Humans have been marking deep winter with festivities and celebrations for many millennia, long before the written word was ever able to record the whys’ and wherefores’ of such ancient rites.
Fires’ burnt and mead flowed centuries before tales of a Christian God-child was even conceived in a cold darkness few modern souls can fathom. The shortest day of the year was worshiped and celebrated. Long forgotten Gods were praised and flattered in order to bring forth a new season of rebirth and spiritualities that linked to the turning seasons kept hope alive when the frosted earth appeared to have none.
All things fade, and even the religious Christmas many of us grew up with in the western world has been superseded by a commercial season which worships money over all things.
The irony of promoting my festive season cards, like all hypocrisy, is not lost on me. But I am, first and foremost, an artist and this is the only way I can make some pocket money for myself. My images have been around for a long time. The first was winter solstice (below) created in 2007. This image has photos of frost, holly and conkers (seed of the horse chestnut tree) among other things to create an image that reflects on nature in slumber.
The next image (below), Festive Wood 2008, is a surreal depiction of the wonder of nature during this festive season.
Last of all, (above) Winter Dance 2009 , celebrates the magic of winters’ merry dance of frost and snow (which sadly we experience less and less of) Can you see the Jack Frost-like figure in the image that happened more by chance than intention?
These three images proved popular at the Spiritual and Natural Fairs I used to exhibit at with my wife in toe 😂 .
While I now create differently, these images have a certain timelessness that makes an interesting proposition for someone trying to find that special card for the person whose hearts still yearns for the festivities of old.
Let us not forget, while corporations weave their magic and Christianity chimes its’ bells, pagans and those spiritualities that defy classification will mark the dark winter with local traditions and tales that even those attuned to nature may not be aware of.
Difference is good and all belief systems and traditions have value. Giving hope against the ever-rising tide of capitalism and the homogenised culture.
About the actual cards
These images are printed and distributed by one of the internets oldest ‘print on demand’ companies:- Zazzle. I have always found their prints to be good quality. I have no control over any aspect of Zazzle, I simply upload my images to their servers and receive a small royalty of a few pence for every image they sell. I am always very grateful for any sale, especially in these troubled times.
Thank you for reading