Tiger Belly

coffee, acrylic, chicken feather and other collage, pens on w/c paper, 11″ X 13″

Another Guardian Angel. . .I’m amassing a few now to guide and protect me through this coming year.  This angel with the tiger belly got me through a rough month of digestive difficulties.  She was conceived when my stomach was roaring fiercely and demanding attention.  Ironically I started this piece with coffee stains baked in the oven.  Coffee – just the sort of tasty acidic thing my stomach could not handle at all!   Somewhere along the way, while my stomach was still quite unpleasant, and after lots of playing around with collage and color and such, I sat down and had a conversation on paper with the girl and the tiger and the little owl in the lower right corner.

What I learned was a great deal – such as why the tiger was demanding to be seen and heard.  Tiger said, “Let me out of the tight and airless box so I can roam and hunt and sit in high places and roar, shaking the land around me!”

Well, when I asked her, the little girl was afraid that the tiger would eat her friends and said she preferred a stomach ache. Can you believe it?  So in her desperation she asked the little owl to speak.

Owl said, “This jeweled crown is for your tiger to wear.  Let him be king and roar in contentment and no one will fear him!”

She was very pleased.  The tiger was very pleased.  Lift off!

And shortly thereafter my stomach became quiet and happy again.  Now you can make of that what you will, but I would have to say this is about more than paper and paint. . .



  1. What a great collage and a great story. (I think that tiger’s moved into my bronchial passages.)

    I may have to follow your lead and have my own conversation with that little girl, the tiger and the owl. In the meantime, I’m glad your digestive difficulties have cleared up. And thank you for sharing this beautiful angel with us. I love how you colored the paper with coffee! I’ve heard of tea dying, but not coffee.


  2. THanks Carol! Coffee is so rich as a pigment and it continues to have that delectable coffee aroma. I use instant coffee and mix it with just a little hot water so it is very strong. I soak the paper in it, then drop some more granules on top and bake it at 250 degrees for a few minutes till it’s dry. Instant aged paper!


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