Monday, May 28, 2012

Creating Egyptian works

I haven't posted in awhile and I thought I would share a small bit of what I have been up to. Recently, I have been working on recreating or perhaps that should be creating some of the Ancient Egyptian things I have been reading about over the past few months.

The first thing I began working on was beading a collar. This is a pain to do but every once in awhile I get it in my mind that it really won't be that hard this time. I don't know how I seem to convince myself of this every time because it really doesn't get any easier. This time around I went for a more simple design with less pattern. I think it turned out nice enough. Some day I will get crazy enough to do a really intricate one.

The next undertaking was something that I don't ever really feel is impossible like working on the collars. I love making masks. To me masks have a lot of significance. There is also evidence that masks were used in Ancient Egypt. The one most often shown is that of Anubis. However, I decided to go with something a little more my personal style. I made Ammut, the devourer of the hearts of those who do not walk in Ma'at. Follows is a series to show the progress of the mask but the first image is the crocodile I worked from to get this project started.

Plaster base, shaped and ready to dry before painting. I used
a wire frame covered with linen strips that were dipped in
plaster. I smoothed these over the wire frame and
waited for them to  dry. A cool thing about this is the back, which
will sit on the head, is actually an old baseball cap with
the wire framing sewn to it. This is a remarkable comfortable
addition to traditional ways of making masks.

After drying I started the painting process. I used acrylics
with water washes to get the plaster damp and work the color
into it. I really loved how the painting went. I feel like once I stopped
trying to paint it with little tiny detail the project seemed to
go far more smoothly.

The finished product. Sadly, I don't have a picture of me wearing
the mask. I should really have taken one before doing this post.
I will add one later, promise.

The last thing I made, just a few days back, refers back to this post about festival cakes. I took some time to make Khenef cakes, or the traditional honey cakes used as offerings in Ancient Egypt. Mine were done in two loaf pans. I really think the recipe needs some tweaking before they come out properly. I can say they are delicious though. They taste sort of nutty and a little sweet. As a friend put it, they don't taste like modern food. I found this to be very true. They don't really taste like anything I have tasted before.

I do suggest that you cut the cakes into small squares before soaking them in the syrup. It seems to work better that way. I ended up cutting mine up in the process to get the syrup to soak in. I think I did something wrong in the baking process that made the surface too dense and the syrup wouldn't soak in. However, these were a good first try and tasted very good despite any structural problems.

No comments:

Post a Comment