Friday, 1 February 2013



It is Up-Helly-Aa this week in Lerwick, Shetland - the annual Viking Fire Festival.  This fitted in perfectly with the Round 3 Design Challenge over at Swirlydoos (amazingly I have made it through to the third round!) which is metal embossing.

I took this photograph in 2009 of Stephen Mouat and his squad at the morning procession and I tried to emulate the shields with my metal embossing.

The metal sheeting was embossed in two Tim Holtz Embossing Folders, then painted with Adirondack Cranberry Acrylic Paint.  Once it was dry I sanded the paint from the raised embossing to bring back the silver.  It looked a bit bright so I dabbed a bit of Walnut Stain Distress Ink over the top and then embossed the metal with clear matt embossing powder.  (Tim Holtz did this technique during the 2011 Tags of Christmas). 

I was then able to cut out whatever shapes I wanted.

There is alot of symbolism here!  The clocks as it is a 24 hour festival (!!), the birds for the Raven Banner, the compass for the galley, stick pins for the torches and leather thonging for the costumes.  I couldn't make an axe so I found this clock hand which I thought looked a bit swordish!

I kept the colour pallete fairly simple so as not to engulf the metal, but unfortunately it looks a bit pinkish in the photographs - it really is quite burgandy in real life.

If you would like to find out more about Up-Helly-Aa click the link HERE for the official site.  It is THE most amazing festival with a procession in the morning, a massive torchlight procession in the evening with up to 900 guizers with blazing torches.  The wonderfully made galley is then set alight with all these torches.  Then it is a party with the 45 or so squads being invited to 12 halls around Lerwick, where the guizers entertain the ladies with an act or dance.  Then there is more dancing and supper to be had.  This starts at 9pm and finishes at 8am the next morning!

We certainly know how to party up here!

Thanks for visiting and have a lovely weekend.




Yon Quilting Wife said...

That is a lovely page Jenny and really captures the feel of Up Helly A.


Artyjen said...

Fabulous page! One of these days I'd like to see that for real it looks and sounds amazing!! Party all night? Sounds good to me ;) lol
xoxo Sioux

Debbie said...

Gorgeous Page Jennie.
I just love the metal embossing and the photo. Just a great sketch too.

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