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The Norns by jadesheldon The Norns by jadesheldon
The first Goddesses I brought to life were the Scandinavian Norns: Urd, Verdandi, and
Skuld. They are three sisters who live at the foot of the World Tree. They are said to be
the most powerful of all deities: not even the Gods themselves could undo what they had done or do what they did not wish. Urd, the eldest, rules the past, Verdandi the present, and Skuld the future.

Every day the Norns drew water from Urd’s well and, mixing it with gravel, carefully sprinkled the World Tree. They never overwatered causing the tree to rot, neither did they allow the tree to parch, for on it not only human life, but the universe itself depended.

The three, faceless figures live in a world of flesh ochre, permanent orange, and
walnut brown, each hold a bucket of gravel and stand before the towering Tree of Life.
Skuld, the youngest, oversees the future and stands tall with her left hand outstretched
sprinkling gravel on the tree. Verdandi, the middle sister, oversees the present and stands in-between her two sisters. Urd, the eldest, oversees the past. Her old body can only stand in a hunched position and her crippled hand reaches out to delicately sprinkle their mixture.

The left side of the tree is covered with leaves, which represents growth and life, while
the branches on the right side are bare, which signifies death.

Under the tree and the feet of each sister, under the dirt of the earth, is the heart of the
Tree of Life. The veins of the heart and roots of the tree are one of the same. The heart
glows an intense vermillion hue, the same hue as the hearts in the center of each sister.

They keep the Tree alive, and the tree keeps them alive.

Created with soft pastel and a 6B graphite stick on 33" x 44" Rives BFK paper.
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Submitted on
August 1, 2009
Image Size
698 KB


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Camera Data

Shutter Speed
10/500 second
Focal Length
7 mm
ISO Speed
Date Taken
Mar 4, 2009, 1:18:57 PM