Magnus and Murray, Dragons of Fire and Rain

CALL FOR ARTISTS
Calling all artists who love dragons! Aria Luna needs your help creating dragons of Fire and Rain to protect the fire crews working to contain the multiple wildfires raging throughout California, Oregon, and other regions around the world burning right now. She has always loved dragons, and she’s harnessed their power to raise funds for communities impacted by wildfires before. Now, Aria Luna wants to support the firefighters—they are the ones on the front lines, risking their lives to save people, animals, and property. So she’s created Magnus, the Dragon of Fire, and Murray, the Dragon of Rain. But she can’t do it alone, and two dragons are just not enough. Not for these wildfires.

We are sending a contingent of Fire and Rain Dragons to the fire crews active on the ground now throughout California and other states in the West. These dragons will be selected from among the submissions, and printed as 16 x 20 posters. We’ll also create an online Wall of Dragons, composed of your submissions, that we’ll share far and wide and above all, directly with the fire crews, their chiefs and support personnel.

The Dixie Fire in California has so far burned over 635,000—no, it’s now more than 678,000 acres.* It is the second largest fire in California history. To give you an idea of the scope of the inferno, 250,000 acres is the size of Hong Kong. 600,000 acres is the size of the country of Mauritius in the Indian Ocean. The Dixie Fire is larger than the entire island of Mauritius.

Now, a violent new fire, Caldor, has just sprung up, and fire crews are exhausted and severely under-resourced. As if that weren’t enough, fires are also burning in Algeria, British Columbia, France, Greece, Italy, Turkey, and shockingly, Siberia. It seems the entire world is on fire.

Time is short. Let us introduce you to Magnus and Murray.

MAGNUS
Meet Magnus, the Dragon of Fire. Unlike a lot of other fire dragons you might know, Magnus doesn’t set fires. He doesn’t fly around throwing fireballs at people’s houses. He doesn’t drop fire bombs in enemy territory. Granted, he may roast a marshmallow or two for you, if you ask nicely. At any rate, he’s not your typical fire dragon. He’s a fire steward.

What does that mean? Dragons of Fire who serve as fire stewards don’t use fire as weapons. They tend to them, making sure they burn only the old, dry underbrush, weak or sick trees, and keep forests from overgrowing—because too much dry vegetation is a recipe for disaster during wildfire season. Fire steward dragons can also breathe in smoke—unlike us humans!—and filter it through their bodies back to clean air. (Please don’t ask us how that clean air comes out again, but we swear it’s smoke-free!)

So, fire stewards are really really important. In the old days, it was the native people who served as fire stewards, and many still do. But they are overwhelmed as well, so they and the fire crews need all the help they can get.

Magnus

2021
Color pencil on paper
9 x 12 in
22.9 x 30.5 cm

MURRAY
This is Murray, the Dragon of Rain. Like Magnus, Murray is also a steward, but of water. His power lies in the ability to summon rain, create cloud cover, and turn dry thunderstorms into nourishing rainstorms. When massive wildfires break out, Murray is the one gathering the clouds above. He makes sure the raindrops are just the right size and weight so they put out the fire without over-saturating the ground and creating floods or mudslides. He also really loves flowers, and is known to protect the seeds of young trees and wildflowers so they can germinate again.

Being a steward of rain means Murray can help not just with fires, but floods too—because too much water can also be a problem. Nature is about balance, as we’re all learning too well first-hand.

Murray needs many more Dragons of Rain to help bring the rains back, and tamp down the massive wildfires burning everywhere.

Murray

2021
Color pencil on paper
9 x 12 in
22.9 x 30.5 cm

WHY DRAGONS, AND WHY ART?
So why a call for art instead of a GoFundMe campaign? Because art has power that money doesn’t. Don’t get us wrong… money does a ton of good. It can buy supplies, equipment, fuel, food, and other things that are needed. But art captures the heart, body, and mind in ways perhaps nothing else does. Think of how you feel when you listen to your favorite music. How a work of art or photography can instantly transport you. Art inspires, motivates, strengthens, and even heals.

While we’re under no illusion that an art project like this would somehow magically extinguish all of the wildfires, as if you waved a water wand, we do believe in the power of art, mythology, and imagination to send a message of resilience, strength, and support to our real-life superheroes: the men and women on the front lines of the wildfires.

ELIGIBILITY
All creative humans ages 3 to 100 are welcome to participate. If you are under 18, please have your parents email us their consent along with your submission.

REQUIREMENTS
The theme is dragons, so the requirement is to create… a Fire or a Rain Dragon. Or both. You can create your own Magnus, Murray, or a completely different Fire or Rain Dragon. You can utilize any media — acrylic, watercolor, color pencils, oil pastels, pen & ink, and digital art is acceptable as well. We prefer 2D art, because we’ll be printing some of the entries, but if you are drawn to 3D art, that’s fine too. Just send us a few well-lit images of your sculpture (but please note photography will not qualify to be printed as posters).

You can make it as small or as large as you like—but we do recommend a minimum size of 8” x 10” and a maximum of 16” x 20”. The ideal aspect ratio should be 4:5.

SPECIFICATIONS
– Resolution: 300 ppi (high resolution)
– File formats accepted: jpg/jpeg, png, tiff, pdf (No gifs, MS Word or other file formats please)
– Files must be no more than 5MB in size. If we select your dragon to be printed, we will ask you for a larger file.

DEADLINE
We really wish the wildfires had a deadline (to stop burning), but they don’t. So, to keep up with the rolling fires, we’re setting up rolling deadlines:

Cycle 1: Deadline is August 31, midnight Pacific time

Cycle 2: Deadline is September 15, midnight Pacific time

Cycle 3: Deadline TBD

The sooner you can send your dragon/s in, the better, so we can start sharing them with the fire crews. Every day counts. Every day they’re out there, carrying heavy equipment, digging trenches, holding those firelines, breathing toxic smoke.

HOW TO SUBMIT YOUR DRAGON
This part is simple! Just email it to us, with the following information:

– The name of your dragon and whether s/he’s a Fire or Rain Dragon
– The artist’s name as you wish it to be credited
– Dimensions of the original piece (height x width)
– Date created (if it’s a work you created prior to this CFA, that’s ok! just give us the month/year)
– Media used (you know, the usual “color pencil on paper”)
– Your city and country (state, too, if you’re in the US)
Optional: Any special message you’d like to include for the firefighters (please keep to 1-3 lines)

You can also let us know you’re submitting by posting your dragon on Instagram or Twitter and tagging @aria.luna.art (Instagram) or @Aria_Luna_Art (Twitter).

Please do not send us your original art.

SELECTIONS
Selected entries will be printed as posters on FSC-certified paper and shipped to the fire crews working to contain the wildfires. Posters will be sent to fire stations in California counties impacted by the wildfires, starting with the ones most hit right now. We’ll list them here as the posters are shipped.

But this is just the first step. As soon as we’re done shipping posters to our firefighters here in California, we’ll start sending more to other states and countries around the world.

If you feel inspired and want to support this effort financially, we are accepting donations. Funds will be used exclusively to cover the cost of printing and shipping the dragon posters, and anything left over will be donated directly to the fire crews. We’ll post updates here as well.

ARTIST’S RIGHTS
You retain full copyright and the original artwork. By submitting art to this Call for Art, you agree to grant us the right to print, distribute, display, and share images of your work on Aria Luna’s site, social media channels, and other platforms.

One more thing. This is not an art contest, and there is no winner or prize. This is a call to the creatives of the world to support the men and women of the fire crews working around the clock to keep communities safe from wildfires. All of the entries will be published on this page (assuming they fit the requirements and assuming we don’t get buried in submissions).

 

* Data as of August 19, 2021. Please check the CAL FIRE web site for updates.