My personal blog as a 'grown-up' Goth and Romantic living in the Highlands of Scotland. I write about the places I go, the things I see and my thoughts on life as a Goth and the subculture. Sometimes I write about music I like and sometimes I review things. This blog often includes architectural photography, graveyards and other images from the darker side of life.

The Gothic subculture is not just about imitating each other, it is a creative movement and subculture that grew out of post-punk and is based on seeing beauty in the dark places of the world, and looks back to the various ways throughout history in which people have confronted and explored the macabre, the dark and the taboo, and as such I'm going to post about more than the just the standards of the subculture (Tim Burton, Siouxsie Sioux and Anne Rice et al.) and look at things by people who might not consider themselves anything to do with the subculture, but have eyes for the dark places. Goth should not be limited by what is considered "goth", inspiration comes from all places, the key is to look with open eyes, listen carefully and think with an open mind..

Monday, 9 January 2012

30 Day Goth Challenge, Day 4

I'm usually mostly out and about after dark. That is partly because I've moved North, and the days here at least feel considerably shorter than they were, but I think that this is partly because I am ringed by mountains, so the sun has set behind the mountains long before it would set behind a flat horizon. This is also because my partner works until quite late, he often finishes work at gone 19:00 and then has a 45 minute commute home, so if we want to do anything together, including mundane shared chores like food shopping, it is usually done after 20:00. I am up and awake long before then, and do get up at a sensible time, but with the weather having turned for the worse, there's less conservation work for me to do, and I am less inclined than usual to walk into town, especially as I know I'll be walking home alone in the dark if I do that. Also, if it gets dark before 16:00 and light after 09:00, there's not that much of the day when itisn'tdark here in Winter :P I'm also a sucker for not going to bed until I've done a task - for example last night I stayed up working on a Doodle or Die drawing of a Samurai, in great detail, until it crashed at 03:30. If I start something, unless something really distracting happens, I'm usually locked off from the world until I've completed it.

Pale As Death
I'm naturally rather pale, though pale with a reddish tinge, and I tend to do my makeup not to make me actively paler, as I'm pale enough anyway, even for the Gothic look, but simply to make my skin less pink. I am often asked if I'm feeling ill, or what the matter with me is, but the truth is I'm fine, this is my natural, normal skin-tone. I've also got poor circulation, so my hands and feet are often very cold. As you can imagine, this means I end up the butt of corpse-jokes, but that's fine by me. I've found a lot of Goths are naturally pale people, maybe it's because Goth provides a style alternative for people who are never going to pull off the sun-kissed blonde look but can do pale and interesting quite well.

All Black Everything
Black is not my favourite colour, but it is one of them. I do tend to pick the black option even when buying items with little inherent Goth potential, not just because I don't want my cleaning stuff to clash with my clothes, but simply because I like the colour black. My four favourite colours are purple, green, black and blue - in that order. This said, I have, and this list is not exhaustive, the following: black coat-hangers, black-handled cutlery (and that actually IS deliberately Goth), black serviettes, black bedding (also Goth), a black "Gothmas" tree, square black crockery, a black electric-guitar-shaped grater, black towels, black coffee mugs, black tissue-box, black sushi plates, black plastic cooking utensils, black-handled scissors, black photo-frames (also fairly Goth) etc. etc. My wardrobe is a black-lined pit of black clothes and black shoes. Sometimes I wear a bit of green, blue, or purple, but it's mostly black on black. I get teased by friends who, when I buy something totally not goth-related and it turns out to be black, say "Oh! What a surprise! It's pink! Wait, no, it's black." Even my socks are at least mostly black.

Skulls Are Beautiful
I collect animal skulls, collect skull-shaped items, wear skull jewellery, and generally love skulls. I even paint and draw them. I also like Reapers, and bones, and other stereotypically skeletal things. I want to get a biology model skeleton to hang on my wall because I think they're aesthetically pleasing as well as educational. All my animal skulls are found pre-deceased (and mostly picked clean) on walks. I do boil them thoroughly and wash them thoroughly before displaying them. I like deer skulls the best, but have the skulls of other wildlife. I want a raven skull. My favourite art pieces are Memento Mori and Vanitas paintings.

Caught In An Explosion In A Lace Factory
I think this is as much a Lolita/Aristo stereotype as it is a Gothic one, but it's often true for me. I'll wear shirts with triple-lace cuffs, a lace trimmed skirt over petticoats, a lace jabot, lace head-gear and lace as cuff-bracelets and then tie another bit of lace in a loop under my collar and over my jabot, probably in contrasting black, and then carry a lace parasol. Trim my lace with more lace! Lace is a favourite material of mine, I love its intricacy and delicacy and the beautiful patterns it is made in. If I liked pastels and suited them, I'd probably be a Sweet Lolita cliche. I always feel very elegant when I'm wearing lots of lace.

Breathing Is Unimportant!
I lace my corsets tight and wear them pretty much constantly. I'll wear leather studded corsets with buckles, and I'll wear fancy brocade corsets over lacy tops. I like underbust, I like overbust, I like anything as long as it is mostly black, has proper steel boning and pulls me right in like an hour glass. I like white and ivory corsets to wear under period-inspired clothes, I like fancy PVC outerwear corsets to wear as a futuristic cyber-goth. I really, really, really, like corsets. In fact, I think I'm in love with them. They make me look skinnier, bustier and better proportioned. They're warm in winter. They're sexy. They're classy. They're everything I could wish for in one garment.

Bleak-eyed Writer
I wrote my fair share of angst-ridden poetry and bleak, dark fantasy fiction as a teen. Now I'm writing an apocalyptic novel set in a world where civilisation has collapsed and humanity is tearing itself apart, the environment is ruined and a lot of people die. I guess it's gone from Gothic to Rivethead literature, but hey, it doesn't depress me to write it. That said, I'm writing this novel as a warning, not an instruction manual for annihilation nor as a morbid adrenaline-junky's holiday brochure. I also like black humour, and write things that are funny-yet-morbid. I still write poetry, though it is more in the vein of admiring the beauty (and dark beauty) of the universe than in complaining about how awful my life is in poorly-written verse. My poetry abilities have also improved since I was a teen, mostly because writing poetry is one of those things I do quite frequently, for example when bored, on trains, while waiting for public transport, on long journeys, or anywhere else I get 5 or more minutes of sitting-down time. I have also learnt that angsty ramblings are not good subject matter and that good poetry requires more than just rhyme and raiding the thesaurus.

These are the main ones, but I also love ravens, magpies, crows and other corvids, do Siouxsie Sioux style eye makeup or draw curlicues, tend to go out everywhere pretty darn goth, read lots of vampire stories and hang around in graveyards. Yep, I'm a cliche, but I'm having fun being a cliche, so I don't care. 

4 comments:

  1. WHRER HAVE YOU BEEN! missed your posts :-D
    youre just perfect, whenever i read your blog i start headbanging because you just speak what i'm sure a lot of us are thinking. and i love your writing-style. thanks again!

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  2. I've been rather busy recently. There's no set update schedule with the blog, I try and update as and when I've got time. I'm glad you like the blog, it's fun to write. My next blog is going to be a recipe post, and I've got some more goth themed posts coming up, including hopefully one about 'Corp Goth' and being a working Goth - I still hear of younger Goths who think that they have to stop being Goths if they want a proper job, and that's just not true.

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    1. of course there are times when life gives you no time, totally understand, i was just wondering what happened ;-P.

      great idea on working goth post, there definitely is no age when goth ends. i work as a geriatric nurse in the nightshift (ok, not everyones dream but it's mine), maybe that 'goth-atmosphere' around us makes it a bit more difficult but in the end to get what you want you will always have to work hard but never have to give up yourself because being yourself is what gives you the energy to work that hard for your goals. uniforms make it harder but i usually 'gothify' my work outfits...

      oh and the oldest goth i've met so far was a lady who was 79 last year - ok, she's not working anymore but an awesome person, sadly we didnt change contact informations :-(

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    2. I've learnt how to use the reply function on Blogspot!

      Anyway, I've been a) busy and b) trying to reduce the amount of time spent on the internet. I will do a working Goth post still, and a sushi post, and a Chinese New Year post.

      My partner used to work as an auxiliary nurse in a hospital on the really, really early morning shift, and he managed to stay Goth despite having a nurse's uniform... He also got to keep some of his old uniform and customised it into a "mad doctor" outfit...

      79 is the oldest Goth I've heard of yet, but I've met a few in their late 50's and early 60s... Many are people who started off hippies of my Dad's generation, and slowly went through the subcultures 'til they hit Goth and stuck there. I hope I'm still a Goth in my 80s!

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