To this day California’s Golden Gate bridge stands its ground as one of the United States‘ most iconic landmarks. With as much history behind its construction as steel in its foundation, we felt the bridge deserved a special tribute piece. Much like the planning and construction of the massive structure itself, the painting of this breathtaking piece went through several development phases.
Artist, Tim Huhn began the process with a pencil drawing (below) to study and perfect the composition of the piece. And like the original blueprints of a construction project, these initial drawings paved the road to what later would become a study painting exploring lines and edges, perspective, and color schemes; and finally, the finished piece in all of its glory and beauty.
The wall-writings at England’s infamously haunted Borley Rectory have proven to be of enduring interest. Although they may not be unique, they are memorable, with the repeated calling of the name ‘Marianne’, their chilling pleas for ‘Rest’, exhortations for ‘Light’ the ‘Mass Prayers’, and childlike scribbling, redolent of a tortured soul desperate to communicate.
Who can fail to be stirred by the account of their arrival as remembered by a visitor, the professional medium, Guy L’Estrange?:
“Later, being entertained by the rector and his wife, he heard for the first time of mysterious forms, male and female, being seen inside and outside the house; of lights in unoccupied rooms; of articles appearing and being thrown; of fires breaking out; of mysterious whisperings and unexplained writings on walls and scraps of paper. Once, the rector told him, he was working alone in his study when he saw a pencil rise from the desk and scrawl words on the wall in front of him -no hand was visible!’
— Guy L’Estrange, quoted in Borley Postscript by Peter Underwood, p.114
It is an image that we all kept when we first read the Harry Price books about Borley Rectory: the pencil rising from the desk and scrawling the words ‘Get light, mass, prayers.’
This account was introduced by the professional medium, Guy L’Estrange. Unfortunately Guy seems to have made it up. Lionel Foyster, the rector would never have said it. He was meticulous in his care for the truth and was always keen to point out that he never saw anything of a paranormal nature whilst at Borley Rectory. The story of the pencil rising from the desk does not appear in any other account.
The ‘paranormal’ writings first appeared in the spring of 1931 when the Foysters were living at the Rectory.
The diary of occurrences, written soon after the event, records the first manifestations of this strange phenomenon, and then, in instalments describes how it evolved:
“Another strange occurrence is that Marianne’s name was at one time continually being written on little odd pieces of paper in a rather shaky childish hand (Adelaide, needless to say, cannot write yet) That has stopped now as far as I know (March 23rd).”
—Lionel Foyster Diary of Occurences, p.17
In Lionel’s final account which was written seven years later, some detail was added that gave this a much more ‘paranormal’ air:
‘MF sees paper in the air; it at once falls to the ground; discovered to huave some hardly decipherable writing on it. Next day, when we come up, it has disappeared.”
—Lionel Foyster, Summary of experiences, p.4