2011 Interviews : Stephanie Rose Bird
Creative Careers in the Arts Interviews
Root-Worker, Herbalist, Author & Artist Stephanie Rose Bird
By Molly Anderson-Childers
Author and artist Stephanie Rose Bird is an interesting, passionate, and BUSY creative goddess. Her books, Four Seasons of Mojo and Sticks, Stones, Roots and Bones, were especially intriguing to me. One of my main artistic interests and sources of inspiration is the unseen world of the sacred and spiritual. As I read and explored these works more deeply, I found many ways to lend creative, artistic energy to spiritual practices from around the world.
A contemporary root-worker and herbalist, Stephanie's work is rife with the inspiration and wisdom of the natural world. Her fine art is commonly inspired by nature. Making amulets, creating a Spirit Garden and accompanying journal, dream pillows, healing tisanes and teas, ritual baths, foot soaks, scrubs, tinctures, and more are covered with clarity, humor, and hard-headed practical advice. I got the chance to interview this self-described eclectic Pagan, Green Witch, Hedge Witch, Hoodoo, and apprentice urban shaman eclectic indeed! She even tells me she's interested in Buddhism, and her work reflects a lively curiosity and an open-minded look at many different and disparate spiritual traditions from all over the world.
Q: Can you discuss the process of making amulets specifically for different creative purposes: inspiration, enticing and honoring Muses or deities associated with the arts, or help completing a big project?
A: Making amulets is sensual and magickal because of all of the different herbs, stones, metals and magnetic materials used and the inherent special qualities they have to contribute to your magickal journey. I describe amulet making throughout my four books and give some directions for how to create your own.
Q: What is your favorite meditation/visualization to inspire creativity or give you guidance during a challenging project?
A: I rely on water imagery a lot. Imagining the lake, where I grew up, ebbing and flowing carrying soothing messages with its continuous motions.
Q: As a root-worker and herbalist, can you give us some ideas for teas, tisanes, tinctures or essential oils to nourish the creative soul, provide inspiration, and forge a deeper connection with the Muses?
A: One of my favorite herbs to work with recently, to help with inspiration and forging a deep connection to the muses is palo santo. It is sacred wood that is used as an incense, left to smolder during the creative process. I love using different types of incenses for creativity, apart from palo santo, I adore frankincense, lavender and myrrh as well as copal. Copal really takes you to other realms.
Q: Your work has a definite emphasis on creating sacred tools, tinctures, healing teas, etc., by hand; folks doing for themselves instead of buying a bunch of overpriced products. As an artist and all-around creative soul with big ideas and a small budget, I appreciate this spirit and the resources offered in your books. Budgetary concerns aside, what are other reasons for folks to create their own incenses, tinctures, oils, and tools or spell-crafts?
A: You can imbue your incenses, tisanes, oils, tools, botanical crafts and spell-crafts with intense personal energy by doing it yourself.