Duane has been an avid student of the Native American culture and customs for many years. Following his return from a visit to the Hopi nation, he came home and designed this bow in honor of some of their beliefs.
This bow will be presented to the Hopi Chief in the near future.
The 3 Mesas
The Hopi villages are situated on three mesas in northern Arizona. The Hopi believe they were led to that area long ago by some holy men, who told them to remain there until further notice. The 3 Mesas are depicted in the handle of the bow, using the red-earth colored bloodwood. At the base of each mesa is a white triangle which represents a tent, home, or dwelling place, or, in other words, that the people live on the 3 Mesas.
The Rising/Setting Sun
The sun above the 3 Mesas represents both a rising and a setting sun.
The setting sun symbolizes the end of an era, but the rising sun represents the dawning of a new era. The 5 rays coming out of the sun are meant to show that the earth is about to enter the "5th Cycle". The “5th Cycle” of the earth corresponds very closely to what many people see as the Millennial Era.
The Blue Corn
One of the very most important and sacred features of the Hopi religion is blue corn, as it represents life itself. Without the blue corn, the Hopi would not have survived. There is much, much more to this story.
The blue corn is represented by the bead-work done by Cindy (cmj314 photography) on the target side of the bow handle.
The Primary Colors
Red, yellow, and blue represent many things to the Hopi.
Red – female, Mother Earth, blood, life
Blue – male, Father Sky, water
Yellow – sun, illumination, nobility, crown, glory, honor
White – virtue, purity, holiness, cleanliness, peace. White contains all the colors of light.
A snake or serpent can represent either good or evil. When the snake has feathers, it is something good, the "winged serpent". The lightning bolt issuing forth from the serpent's mouth is meant to represent the "The Great Spirit" speaking.
The Bow Tips
On the target facing side, the bow tips have 7 layers, alternating dark and light, to represent the 7 days of the week, day and night. The last overlay is antelope horn, a sacred animal to the Hopi.
On the shooter side, there are arrowheads made from bloodwood as tip overlays.
There are 4 "diamonds" on the snake, to represent the 4 seasons and 4 directions, or corners of the earth.
Wood/Materials Used in the Hopi Bow
3 Mesas – bloodwood, brass
Sky – 24 layers of two different colors of blue dyed birch
Sun – yellow dyed birch, white pearl polyester, brass
Overlays – yellow, blue, and red dyed birch
Quilted maple with ebony wood inlays to create the snake, along with red and yellow dyed birch for the other laminations and actual rattlesnake skin on the inside face of the limb.
~Blue corn – beads
~Rawhide strips on the limbs in front of the snake's head
~wild turkey feathers
~tips – antelope horn, ebony, maple and bloodwood
~string silencers – dyed rabbit fur