Meet The Henna Witch
Updated: Aug 23, 2022
Greetings fellow human!
My name is Mishelle AKA the henna witch, and I have a passion for henna art I'd love to share with you.
I am an old soul, feminist and ardent non-conformist. I travel pretty much everywhere with my therapy dog, Smee, whom I saved while living in Austin, Texas. Who really saved who? I am a native South Floridian, blessed with the benefit of growing up around diverse cultures, tropical plants and colorful art. My upbringing led me to respect differences, ask questions and follow my artistic curiosity! I discovered natural henna over 12 years ago and the rest is history..
I grew up with alot of anxiety and a meticulous eye for detail. Hardcore #VIRGO tendencies! Art and sports became part of my daily wellness rituals. My artistic vision is to counteract mundane conformity and rethink wellness while I pay tribute to an ancient art form. I am a sensitive soul who loves nature and found solace and calm in this plant-based art form. No subject is off limits...through my artistic practice I engage with uncomfortable and nuanced topics including sex, sexuality, culture, racism, mental health and wellbeing. My art practice is meant to be therapeutic, a balm for the soul that connects human experience. Above all, I hope to delight, uplift and entertain you through my holistic practice! I'm a bit of a quirky weirdo/ amateur comedian and awkward girl. (See my instagram reels for a taste of bizarre humor.) Everyday I wake up with a new personality!
A unique element of my practice that sets me apart is my integration of energy work and art for wellness. Over the course of 12 years I have discovered and honed my unique skills as an artistic 'energy reader'. In essence, I specialize in #intuitivehenna art. I create custom designs (translations of energy) based on a combination of your unique aura, your journey, and added codes/symbols for guidance. Perhaps one day, with more research, this will become an accepted form of art therapy!
I am not a psychic who sees into the future, I believe I "see" into pathways of energy through my connection with nature, empathy and the language of art + history. Please do not buy into scammers that leech off the metaphysical community by offering fake readings! I would never offer these services by solicitation or distance/text/video etc under all usual circumstances this is only an IN PERSON offering. Fake and impersonating profiles on instagram have tried this a few times this year! GAH!
Let's talk about intuitive "seeing." Im going to ask you to leave your literal interpretations of sight at the door and tap into your third eye! I have a condition of consciousness where I close my eyes (or keep them open and disconnect from physical reality). I see a carousel of moving objects and visuals, much like a dream that constantly spins and morphs within the minds eye. These images can be very distracting and cause me to daydream ALOT, but it can also be honed while tapping in to other peoples energy to visualize, harness, and download symbolism for design. Once the design is complete I de-code the meaning through interpretations of the symbols and layout, similar to reading tea leaves after they have settled. I use this technique as a form of meditation on myself and have translated it though study and practice on others over the years! The comparison to tea leaf reading is evoked by the fact that henna is indeed leaves and I let the design speak to me and not the other way around.. Have you experienced this phenomena? Please comment your thoughts or experience!
I am also a proud practitioner of #feministhenna my work and the images I create are intended to uplift, bring awareness, hold space & discuss female/womxn's experiences. I want to better understand diverse human experiences through contact and interpersonal relations facilitated by my artwork. I celebrate all womxn through creating safe spaces, staging body art rituals to honor milestones in life, and by providing therapeutic care/outlets. This work often happens across cultures with plenty of nuance, respect and safety considerations.
One very special ritual I love to offer is a #bellyblessing ritual or #blessingway ceremony that honors the transition to motherhood and intends to impart a protective blessing and celebrate the excitement of welcoming the child into this world. Safety considerations for the mother and child are taken very seriously, including adding safe organic (plant based) ingredients and essential oils recommended for use during pregnancy. I remind everyone to always be sure their artist is using #naturalhenna and not synthetic henna with harsh chemicals added (readily available on Amazon.) The ritual intends to keep the mother comfortable and well-supported (physically and emotionally). The designs are a unique mixture of symbolism that tells the story of the mother and child, and imparts a blessing.
Eva Luna belly blessing by @thehennawitch 2022
I wish to spur change in this world through empathy, connection and a clearer understanding of human emotions and experiences. My dream is to continue to travel the world and bring peace/joy/healing/beauty/meaning to people’s lives through my art. I believe my purpose is to be of service to others. I also believe it is within my powers to have difficult conversations and hold space for wounds or differences of opinion. Sometimes it can be a simple smile and listening, and sometimes it’s the artwork that serves as a calming meditation. The residual stain is the mantra or joyful blessing that my guests take away with them for the next 1-2 weeks. Then the design fades away, because henna plant medicine teaches us that surface beauty and time is precious, fleeting and impermanent.
My travels around the world and the wonderful people I have met along the way have led me to believe that we each have a unique purpose in this lifetime. I want to encourage people to be themselves in a time where social pressure, toxic culture and media can disconnect us from our wise inner voice. I too, have felt this disconnect and struggle with fear/disruptors blocking my pathway from time to time.
I want to encourage empathy through mutual respect and transparency. I am a non-traditional artist, meaning I do not come from a lineage of traditional henna (or Jagua) using heritage(s). I'd like to give immense thanks to my teachers I have sought out along the way who have trained me in traditional henna styles including Moroccan inspired design, Warli, Arabic gulf, calligraphy, Sikku Kolam and more! My henna style has become a fusion of everything I have learned and continue to learn. I am Irish American and have fused my own heritage of 'witchcraft' into my artistic practice. I have built an inclusive henna witch community regardless of origin culture and ethnicity across the world! Please read more about being a #hennawitch in my other blog post if you are interested more on that topic or want to find community practitioners in your area.
Henna art is my preferred medium, but I don’t ever want to detract or remove henna from the rich multi-cultural background henna has by declaring it as my own. I am merely a vessel and avid practitioner to share this beautiful art form with ALL people. I am a lifetime student of art and have made it part of my practice to educate about art history, safety, and credit/respect its origins. Henna has been used for thousands of years by many peoples both medically and decoratively. It is my life’s joy to keep this wonderful plant medicine/folk art alive and kicking! It is believed that henna originated in Ancient Egypt about 9000 years ago. India, Pakistan, Africa and the Middle East have practiced henna for well over 5000 years. It still blows my mind that this art has persisted to modern times, we are still using henna art much in the same way, for rituals and adornment to connect and share!
Questions? Please leave a comment or email email@example.com
Thanks for reading!
Image sole copyright belongs to @thehennawitch Michelle Wade 2022