Alchimia – Not Just an Alter Ego

People often ask why I choose to use this ink drawing, Alchimia, instead of a photograph?

Practically speaking, I have a desire to protect my privacy. But, it is much more than that. Alchimia is me.


Alchimia is an image for which I had a strong attraction as soon as I tripped upon the beautiful, intriguing ink drawing.
Her hands are full, she is precariously balancing a bowl and a flask in one hand, and she is holding a pair of badass tongs in the other. Her hair is askew (sorry, Alchimia). Flasks, alembics, mortars, pitchers are strewn about in the midst of her dedication to her craft. Yep, pretty much me – just ask my husband.


Yet, her papers are neatly tucked along the platform upon which her scale sets, her fire stoked, and elements well organized. Also, me.

Alchimia is my hero. She is an intelligent woman brazenly engaged in activities her contemporaries charged she should not as a female.  A woman from the turn of the 16th century, as far as the information I can find on this drawing – a time when women were not allowed to practice medicine and were denied entrance into universities. She appears to be a woman who is working in alchemy with competency, passion, and dedication when society dictates that she should not be doing so.

Our lovely Alchimia (even with her bad hair days) appears to move comfortably in a dichotomy which also melds seamlessly for me. A strong belief in scientific methodology and a belief in the ethereal power of the Universe and Elements of our world: Earth, Air, Fire, Water and our need to respect those powers.

Alchemy, the roots Alchemy has given us in our current sciences and associated critical methodologies, and the ethereal property sought after in Alchemy, have driven me both as a writer and a member of a demanding, exacting, yet compassionate scientific community.

My dear Alchimia embodies all of this, I love her. I hope you enjoy her, as well.

Thank you for your time in reading this blog – I am hopeful it proved to be fun and enjoyable for you. I look forward to an interesting journey with you, Dear Reader, through “Of Alchemy & Angels”.

Elementally Yours –

Danielle Ancona

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