This watercolour is based on a dream and a conversation I had a couple of days ago. The dream involved a dark man who stole everything I owned after I unlocked my door and let him in. The conversation talked about the book Women Who Run With the Wolves, particularly about confronting and befriending the animus. Yesterday I made a fast pencil sketch of those elements.
©2011 L.Ciacco, Wild Woman and Wolf Befriending Animus, watercolour on paper, 13.5 x 10.5 in.
And then I looked for unexpected details, discovering a little masked man bearing a large heart, and a yellow bird stretching its wings. For some reason, I added three shapes that became burning candles stuck in the hair of the animus.
I painted in the main colours and then today I painted the details and nuances. It took a lot longer than I had anticipated. But digging usually does.
Last night, just before going to sleep, I picked up Women Who Run With the Wolves, which I haven't read in several years, and opened it to a page that was bookmarked. Here is a quote that jumped out at me:
"There is a tremendous correlation between women who are afraid to create, making their ideas manifest in the world, and their dream images of injured or injuring men. Conversely, the dreams of women strong in outer manifesting ability often feature a strong male figure who consistently appears in various guises."
Clarissa Pinkola Estés
Obviously, I don't have trouble creating, but making my ideas manifest in the world is quite a different matter.
By turning the painting on its side (and squinting a bit), it looks as though Wild Woman is being embraced by a Being in a long, striped, fringed shawl. Do you see it? Hmmm, maybe I should paint that version...
Do you ever write down or draw images and scenarios from your dreams? Can you even remember your dreams when you wake up? Is there a recurring male figure who visits you in your dreams?
P.S. About those 3 candles? I just read "So the animus travels the road between two territories and sometimes three: underworld, inner world, and outer world." Coincidence?