‘The Quickening’: part 2

Work progresses on The Quickening. Four days in and I’ve gone from sketch…

to underdrawing…

to an acrylic, gouache and oil pencil render. (Detail)

The maquette of model Jordan Morley is an invaluable tool, and the time spent making it begins to repay in compositional terms. With its complicated articulation, it’s proven versatile in shaping my ideas.

The image of the Mari is a bit of a departure for me. I used the maquette made for the animation sequences of The Mare’s Tale in 2013, though changed nearly everything about it.

For me the Mari Lwyd is a constantly evolving construct, though this most recent version, flayed, blood red and with vegetation spilling from its abdomen, is the most visceral yet.

5 thoughts on “‘The Quickening’: part 2

  1. What power there is in the relationship between man and horse here, the two beings are very different but there is a crackle of energy between them. The heat of that red is marvellous; can’t wait to see this develop, it’s looking awesome already

  2. I know in pre-Christian traditions that the darkest period of the year was traditionally believed as a time that the veil between this world and the ‘otherworld’ was thinner and so beings, like the Mari, could readily pass through to this one.

    In “The Mare’s Tale” your Mari was part horse/part human and rooted in the mumming tradition and all that means to your personal history. However, the Mari of “Dark Movements” appears to be wholly a glorious beast of the “otherworld”, with no such human ties.

    The horse was associated with ‘power, fertility and prowess on the battlefield’ in Celtic Britain. I am very interested to see this new Mari emerging in your work, which, in my opinion, embodies the qualities it was once worshipped for and seems to be about life, not death.

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