Day 13 of my travels with The Clipperton Project around the Faroe Islands.
Today we were wandering around the small town of Hvalba.
A small group of us had wanted to visit the only coalmine on the islands, which was located just a little outside of Hvalba… but sadly when we wandered into town in search of information, there was none to be found! and we couldn’t quite figure out how to reach the place. So… we went for a walk instead.
And a beautiful walk it was, well worth sticking around for.
Yup. That is the little island we saw the other day. We’re now just a lot further to the left of where we were yesterday.
This was a wonderfully odd little farm just on the way to the harbour! full of weird little animals…
I walked down this pretty little harbour, and sat on the edge of the rocks to eat my lunch… after being chased by sheep who wanted by sandwich!!
Finally a walk along the beach to collect some more bits and pieces for jewellery making…
And back to The Johanna… tonight sailing off back to Vágur for a few days….. but first a bit of cheeky climbing up the rigging for a couple of our crew!!
And where would I be without some sexy pictures of the ship’s ropes and riggings. Love me some ropework ;)
And off we go!!
Today’s journey was very all over the place and not very calm at all! A lot of us were very rather ill by the end!! We had 50 knot winds battering us about, and rather big swells as a result! I still hadn’t figured out my strategy, and felt like total shit by the end of this journey!!
This was the end of my photos from that day. When the boat was tipping enough to allow water in, and I couldn’t move an inch without feeling like I wanted to hurl, it was time to put the camera away!!
But luckily Lea Kannar was filming a timelapse of this journey… if you follow this link (it may not work as I think it’s a private FB, but still worth a nosey if you can!).
Day 8 of my travels with The Clipperton Project around the Faroe Islands.
Today we were still in Tòrshavn and my day was a bit annoying.
I woke up in a bad mood for no apparent reason, and it got worse as I messed up most of morning wandering to and from laundry services trying to acquire clean clothes!! A complete waste of a morning… but I made up for it.
The Nordic House was basically a culture venue, built using traditional Nordic design with a modern spin. It was beautiful. And at the moment housed a really interesting art exhibition.
The Summer Exhibition NÚ/NOW 3 June – 21 August
The Summer Exhibition 2016 lets young Faroese artists born after 1980 take centre stage. We showcase works by 26 young talented artists, each with their own approach to visual arts.
I then wandered around the city for a little bit, doing a bit of shopping, and just seeing what I could see :)
No. I did not draw this. Just was highly amused as I walked past!
The Westward Ho.
I then settled into this beach to draw and gather up materials to make jewellery with.
A bad start to my day turned beautiful with art and the sea shore.
Yesterday we walked out along the coast to the puffin colonies in the glorious sunshine, and today we walked up a marshy hill in the drizzingly rain. It was still beautiful… just a different kind of beautiful!
A small group of us decided to explore the other side of the small island, and we wrapped ourselves in waterproofs to tackle the wet weather on our walk up the boggy hills on the other side of the small town.
That green ridge was where we walked along the previous day to see the puffins. It looks like a long way from here!! You can just see the lighthouse poking out from the top.
I’m actually wearing a pink waterproof jacket… it was that cold!!! Yes, mum, thanks for the jacket, I do appreciate it :P
A place that is so natural is still shaped by human hands. This, in a very beautiful way, but even here we are leaving our mark.
After this cold, windy, wet walk we popped into the little cafe opposite the yellow house for a hot chocolate! and I doodled in my journal for a bit.
Just before heading back to the ferry, I went for one last wander…
I include this dead bird picture, because I found it interesting. This is the third dead bird i came across like this. All that remains are the wings, and a little connection of bone in he middle. It suggests to me that the middle of the bird is the only edible part, or the part that is easily accessed by scavenging animals. However, to me, the interesting part is that I can see where fallen fairy or fallen angel stories could arise from, if all that is left of them are dead wings, lying abandoned and broken on the ground without their body counterparts.
The ferry back was cold and windy!!!
A small group of us broke off from the main, to head back to Tòrshavn for an open mic night, featuring Josè ( a member of our merry crew!) who was invited to play by the organiser.
José is a fantastic musician, and if you follow this link, you can nosey at his beautiful work.
After the bars closed we headed over to the stone steps were a small group of people were hanging out playing guitar, and we talked and enjoyed the music they were playing until the almost dark hours of the morning. It was a wonderful night, full of great music and lots of fun :)
Mykines is the westernmost island in the Faroes, and has a permanent all year round population of 11 people, with about 40 houses, most of which are only used in the summer season. Most excitingly however, are the puffins! The island is one of only two remaining that is home to a colony of nesting puffins, as well as countless other seabirds, including gannets, guillemots, kittiwakes, fulmars, etc. etc.
It’s also a place where I learnt a great piece of mythology…
Tórur Rami intended to conquer Mykines and all of its wealth. He therefore went towards Mykines and went ashore at Borgaragjógv, eastwards of Mykines and walked westwards towards the village. Óli Rami then saw Tórur, heading towards him above the village and flew west towards what soon would be the Holm and which at that time was a part of Mykines. In an attempt to be safe, Óli asked for the Holm to be an island and so it became. But that fact was not enough to stop Tórur, who just jumped across Holm Gjogv. Now the to giants began to fight and the fight was very violent and took place at a place, which now is called “í Traðki”. Óli got the upper hand and was close to kill Tórur. But Tórur now asked for mercy and promised Óli three gifts, which should come to Mykines every year, if Óli would spare his life.
The gifts were a whale, which every year should strand at Hválagjógv, a piece of timber, which should strand at Viðarhelli and a special bird, the gannet, which should settle down at the Holm. But there was one condition; none of these gifts should ever be sneered at. If the Mykines people did so, the gifts would disappear. Óli accepted the conditions and spared Tórur’s life.
They so agreed and both settled down on Mykines and are said to both be buried on Mykines close to where the Memorial now is standing.
But the story continues. The people of Mykines criticized the gifts. They were unsatisfied with the whale, which had only one eye and which gave them a bad stomach. And also the timber wasn’t good enough, it was awry. From then on neither a whale nor a piece of timber came ashore. But with this experience in mind, no citizen from Mykines dares criticize the gannet, as they say, “Súlan er goð”, the gannet is just fine.
After a lazy start to our morning, we headed out of Tórshavn on a bus to Søvagur to catch the ferry over to Mykines.
Søvagur was a pretty little town, with a beautiful harbour… with plenty of rusty metal inspiration for me to photograph!
Boobs… hmhm, okay immature… shush!!!
All aboard the ferry we go!! It was a lovely ride over, pretty smooth, and wonderfully sunny for most of the way. Our first taste at being out on the water…
Panoramas pinched from Naomi J. Falk
And into the harbour we go!
Although I took this photo later on when I went for my walk, I include it now because I want to show you the harbour contraption they had going on. Like many of the islands, Mykines is surrounded by cliff faces… so how does one get a boat/heavy luggage up and down the cliffs? build a pulley system on tracks to pull it up and down! Brilliant. I include this mostly for my Dad as it’s the kind of clever and simple mechanism he’d like… so, if you’re reading this, you big weirdo, enjoy!!
After setting ourselves up in the yellow house, and having a little dinner, I went for a wee walk around the town, and then down to the harbour to see what I could see.
My first puffin sighting!!! And many more to come tomorrow…
I fly away to Vágar on Friday morning to start my journey with the Clipperton Project around the Faroe Islands for just under 4 weeks.
Why? I hear you ask… well…
I’ve talked a little bit about The Clipperton Project before… but that was a long time ago! So, Ill remind you…
This is The Clipperton Project’s Mission Statement…
“The Clipperton Project began as an idea in 2010. Now in its sixth year we are an independent, not-for-profit organisation that navigates a global programme made up of journeys, residencies, exhibitions, exchanges, workshops, talks, festivals, symposia, and much more; using exploration to energise and empower active citizens.
We use movement, both physical and mental across water (oceans, rivers and canals) to explore and discover new possibilities that enable direct action for change.
Our mission is to broaden horizons; to empower people to trust the unknown; to move beyond themselves and what they think they know.
Our vision is of a world where people actively engage with the space around them for the good of all.”
Doesn’t that sound perfect?
My trip is around the Faroe Islands, and I’ll be away for just under 4 weeks!
To keep up with my progress, and a few updates, make sure to follow this blog, as I’ll be posting everything here… hopefully! I’m relying on local wifi to access my blog, but hopefully I’ll be able to get a few posts here while I’m away… if not… I’ll have LOTS to tell you when I get back!!
I signed up a year ago with the idea to use this project to further my Ondine project. That, is very much, still the case… but my Ondine project has changed it’s outcomes from it’s original conception.
I introduced my project as this…
“An Undine is a category of elemental creatures associated within the domain of water. The array contains many species, including nymphs, nereides, selkies, morags and mermaids, to name but a few. Although resembling human details in form they lack a human soul, so to achieve immortality they must acquire one by marrying a human. Such a union is not without risk for the partner, if the human partners are unfaithful they are fated to die.
I want to capture the essence of what a watery elemental soul would look like if preserved in the human world. Water has a great expanse of visual imagery and folktales to draw upon as inspiration for a collection of jewellery. Inspiration I plan to share with you as this story unfolds.”
While that is all still very much true, my original intentions have changed, and although the underlying concept remains the same, I have expanded my outcomes for this project. This is now what I expect to accomplish from my Ondine project…
1. A written faerytale based on traditional undine mythology.
– I have already started writing this, and have built a good foundation for a story. It has some issues that need fixed, and it needs edited a few (hundred) times, but I’m getting there.
– I now want it to contain some environmental message woven into the narrative. Fairytales often voiced concerns for real life worries in the past, and I would like mine to be able to do that now. This latter point will be great to explore on The Clipperton Project journey, and I will hopefully glean a great wealth of inspiration and knowledge on how to weave this into my tale, and into my collection.
– There are also a few bits in my story I’m “stuck” on, so, I’m this little adventure will help me find the inspiration, and solutions I’ve been looking for!
2. A commercial collection of jewellery.
– I, of course, want my jewellery and artwork to mean something greater, but I would also like to make a living from art. Therefore, I want to create a commercial collection of jewellery, but at the same time have all these other aspects to the project that tell the story.
– Although this collections is commercial, it is still an integral part of my story, and it’s meaning is still great in connecting everything together… I don’t want to tell you why, because… *spoilers* and I’d rather keeps those surprises until I’ve launched it… but I think I’ve come up with a pretty cool idea.
3. A handmade mermaid’s tail.
– yup. I’m gonna make a full-scale mermaid’s tail!!!
– I’ve started this, and I think it’s going to turn out quite well… but it’s a fairly expensive undertaking, so it might take me a while to collect together all of the materials I need.
4. A collection of art jewellery.
– this is a new idea.
– I would like to make a fully handmade collection of jewellery to go alongside this collection, as well as to make appearances in the film.
– I’ve not quite decided what this collection will consist of, and I’m going to fully use all my research and resources from my journey to the Faroes to figure out what I want from these pieces.
– I’d like to tie in reality with fantasy. Using visual imagery from whales, water, sailing, etc. I will create this collection to bring together the reality of life on the waters, with the mythological undines…. what that will look like is a little fuzzy in my mind at the moment… but, as it develops into clarity, I’ll be sure to share it with you all here!
5. A short film and series of photography.
– I would like to make my story into a film, that features everything I’ve made.
– I happen to know a very talented filmmaker, so I have a little help with this already… but as this task is a little out of my frame of expertise I need all the help I can get. If you are, or know, anyone who would be up for helping out making a mermaid film… send me a message! I’d be only too happy to get you involved.
– I see this stage taking me the longest, and I don’t want to rush it. I also think I don’t want to make the film until I’ve (got in!!!!!) and finished my Masters… so, this is still a few years off for completion.
6. A book.
– alongside all of this, I would like to collate everything into a physical book.
– it will contain: the making of the work, as well as design drawings and samples, written up and illustrated research, a diary-style chapter of my journey with The Clipperton Project, photography and illustrations from the making of the film, the final photography, the story itself, with illustrations, and final photographs of the finished jewellery… +more.
This is all still a few years off from completion. It’s a project I’ll consistently work on alongside my other endeavours. I have ideas for another small, and easier to get off the ground, commercial collection, as well as ideas for drawings and paintings that need to escape from my mind. I’d like to do more craft fairs and markets, as well as getting my work into galleries. I’ll hopefully *SO MANY FINGERS CROSSED* be doing a masters degree next year, so that will take priority over my ongoing projects. And… I have a proper job as well!! And, I’m always open to opportunities that stumble my way.
I’m basically trying to tell myself not to feel bad if work takes me longer than I’d expected. It’s better to take my time with it, and get it done right, rather than setting deadlines, making myself ill, and not making the best work… do you agree?
On another note… I’m REALLY excited about all the mini-projects I have planned, and I can’t wait to get swimming with the mermaids again, and pursuing this project all the way to completion… and I hope you’re excited too dear reader, as I’ll be sharing all my progress with you :)
That was quite a long post, so if you’ve made it all the way to the end… congratulations!! and thank you so so much for being this interested in my work. It means a lot to me :)
For my cousin’s 18th Birthday I made her an ocean inspired necklace and earrings set.
She loves all things under the sea, in particular whales and dolphins…. so what to make her? A whale tail necklace with splash drop earrings of course!
And as, she too, is a February birthday, it just had to be an amethyst stone… these ones a beautiful pastel Lavender Amethyst.
So sorry I haven’t paid any attention to you for quite some time.
Life is odd. Things have happened. I had a five-month long moment. I think it’s passing now. I’m back to my relatively normal reality.
And with that I’m back to focusing on my beautiful undine and all her sparkling finery.
I’ve finished my first draft of the story. That was really exciting. If anything it’s what brought me back. I’m in love with Ondine all over again, and I can’t wait to pick up my work again. It needs working through, adding bits to, taking bits out… but it’s there. It’s a story. It’s real.
And now I’m back into my beautiful creative bubble, of course, I’ll start filling up this little blog with lots of updates and images of what’s going on too!
To start with… a few sketchbook pages of late.
I’m going back to the beginning almost. Re-familiarising myself with her tale, and her tail. I’ll be at the drawing board for a while, trying to figure out where to go with my collection samples, what to do with my knotty tail ideas, and all the while tailoring her story to it’s finest… and talking it through with a wonderful filmmaker to figure out how to transform her tale into images. If you’re crushing on my project, and have any filmy/acting/music/anything experience, please hit me up!
Ooo and here are a few knotty samples…
All pretty exciting, huh?
Stay tuned for tales, and tails, and pearls of wisdom, and some actual pearls too!
Oh, and I’ll leave you with this oh-so-glorious song from Laura Marling, it’s appropriately titled Undine, and shares a similar thread to my own story.
Hey Laura, fancy writing me a soundtrack for my film?!