Inspired by... A Lifetime of Adventure

It's again the 10th of the month and time for the "Inspired by" creation! But what is Inspired by? Every month awesome Marsha and I choose a subject to be inspired by. It can be a movie (link)an item (link)a designer (link), a painting (link) or a music style (link). Then we make something inspired by that theme or a piece of art and share it with you and each other on the 10th of the month.

This time we went with music again, but not just any music. The album from which the piece of music is combined two of my favorite things - Don Rosa's duck stories and Nightwish. Oh, let me explain. 

Nightwish is a Finnish metal band whose music made an impact on me when I was on high school. Nowadays I actually can't even start to listen those earlier albums, they have such an awful "Mickey Mouse synth"! But the theatricality, the sense of musicals in the music really floated my boat and I was hooked. In the recent albums the band has gone even more to the direction of movie music and Hans Zimmer. The composer and master mind behind the band is Tuomas Holopainen. 

Tuomas Holopainen, on the other hand, had had a long dream to make a soundtrack to Keno Don Rosa's comic book album "Life and times of Scrooge McDuck". I guess you've guessed it by now that I simply adore Don Rosa's comics! I love the history input in them, the little jokes in the script and in the pictures, the adventures, the D.U.C.K... So when the album called "Music inspired by the Life and Times of Scrooge" was published, I wanted to get my copy. In an interview Holopainen talked about how he hears the pictures - how the stories of the album transform into a soundtrack in his head. It's quite the opposite of what happens in my head - the music that influences me turns into images in my head. Here's a link to one previous post about the subject.

Actually we chose the subject for this Inspired by before I had the album in my hands and went with the song we could find online: A Lifetime of Adventure. You can listen to the piece by playing the video above. If you are familiar with the comic album I believe you know which story it goes to. 

Where to start how I heard the piece of music? The images started to appear almost immediately. Part of them where from the comic book, part of movie style landscapes and then glimpses of the piece I did. The fist thing, of course, was to decide what to do. As Inspired by is pretty free in terms of execution, I had all the choices available. But the images that were building up were all about a canvas. So I chose to go with the flow and let the images take over.

The song has a magical, even fairy-like feeling to me. The voice singing the lyrics is so fragile in a way that it makes me think about fairytales. But the lyrics and story are strong. What also was strongly present in my mental images was the snow: falling snow and snowy hills and ice. So a lot of white. The third thing that caught my imagination were the sleigh bells, the little jingling ones. I wrote to my notes (while listening to the song in repeat): "fairy-like, childish, happy, magical, content, sleigh bells, white and gold, glitter, snowflakes". 

This is how the canvas then turned! A cluster of golden coins on top of a snowy piece, mixed with icy flowers and a sleigh bell. The coins represent the richness of Scrooge but also are a reference to a frame in the comic where Scrooge is surrounded by memories - every coin he owns in the money bin equals a memory, a story to be treasured. The white texture in the background as well as the white, icy flowers represent the snow and the wintery feeling the song has. Klondike and adventures there. I also wanted to add the sleigh bells - but unfortunately I only had one golden one so it had to do. 

I kept thinking about the quote and how to add it to the piece. My original sketch had the text really big on the other side of the piece, but when I found the perfect background for the creation it was pretty clear that I had to abandon that idea - because the canvas just 6x6". So I bottled up the important message - to be rich is to treasure every moment.

I started creating the canvas by adding a layer of gesso on top of the residue I had there. Yes, residue as the base is recycled. I tore one older canvas apart some time ago and while the papers and layers left almost totally, there was some white paper spots left there. But to this piece it was just perfect! So I covered the base with gesso and then added texture paste through a circle stencil. While the paste was still wet I added a few touches on the side with my finger and also smeared some of the circles. Then I left the piece to dry over night.

The next day I started making the gold coins. I cut them from white cardstock and treated with golden High Impact paint. After I had glued them in place I added more gold in the form of glitter and embossing powder to them. On top of the treasure I then placed a cluster of flowers, mesh, snowflakes and thread.

Ok, now enough about my ramblings! Go and see what Marsha has created for this one (link)! I'm eager to see if your interpretations are anything alike! 

Thank you for stopping by today! Please leave your impression of the song if it inspires you!

Materials: Tattered Angels, Prima Marketing, Talens, Imaginarium Designs, Teippitarha, Design Memory Craft, Kreinik


  1. Riikka! This is beautiful!!!!!!!!!

  2. I can't believe how many of the same elements we noticed and incorporated in our individual pieces and yet... They turned out extremely different this time!

    Oh, I adore that little 'message in a bottle'... That's so... Aaaah!

    1. I know! It's almost magic how we notice the same things!

  3. Wonderful canvas! Love all the textures and all the little bits and pieces.

  4. I love . . . all. Very beautiful Rikka !

  5. Upea työ! Loistavia yksityiskohtia ja pulloposti on aivan ihana! Video, josta viikonloppuna puhuttiin, niin aivan loistavan upea!

  6. Todella kaunis ja herkkä. Kappaleestakin pidin.

  7. Voihan upeus! Ja kuvastaa kyllä täydellisesti kappaletta!


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