There's something about ghosts, it seems.
(Green Ghosts/The children of Green Knowe, by me:)
I am not really referring to the well-worn concept of the 'spook' here, but more so to my own impressions and feelings about ghosts.
To me, they are a beautiful metaphor; like fairies, in one sense, and really quite devoid of the usual macabre associations of which they are so famously related. I seem to have a natural predilection for all things spectral - this is quite evident in my obsession with ghost stories, ghost films and even more so, my art.
So what do they mean to me?
I'm still trying to work that one out! But i do believe that my fascination is primarily expressive of a more positive relationship to the theme, as opposed to a morbid fascination with fear, death and terror that might so readily spring to mind - although it must be said that i do enjoy cavorting with shadows on occasion, quite on purpose, because I am a law unto myself.
I suppose, in many ways, that I'm leaning towards the poetical, the mysterious, the ethereal, the potential with my ghosts.
They allude to my dreams (in which i meet the deceased quite often), those fleeting wonders that assist inspiration, like thoughts and ideas made manifest...or almost.
And my cat likes ghosts, too, ok? especially White Ladies.
(I am also aware that the concept of 'ghosts' will have completely varied significance for each and every one of us (culturally, religious, etc). For some, they are the souls of the departed, electrical anomalies, the embodiment of horror, absolute stuff and nonsense, or manifestations of the unconscious mind, etc, etc. So i do not intend to start up a discussion about what ghosts actually are, by any means - i simply wish to waffle, as i am prone to do on occasion:)
I just like the idea of endless possibilities and potential. That child-like openness again, which i have mentioned before, creeping into my love of imagery and words. The above image encapsulates this very concept, for me. I was recalling a book from my childhood at the time, called 'The Children of Green Knowe' a story about a young boy who goes to stay with his old, eccentric aunt at an old English country house, haunted by the ghosts of three small children who had at one time occupied the very attic room where Tolly (the boy) now slept. Steeped in the type of fictional imagery that i adore (forests that whisper, rooms with secrets, hidden doors and curious creatures that inhabit ancient trees), this particular book, and it's long lost BBC dramatised accompaniment, must have had a great effect on me. And so have many other such stories and films; dark perhaps, yet rarely devoid of warmth, love and adventure.
And this little wraith is one of my favourite ghosts of all. The stairs had collapsed inside of my dollshouse, so i decided to make the most of it! I cannot decide whether she is a visiting apparition, exploring the rooms of a home she once knew, or whether she is suspended in time, stranded at the scene of a previous existence which is no longer a part of this world.
I am also enchanted by the possibility of her actually being a living creature, dreaming this scene in which she appears as a projection of her self.
I have often flirted with this idea, especially after dreaming about the areas where i grew up. We had a farm, surrounded by fields and streams, rambling woods and long, winding dirt paths that lead to who knows where (I still perceive it with a child's mind). And when i dream of this place, which is quite often, i can almost imagine myself actually appearing there, as a sort of transparent, hazy figure, snooping around the hedgerows and apple trees...... which aren't even there anymore - they eventually tore it all apart and built a housing estate over the landscape of my memories, but such is life:(
The ghosts of memory - perhaps the most haunting of all.
Bridey's Ghosts (Garden Dreams)
These were taken from a project that i worked on with a friend, consisting of paper collage, photography and crepe paper.
'Bridey's Ghosts' was the story of a girl's transition from innocence and naivete towards self knowledge and awareness. The process is painful but also quite beautiful, and that, of course was the entire point. The images utilised the ghost metaphor throughout; allowing me to express the inexpressible, capturing those essential yet intangible landmarks and awakenings integral to a young womans life - in much the same way as a fairytale might utilise the motif of a frog becoming a prince, as a metaphor for transition.
And so it seems, my ghosts are quite as often constructs of the mind and emotions, a visual representation of the transient, just as often as they are products of a playful imagination. I dare say they make up the more thoughtful, 'intellectual' portion of my works, at the same time attempting to throttle the intellect into giving itself up to the impossible.
I'm left handed, you know, it causes havoc ^_^
And my last ghostly offering for the evening....
Mirror with a Memory
What do YOU see in the glass?
I so wish that i could elaborate more on this theme, perhaps it could be part of another blog post.....especially my thoughts and musings with regards to the use of ghosts in film, literature and so on. But time will not allow it, alas, so please accept the following spectral weblinks as a humble expression of my apologies - i have some long, overdue art to attend to...and a handful of ghosts besides;)
And now for those ghostie links...you know you want to:)
. Ghosts in film
. More ghosts in film
. Ghosts in photography (like, really) sheesh!
. The Ghost Story
. Phantasmagoria (again!)
. Edith Wharton - The Ghost Feeler
. The Virago Book of Victorian Ghost Stories
. Symbolist Art
. Arthur Machen, also here
. Ghostly Showgirls by gilfling
. Print of Ghost by shannondzikas
. The Ghostly Cradle by MarmeeCraft
. Dancing Ghosts Mobile by collabolabo
. Untitled Apple Doll Print by thisisblaise
On that note i will leave you for the night!
Enjoy your bedtime reading:)