- Politics and Social Issues
Like Fantasy Art? You'll Love Anne Stokes "Summon The Reaper" Fabric Poster
I have adored Anne Stokes fantasy art for quite some time, and if you were ever into fantasy novels or gaming chances are you know her wonderful art. That's right, there are women who make glorious fantasy art. And one of the things I love best about her work is all the rich and complex relationships it shows and the questions it inspires.
Take this piece, one of my all time favorites that I am thrilled to have as a silky fabric poster. We see a beautiful young witch, who has summoned the reaper. Now that brings up a million questions. Is this a fantasy game reaper with a small r, a type of intelligent and rather benevolent creature who protects the witch when she needs him or her?
Or is this THE Grim Reaper, summoned and now lovingly protecting his charge? There is something so loving and sheltering about the way one hand is gently placed on her arm, and the reaper's robes whirl protectively around the young witch. And from the way the scythe is held and pinpricks of light glow in the eye sockets you know that protection will become lethal force if need be.
But that is what fascinates me. The protector here is obviously fond of the young witch and is standing in an attitude of protection, but not attacking. Any would-be attacker is being given a choice, an option to leave peacefully. So the reaper is not just some mindless thing but a being with his or her own personality and intelligence.
The witch herself is young, but clearly sure of her powers. She isn't hostile, but she's clearly proud she can summon her protector when needed. Which of course makes me wonder why she has called her friend and ally. Is this for protection, to give thanks, to have a lovely craic, and does the reaper, having been summoned control the beautiful creatures that wing through the night sky?
There is an overall feeling of the sea in this art, from the movement of the fabric of the reaper and young spellcaster's garments that mimics waves, to the blue sheen it is impossible to see unless you are looking at it in person. Transparent, it would make a lovely flag as suggested, and can be viewed from either side.
It is huge, a generous 30" by 40" also it is also a lovely piece of statement art as well. These lovely flags are produced in Italy and come in a wide array of designs including films, famous musicians, fantasy art and more.
The background and photo below are from my own poster, hung on my bedroom door. I favor my personal theroy that the reaper is a lovely female, which explains, I think the roses. As always if you own the rights to anything and want links and credit or something removed, please let me know.
Oh, before I forget, this went up in a flash with four poster tabs. Perfecto!
Summon The Reaper
OK, maybe you aren't going to add roses around your poster, but I had personal reasons. After all, I tend to favor the idea of the reaper being female. This poster just speaks to me on a profound personal level. It let's me know that one, it is OK to be different. We are all different in some way, and it can feel like we are alienated in a hostile, unfeeling world.
But there are always those who have our back who would protect us if we let them. Maybe to you the reaper reminds you of a best friend, lover, spouse or family member. Maybe you haven't met this person yet, but you will. My personal take, and no idea where this came from, but it was that the reaper had been the girl's mother.
She passed on but was able to return to protect her daughter. Or then again, maybe Death is her godmother (from my Polish background I've been told she can be seen as female in Slavic countries) or close friend. Whatever she is, there's clear love here and that is what is so profoundly moving to me.
And two, the personal reason it means so much? I have loved this artwork for years and years, I adore just about anything Anne Stokes from her fairys to her dragons. But it is a positive, uplifting piece. It makes me smile to see it. Sure, the reaper can look fierce, but he or she should. But if you look at it in the right way you can focus on the sheltering love and fierce devotion. There is a bond there of mutal affection that will last a lifetime.
One of my all time favorites that appeared in the Dungeons and Dragons games. Isn't this red dragon a beauty?
Need a sweet greeting card? I think the title of "Friends Forever" says it all. This pair is so sweet together!
This video actually made me tear up. Her work is so very profound and moving, and to see that I'm not the only one touched by this piece is comforting.