Usually when I am finishing a new drum, it is the full image that directs the meaning of the creatures, as they show themselves in relationship to the human drummer, or to other creatures on the painted surface.  But not this time.

This time each creature gave insight about meeting the Mystery.  And the more I gazed into the painted surface, the more each individual animal and bird became its own answer about how to make this magical connection.

This image of the full drum surface is accurate to the colour and focus of the painting. However, in the details that follow, I adjusted the tone of the raw earth pigments to heighten expressions and postures.


Be vigilant.
Pay attention.  Pay attention.
Something is always watching,
always looking back from where we are looking.


Be curious.
Watch and listen like a child.
Absorb without judgement.


Lean in.
Act on intuition, follow a hunch.
Surprise yourself.


Reflect on how nothing is only what it seems,
but also something else.


Meet the Mystery by rising up.
Feelings and thoughts open to wonder
when we realize that everything that is,
is alive.


What is the Mystery?

A journey through a space between what you already know and what you have not yet experienced.  A place of veils and mist, of glimpses that disorient as much as reveal.  A journey that brings loss of comfort as much as heightened awareness and unexpected discoveries.   A journey you may begin with an intention to change a view, a routine, a circumstance–and find at journey’s end that it is yourself who has changed.


…the opposite of knowledge is not ignorance, but Mystery,
the opposite of truth is not lies but revelation.

Diane Schoemperlen