Smudging fans:

This time of year, late February, we should be having beautiful cooooold winter weather, but instead of that it is raining into our formerly 4 feet of snow that now is quickly melting away, especially because it also is +11 degree centigrade. 😦

All our outside chores like going out into the bush and getting our wood are on hold.

So I am sitting in front of a pile of feathers, furs and recycled leather and give new life and meaning to a few of the wild Bird wings I accumulated over the last few years.

Remember this post – about how to pin and dry Bird wings?

https://shamanicdrumm.wordpress.com/2014/09/14/a-box-with-wings/

Here now is a nice Merlin Wing Smudging fan, just finished 🙂

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 Another wing pinned in the box in the above mentioned post is this following Sharp Shinned Hawk wing.Now it too is dressed up and ready to find an owner 🙂

 

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And as always, to maybe go with these 2 treasures there are 2 Sweetgrass baskets dressed up and filled with Sage, Cedar, Juniper, some incense, some crystals and 2 different large shells suitable for smudging.

One of them is a LARGE clam shell found at the beach of Kouchibouguac NP in New Brunswick. The local Micmac people consider shells from there as powerful “Gebmeg” = good Medicine.

 

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Feather Work:

This post is just a couple of pictures about what is now happening to my feathers:

Here is the latest crop of Feather Earrings:

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Normally I make some quite involved Prayer Feathers like these:

But for these I just wanted to keep it simple. They just have to find someone who loves and uses them.

The Large one is from “Vulture Woman”

Then there is a Raven. Of course it is dressed in white Deer leather, because of the Siberian story, that in the Beginning the Raven was white….

Have I told that legend?

The Owl feathers and the Hawk are some of the ones I brought back – see last post….

 

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We are in the midst of the Market and Craft Show season and we both are trying to keep up with making Jewellery for our booth and of course I am having some of my Shaman Art there as well. 

Here are 2 Rattles .

They are painted rawhide and Deer leather  and of course some feathers:DSCN4459

Bird Food

Every 2 weeks the large wast containers at the crossroads down by Kawpakwakog river are getting emptied. During the winter months all the locals bring their garbage there. The Ravens know that. They are lurking around, high on top of the surrounding trees, hoping for a spilled morsel. So when I went there last Sunday to bring our recycles and other stuff, I was not surprised to see them. When they see me, they caw a ruckus and come down to the lowest branches. They know me well and know, that ifff there by chance is a morsel in easy reach, I will feed them.

 

They were VERY agitated , so I in turn knew, that there was something, that they could smell and they WANTED IT!

Oh, right! Yet again we had lost the “hydro” = electricity a few days ago, due to a snow storm. This is a sad, but rather regular occurrence here. The overland line neeeeeds to get fixed, but the city does not want to spend the money….

When we loose power, all the cottagers usually throw out, whatever was in their fridges and freezers.

No wonder, the Ravens were going “nuts”Ravens

Yes, there was a whole chicken, a leg of lamb, still sealed in cellophane, best before date march 2017 and lots of other goodies. I got a knife, opened some stuff and tossed it into the bush behind the large containers. The Ravens descended onto their feast…..

You are welcome, guys! What you can not drag away, the Foxes will get and that in turn will save the lives of a few Snowshoe Hares and a dozen Mice. Mice however are food for Owls and as you all know…. me and Owls…..

OK, back home – But wait!??

Why is this there plastic bag “shimmering and glimmering” in this all soooo very familiar shaman sight way?

What is inside?

More Raven food?

Oh! yes and NO!

Inside the wall mart bag is a little lost Soul.

A local one.

A little Green Winged Teal.

Shot right through the chest.

Stuffed into the bag – for what?

And now- thrown away.

Still beautiful in its very own sad way.

 

Poor little Duck” I said. “Maybe I should take you home. Thaw you out, take your wings and make something beautiful, then put your body outside for Dilgi, our local Fox….

I did.

A day later a Spirit Release ceremony took place in our kitchen.

Then I took the wings, stretched them out and mounted them on a piece of Styrofoam to dry them.

Teal wings pinned

It will take at least 6 months, until I can get to work on them.

I will report back, when that time comes.

For now,fly well little Green Duck! ♥

09SB6208 Green-winged Teal Hen

Medicine Pieces In January:

Yes, it is January.

Every year, after Peter’s birthday we slooooowly and reluctantly start up working again, on/ for Bearpaw Jewellery, our business.

Actually, with both of us in our 60ties now, we could afford to – just stop.

But how does one “put to sleep” a successful and thriving business? We can not sell it, because its value ins not in the large workshop with all our tools and materials, it is our ideas, our designs and our creativity, that makes up the value.

Just stop everything, stuff it into boxes and bury it in the basement?

We can not really bury our creative drive either.

So for now, we decided, Bearpaw will transform from our “must do” to become more of our hobby and passion.

For me, my shamanic artwork is also a responsibility.

A promise I made. One, that I HAVE to keep, to the best of my ability.

See, there are all the hundreds of furs – all recycled form discarded coats, to be sure, but still….

Many of these Animals were bred and raised in deplorable conditions, just to be killed for their fur. Then, quickly and with the rapidly changing social consciousness, it became “inappropriate” to wear fur and so the beautiful pelts ended either in the trash bin – or the 2nd hand shop – or people brought them to me, traded them in, for a piece of jewellery, knowing, that I would make meaningful artwork from the pelts.

I promised to do that. Not so much to the people bringing the fur, but to the Animal Spirits still alive within…….

For a shaman EVERYTHING is ALIVE! ALWAYS!

Now however, I have about 10 large bins full of fur. Toooo much to ever be able to use it and work it all. So, I will share with the Native crafters living in the area…….

Then, there are all the beautiful Bird Wings, waiting to be re-awakened to a new life. – Just remember this post, where I found several Hawks dead on the road on Manitoulin island on the busiest weekend of the year:

https://shamanicdrumm.wordpress.com/2014/09/14/a-box-with-wings/

Now these are cured and ready to work with.

But before it is their turn, I have to work on the 2 Wings that came before them.

This one is yet another Sharp Shinned Hawk. I mounted it onto a piece of Cactus root.

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Then, remember this post?

https://shamanicdrumm.wordpress.com/2014/11/06/medicine-pieces/

Now the 2nd  Northern Harrier wing is ready to take flight. – get “adopted”.

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It is a truly LARGE piece with a Quartz Crystal and a Heron feather at the top and a silver feather on the sturdy handle. The handle is also a functional rattle, being filled with Turquoise pebbles.

This Female Northern Harrier Wing Fan is my Medicine Piece in honour of Full Moon In January.

Palaeolithic Hunter’s Knife

DSCN7096 (371 x 720)We now know, what the flint blades, that our early Ancestors used for hunting and in other daily activities did look like. During long hours the carefully collected flint was finely napped into shape and finished with a razor sharp tip.

flint napping

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When I was able to trade such a blade, created by a fellow artist,that specializes in flint napping, I could not resist, combining it with a smooth goat horn and some bits and pieces of fur and leather to create this replica of a knife used in hunting, skinning of hides portioning meat and in “Hunting Magic”

This actually is the term many archaeologist and anthropologists used to describe the many and varied pictographs and petroglyphs they encountered in paleolithic and also neolithic sites. I feel, that the user of the knife honoured his/ her personal Spirit guide/ Guardian as well as the Animals, that were the desired, but also revered and respected prey.

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The Materials I used for my replica:

Flint

Goat Horn – May the descendants of the Goat, who’s horn I used live and prosper

Pig leather – Can YOU imagine, to go after a Wild Boar with just such a knife?

Deer leather,… or run down a fleeing Deer in dense under-brush…?

Fox Fur – ….get bitten by a cornered Fox?

Mink fur – You would catch this one in a sling……

bone, stone, antler and wooden beads,

hand carved Spirit Bird,

Raven feather

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Reflections

Soooo – I think, it is time for a little update as to what I am up to the days.

Well, busy for sure. Now in late October whenever the weather is halfway decent Peter and me are working hard – getting winter wood ready. Recent storms have brought down some huuuuge Maples, that we cut and carry out of the bush, section by section…..

Then there are a couple of craft shows coming up and while it is raining Cats, Dogs and Howler Monkeys – or rather Chipmunks, Weasels and caterwauling Catamounts we are making jewellery, lots of little things, that are fit for small budgets. Many of them are inspired by the recent trip to Bon Echo and Algonquin Park:DSC_5927

Spirit Boat petroglyph:

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 I am also making a few nice Medicine Pieces.

Like this Rattle for example:

Shamans Rattle 1

here is another view

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While sitting on working on pieces like this, I again think back on the “Vision-Teachings I received at Bon Echo and I yet again find myself drawing the pictographs seen on the face of the rocks = or their counterparts shimmering in the water onto the leather of my Medicine items.

The sonorous voice of a long-time enspirited Medicine Person reaches from the beyond into my ear – or rather my soul:

They call it Bon Echo.

But not for the voices reflecting back from the rock walls.

The bon echo is the one coming of the Medicine Spirits as they dance in the Water and teach the People!”

I reflect about these reflections……..

Bon Echo indeed!

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Parrot Feather Fan:

One of the shamanic students I mentor is raising the son of a Taita of the Cofan tradition from Colombia.

Parrot feathers are an important part of their regalia.

That inspired me to use all the diverse Parrot feathers I recently received from a loving family, that has several pet Parrots and combine them with a bit of fur from an ooooold coat of Ozelot fur. The Jaguar also features prominently in all South American traditions. Black Jaguars have the map of the Stars hidden on their pelt and bring the teachings of the Star Nations and our Ancestors, as well as our descendants yet to come…….

Parrot Feather Fan

http://www.sfgate.com/news/article/Colombia-s-Cofan-still-fighting-for-survival-3277733.php

http://parquesnacionales.gov.co/PNN/portel/libreria/php/frame_detalle.php?h_id=2911&patron=01.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Cof%C3%A1n_people

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