My name is ANGIE WILDMAN, and I also go by my online handle name SAPPHIRE WOLFE. I am an Aspie woman living in Brighton, MA. I am a furry, anime fan, autism spectrum advocate and part Jewish by blood, practicing liberal Earth-based Judaism. Favorite activities of mine include going to furry, anime, autism and Jewish events; hiking and getting outdoors in Nature whenever I can; organic farming and being with animals; and doing my artwork. I have been drawing animal pictures ever since I could hold a crayon, which eventually lead to the ballpoint pens that I typically use for my line drawings (for now, at least). These pictures are sacred to me, and they are a gift to celebrate and heal our fragile planet.
I have always been fascinated with face and body painting, and I have been doing this art for a good while now. All of these face paint designs I have done myself. I consider painting one's own skin, and sharing the experience by painting other people, a special sort of intimate, visceral experience. Almost all tribal cultures have painted their faces and bodies. Painting on our own skin is more powerful, I've always felt, then painting on a more typical canvas, because we can share the energy of the paint we smear on each other. I consider this act, when shared with friends and those of us united in a common cause (such as AS awareness), to be a powerful anointing ceremony that bonds us both to each other and to history.
When I draw my animal pictures there is a strong Judaic spiritual thread running through all of them. Certain animals are endowed with special meanings, in the same way that Native Americans believe in totem animals. I draw a lot of creatures but I tend to mainly focus on furry mammals and mythical hybrid creatures. Since all of God's creation is equal in my eyes, anyone - be they wolf, human, tree or gemstone - is allowed to mingle species traits together, hence the large tradition of mythical creature art in the Middle East and Mediterranean.
In spite of what some conservative people might tell you, Judaism has a strong Nature and animal spirit tradition. My Tribe often describes God as the Sun in the sky, a great big lion, or a magnificent eagle. We worship only one God but we see a soul not just in Him, but in all He's created. Therefore the non human animal world is full of teachers, healers, spirit guides and good friends.