FEAST by Scott Helland

Scott Helland

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Review by Deborah Blake.

Scott Helland is most familiar to those in the Pagan community through his music. As a gifted musician and the guitarist half of popular international touring indie folk punk cabaret duo, Frenchy and the Punk (he’s the punk, obviously), Scott has been a part of the witchy world for many years. But it turns out that his talents encompass the artistic realm as well.

I confess, that’s not a surprise to me. I have been fortunate enough to hear Scott play in person a few times, and he usually had a few tee shirts and other fun goodies with the duo’s Batfrog logo he designed. What did surprise me was the scope of his gifts, on view in his first book of art.

FEAST is indeed a feast, both for the eyes and for the spirit. At first glance, the black and white pen and ink drawings in the book seem simple. After all, they’re only in two colors, and it’s pen and ink, not some more dramatic medium such as oil or watercolor. But when you take a second look, and a third, and a fourth (and I promise, you will want to), there is a depth and a complexity to these more than fifty pictures that will pull you in and capture your imagination.

Many of the images contain some combination of the human form, music, gothic architecture, the natural world—most particularly trees—and various mythical components, all wound up together so you can’t tell where one starts and the other lets off. Which is the point, I think. Some of the pictures are also accompanied by short, poignant quotes, which provide spice to the main dish that is the art itself.

This book defies categorization. It is part sacred worship, part social commentary, and perhaps, part diary of a musician; you’d have to ask the author to be sure. What it is for certain, however, is a beautiful marriage of spirit and art, and a book well worth having on your shelves or giving as a gift to someone you know would appreciate something magically unusual and inspirational.

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