Sunday, 17 January 2016

More Mandalas

"Mandala -- Aeonium-x-3 Mandala", drawing by Sarah "Sallie" Thayer, 2015

I have always liked the geometric appearance of most members of the genus Aeonium so, as I looked back at the drawings I have done over the past years, I felt that these three plants would be perfect for the "mandala treatment".  

While I am pleased to a degree with the result above, I am thinking that perhaps Aeonium lancerottense (the plant in the centre of the design) might actually make an interesting mandala all on its own -- so long as I used not only the entire plant but the individual petals as well.  It is just something that I am "sitting with" at the moment.  You will certainly know about it if I, eventually, decide to give it a try!

For now, however, let's return to today's mandala composed by using the three drawings posted below -- all members of the genus Aeonium.  

Although I did write a bit about them back in 2010 when I did the original postings, here is a bit a of information about each plant just in case you have forgotten.

Aeonium is a genus of about 35 species of succulent, subtropical plants of the family Crassulaceae. The name, Aeonium, comes from the ancient Greek "aionos" which means “immortal.

"Aeonium nobile", drawing by Sarah "Sallie" Thayer,
revised 2015
Most of the various species of Aeonium are native to the Canary Islands although some species are found in Madeira, Morocco and parts of eastern Africa.

Aeonium nobile (to your left) has one of the largest rosettes of any Aeonium -- up to 15 inches in diameter. The individual light-green leaves with reddened margins are quite succulent and fleshy.  It is native to the Canary Island of La Palma where it grows among volcanic rocks at elevations up to 2600 ft. above sea level.  The specific name of "nobile" comes from the Latin and means notable or noble.

"Aeonium lancerottense",
drawing by Sarah "Sallie" Thayer, revised 2015

Aeonium lancerottense (to the right) gets its specific name from the location where it is thought to have originated which is the area around Lanzarote in the Canary Islands.  

Below is a revised drawing of Aeonium 'swartkop' with its large head of deep purple black foliage. The original drawing, done back in 2010, showed only a portion of the "rosette" and I needed the entire head in order to use this plant in the mandala. Aeonium 'swartkop'  is a cultivar of Aeonium arboretum. Its cultivar status is indicated by placing the species name in single quote marks.  

"Aeonium swartkop",
drawing by Sarah "Sallie" Thayer, revised 2015 

Aeonium 'swartkop' looks like a flower because of the arrangement of its leaves which are deep red/black in colour. In fact, one of its common names is Black Rose. There are other forms of the specific name for this cultivar including "Schwarzkopf "and "Schwartzkopf".  I presume that these are various forms of the name of the individual who first successfully created the cultivar. 

Even though it is not really a mandala, I want to show you another design I made recently which I created using the flowers and petals of Tulipa stapfii.

"Mandala -- Tulipa stapfii mandala", drawing by Sarah "Sallie" Thayer, 2016

I did start out intending to create a mandala using this particular tulip --  I planned to combine it with a couple of other tulip drawings. However, when I started working with Tulipa stapfii, I decided that I so liked the patterns I was able to create with this one flower that I ended up creating a design using only this one flower along with various parts of the flower such as the centre of the flower, the petals of the flower (greatly reduced in size) and the leaves.

"Tulipa stafii", drawing by Sarah "Sallie" Thayer,
revised 2016

At the left is the actual drawing (after just a bit of recent revision) that I did of Tulipa stapfii back in March of 2011.

I must say that the more involved I become with the attempt to create mandalas, the more I want to continue working on them well past my usual daily time limit for being on the computer.  Too often now I find myself working on these drawings until the pain in my hand and arm becomes unbearable and I am forced to stop. Of course, the incredible aspect of this is that up until I reach the point of unbearable pain, I am so intensely involved in the creative process that I am almost completely unaware of the pain that is always present!  If only someone could put this "creative intensity" into a medicine bottle so that people everywhere would be able to use it in order to leave their pain behind for at least a few hours each day...

Some of the above information was taken from various Internet sources.


Suki in one of her reflective moments!
Well, I much as I dislike setting up rules for visitors to my home, I have reached the point where it has become absolutely necessary.

As of this coming week, I will be posting certain rules next to the coat tree where my visitors hang their coats and leave their shoes and boots.

The poster will read as follows:

As a visitor to my home, you are welcome to do the following:

  1. Play with Suki whenever you wish and for however long you wish so long as you do so using your own fingers or any of the many conventional cat toys available.  
  2. Give her a small bit of catnip (I will show you where it is hidden) if you are so inclined -- with the proviso that you are not to complain if she drools all over your nice clothes.
However, you may wish to touch, examine or play with the laser pointer sitting on the coffee table in the living room.  If so, here are the rules you must agree to follow:

  1. You will not use the laser pointer sitting on the coffee table in the living room for any reason without my express permission.
  2. Having gained my permission, you will then be allowed to examine said pointer at your leisure; however, if you wish to turn it on, then you must be prepared for Suki to pester you for the remainder of your visit.
  3. Having turned on the laser pointer, you should be willing to engage in game playing with Suki -- said game playing may continue for a period not exceeding 15 continuous minutes.
  4. If you wish to do so, you may use the laser pointer for an additional 15 minutes of play so long as there is at least a 10 minute rest period between the first and second 15 minute segments.
  5. After having played with Suki using the laser for a total of 30 minutes, you will not be allowed to touch the pointer again during your visit.
  6. Any attempts to sneak in some extra minutes of laser play will result in your being escorted to the door with the strong suggestion that you behave yourself next time you want to come for a visit.

I hope this doesn't sound too harsh, but, unfortunately, something must be done to protect me from a cat whose brain seems to get all messed up after a prolonged bout of laser-pointer play.  When Joycelyn plays with Suki using the laser pointer for longer than 15 minutes at a time -- let's say 20 minutes -- it's almost as though Suki ends up on "speed". Even after this extended play time ends, Suki stays on high alert for at least another couple of hours and drives me a bit crazy in the process with her constant searching, whining and begging.  

However, I have noticed that the shorter the play time, the more quickly Suki "decompresses".  That is the reason for my limit on the time guests may play with Suki using the laser pointer while the rest period of 10 minutes between play periods seems to be just enough time to break the intensity of Suki's search for that damned red spot!

So, while Suki continues to become more and more addicted to the search for the laser light, I continue to be about the same as usual. 

I am having some new pain episodes in an part of my body that hasn't been affected previously; however, I am not surprised or particularly distressed by this since I have been told many times to expect the pain to spread and worsen over time.

However, the week ahead should be a reasonably quiet one for me as there are no special appointments or visits planned.  As usual, Joycelyn will be here on her regular days and I will have my regular Friday visit with my friend from the sixth floor.  Otherwise, hopefully, there shouldn't be any surprises.



"Icon -- Wedding Feast at Cana", by the hand of Sarah "Sallie" Thayer, rev. 2016

On the third day there was a wedding in Cana of Galilee, and the mother of Jesus was there. Jesus and his disciples had also been invited to the wedding. When the wine gave out, the mother of Jesus said to him, “They have no wine.” And Jesus said to her, “Woman, what concern is that to you and to me? My hour has not yet come.” His mother said to the servants, “Do whatever he tells you.”
Now standing there were six stone water jars for the Jewish rites of purification, each holding twenty or thirty gallons. Jesus said to them, “Fill the jars with water.” And they filled them up to the brim. He said to them, “Now draw some out, and take it to the chief steward.” So they took it.
When the steward tasted the water that had become wine, and did not know where it came from (though the servants who had drawn the water knew), the steward called the bridegroom and said to him, “Everyone serves the good wine first, and then the inferior wine after the guests have become drunk. But you have kept the good wine until now.” Jesus did this, the first of his signs, in Cana of Galilee, and revealed his glory; and his disciples believed in him.  After this he went down to Capernaum ... and they remained there for a few days.  John 2:1-12

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