I’ve always been inspired by stories of knights and ladies. Sprinkle in a touch of fairy magic and I’m a goner. When I’m not writing I love drawing and painting, and there are two stories I come back to time and time again.
‘The Ballad of Tam Lin’ is from the 1500’s and tells the story of Janet, who rescues the father of her child from the Fairy Queen on Halloween when the fairies plan to sacrifice him in the tithe they pay Hell every seven years.
One of the reasons this tale has always had such a strong hold on me is that its a story in which the maiden rescues the knight instead of the other way around. Not only that but she goes to confront the Fairy Queen in a graveyard at midnight on Halloween when she’s nine months pregnant. That takes some serious guts!
Going in the opposite direction, ‘La Belle Dame Sans Merci’by John Keats is the story of a wandering knight who spends one night with a fairy woman, wakes to find her gone, and wastes away for longing of her.
These two paintings hang over my desk where I’m constantly reminded of the beauty and simplicity of the stories that inspired them. I hope you enjoy them. Do you have stories and artwork that you keep close to inspire you? Have any other stories of knights and fairies to share? I’d love to hear them.