share things right away. My plan is to keep updating the blog each week with my artistic endeavors. Tonight I get to go play with my fellow Leprechaun Pirates as we have our first show this weekend. Wyrdhaven Studio is thriving with art and music, and I’m really looking forward to seeing where this story leads us over the next six months. Music is life and art is joy!

The Mystery of the Tree Goddess

I do love painting trees, they are very patient models and hold their poses very well. Deep down I think we all know that the trees provide life and shelter to us all. I have a love for well crafted instruments and furniture made of wood, and there are hardwood floors here in my studio. An old apple tree struggles as each year more of its limbs grow black and brittle in my yard, while a young pin oak delights in the regularity of sun and rain we’ve been having this year. In the back yard a magnificent silver maple shades much of the yard and our sacred circle space we use to count the months and seasons creates a leafy canopy that we watch the moon travel through.

Around the world stand sacred groves, and I pondered long on how to depict the Tree Goddess. Arms as branches came to mind, but it was this vision of the Goddess as a guardian of the inner mysteries of the tree itself that had to be painted. What lies beyond her gently curving form in the darkness? Just as a woman’s vulva holds the mystery of pleasure and life, so also do trees.

Tree Goddess Art

May the mystery of the secret gate bring you closer to your walk with nature. Tree Goddess painting 8×10″ watercolor by By Beth Hansen-Buth

Trees are sacred all around the world, and culture after culture reveres its sacred groves. The wisdom is found in Wiki these days:

A sacred grove or sacred woods are any grove of trees of special religious importance to a particular culture. Sacred groves feature in various cultures throughout the world.

They were important features of the mythological landscape and cult practice of Celtic, Baltic, Germanic, ancient Greek, Near Eastern, Roman, and Slavic polytheism, and were also used in India, Japan, and West Africa. Examples of sacred groves include the Greco-Roman temenos, the Norse hörgr, and the Celtic nemeton, which was largely but not exclusively associated with Druidic practice. During the Northern Crusades, there was a common practice of building churches on the sites of sacred groves. The Lakota and various other North American tribes consider particular forests or other natural landmarks to be sacred.

Ancient holy trees still exist in the English countryside and are mentioned often in folklore and fairytales.

When I was growing up, we lived for a while on a dead-end street. The farthest house had an old well on it and beyond it were trees. It was a lovely woods, that as a small child I considered a forest. A path led down the hill through the woods to a nearby park where we would go to play. This is where a neighbor lady would sit on her deck telling us fairy tales in late summer while we ate ice cream cones. The nature of magic is self-evident to children, it is everywhere around them, in the stories and songs, the rustle of leaves, and the old well down the street. It’s mysteries are very solid and real, and the trees have their own tales to tell if we will listen.

Earth Goddess Detail

Grounding with the Earth Goddess

The following is a meditation I use to stay grounded, the Earth Goddess helps me do that. As above, so also below.

Go to a quiet place where you will not be disturbed and can sit comfortably in a chair with your feet touching the ground. Have a glass or bottle of water nearby. Begin by closing your eyes and breathing slowly and deeply, expanding your rib-cage and your belly for six breaths. Notice how this feels by focusing on the expansion and contraction of your ribs. Relax and breath normally. Now bring your focus up between and behind your eyebrows, this is your Ajna Chakra or Third Eye and will help you with visualizing the rest of the meditation. Keep your eyes closed and picture a ball of white light in the center of your body, imagine it growing and expanding filling your body and creating a glow to about two feet from your body all around. At the outer edge imagine that a light blue electric light starts to form, like a forcefield it is protecting you and your space from any distractions.

Now feel the weight of your body where you are sitting, and imagine you are a stone, sitting in the warm sand with your feet and legs buried deep into the earth. Focus on your contact to earth, and imagine that the white light flows freely from you to the stump and back again. Notice any sensations you may feel as you connect and ground yourself to Mother Earth.

Earth Goddess watercolor painting by Beth Hansen Buth

Earth Goddess watercolor painting by Beth Hansen Buth

Move your feet back and forth, and wiggle your toes while touching the floor. Imagine your feet have sent shoots down deep into the heart of Mother Earth as energy begins to flow effortlessly like water into your Energy Body. Picture the energy as a warm, golden-green color or loving pink color, whichever you are more comfortable with. Still your feet as they continue to drink and focus on the rising warmth as earth energy fills your legs, knees, hips, torso, arms, hands, neck and finally your head where it flows out the top, down your body, and back to the earth through the trunk of your tree-chair to the center of the Earth to be transformed into clear clean energy again. Allow it to flow at it’s own pace, and imagine as it does so it’s cleaning away all your doubts & fears, anger & frustration, and any negative speck or blocked idea that keeps you from pure love and joy. As Earth Energy cleans out a space, it fills it with love, peace, and contentment. Focus on how this makes you feel.

When you are ready, open your eyes and drink your glass of water. Know that the water came from the earth and is nourishing your Energy Body which just had a good workout! As you continue your day, you can renew your connection to the earth by imagining a vine reaching from the base of your spine to the center of the earth. Like an anchor it keeps connected to Mother Earth and you can make it as large or small in your imagination as you think it should be. Use it any time you need to eliminate any negative or unpleasant emotions or energies throughout the day.

© 2007-2016 Beth Hansen-Buth. All Rights Reserved.

Moon Goddess Art

The Moon Goddess

Approach the Moon Goddess with care. Her silver light will guide your step, you will find her in a still pool. She is the mirror of your soul’s longing, the gift of light in darkness. Drink deeply of her light and praise her beauty.

It is impossible for me to talk about the moon without waxing poetic. Walking under the moonlight is a truly romantic experience, I fall in love with her every time. While there are many named goddesses associated with the moon, it is her light which inspires me the most, it is a great blessing on a late spring night. In winter, the snow reflects her glory so brightly it startles the senses. She governs the tides, and times to plant and sow. Moonlight is magical, cool and beautiful. She glimmers and shimmers. There is no way to adequately describe the glory of the moon, or render her with watercolor paint for that matter. Yet I have to try to honor her to the best of my ability, exploring the sacred in nature and the divine feminine demanded it.

Blue Moon Goddess

Moon Goddess Original Watercolor painting by Beth Hansen-Buth

The Freedom Of The Moon – Poem by Robert Frost

I’ve tried the new moon tilted in the air
Above a hazy tree-and-farmhouse cluster
As you might try a jewel in your hair.
I’ve tried it fine with little breadth of luster,
Alone, or in one ornament combining
With one first-water start almost shining.

I put it shining anywhere I please.
By walking slowly on some evening later,
I’ve pulled it from a crate of crooked trees,
And brought it over glossy water, greater,
And dropped it in, and seen the image wallow,
The color run, all sorts of wonder follow.

How does the moon inspire you?

Green Goddess

Sacred Nature

It came to me suddenly one day, while contemplating the new paintings. I am exploring the sacred in nature, and the nature of the sacred. What began with just one painting of the Goddess has evolved into an adventure. It started with the sun, the dawn of a new day for me. The next step came when the seed was sown and started to grow into this green goddess. While explore working with watercolors, each painting is also an exploration of the Goddess. What is she trying to tell me? It begins with an idea, and with this one it is the coming of Spring, The intention is to show growth and the power of green living things.

Green Goddess Art by Beth Hansen-Buth

Green Goddess Art by Beth Hansen-Buth

“The environment is where we all meet;
where all have a mutual interest; it is the one thing all of us share.”
~ Lady Bird Johnson ~

Each painting is a step to a whole journey, with an unfolding visual story whose destination is the next idea that grabs me and won’t let go. Taking up the brush, pushing the paint around, following my simple sketch, I watch each image unfold in ways that I didn’t imagine before I began. The original thought remains, but it grows and evolves from sketch to finished painting, even on something as small as 5″x7″ this happens. Creating each painting changes the environment, showing me things in a fresh way. Variations on the theme of the Goddess, it has a musical quality to it, each painting is a new verse to a song honoring Mother Nature in all of her aspects.

While the Sun Goddess has the strong energy of rays, this is full of spirals. Each plant emerges from a seed to form a seedling, curling up out of the soil. Shoots and leaves unfold and take form every Spring. In my own garden established plants were ready to divide, and columbine self seeded beautifully, so I can spread them around and enjoy their delicate beauty more and more.

Some notes on art techniques and materials:

Repetition and variation makes for good design, and I am reminded of when I was first learning to work in color. I have explored so many medium and techniques, and watercolor on aquabord is serving me well. Many of my smaller paintings in oil were on gessoboard, which has a similar texture; enough to give the paint something to cling to but still allowing delicate details. This painting definitely evolved, as I had no real plan for the background on this at all, other than the verdant green of growing things. She glows with the sparks of life, some of which were created by scraping away the paint to the bare clay below, and then tinting again with yellow or green watercolor. I used colored pencil to emphasize details of the hair/leaves/vine. Some of the white is from gel pen, the dots above the heart leaf and  some of the white swirls as well. This painting also heralds a change in my artistic signature, which I plan to refine and make into a logo.

Each painting is added to my Art Gallery, so take a look at all that I’ve done so far. Feel free to comment here on the blog or in the gallery. Art is a solitary business, but the paintings must be seen, so please leave a few kind words if you are so moved.