Monday, January 9, 2017

Leaves on the World Tree: Bemba Muombo




Imiti ikula empanga which roughly translates, "The trees that grow become the forest of tomorrow." I love this Bemba saying very much as the opening for the next leaf in my world tree series, as it means that the future belongs to those who prepare for it.

The miombo woodlands are one of the largest in Africa.  There are actually several types of miobo, and they can cross pollinate, so there are a variety of leaves.  But the Bemba Muombo very specifically refers to the Brachystegia longifolia.

Since it's fruit bears at this time of year (long flat pods), I decided to represent the fruit instead of the flowers.



The messy process that makes the background.



I've drawn out my rough shapes and added the first layer of white.



Three layers of white to stand out against the colors and almost done.

Since starting this series as inspired by a dream, I've discovered my initial research was off by over 120 ethnic groups, so there are plenty more of these to be done.  All of them have rainbow colored backgrounds, as a world sign of creation, divinity, good luck, hope, potential, harmony, connection, balance and spirituality, paired with seven (either fruit, nuts, or flowers) to represent the collective consciousness and spiritual awakening.

The twenty second leaf in my world tree series, and my first new piece for the year is the Bemba Muombo, may these be the seeds of something great.

"Leaves on the World Tree: Bemba Muombo" by Janin Wise
3" x 3" acrylic on mini canvas

Prints and other merchandise available at my society6 store