The Waterman: Ignis Aeris by Patricia Ariel

Watercolor and pencil on illustration board,
15 × 20

Related work:
The Waterman: Unio Mystica

This is the second panel of The Waterman triptych.

While the central panel represents the Christ as the macrocosm, the side panels are the microcosm, represented by the Four Elements and their manifestation in the physical world.

Ignis Aeris is the yang pillar, the elements Fire and Air. Volatile and oriented upward, these elements are connected to the realms of the abstract thinking and intuition. Fire is the energy, passion and primeval instincts, that need to be balanced by the intellect (Air) in order to manifest in a most constructive way. The certainty of the Divine, that comes from the heart and from a primal knowledge, needs to be shaped by the intellect in order to become less aggressive and to expand (the butterflies rising from the fire and flying upward). Only through a perfect combination of faith and reason we can access the Divine and understand Its Laws.

At the basis of the picture, handling the creative power of Fire, we see the Magician of the Tarot, which I represented wearing the skin of Nemean Lion, just like Greek hero Herakles. He represents the first step in the Hero’s Journey, or that path that each one of us need to find out and go through in order to become Whole with the Universe. The Magician is the one who uses his power of will (Fire) and mental skills (Air) in order to find his own path.


  • BGlatzeder
    BGlatzederalmost 6 years ago

    I love all of your pieces, but this is exceptional. I am awed.

  • thank you, Barbara, I’m glad you liked it! your comments are always very appreciated.

    – Patricia Ariel

  • VickiYeager
    VickiYeageralmost 6 years ago

    Brillant! Your watercolors are amazing~

  • thank you Vicky, I’m happy you have enjoyed my work!

    – Patricia Ariel

  • SHRyan
    SHRyanalmost 6 years ago

    Exceptional, so striking ,xxxSandy

  • thank you so very much, Sandy!

    – Patricia Ariel

  • quigonjim
    quigonjimalmost 6 years ago

    Wonderful, like the Klimt vibe you’ve got going there : )

  • thank you very much! yes, I drink a lot from Klimt’s cup, as I like to say. he is one of my biggest influences.

    – Patricia Ariel

  • MoonSpiral
    MoonSpiralalmost 6 years ago

    This is amazing!!!! You are truly creating a masterpiece with this work Patricia!!!!!

  • oh, thank you, sweetie. your comments are always very appreciated. I was not very happy with it when I finished, I thought that it could be a little “lighter”. but I’m beginning to like it more now, and I’m very very happy with so many positive responses to it.

    – Patricia Ariel

  • conniecrayon
    conniecrayonalmost 6 years ago

    Wonderful wonderful work you are truly gifted Patricia (O:

  • wow, your comment is so heartwarming! thank you so much!

    – Patricia Ariel

  • Ming  Myaskovsky
    Ming Myaskovskyalmost 6 years ago

    WOW!!!! This is stupendously phenomenal work!!!! ;D

  • oh, thank you so very much dear Ming!

    – Patricia Ariel

  • NomadicGoddess
    NomadicGoddessalmost 6 years ago

    Brilliant work, has a venetian feel to it

  • yes, I guess so… I thought it had a feel of Brazilian carnival when I started coloring it. not intentional, though, it just came out, and I found it very appropriate once the work deals with the meanings of Fire… thank you for visiting, I’m glad you enjoyed it.

    – Patricia Ariel

  • marak
    marakalmost 6 years ago

    very nice,Exceptional art work,love it!!!!!!!!

  • oh, thank you so very much, I’m so happy you liked it!!
    (I owe you a good visit to your gallery!!)

    – Patricia Ariel

  • Anthea  Slade
    Anthea Sladealmost 6 years ago

    Wow this is exquisite…this composition is like a dance to me…I like the flow of the three figures and the masked figure in the middle adds mystery to this gorgeous work. Well done.

  • thanks for your sensitive comment, Anthea… I always seek to bring a little of dance to my figures, and I’m glad to know that it really got evident in this work.

    – Patricia Ariel

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