The past year has seen the rise of empowered women everywhere – across the globe, in the office, and at home. It was hard to go anywhere without seeing a story or news article about women – and men – joining together to fight for gender equality and basic human rights. It was, and is, a movement that is lifting people up and creating a strong community.
We drew inspiration from this women’s movement for our spring line, especially with our Goddess Collection. We teamed with our friend and colleague, Bronwyn Schuster, who is a beautiful artist and human being, to design the images that are now the Goddess Collection. We chatted with Bronwyn about her experience working on the collection, and what inspired her creatively. We’ve also put together a little guide about all the featured goddesses so that you can get to know them a little better, and which one can inspire your movement.
Representation: Greek goddess of feminine strength, focus, renewal, and new beginnings
Symbol: New moon
Message: Artemis is a chaste huntress with a golden bow that never misses its mark. She is not distracted by the lives of others, rather, the power of her magic is to hunt down the desires of her own heart and hold on to them.
Representation: Hindu goddess of creation, preservation, and destruction
Nickname: Dark Mother
Appearance: Black or blue; long, lolling tongue; multiple arms; skulls on clothing or by feet.
Message: Through destruction and darkness comes clarity and opportunity.
Kali is often seen as a destroyer due to her fearsome nature. But it’s her fierceness that teaches us to be swift and merciless when cutting down obstacles that life sets before us. She embodies the power of time which devours all, thus reminding us to go forward with ferocity and not squander our lives.
Nicknames: Kwan Yin or Tara
Representation: Buddhist goddess of compassion and mercy.
Appearance: She sits on a lotus blossom with a vase of sweet nectar and a willow branch to sprinkle it on others to bless them. The willow branch is also a symbol of being able to bend (or adapt) but not break.
Guan Yin is a protector of women, especially those who yearn to have children. She exudes calm serenity and has the magical power to transform the body in any form required to relieve suffering. She symbolizes limitless transcendence and purity in the face of hardship.
Representation: Ancient Egyptian goddess of magic, fertility and motherhood, healing, and rebirth
Appearance: Her embracing, protective wings bring us healing and security in this life and the next
Isis embodies the strengths of the feminine, the capacity to feel deeply about relationships, the act of creation, and the source of sustenance and protection. She is known as the mother of life, as well as the crone of death, representing both light and dark.
Representation: Hindu goddess of wealth, fortune and prosperity
Appearance: Lakshmi has four arms and hands, which represent Dharma (duty), Artha (wealth), Kara (desire) and Moksha (salvation). The symbol of elephants pouring water on the goddess suggests that the chain of Purushartha (endeavour), Dharma, Artha, Kama and Moksha has to be continuously strengthened with wisdom, purity and charity. She is seen sitting on a lotus and holds lotuses in her hands to symbolize beauty and transcendence. She drops gold coins on the ground which represents prosperity in all directions. She is a symbol of confidence, abundance, generosity and power.
I grew up in a family of artists, and used art as one of the tools to alleviate boredom, process emotions, and make friends. Somewhere along the way it became my career, and I started to study with other artists and went abroad to Sweden for a year to study classical realism. Since then, I have been pursuing more of an illustrative take to art, and finding ways to incorporate magic and myth into the art.
The first resource I went to was the handful of books I have on Goddesses and symbolism. Aesthetically the designs are a puzzle of all the art that influences me. I got a lot of inspiration from Art Nuevo, vintage photography, Indian block prints, and various other types of print based art.
It was interesting. Having experienced screen printing, I know how difficult the ink can be, and so in the design process I had to stay really conscious of that and not add too many of the fine details and flourishes that I would generally approach a drawing with.
Definitely. I am quietly hoping to pass by someone on the street wearing one of the goddess shirts. I have already seen some of the other Inner Fire designs already.
There is a little bit in each Goddess that I admire and relate to. Right now though, I could really use some of the ferocity of Kali. I don't exactly relate to her in every aspect, but I am definitely inspired by her symbolism.