I started out fully intending to make a black and white, highly detailed mandala this afternoon for my second mandala of the six required for the first lesson in this course. N was busy playing with Z, and I had two hours or more to myself. What I had in mind was something reflecting the sudden cold that has descended upon us after all the unseasonably balmy weather (no doubt killing all my spring flowers that are, in mid-January, now ready to bloom).
I began from the outside in this time, while listening to Cat Stevens' "Numbers" album. (Sorry, it predates cds & so will always be an "album" to me!) I noticed that the little designs I was making with my pencil were tripartite - something I hadn't tried before. Fun! Maiden, Mother & Wisewoman (I don't like thinking of myself as crone). They also looked kind of like frost on a window, so I doodled around, trying to make more frost-like designs in all the rest of the empty space. But nothing I made looked right.
Tried adding other types of tripartite designs. Didn't like any of them. Looked online at some photos of frost & ice crystals, but didn't get any inspiration.
Then I noticed that the three main big, sweeping lines I'd drawn (which rather reminded me of a three-part yin/yang symbol) could be added to to make a sort of Hokusai-like wave pattern. (Click on the title of this post - ALL my post titles can be clicked on, actually! - for more on Hokusai.)
I ended up not embellishing them at all, so they're not really much like him; but by the time I'd finished, I had Hokusai & Japan on the brain. And water. So I added a fish that was (to my mind) vaguely Japanese.
But I thought another fish would be too repetitive. So I tried a Japanese-y crane in the next section. Hm. Now I need an animal in the third. I couldn't think of any animal I could draw, though!
So I got out my markers & colored everything in, including adding a few gems in the border, representing little surprises that I happen upon from time to time. ;-)
And then, still needing inspiration, I google-imaged "Japanese drawings animals" and the first thing that came up was - well, I had to put him in.
The fish represents my mother, who taught me how to fish (which means I'll never go hungry, right?). The crane represents my friend in VA, S, who lives where there are cranes. And the third element represents my son, C, the reason for which will be obvious to anyone who knows us.
Unlike my first mandala, I'm pretty happy with this one. And I can't believe I actually drew some things that looked like reasonable representations of things.
Here it is:
I call it "Japanese Threes." And yes, that's Gojira - Godzilla. ;-)