Totem Animal: Mourning Dove

Morning Dove Totem Color

My latest totem piece is a gift for my grandfather. It is a mourning dove with my own personal symbolism attached to it. You can check out that story here. I am very happy with how the final piece turned out. The pose is unique and active. The wings were my favorite part to draw. Creating feather patterns and following the elegant curve of the wing fascinates me. I have always loved wings and feathers. It’s as if I use to have my own and dream to have them back.

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Mourning Dove Symbolism 

They are a symbol of feminine energies, motherhood and nurturing. They feed from the ground showing us to stay connected with Mother Earth. The dove is a messenger from a higher power. You can hear their call more often at dusk and dawn. This is when the veil between the physical realm and spiritual realm is the thinnest. They bring a message of love and peace. It is time to put your mind to rest and remember to love yourself and others.

The mourning dove is a symbol of new birth. Remember your creator, your Mother. Her energy can help create a new life. A new you! The mourning dove can guide you down a fresh path. No matter what burdens our past we must “mourn” and move forward towards a brighter future. A future full of compassion and comfort. Native Americans use to listen for the mourning dove, knowing it would bring them to water. Be at ease and let the water carry you to a new adventure.

If the mourning dove has flown across your path today, it brings peace and hope. Let go of what has passed and make room for more love. Connect with nature to take advantage of the nurturing energies she provides. This will give you a regenerative boost in the right direction. Fret not and let the waters gently carry you to your next chapter.

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Thanks for stopping by this week! I hope the mourning dove has brought you at ease as it does for me, every time I hear that call. Have you seen a dove recently? Share your story in the comments below!

Until next time,

“The best love is the kind that awakens the soul; that makes us reach for more, that plants the fire in our hearts and brings peace to our minds. That’s what I hope to give you forever.”

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Sources:
Animal Speak by Ted Andrews
https://www.whats-your-sign.com/dove-symbolism.html
Ending quote from the movie “The Notebook”

 

 

 

 

 

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Totem Animal: Beaver

Beaver Totem Color

I have completed my latest totem drawing, the beaver. I am very happy with how it turned out. I enjoyed working with the colors as they blended just the way I wanted. I like how the tail came out as well. It’s like I can feel the texture of it just by looking at it. I’m not going to lie, I was surprised by how much I enjoyed creating this piece. I was a little nervous with the ink but the colors really bring it together.

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BEAVER SYMBOLISM

If the beaver has crossed your path it may be time to pay attention to your home and family life. Beavers are known for their advanced skills in building. When they create their homes, there are many entrances and exits. This teaches us not to create a corner for ourselves to get trapped in. Leave many openings for new experiences and let the waters flow freely. Do not get stuck down one path but instead allow yourself to try new things.

The beaver is the builder of dreams, the one who takes action. Have you been working towards your dreams lately or just waiting for something to happen? The beaver knows it takes hard work to finish projects. Make sure you are putting forth the effort to finish your projects. Are you sour because you have to work? Buck up, buttercup. You get nowhere if all you do is day dream. It is time to take action! Projects do not finish themselves and dreams do not manifest out of thin air. You have to build them!

The beaver is also known to stay with one mate for life. The beaver understands that family and teamwork are important. We can achieve major goals when we work together. Everyone has a specific talent that they bring to the table. We must appreciate each other for the individual talents we contribute. When everyone is playing their part and encouraging each other in the process, your dreams can finally become a reality. Build your dream home together!

The beaver is also very reliant on their teeth. If a beaver were to lose a tooth, they would surely die. Make sure you are taking care of your own dental hygiene!

The beaver has lifted it’s tail and gave a slap in the face! Wake up daydreamers! Stop fantasizing about what you want and just make it a reality. You are the one in charge of your life. Now actually build it into what you want.

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Thanks for stopping by this week! I hope you enjoyed the latest totem drawing and gained some insight from beaver’s wisdom. If you have anything to add, feel free to leave a comment below!

Until next time,

“If there’s something wrong, those who have the ability to take action have the responsibility to take action.”

 

 

Totem Animal: Opossum

Opossum Totem

Opossum have been scurrying all over the night. Have you seen any? I completed the color on my latest totem piece. I was a little worried in the beginning. It wasn’t turning out right at all. I just kept tweaking it until finally it started to look right. I should know better than to judge a piece before it’s finished! What do you think?

So what message do these nocturnal marsupials have to share? It’s what they do best of course! Play dead!

It is time to think strategically, like the crafty opossum. Have you found yourself in an uneasy situation. Is someone trying to put you down or spread rumors about you to make you look bad? You may want to scream that individuals head off but the opossum is not one to use the claws right off the bat! When a predator approaches, the opossum will drop dead, emit the “death stench” and slow it’s heart rate. This throws the predator off. In the confusion and a quick glance in the other direction, the opossum can run to safety. Use this tactic with your own situation. “Play dead” and let it go. If you ignore hurtful words and let them roll off your back, the individual inflicting it on you loses all their power. If rumors are being spread, let them fade out on their own. Others will see the truth and you will win in the end! Do not add unnecessary drama to your life when you can simply “play dead” to the situation. In doing so, you will achieve greater victories than if you show tooth and claw.

On the other hand, maybe you’ve been “playing dead” too often or when it doesn’t call for it. Have you been making excuses instead of facing the facts or being honest with the people around you? You might be trying to avoid hurting others feelings but you must learn how to tactfully tell them the truth of the matter. Remember, you do not have to explain yourself to anyone but white lies are not a good alternative. Be strong and use your head. Think strategically.

Thanks for stopping by this week. I apologize for the delayed post but I finally got ‘r dun! Do you have any stories to share about opossum? Leave a comment below!

Until next time,

“All these moments will be lost in time. Like…tears in the rain. Time to die.”

 

Totem Animal: Giraffe

BW Giraffe

With keen eyes atop an elongated neck, giraffes have amazing eyesight. They can see vast distances and have a wide peripheral. This represents being able to see what lies ahead of you. Giraffe gives you the power to see your future. You will be able to see your destination and any obstacles that may be in your way. You will be able to prepare and effectively deal with obstacles so they do not inhibit you.

Are you preventing yourself from moving towards your future? To go along with their towering necks, Giraffes also have long and lanky legs. Though they have a teetering appearance they are balanced and move rhythmically. Their neck and legs work together as they run. This teaches us we must not only see our future but to make sure we are moving towards it. See what is in front of you and take yourself there. Always move forward.

Giraffes have adapted to only need water every few days. This is because of the awkward stance they must put themselves in to drink. They part their front legs wide and lower their heads to the water. This puts them a vulnerable state. Giraffe could be warning you to keep your head high. Do not let your vision drop below the horizon for too long. You will be susceptible to harm and may hinder your own progression in life. Have you ever heard the expression one step forward, two steps back?

Giraffes are silent creatures. They may occasionally snort or “hum” but otherwise do not produce sound. Their communication is body language. Pay attention to yours. What are you saying? Are you saying too much? Or maybe not enough? If giraffe has presented itself to you, it may be time adapt your communication.

I hope giraffe is able to help you through your next journey. I learned a lot about giraffes and their symbolism that I hadn’t known before. Do you have any stories about giraffes? Share your story in the comments below.

I wasn’t able to finish my giraffe totem drawing yet but will be sharing another post later this week with the completed piece in color. Once the color is added it changes the entire look of the drawing. I am excited to see how it turns out. Check back soon! Thanks for stopping by!

Until next time,

“Where we’re going, we don’t need roads.”

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Sources:
Animal Speak by Ted Andrews
Ending quote from the movie “Back to the Future”

 

Totem Animal: Sea Turtle

Sea Turtle

Sea turtles are beautiful, elegant creatures. I was inspired from my recent trip to the New England Aquarium to make my next totem piece the sea turtle. The black and white version came out alright but I was much happier with the piece after adding color. The natural patterns of this particular sea turtle resembled flowers and I think the colors really added to that effect.

Turtle symbolism, in general, encompasses Mother Earth and our connection to her. Many different tales speak of the giant turtle carrying the entire world on it’s back. Some portray the turtle carrying the tree of life. Turtle is Earth, the mother of all life and the protector of the universe. We are all born from the Earth and one day give back what was given to us. As long as we love Turtle, love the Earth, she will love us back and we will never be alone. Abundance will follow by simply showing gratitude for what we’ve been given.

Turtle Totem BW

Turtle is balanced with earth and water energy. The sea turtle, with it’s strong association with water, further amplifies the meaning of life, feminine energy and fluidity. The seas are also symbolized as the womb of life. It is also home to our dreams, our subconscious and unconscious minds. The water is forever changing, a constant transition like life. We must learn to flow off Turtle’s back, allowing change and rebirth to happen. Water has no shape. Become shapeless like the sea and let new possibilities form more easily.

Sea turtles bury their eggs on the beach under the sands. The sun will do the rest of the work until they hatch and fight their way back to the sea. This tells us we need to let our ideas fully develop before we let them rise to the surface. We must build our strength before we open ourselves up to potential threats. Focus your thoughts and energies before acting to better ensure success.

If the sea turtle has swam through your mind, it is time to reconnect will Mother Earth. Ground yourself with the Universe and remember where we all come from and were we will all return. Be grateful for the life you’ve been given and Turtle will reward you with abundance and love. Show respect for the ancient wisdom that Turtle holds. She is eternal. She is our protection. She is our connection to everything great.

I hope you enjoyed my latest drawing and gained some insight learning about sea turtle symbolism. Thanks for stopping by this week. Check back next Monday for a sneak peek at my next totem animal piece.

Until next time,

“I’m the Turtle, son. I made the universe, but please don’t blame me for it; I had a belly-ache.”

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Sources:
  • Medicine Cards by Jamie Sams & David Carson
  • Nature Speak by Ted Andrews
  • Animal Speak by Ted Andrews
  • The Illustrated Signs & Symbols Sourcebook by Adele Nozedar
Ending quote from “IT” by Stephen King

Totem Animal: Manatee

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Manatees are the “Buddhas” of the waters. They look like heavy, cumbersome boulders yet they glide through coastal waters gracefully. They swim slowly, peacefully at about five miles an hour but can reach up to 15 in short distances. Manatees live in small groups called aggregations though sometimes males create larger groups during mating season. Their diet consists of marine grasses, algae and seaweeds. They have teeth like horses to grind up their food and their intestines can reach up to 100 feet long!

So has the mellow sea cow drifted across your path? What is their message? Peace and tranquility, of course. Slowing down and not letting life blow right by you. Take time to glide through the waters; appreciate life. When Manatee presents itself to you, it is time to let go of violence and aggression. Let anger roll off your back like a gentle wave. There is no need for it now. Be calm. Be cool. Just Be. Clear the mind of unnecessary thoughts and open it to new ideas. Ideas that put you at ease. Peace and tranquility. Far out!

Manatee also show us to cherish our closest friends. We only find a few true friends in our lifetime and we need to appreciate them. Keep them close and value the strong relationships you have made.

I really enjoyed creating the totem drawing for manatee. I was a little nervous about how it might come out for the simplest fact they are gray blobs with paddles floating in water. I think it worked out though in the end. I used one of the tangles from my book and it gives it an old “Mayan stonework” look. I am still working on the coloring which shows off the green algae that sticks to the manatees backs. I will be sharing the finished piece in a later post.

What do you think of Manatee? Have you been in a situation recently that called for some peace and calming? Share your story in the comments below! Thanks for stopping by this week.

Until next time,

“Anything is possible when you have inner peace.”

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Sources:

 

https://www.nationalgeographic.com/animals/mammals/group/manatees/

 

https://www.britannica.com/animal/manatee

 

https://trustedpsychicmediums.com/spirit-animals/manatee-spirit-animal/

 

Ending quote from movie: Kung Fu Panda

 

Totem Animal: Squirrel

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Squirrels are everywhere!

They are always scurrying around… looking…gathering…preparing. Have you seen them? Red, grey, black or maybe even flying? If they have scurried across your path they have a very important message to share.

It’s time to start preparing for the future. Start stockpiling whatever you may need on a rainy day to get you through. A big change could be coming into your life soon and you need to be ready. Harbor energies that will help you to keep moving forward and not be caught off guard. Collect tools, gadgets, money, food, whatever you need in your trusty boy scout back up kit, if ever a kit is needed. It is better to have it and not need it then to need it and….you know the rest. It is also a time to gather your thoughts. Think things through and prepare your mind for the future as well as your body.

On the other hand, have you become a hoarder? Maybe it is time to do some spring cleaning. Do you have too much of something? Do you have things you no longer use and are only cluttering your space? Clear out unused items and donate them, sell them, get them out of your hair. Are you hoarding worries and stress? Stop holding onto bad feelings that serve you no purpose and do nothing but hurt your future. It is time to move on and let go of the baggage that is driving you nuts!

I’ve been wanting to create Squirrel’s totem piece for quite a while and have finally got around to finishing it. I know I keep repeating it but with each one create I want to keep making more and more and more. I am so excited to keep going. Next Monday I will be sharing my Manatee piece and their symbolism. After that…who knows…it could be anything! Whatever presents itself to me I guess! I can’t wait!

Thanks for stopping by this week. I hope squirrel has helped you get a little more prepared for the future! What do you do to prepare? Share any tips you have in the comments below!

Until next time,

“I will prepare and someday my chance will come.”

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Sources:
Medicine Cards by Jamie Sams & David Carson
Animal Speak by Ted Andrews

Totem Animal: Rhinoceros

The rhinoceros holds an ancient wisdom…

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They have been around for about 50 million years starting with their ancestor, Paraceratherium, the largest of all rhino species. They stood over 16 feet tall at their shoulder! This ancestor is also shared by horses and tapirs. Rhinos have actually been mistaken for horse-like creatures before. After being described by a historian around 400 BC, the myth of the unicorn began. A magical beast with a horn atop it’s head. The horn was said to have the power to protect one from poisoning if used as a cup. They were prized in medieval times and rhinos and narwhals were hunted to provide the gift of a “unicorn’s horn” to the king. Even today the rhino is poached for it’s horn which is used in traditional Chinese medicine, powdered and used for fevers. Unfortunately, this and habitat loss has led to the extinction to certain species of rhino such as the western black rhino and the northern white rhino.

Rhino might appear to be a lumbering brute but is in fact fast and agile for it’s appearance and is seldom aggressive. Males will use aggression when defending their territory. They will charge head on but not attacking with their horns as one may think. Their horns are actually soft being made out of keratin. They instead use their teeth, the lower incisors which can reach up to five inches long! They typically live solitary lives, only grouping up during mating season. A group is called a crash.

So what ancient wisdom do these creatures hold? They are strong and heavy, planting themselves firmly into the earth. They teach us to be grounded and stay connected to Mother Nature. Rhino holds all the wisdom needed in life. If rhino has come to you, it is time you believe the same in yourself. You know the answers; you have the wisdom. Be strong with your decisions and know why you are making them. Rhino knows when to use aggression and when to be gentle. We, too, should practice this balance. It is time we take the knowledge we hold inside us and use it to charge forward in life. You know what is best for you. Take that and run! Do not hold yourself back! You can go far if you take out self-judgement and fear.

Be careful not to trample others as you stampede through life with your newfound confidence. Help them as you go. Share your wisdom and help others find their own inner knowledge. We all have rhino’s ancient wisdom inside us. It is time to put it to use!

I hope you enjoyed learning about the rhinoceros with me. I sure learned a lot I hadn’t known before. For instance, the word rhinoceros is derived from two Greek words, “rhino” and “keras”. Together they literally mean “nose horn”. Thanks for stopping by this week! Check back next Monday to learn what squirrel’s message is!

Until next time,

“You’re braver than you believe, and stronger than you seem, and smarter than you think.”

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Rhino Totem prints and products available on Society6 & Redbubble 

I’m Free Spirit Meg! I am a mother/wife/landscaper/artist working towards my goal to create and sell my artwork full time. All profits go towards art supplies, equipment and growing the blog! Your support is greatly appreciated!

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Sources:
Animal Speak by Ted Andrews
https://www.sunsigns.org/rhinoceros-animal-totem-symbolism-meanings/
https://www.britannica.com/topic/unicorn
https://www.britannica.com/animal/rhinoceros-mammal
http://www.bbc.com/earth/story/20150518-the-epic-history-of-rhinos

Totem Animal: Owl

Owls are everywhere! There are over 200 different species of owls in habitats ranging from deserts to forests to snowy tundras. They are all around us yet we seldom even notice. Being nocturnal and having fantastic camouflage, they could be right in front of our faces and still go unnoticed. But if you are one of the lucky ones who has witnessed this avian king, perhaps they have a message for you.

No, it’s not your invitation to Hogwarts. Although Owl represents wisdom, it is what makes them wise that I find most interesting. Owl sees through the darkness where others cannot. Owl is a silent flyer, in order to swiftly snatch his prey in the dead of night. He moves through the night without even a single swoosh from a feather. Native Americans have called them “deceiver feathers”. Deception is Owl’s way.

His eyes are not spherical but instead immobile tubes. This is why Owl can rotate his head 270 degrees to be aware of everything around him. Owl’s ears are asymmetrical on either side of his head so he can hear multiple dimensions.

If Owl has presented himself to you it may be time to heighten your senses to see everything more clearly. Pay attention and broaden your perspective to better judge a situation your in. You may come off a little intimidating to others but this is only because you can see through the dark. No one can deceive you when you have the vision of Owl.

Owl might be warning you that you are being deceived by yourself or another. Beware of others who may seek to harm you. Owl is associated with white magic and also with black magic. Make sure you don’t end up on the wrong end. Stay sharp and strike with the precision of Owl when necessary.

 

My mother would hear an owl calling in the night from time to time. A short time later a loved one would pass. Whether it was a family member or a beloved pet, the Owl seemed to deliver the warning. Death is another symbol of Owl. Though it should not always be taken literally. Sometimes the call of Owl represents the death of a chapter, renewal.

I hope you have found some insight on this week’s post. What experiences have you had with Owl recently? There is a lot more symbolism that I didn’t cover today. I would love to hear your story in the comments below!

 

I am very pleased with how this piece came out. I really enjoy incorporating Zentangle and feather patterns. Theye simply go together. It just shows how there are patterns through out the universe, just repeating….repeating…..over….and over….into a beautiful existence. All the same, all connected. It just depends on how far back you stand and look. Thanks for stopping by this week.

Until next time,

“Pin feathers and golly fluff!”

Art by Logan

Totem Animal: Raccoon

Raccoon is a powerful totem. These fuzzy ninjas of the night represent protection and generosity. It is common for males to band together for greater strength against predators or other male raccoons from different territories. A group of raccoons is called a gaze. The gaze will have a dominant male who will stand watch and defend the group while the others forage for food. The best morsels will be given to the dominant male as a sign of respect and gratitude for the protection he offers. Raccoon is generous and protects the young and elderly. They are the guardians for those who feel like a dark horse, the underdog. They offer strength and wisdom gained from self experiences.

If Raccoon has bumbled it’s way across your path, it is time to share your wisdom with others in need. Does anyone around you need help or guidance that you can offer? You possess knowledge that you have worked hard to obtain. It is time to share this with others. Do not become a crutch but rather equip them with the tools necessary to obtain their own strength. Lift them up, dust them off and show them the way. Speak up when others speak ill behind another’s back. Do not tolerate unfounded judgement and gossip. Recognize the guardian within you. The protector is always rewarded for their great deeds. Though beware of those who refuse to help themselves; those who are lazy and greedy. They will drain you of your resources while refusing to learn how to stand on their own.

Perhaps it is you that needs to be lifted up. Are you stuck in self pity and feeling like you’ve hit rock bottom. Change your perspective and see the strength you hold within. Do not become a victim but fight. Help someone. Do not become selfish but instead be giving. The gratitude and appreciation you will receive for helping another will give you the boost of confidence you need.

On the contrary, Raccoon could be warning you to take time for yourself. Female raccoons often live solitary lives excluding mating season and when raising young. Have you been giving too much energy and have left nothing to care for yourself. An empty pot feeds no one. If you do not tend to your own needs first, you will have nothing to offer those who depend on you. Take time for yourself and recharge.

It’s no surprise that I enjoyed creating this piece. I enjoy creating all my totems yet I believe Raccoon may be my cutest so far. I still need to add color to

this piece as well as moose and owl. I’ll talk about Owl symbolism next week! My prismacolor pencils are preforming beautifully and I can’t wait to finish these three totems completely. I have much more coming that I’m excited to share with everyone. I hope you’ve enjoyed learning the different totem animals with me. I know I have!

What raccoon stories do you have to share? Leave a comment below and thanks for stopping by this week!

Until next time,

“Don’t call me raccoon. -I’m sorry. I took it too far. I meant trash panda.”

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Sources: Medicine Cards by Jamie Sams & David Carson

https://www.nationalgeographic.com/animals/mammals/r/raccoon/

http://insider.si.edu/2013/07/suburban-life-does-not-alter-solitary-ways-of-the-raccoon/

https://academic.oup.com/jmammal/article/89/3/646/862216