"Now we must brave the long dark of Moria. Let us hope that our passage goes unnoticed."
- Gandalf the Grey, Lord of the Rings: The Fellowship of the Ring
It is dark.
You are alone, abandoned, lost.
This feels like the loneliest place in the world.
The Belly of the Whale is the point in the story in which the hero reaches her lowest point, or rather her "point of least self". All the things she has known about the world and about herself must be transformed or discarded for her to re-emerge ready for the rest of her journey. The imagery of being "inside" something here is important. The hero appears to those outside the Whale as dead o
"We'll never survive."
"Nonsense, you're only saying that because no one ever has."
- Wesley and Buttercup (when preparing to enter the Fire Swamp), "The Princess Bride"
This is Stage Five in the Hero's Journey. The earlier stages are here:
Stage One – The Call to Adventure
Stage Two – Refusal of the Call
Stage Three – The Helpers Arrive
Stage Four – Crossing the Threshold
By the time we reach this stage, the hero has committed to the adventure.
She is on the plane; she has accepted the new job; she is pregnant; she has said “Yes” to a big opportunity.
(Not all at once, obviously, but you ge
In previous journal entries, I talked about The Call to Adventure, Refusal of the Call and The Helpers Arrive.
Next comes the crossing of the threshold - the stage where you take a decisive step that commits you to the adventure - to leaving the ordinary world, the status quo, and venturing into the unknown.
"If I take one more step, I'll be the farthest from home that I've ever been."
- Samwise Gamgee, The Lord of the Rings: The Fellowship of the RingThis is a defining moment in the life of the hero, often the first active decision of responsibility and independence. This is stepping into a bold new world and is often a very scary act,
In previous journal entries, I talked about The Call to Adventure, and Refusal of the Call.
This - the third - stage of the hero’s journey is where helpers arrive to support the hero in her quest.
"It all depends on what you want, you can trust us to stick to you through thick and thin - to the bitter end.
And you can trust us to keep any secret of yours - closer than you keep it yourself.
But you cannot trust us to let you face trouble alone, and go off without a word. We are your friends, Frodo."
The Lord of the Rings: The Fellowship of the Ring by J.R.R. Tolkien
Helpers can take various forms – think about fellow tr
So, I set myself a challenge to take a single picture and make a range of digital collages out of it in the style of as many as possible of my fellow (traditional) collagistes on deviantArt.
It was a surprisingly challenging task - and a real learning curve as I tried to imagine the choices and process of artists whose work is very different from mine.
Here are the first few hommage pieces, side by side with a collage by the "real" artist.
Successful? Or not?
More to come ..
Anyone like to join me in the challenge?
Pick a source picture or scrap of something.
Choose three of your fellow collagistes.
See what you come up with!