About two years ago I dressed up as a poor man’s version of little red riding hood for a Halloween party in Denmark. I write about it ad nauseum, that’s what growing up has been for me. Adulthood, refuse it and all of it’s a-decent-party-once-every-ten-years-and-theres-no-well-lit-event-photography-that-can-suggest-to-the-contrary connotations.
Months after that party I had moved into a room in a couple’s apartment in Denmark and I taught myself the very basics of after effects (an animation software) and I made a short animation of Red Riding Hood strolling through the woods. I often try to forget a memory I have of rehearsing the laugh for the end of the animation. I was skipping down some apartment stairs in an affluent area trying to practice an “evil” child’s laugh. I bumped into a neighbour who made eye contact with me. iunno. I think it is amazing to exist in a time when that software is available and the information is available for people to learn it. (I revisit the story a lot but a lot was going on, even though it wasn’t.)
In sixth form I did an A-level that discussed fairytales and those repetitive archetypes which are the fabric of the media that we engage with daily. Every story we read or film we watch has a character who is living a vibrant and interesting life of their own and their psyche is made up of layers of not just one of those nursery-school fairytales but many of them. I took the work into as many subjects as I could and that was really how I tried to develop what I think was Snow White. (I decided she had an eating disorder and that her step mother was feeding her apples laced with laxatives). I explored a lot of mental states as a teenager. It’s how people build character, the shit they allow themselves to go through as teenagers.
As I write this, I am watching this. #WLVS
But to research for that collection of A level work I had to read the Brothers Grimms version – which was grotesque, but it was important to do so because it was the origins of that particular fairy tale. The version I was studying was a short story in a novella by Angela Carter called the Bloody Chamber. Her writing style is so distinctive that you cannot pretend not to have read it. In her version of Red Riding Hood she empowers the female protagonist without trying to negate from the underlying thematics of the original narrative.
This is my favourite version of the Three Little Pigs. Watch it, it takes minutes. You might enjoy the series.
The stills of note, though:
When you fancy yourself some kind of imaginative or creative you have a compulsion somehow to learn how people work. How does a woman become the kind of person that would ever need to walk around with a pistol? How did she learn to walk through the woods in high heels? Who taught her how to skin wolves? Why do I like her? Why did my child self like her this much?
If it’s not clear from this post I’ve probably been subconsciously working towards making my own version of Roald Dahl’s Three Little Pigs, probably for my spiritual kids channel thing. I performed a puppet show for myself using a hairclip for the wolf’s dialogue. I am confident that the performance could translate to something grand.
The actor in me (every single one of my interests or talents encourages a person to compartmentalise their identity) would repeat something she recently read about Sr. Antony Hopkins in which he said that he’d spent his life thinking about the role of King Lear, which he played at the end of last year. He was quoted as saying that it took him years simply to comprehend how he could play that role. I’m saving watching the film for the moment in time when I’m in the right company. Do you know that I’ve seen a few Shakespeares – Twelfth Night (I was meant to play the slutty barmaid and I made up every excuse in the book to drop out and regret nothing.), A Midsummer’s Night Dream, Romeo and Juliet, performed and on every occasion I left with an impression that neither PTSD nor years spend stoned could erase from my memory. There’s something about every single one of those performances that I can recall.
I have Shakespeare script on my forearm and I could discuss the plays and poems that I like – at length – but I’ve not “seen all of his work” nor have I read all of his scripts. (I know that people don’t think he actually wrote the scripts and that the performances were mostly improvised at the time) but I’m happy for that to be something I do over many years. I think that to understand anything, it takes a very long time. To understand a character or really relate to their story, especially a deus ex machina, it really takes years. Probably because the Universe throws all of these instances at you whereby you have to learn how a person would really respond to that situation.
I know that when you watch a Shakespeare a few too many times, one of the characters becomes you. It’s sort of a literary curse.
Here is the very-beginnings of an Al Pacino-esque pig bag that I designed this week. I ordered some leather offcuts off etsy and they were delicate enough that I could poke some pins through them.
I liked the idea of 1. not cutting, because cutting leather is a drag and 2. making something with a shape I already had, kind of like origami artists do and 3. if I had the cash I’d buy this Loewe bag and that probably serves as an artist reference too.
I’ve added this bag to my I LOVE LIST. Which has not been a thing for a long time.
As if you could, consider the idea of me recreating Red’s outfit as imagined by Quentin Blake. Here’s a hood I designed/co-created. (If you have favourite artists you’re not designing anything on your own. I initially had written ‘that I designed’ but that’s not entirely honest. I was thinking of myself while I designed it because there are a lot of cuts that I can wear that a lot of people can’t.)
I would wear it sensibly for kids-intended TV. I would wear it like this to Torture Garden. (Which I’d then write about.) Oh, by the way my tumblr URL has changed to @KnightsTemplar13. I know Tumblr got weird, I think the original programmers must’ve sold it because it got that weird, but if you do you – at least you aren’t contributing to the weird.
The tattoo is about falling in love too soon. It is a real thing that made my life difficult years ago. It doesn’t make my life as difficult anymore. Years ago I’d of been so upset if you brought up this band, in relations to this tattoo, but actually it’s preferred to the alternatives. I’ll grow up again.
when I think about it, I really enjoy the correlations in the narratives between myself and the Little Red Riding Hood that appears – the shallow ones I mean. I must’ve at some point absorbed this into my subconscious as a vision for what I could be when I grew up.
The voice actor playing the female roles in this animated series that I watched a lot is a very renowned British thespian called Prunella Scales. I like her most as Sybil in Fawlty Towers. As a child I learned to be able to recognise people by voice and it became somewhat of a party trick later when I dated a film-buff (who surpassed me in his dedication) and I’d be able to tell him which of his favourite actors were my favourite voice actors, in obscure cartoons that he’d never of been that interested in watching if it hadn’t of been for me.
and the correlations I’d of preferred. As a film person (I am a film person – an age of social media exchanges via video? I’d of thought it was my time. My imagination is meditative journeys of the human figure engaging with stories in time to music, it’s fast forwards and rewinds from different angles, with different colour temperatures – the details)
Here is me pretending to be Vega.
I know that we’re having this moment socio/culturally where we don’t read lengthy pieces of text on the internet. I’m condensing as much as I can but really to adopt an Orwell-ism for a moment “For a time when this is interesting”