As a child, there was always something I found absolutely mystifying about figureheads on ships.
I found them somehow scandalous and sexy. There was also a part of me that, I think, considered becoming one a possible career path. In part I looked up to these women and yet couldn't quite tell if the were friend of foe.
I'm still not entirely sure how I feel about them. I definitely think they are beautiful, but I still feel slightly intimidated . Or maybe I am a little judgmental , I think of them as being loose women, or somehow lacking in morals; in actuality they are probably just free spirits and much more forward thinking than I, not to mention the fact that they are constantly surrounded by large groups of raucous men.
In The Wood-carver’s Shop, illustration by Howard Pyle for “By Land and Sea”, published in Harper’s Monthly, December 1895.