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Phoenix Energy = Resilience (tutorial)

I finished a page in my art journal last night and I'm insanely excited with how she turned out.

I drew her for the Aries New Moon to represent my inner warrior, but my muse wanted a witch instead so I flipped the page and started over. I really wanted to finish her though because I love this concept. To me, Phoenix is a powerful icon of resilience and strength. It is a reminder to never give up.

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ has this to say about Phoenix:

The mythical phoenix is the keeper of the fire in all of creation. It represents transformation, death, and rebirth in its fire. As a powerful spiritual totem, the phoenix is the ultimate symbol of strength and renewal. Phoenix traits include: transformation, power, protection, and hope. [Phoenix is] hope in the midst of despair. We all experience tough times that drag us down and make us feel engulfed in negativity. It is sometimes hard to imagine pulling ourselves out of them.

During these times, we can call upon the phoenix for strength and a renewal of energy to keep us fighting the good fight. No matter what trials we encounter in our lives, the phoenix is always there to remind us that we can endure. By helping us to transform our lives and live more purely, it allows us to get into deeper connection with our spiritual awareness.


The woman represents me and I love how the phoenix is wrapped around her in a show of solidarity and love. She is unburnt and her stance is strong and unyielding.

She is naked because vulnerability is a strength (this is something that resonated with me during my research for new moon aries).

The crown is a symbol of my own sovereignty over my life and my choices. I am where I am because of ME, not anyone else.

I started by using a Julie Nutting stamp (not affiliated) to get the proportions of the figure. I stamped in a light yellow color so I could easily gesso over the bits I didn't want to use.

Her doll stamps are so cute and I have a TON of them. It's all about working quickly for me, so using a stamp means I can get my point across without fussing with drawing.

This time, though, I stamped a girl, and basically re-drew her -- so the stamp didn't really help at all time-wise 😂.

The doll stamp I used (left) had her knees turning in toward each other, which (to me) isn't a strong stance. And I really wanted her to take on a position of being completely in her Power. So, I re-drew her legs.

I also extended her shoulders to make them more proportionate, added a chest (boobs!), got rid of the skirt, gave her hips and a longer torso, and gave her bare feet rather than shoes.

Once I had that drawing, I began working on the phoenix in pencil. Then, I inked everything in with a fine sharpie and began gesso-ing out the bits I didn't need.

I used acrylics and ink to paint the piece. I thought about adding other elements, but in the end wanted the phoenix woman to be the focus.

I used gold for the crown and put gold all around the figures. Then painted over that once dry with pthalo turquoise, so it looks like labradorite on the page. I like how it looks like she's floating with the Phoenix.

I love her fat little feet. And I accidentally gave her 6 toes on her foot (on the left), which I find totally endearing and adorable. 😂 So I'm keeping it!



PS: I'm blogging along with Effy Wild in April. If you'd like to join the facebook group to read the rules, go here:

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