Treasures: Man & Beast

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My great-grandmother, Hope Estelle Maffit Duval, was very talented.  Among her many well-developed hobbies was a love for ceramics.  She created, painted, & fired hundreds and hundreds of various ceramic items.  This pair – a Native American Man and a White Buffalo – are among those many ceramic items.  They currently live on top of a bookshelf in my parent’s home.  While I was there a few weeks ago, my Mom had me photograph them (along with several other items).

I love the details on the Buffalo so I took lots of pictures of him.  My mom told me that Grandma Duval tore up a terry cloth towel and used bits of terry cloth dipped in silt to help create the fur.  She said that Grandma loved White Buffalo and that she thinks it was because they were considered “lucky”.  A quick Google search reveals that White Buffalo were considered “sacred or spiritually significant” in many Native American religions.  Because Grandma Duval spent a lot of time with Native women who lived near Spokane, I would guess that she was honoring Native American tradition with her White Buffalo rather than just viewing him as “lucky”.  Either way, she definitely put a lot of time into her White Buffalo!

Did any of your family members create ceramic items?



Happy Monday, I hope you find a special family treasure very soon!  In person, or online.  If not, I hope you will choose to preserve and share photos of a family treasure this week.   xoxo



ps – I photographed these two fellas using my new ShotBox.  It is super handy!  The man was too tall but I still used the backdrop and lights outside of the box and it worked great!!



7 thoughts on “Treasures: Man & Beast”

  1. I love the buffalo ceramics. My mother was a sculptor but she mostly did portraits. The only animals she did were a Borzoi (dog) and a long-eared owl.

  2. You did an incredible job of photographing the buffalo—you really captured all the detail so well. Lots of talent runs through your DNA!

  3. The lighting of your Shotbox really brings out the details. It is also nice to not have distracting backgrounds in the photos. I’m expecting more treasure posts as you chase them down and get more great shots with your Shotbox.

    1. Thank you, Cathy! I’m really happy with it. I agree about the background. So often family treasures are in a space with lots of other items. Seeing them on a solid background allows you to take in the details more easily. I will definitely be sharing more treasure posts! 🙂

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