Wednesday, February 24, 2010

The Green & The Ugly: Swamp Witches and Their Homes in Miniature

Way up the road from Hattie's Shack
Lies a sleepy little Okeechobee town
Talk of swamp witch Hattie lock you in when the sun go down
Rumours of what she'd done, rumours of what she'd do
Kept folks off the track of hattie's shack
In the back of the Black Bayou


When you do an online search for 'Swamp Witch', you will arrive at 2 very different archetypes. You will find the warty, slimy green skinned hag with a bad temper as exemplified by Meg in the movie 'Legends' (remember the one with the unicorns and Tom Cruise dressed up like Robin Hood). You will also find the elegant and wise depictions of the Cajun Voodoo Queen, Marie Laveau. This article will focus on the first, greener version!

I've heard of women making secret magic deep in the woods since I was little. I remember giggling at the song 'Marie Laveau' when the guy would shriek and say 'another man done gone!' It was first released by Dr Hook on the 'Dr. Hook & The Medicine Show' album in 1971. Marie Laveau was then released by Bobby Bare on the 'Lullabies, Legends and Lies' album in 1974. Check out this fan video on YouTube! It's a snaggle puss beauty pageant and a warning to any bad man! http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=G9qaIFS16nE

THE GREEN & THE UGLY
I've recently discovered a new miniature hobby in the Garage Kit horror and fantasty sculptures. These are not dollhouse related, being more in line with collector's quality action figures and fine art sculptures of larger scales. However, many of the techniques and themes are similar to what I do for both dollhouse minis and war gaming minis. I found two fantastic versions of the Swamp Witch Meg!

Above is a 1/6 scale resin model sculpted by Miles Teves for Dimensional Designs. Painter unkown. The kit costs $150 and was released in 1994. Below is another version of Meg in resin. This one is by Al DeGregorio and posted on MyToyCollection.com
Some of my favorite 1:12 scale depictions of the genre are...Above: The Dressy Witch by Solet Luna Studios
Above: This bent back witch by Blue Kitty
Above: The Sea Witch by Pat Benedict, ocean or swamp she looks green and watery

Where does the Swamp Witch Live?
Black water Hattie lived back in the swamp
Where the strange green reptiles crawl
Snakes hang thick from the cypress trees
Like sausage on a smokehouse wall
Where the swamp is alive with a thousand eyes
An' all of them watching you

Solet Luna Studios has a fantastic spooky house for any anti-social Swamp Witch! This piece is entitled 'Muddy End' and it won 3rd place at the Westcoast Dollhouse and Miniatures Show, 2008. I love the roots and tree limbs twisting about. Visit at http://www.soletluna.com/
The very first roombox kit I made was a hovel I called the 'Hag's Cabin'. I scratch built the hearth from styrafoam, rocks, and repurposed Halloween jewelry. I covered the wood walls and floor with a sandy stucco mixture and made tattered leather curtains. It was a very early attempt and also one of my first miniature sales. I've learned a lot since then but I still look fondly at the pictures!


6 comments:

Briarwood Miniatures said...

Love all the background info and the various versions of the Swamp Witch you've shared. Thanks! It was a fun read.

Cia

Cate and David said...

Thanks for including my witchy creations in your post! You made my day! I really love sculpting witches; I am at my happiest when creating characters with character!
I've left some sunshine for you on my blog...if you partake in such things! :)
Thanks again!
Cate

WendiesMiniWorld said...

OOooh I love Muddy end, thats exactly how I'd imagine it to be!

I also really like your blog background :o)

Jeanne said...

How very cool! I love your Hag's cabin. and the 'Muddy End' is incredible!
Thank you for sharing!

WendiesMiniWorld said...

There's an award for you on my blog x

S said...

The cabin is so awesome it's not even funny.

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