Universal Elk by Arla M. Ruggles

(Formerly titled: “Standing Elk, The New Moon And Venus”)

According to some Native traditions, the Elk symbolizes endurance or stamina. Bull Elk is a powerfully masculine spirit.

The New Moon and Venus in this position are symbolic of the High Priestess in the Tarot deck. The most potent of feminine portents.

They seem to me a perfect combination of male-female balance and harmony.
In my interpretation, the placement of Venus between (above, yet behind) the antlers of Standing Elk represents fertility.

The Moon, in virtually all traditions is a representation of romantic love …. New Moon, a glowing bowl to hold the abundance of Creation. The marriage of Earth and Heaven.

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Antlers, Racks, and Other Horned Animals

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The elk was standing silhouetted against the evening sky in early November. New Moon and Venus appeared just above the western horizon, about the same time of day, three months later.

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Great Basin Life exists … between … high desert expanses and majestic mountain wilderness.

Daily, I watch the winds of change sweeping away what remains of our western culture and heritage, and the land that has produced them.

My mission is to preserve as much as I can, of that which will soon vanish, through my photography.

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  • Scott  d'Almeida
    Scott d'Almeidaabout 6 years ago


  • Thanks very much, Scott!

    – Arla M. Ruggles

  • Carol Berliner
    Carol Berlinerabout 6 years ago

    brilliant work!

  • Thank you, Carol!

    – Arla M. Ruggles

  • Dawnsky2
    Dawnsky2about 6 years ago

    they deffinately long great together, well done :)

  • Thanks a lot, Dawn!

    – Arla M. Ruggles

  • arvyart
    arvyartabout 6 years ago

    But it is just an image from a fairy-tale with happy end… Very peaceful, very visionary!

  • Thanks so much, Arvy!

    – Arla M. Ruggles

  • A.M. Ruttle
    A.M. Ruttleabout 6 years ago

    Very cool, Arla; I shot the moon and Venus about the same time, and also shoot wildlife mostly; how fun to see your “vision” pulling these two together!

  • Thanks, AM … it’s not my usual style. I liked both images ok, but neither was “stunning”. This was an experiment to see if the whole could be greater than the sum of its parts. :p

    – Arla M. Ruggles

  • Appel
    Appelabout 6 years ago

    Very cool!

  • Thank you, Ann —

    I seem to have lost a whole batch of your comments. Sorry for the delay responding!

    – Arla M. Ruggles

  • John Linton
    John Lintonabout 6 years ago

    Stunning effect.

  • Thank you, John!

    – Arla M. Ruggles

  • Catherine  Howell
    Catherine Howellabout 6 years ago

    Incredible composition and look!! I love this work:)

  • Thank you, Catherine!

    – Arla M. Ruggles

  • WaleskaL
    WaleskaLabout 6 years ago

    You have being Featured in the
    First Things Group

  • Thank you so much, Waleska!

    It’s the first feature for this guy! :)

    – Arla M. Ruggles

  • Jake Freeedman
    Jake Freeedmanalmost 6 years ago

    Congrats on the win!

  • Thank you, Jake
    (It’s a bit anticlamactic, given the number of entries — but I’ll take it. :D)

    – Arla M. Ruggles

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