White Dog Art

Posts Tagged ‘native american’

holder of the dream

In Art Watercolor Gallery, Things with Feathers, Ravens and Crows on March 19, 2018 at 4:20 pm



Aceo Original watercolor

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The raven in this painting is what is called a ‘Spirit Raven.’ It is found mainly in British Columbia. Very rare bird. I personally love genetically white birds and animals. They seem sacred and of course Native Americans  regard the Spirit Raven as sacred.

The common raven has a 4 ft wingspan and is over two feet from head to tail. The raven is often misidentified as a crow – a closely related bird. Ravens are uncommon in populated urban areas. If you see a “really big crow” in the city, the chances are good that it really is a crow and not a raven.

Ravens soar more than crows. If you see a “crow” soaring for more than a few seconds, take another look – it might be a raven. Common Ravens can do a somersault in flight and even fly upside down. Ravens are longer necked in flight than crows.


golden eagle

In Art Watercolor Gallery, Eagles, Things with Feathers, Wild Things on February 22, 2018 at 5:00 pm

watercolor aceo

Once while walking with my dog Buddha at the lake a large bald eagle swooped down on him while he was wading in the water directly beneath shrubby bushes and trees. I saw this all happen and it happened in an instant. Buddha is a cattle dog weighing in at 70 pounds so I would guess that when the eagle got close enough to measure him……no sale. The eagle shot upward with dog unharmed. If Buddha had been smaller, perhaps he would have made a meal for the eagle. 

There were several eagle families who called the lake home. They would sit high in the cedars picking away at their fish or small animal. Such sights was I privileged to see and will never forget.

Eagles figure prominently in the mythology of nearly every Native American tribe. In most Native cultures, eagles are considered medicine birds with impressive magical powers, and play a major role in the religious ceremonies of many tribes. 

Eagle conveys the powers and messages of the spirit; it is man’s connection to the divine because it flies higher than any other bird. The eagle is symbolic of the importance of honesty and truthful principles.

Both Bald and Golden Eagles (and their feathers) are highly revered and considered sacred within American Indian traditions, culture and religion. They are honored with great care and shown the deepest respect. They represent honesty, truth, majesty, strength, courage, wisdom, power and freedom.

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warriors of the rainbow

In Art Watercolor Gallery, Wolves on January 22, 2018 at 3:48 pm

watercolor 4 x 5 1/2018

Spirit of the Wolf

‘The spirit of the wolf resides in my heart

Mostly peacefully, but ever wild

Running in time to the blowing wind,

Dancing in the clouds that drift in the heavens

The spirit of the wolf resides in my soul.






sacred wisdom

In Art Watercolor Gallery, Ravens and Crows, Things with Feathers, Wild Things on January 7, 2018 at 4:32 pm

Watercolor 1/2018 5 x 7


This is just one of so many Native American tales about Raven as well as other animals. I love to read them.


When Raven was killed

Raven had played so many tricks on mankind for so long that one day a great chief decided to kill him. The chief caught Raven unaware and threw him into a large skin bag. Then he began to climb to the top of a steep mountain. Raven asked from inside the bag “what are you doing, where are we going.” The chief ignored Raven. Raven told the chief that bad things would happen if he hurt Raven. But the chief did not listen and finally on top of the mountain, he threw Raven off the mountain. Raven was torn to pieces falling. The chief had killed Raven.

Everyone in the village was happy and they celebrated for days. Then they noticed that all the water was gone. The lakes and rivers were dry. The shaman told them that the water had vanished because the chief had killed Raven. Now the people wanted Raven to come back.

The shaman told the chief that he would have to put Raven back together again. So the chief put all the pieces back together again. Raven came back to life and started to fly away. “Stop” cried the chief. “All the water is gone and only you can return it.” Raven flew higher and said “Look around you, there is water everywhere.”

The chief then turned and saw that the lake was full and that the river ran deep and fast again. As Raven disappeared in the distance, the chief promised never to try to kill Raven again.

Because of his powers and role in their heritage, Natives do not kill ravens.



In Art Watercolor Gallery, Wild Things on September 22, 2017 at 2:55 pm

watercolor 2017

Among Native American tribes, especially the Plains Indians, the bison is considered a sacred animal and regarded with reverence. Native Americans consider that all given to them by Nature was to be treated with great respect and the bison was used down to every last part to ensure survival of the tribes. How devastating the disappearance of the bison by the hand of the white man. That act itself alone could have destroyed the tribal nations on the plains because they depended upon the bison for their well being. How insulting to their beliefs. How could the senseless killing of almost all of these sacred animals be understood by the Native Americans…….or by we who look back at the senseless devastation.

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dire wolf

In Art Watercolor Gallery, Wolves on August 14, 2017 at 3:41 pm

watercolor 8/2017

The Dire Wolf is extinct, but really did exist on the Earth so many years ago.They were big enough to ride if you kept them well fed. A divine animal to whom the Gray Wolf is related. I am always mesmerized by wild animals who have peaceful relationships with humans. I haven’t heard of anyone who doesn’t like ‘Game of Thrones’…..and the Dire Wolves play their part in this fabulous production. Just please be sure that the wolves are well fed.

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ripe corn moon

In Art Watercolor Gallery, Wild Things on July 8, 2017 at 3:01 pm

watercolor 7/2017

Raccoon is a lot of different things to a lot of people. Probably one thing that all would agree is that they ‘get into things.’ They are so curious and resourceful. Years ago I lived in a huge old house in the middle of downtown Mountain View California built in 1906. It was on a big piece of property with a full size barn in back of the house. Located on the large back porch was an enclosed single toilet and a laundry room. There were the resident raccoons and opossums who knew no boundaries and in the middle of the city. My family of raccoons used to periodically raid the bag of dog kibble stored in the laundry room. Then, as it is their habit to clean their food, they would wash the kibble off in the toilet. So resourceful. We coexisted….like I always do with the wild things. My son dug a fish pond in the yard and installed Koi. What was I thinking? The raccoons helped themselves and ….no more Koi. Living with others does not always meet all your needs and expectations now does it.

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i dream of snow and ice

In Art Watercolor Gallery, Ice Bears, ice bears on May 4, 2017 at 2:58 pm

watercolor 5/2017

‘When the blood in your veins returns to the sea and the earth in your bones returns to the ground, perhaps then you will remember that this land does not belong to you.  It is you who belong to the land.’

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keeper of the secrets

In Art Watercolor Gallery, Ravens and Crows, Things with Feathers, Wild Things on April 5, 2017 at 11:43 am

watercolor 4/2017


‘Raven’s lesson is to walk without fear even if the way is not clear…trust your intuition to guide you.’


As it is with all original people history is recorded through verbal stories. I love the tales from Native American culture because they add to the spirit and mystery of the animals that I paint. I often get lost often reading the myths and that’s how I found this one.

“At one time the whole world was dark. Inky, pitchy, all-consuming dark, blacker than a thousand stormy winter midnights, blacker than anything anywhere has been since.”

“The reason for all this blackness had to do with the old man in the house by the river, who had a box, which contained a box, which contained a box, which contained an infinite number of boxes, each nestled in a box slightly larger than itself until finally there was a box so small all it could contain was all the light in the universe.”

In the story, the old man hides the light because he’s afraid to see whether or not his daughter is ugly. In a ploy to steal the light, Raven shrinks himself to become a hemlock needle in a basket of drinking water so that the daughter swallows him. Soon Raven is reborn from her as a raven/human child. The old man accepts him as a grandson, and soon Raven begins begging that he open the boxes, one after another, each time pleading and crying until the old man yields.

When the old man finally opens the box containing the light, Raven grabs it and flies out of the house—causing light to spread throughout the world and revealing that the old man’s daughter is as beautiful as the fronds of a hemlock tree.

As Raven flies away, Eagle sees him and tries to steal the light, causing Raven to drop some of it, which becomes the Moon and the stars.

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mystic dreamer

In Art Watercolor Gallery, Black Bears, Wild Things on March 28, 2017 at 2:24 pm

watercolor 3/2017  8 x 10

I am dedicating this painting to honor the healing flute music of Carlos Nakai.  When I was 3 years old a groundbreaking surgery was performed on my left hand and ring finger to remove a bone tumor. The innovative operation was very successful but not much hope was given that I would ever use my ring finger again. I was just so fortunate that the finger was saved. So when I was about 6 years old and I wished to learn to play the flute I was repeatedly discouraged and told that it would be impossible for me to learn because of my stunted and immobile finger. Since I kept pleading  to try, a teacher was found and a silver flute supplied. I practiced and practiced and by the time I was 10 I won a music contest playing the flute that everyone said that I would not be able master. In the learning process my finger had become fully mobile so much so that I was able  play my instrument with excellence. Still, today I have full mobility of my hand and finger. I do believe that this magical instrument was the mystic healer for my body.