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..

Tuesday, 5 June 2012

Red Hair, Black Ribbon and White Lace

❀ Summer Meadow Anachronism

It is still Red & Black Week, the bloggery event being organised by Victorian Kitty of ::Sophistique Noir:: and this is my second Red & Black Week post, although as the photographs are only from the bust upwards, they are mostly white, which while making for fabulous photographs (thank-you Raven! check out his photography business at ::Chance Photography::) is not really inclusive of a lot of black. This is because the original plan was to wear my floor-length tatters skirt (the one featured ::here::) but two things happened that meant I had to wear rather boring trousers out into the meadow instead. The first was that I stood on the hem of the skirt and tore it (oops!) and the second was that it had rained recently, making the grass rather wet and full of slugs and snails, and I was not really wanting to pry slimy creatures off my skirts nor to wander around in skirts soaked and muddy for the bottom inches. 

By the time I went out into the meadow, on this occasion only for photographic purposes, the weather had cleared up significantly, and the view behind me across to the mountains was gorgeous. All these lovely photographs were taken by Raven, who is rather wonderful with a camera. I did the digital editing because I wanted to give everything a summery glow and he's not into doing that sort of thing. Raven spent as much time photographing the view as he did me! Just so you know, I haven't really changed how I look apart from the colour balances and contrast. 


Gazing into the distance.
Photo by Raven, Tweaked by Housecat
While on that occasion I was in the meadow to model my outfit, more often I am there as a beautiful place to sketch or paint in, for even if I am not drawing what is around me there, it is such a pleasant place that makes me feel inspired. I have the same attitude about drawing in the garden, although as my garden is a tad over-looked, I tend to wander across the street to the meadow instead. 

The meadow I am standing in is literally across the street from my apartment. It is on the brow of a hill, with glorious views down, across the river and to the mountains. There was still snow on the mountains a couple of weeks ago! Trees shade parts of the meadow and a burn (stream) runs through it. I feel very lucky to live in such a beautiful place. When I moved to Scotland it felt not just like moving to a different country but to a different world, as if I travelled to Middle Earth. There are castles in the midst of lochs (a sort of lake), snow-capped mountains, ancient standing stones and a history that blurs with myth and magic. 
What is that deep and profound thing out of shot?
Photo by Raven, Tweaked by Housecat
This outfit, however, is not inspired by Scottish history or even by Tolkien-esque fantasy, it is inspired by a this ::recent post:: (post contains painted artistic nudity) at ::The Kissed Mouth::, an absolutely fascinating Pre-Raphaelite and Victorian-Era art history blog that isn't the least bit stuffy. I loved all the elegant ladies wandering about outdoors in beautiful white and pastel dresses. While I am no fan of pastels, I do rather like their outfits, and I am prepared to wear white, even if usually in stark contrast to black. Generally, I simply prefer darker, richer colours. 
♫ A daydream believer... ♫
Photo by Raven, Tweaked by Housecat
It is also pretty much the type and style of outfits I was wearing back a short while ago where the temperatures soared to 33℃ according to the thermometer in Raven's car, and when I would have probably ended up with heat-stroke if I had worn all black. When the weather gets that hot a lot more white and grey enters my outfits, despite my usual preference for darker hues, and I wear lots of cotton and looser clothes. The tatters skirt is wonderful in that it is warm in winter and cool in summer, and I can wear thin stockings or even bare feet and sandals with it in summer, or layered thick tights and long lace-up boots in winter. 
Dandelion Clocks
Photo by Raven, Tweaked by Housecat
As it was rather warm out, I opted for minimal makeup. Instead of lots of foundation and eye-makeup and such like, there is just sun-screen, primer, and concealer with a bit of kohl around my eyes, a touch of silvery white eye-shadow  and some bright red lipstick to match my hair. I keep my skin clear and youthful by not wearing much makeup most days, washing my face with water, drinking well and remaining hydrated throughout the day, and wearing sunscreen. I even wear sunscreen in winter if it looks vaguely bright out. I am terribly pale by nature, and if I burn I go very red indeed, and if exposed to too much sun, but not enough to actually burn me, I develop freckles.

This outfit is not really Goth at all, definitely more in the lands between general anachronism and Aristocrat and Japanese street-fashions and subcultures. I guess bright red hair is too vivid for historical anachronism and probably also for Lolita and Aristocrat fashion, but as I like it I will ignore that. I am far more interested in keeping cool in a physical sense and appeasing my own tastes than in abiding by the "rules" of subcultures and fashions. It sort of boils down to "It's a free country and I can sit in a meadow in white lace with a parasol and bright red hair if I so wish... Unless there the grass is wet and there are too many slugs, which will ruin my dress and force me to stand."

9 comments:

  1. It sounds a great place to live, and the blouse and parasol look delicate and lovely. My ideal place to live would have enough space for all my books, and a place like your meadow not too far away to wander in.

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    1. Space for all my books is something I sorely lack. Most of my poor books are packed away in crates at my Dad's house, I only have a small selection actually in my apartment. It did not come with a book-case, so we bought a small one, and don't really have space for a big one. I used to have a room where 3 walls were pretty much lined in shelves.

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  2. Very nice job on the photos; both Raven's shooting and your post-production. You look so summery, in the best possible way!

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    1. PS: I just saw your comment about yesterday's post. Go ahead and post it, then e-mail me the URL (sophistiquenoir at gmail dot com) and I will manually add it to the Day 2 linky!

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    2. Thanks :) I'll pass on the compliment to Raven, too :3 I should get the post working today and I'll e-mail the URL. I should also get today's post up today, which will go on today's Mr. Linky.

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  3. Beautiful styling. I love your red hair against the green meadow.

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    1. Thank-you very much :) Everything is so beautiful and green now! Spring sort of happened in a matter of weeks and it has gone from wintery with late snows and hail to summery and (relatively) bright. We've had actual genuine clear blue skies!

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  4. Lovely photographs, congratulations to the both of you! ^^
    Is that the red wig you mentioned? It's indeed the same style as mine, but this shade of red is so much cooler and deeper.

    I live across a swampy meadow, I spent half of my childhood in a treehouse there. It was our castle we had to defend against the evil dino - dragon that lived underground...x) Later I went there to read, to study or just to think. It doesn't even come close to the beauty of the Scottish landscape, but it's magical to me. ^^

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    1. Thankyou very much! Raven did an excellent job as photographer. He has quite some talent.

      Yes, that is indeed the wig I mentioned. I think I got mine in the colour you were expecting! I actually made the red a little /more/ vivid for these photographs - ah, the joys of PhotoShop (or Creative Suite, in my case). In reality the red is a touch cooler and less saturated.

      That treehouse castle sounds fabulous! Being up a tree and fighting make-believe monsters is the best sort of childhood activity. I never had a proper tree-house, but I was usually up a tree somewhere... Often still am!

      Scotland is gorgeous. I try and take photographs, but then I look at the photographs on postcards, whimper slightly and give up, because there are so many people (Colin Baxter especially) who have taken far better photographs of the landscape than I ever could. I do try, though, and maybe in the future, as my photography skills improve, I might even post a few pictures on my blog of my travels around Scotland and the British Isles.

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