Day 30! This is the day when my drawing challenge was supposed to end since it was intended to be a month long commitment to produce a drawing per day. Of course, my children got carried away with enthusiasm for my project and their directing of it so I have ended up with 40 drawings to produce.
Today’s drawing is of Artemis. Artemis (or Diana as the Romans called her) was the goddess of the hunt, wild animals and the wilderness. She was also the goddess of virginity and childbirth which is a peculiar combination I am sure you would agree. Artemis was yet another child of Zeus. When Hera learned that her husband had gotten Leto up the duff, incandescent with rage she deployed her goddess skills to prevent Leto from giving birth on land. Poseidon, taking pity on Leto or maybe just not liking Hera much, guided Leto to a floating island and there she gave birth to Artemis and her twin brother Apollo.
A well-known story about Artemis concerns the death of Actaeon. Actaeon was either a hunting companion of the goddess or just a stranger who unfortunately happened to be wandering through the wrong part of the forest at the wrong time. Whatever his motive for being there, Actaeon made the mistake of stumbling upon Artemis as she bathed in a pool, thus catching a glimpse of her naked. Artemis, apparently more enraged than embarrassed, immediately transformed Actaeon into a stag whereupon his own dogs – no longer recognizing him – set about him and tore him to pieces.
Artemis is associated with the deer and with the moon but the symbol I chose to incorporate into my drawing was her bow and arrow. In retrospect, drawing a deer would have been a much easier task as I very much struggled to get the pose for drawing an arrow correct. My sketch was a completely tangled mess of lines as I tried to get something that looked somewhat right to emerge. I have to admit that I cast my mind to imagery from ‘The Hunger Games’ to help me. I gave Artemis brown hair and green eyes to connect her to the wild forests where she hunted with her pack of girls. For the same reason, I used green for her dress.