Archive for July, 2012

Dragons in Culture

Posted in Miscellaneous with tags , , , , , on July 28, 2012 by Dawn Ross

Imagine living in the Dark Ages and coming across a gigantic fossilized dinosaur bone. What sort of creature would come to your mind? Nearly every culture has some sort of mythology on a dragon-like creature. Some of these monstrous beasts have wings, some don’t. Some have scales while others have leather-like hides. Some have the head of a giant lizard, an elephant, or a bird of prey. Some live in underwater palaces, others in caverns, and others still in deserts or mountains.

One thing the dragons across cultures have in common is they are large and almost always guard something. In most western cultures, dragons were fearsome creatures. Nearly every story of a dragon included a heroic dragon-slayer. Consider Ladon, the dragon-like creature which guarded the golden apples in Hercules’ 11th labour – http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Labours_of_Hercules.  There is also the hateful Nordic dragon, Nidhoggr – http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Nidhoggr.  Also, consider the dragons in the ancient Celtic story of Lludd and Lleveleys – http://celticdragonbydawnross.webs.com/index.htm, as retold by myself.

“The Celtic Dragon” (C) Dawn Ross 2010

In eastern cultures, the dragon could be either good or bad. Chinese culture today considers the dragon a creature of wisdom and of high spiritual power. Sometimes these dragons lived in palaces under the ocean or guarded the celestial home of the gods. Some could turn themselves invisible or could even turn into birds and fly away. Consider Wiki for some historical information on the Chinese dragon – http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Chinese_dragon.

There are also dragons in ancient Egyptian stories, Hindu, and dragon-like creatures are even mentioned in the Bible by Moses and Isaiah.

If you’d like to know where I got most of my basic information on dragons, check out the “The Element Encyclopedia of Magical Creatures“. This book covered several pages on dragons, gave lots of basic information on several more dragons in culture than the few mentioned here, and inspired me to do more research using Wiki.

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Free Fantasy Art and Other Free Images

Posted in Miscellaneous with tags , , on July 21, 2012 by Dawn Ross

Need an image for your book cover? Or perhaps you want to use some images for your blog headings. There are places you can buy images like Bigstock or 123rf. But perhaps you can avoid buying them by checking out this great source for free images – http://office.microsoft.com/en-us/images/.

Here are some of the fantasy images I found there.

You’re not limited to just fantasy images, though. There are also photos of animals, people, architecture, objects, and more!

Fantasy / SciFi Remix

Posted in Miscellaneous with tags , , , , , , on July 14, 2012 by Dawn Ross

What does the Game of Thrones and Star Wars have in common? What about Avengers And Firefly? Not much other than they are all awesome, and they have these cool mixed-up videos. Check out this fight between Jaime Lanister and Eddard Stark from Game of thrones with Lightsabers. And this video intro to Avengers in Firefly style. (Thank you Bobby for sharing these!)

Do you know any other great fantasy or sci-fi TV or movie clips which have been redone into another creative venue? Please share!

Preview of the Movie “The Hobbit”!

Posted in Miscellaneous with tags , , , on July 7, 2012 by Dawn Ross

The fact that I am only just now realizing that they’ve made a new movie of “The Hobbit” shows you how out of touch I am with the fantasy genre. After finally getting a chance to watch the movie “Avengers”, I saw the preview and am absolutely excited!

I’m really glad to see all the same actors including Sir Ian McKellen, Hugo Weaving, Sir Christopher Lee, and Sir Ian Holm (what’s with all the sirs?). New actors I like include Bill Connolly, Dean O’Gorman who was in several Hercules and Xena shows, Aidan Turner from The Tudors, Evangeline Lilly from Lost and Real Steal, Graham McTavish from the TV series 24 (season 8), Jeffrey Thomas who played Jason in the TV show Hercules, Richard Armitage who was in the Robin Hood TV series and also had a role in Captain America, and so many other great cast members!

Here is a great video trailer below.

Check out The Hobbit movie website. Also, there is some great information on Wiki and a list of the cast on The One Ring.net.