Puzzle: The Dreaming Tree

 The Dreaming Tree, med

Size: 1000 pieces
Dimensions: 67.95 cm x 48.1 cm
Producer
: Mega Puzzles, Fantastic Visions series, 2014, No. 50939ABN, A 12113 PP
Artist: Aimee Stewart
Original: artwork

Puzzle: With its wonderful fantasy imagery and subtle colour variation, this is one of my favourite puzzles, so much so that it decorates the wall above my work desk. Reminiscent of Elven trees from Middle Earth’s Lothlórien, Vallenwood trees from Dragonlance, and Ygdrassil tree ships from the Hyperion Cantos, its winding steps, dwellings, and terraces are a calming, inspiring sight.

The puzzle is not trivial, due to gradual colour changes and a variety of small elements. A good place to start is the yellow-orange region in the medium right, the dresses of figures ascending the staircase, the lit windows and the staircase, which can then serve as a near-vertical guide, splitting the picture into two regions. After that, darker green left side can be tackled, followed by red areas of tree bark, black bottom areas, and regions at the top of the tree. Good lighting is a bonus with this puzzle, but the beauty and detail in each region is worth extra effort.

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Wings, by Josephine Wall

Josephine Wall - Wings, med

Size: 1000 pieces
Dimensions: 73 cm x 48.57 cm
Producer
: The Canadian Group, Sure-Lox, 2011, #50403-2, tin box
Artist: Josephine Wall

Puzzle: “High above the clouds, an angel rides her precious steed, accompanied by her entourage of butterflies. Carried by a winged unicorn whose powerful wings contain a heavenly kingdom, where a host of angels play their morning glory instruments, she holds tightly onto his flowing mane. As he flies the tips of his wings create new galaxies. ” [Josephine Wall site]

Yet another Josephine Wall puzzle, detailed and intricate as always. Lots of subtle shades and distinct textures. This is a puzzle to do over the course of several evenings, at a leisurely pace. Good places to start are the unicorn’s head outlined against the background, and the top borders of the wings. The bright green and yellow areas, the figures under the wing, the butterflies, the ripples of the dress, and the starry-textured top right corner are distinct as well. With the Sure-Lox pieces, the puzzle assembles well.

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Puzzle: Prisoner by Nadia Strelkina

Nadia Strelkina - Prisoner, med

Size: 750 pieces
Dimensions: 51cm x 68cm
Producer: Lafayette Puzzle Factory, Goldenline Fairies series, APL33650LK0812, #0213
Artist:
Nadia Strelkina
Painting: photo
Box: photo
Puzzle: From the same series as Fairy Key, this is a beautiful puzzle – a pleasure for the eye. I suggest starting from the lighter coloured part of the dress and the light background around the fairy, the exposed skin, the torch fire, and the castle at the bottom right. The lighter background border with the dragon wings, the purple ends of the dress, the tree in the top left, and the flowers in the fairy’s hair can follow. The boys in the bottom left, the ships on the river, and the rest of the fairy and the dragon can then complete the assembly.

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Puzzle: Unicorn Waterfall

Unicorn Waterfall, med

Size: 300 pieces
Dimensions: 27.94cm x 38.1cm
Producer: Ceaco, Glow in the Dark series, 10-puzzle pack, 2013, No. 103013-21081-A
Puzzle: Lovely vibrant colours. We did this puzzle with my almost four-year old, and he quite enjoyed it. Good places to start are the orange ground, the purple sky and yellow mountain top, the green bushes at the bottom, the lilac haze along the right side, and the dark purple tree. Next can come the unicorn body, face, and mane, the blue of the water, and its border with the leaves and branches on the left. The rest of the pieces can follow.

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Puzzle: Fairy Raindrops

Fairy Raindrops, med

Size: 300 pieces
Dimensions: 27.94cm x 38.1cm
Producer: Ceaco, Glow in the Dark series, 10-puzzle pack, 2013, No. 103013-21081-A
Puzzle: Great for kids with its vibrant colours and clear colour borders. My son loved assembling it with me. The rainbow background is the easiest place to start, followed by the exposed skin, face, hair and flowers, mushrooms on the right, daisies, and shiny raindrops at the bottom. The dress, long-stemmed plants, and pale pink flowers in the top left can come next. The rest of the pieces can follow to complete the puzzle.

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Puzzle: Enchanted Encounter

Enchanted Encounter, med

Size: 300 pieces
Dimensions: 27.94cm x 38.1cm
Producer: Ceaco, Glow in the Dark series, 10-puzzle pack, 2013, No. 103013-21081-A
Puzzle: This puzzle was one of my son’s favourite, as it had a fairy, a wizard, a dragon, a horse, and a castle all in one. We assembled it together. Good places to start are the wizard’s robe, the blue of the sky, the castle, the sky border with the hills, and the sunset-lit sky. This can be followed by the fairy, the dragon, the path from the castle to the bottom of the picture, and the tree trunk. From that point on, there are lots of green pieces, but the ones for the tree leaves, the moss, and the grassy hill by the castle are sufficiently different to make the assembly easy.

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Puzzle: Fairy Key by Nadia Strelkina

Nadia Strelkina - Fairy Key, med

Size: 750 pieces
Dimensions: 51cm x 68cm
Producer: Lafayette Puzzle Factory, Goldenline Fairies series, APL33650LK0812, #0213
Artist:
Nadia Strelkina
Painting: photo
Box: photo
Puzzle: From the same series as Prisoner, this is a lovely colourful puzzle – a pleasure to do. The best places to start are the skin (face, neck, and hands), the moon, orange and yellow regions (tiger, light, window and gates), brown carriage near the moon and white carriage with a pegasus in the middle right, red dress and cape, castle roof and sky boundary, and the carriage in the bottom left. The darker colours at the bottom, the blue hues of the castle, the swirling mist, and darker blue and black of the top corners can come next. The colourful pieces of dress, trees, and remaining regions can then complete the picture. This puzzle has larger pieces and golden highlights.

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Puzzle: Direwood

Direwood, medSize: 750 pieces
Dimensions: 46cm x 61cm
Producer: Ceaco, Nene Thomas, series 2, 2012, 2993-4, No. 083013-21081-A
Artist: Nene Thomas
Painting: original
Puzzle: Another Ceaco puzzle based on the artwork by Nene Thomas, from the same series as A Chance Encounter. This one is much easier to complete, as there are vibrant hues and clear borders between them. The easiest regions to start are the green and white of the dress, the red of the hair, and the yellow background with tree branches. I have followed that with the arch and pillars, as the colour is quite distinct. This leaves the hanging branches at the top and the growing plants at the bottom. The puzzle is not large and the colours are bright, making it a pleasure to assemble.

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Puzzle: A Chance Encounter

A Chance Encounter, medSize: 750 pieces
Dimensions: 61cm x 46cm
Producer: Ceaco, Nene Thomas, series 2, 2012, 2993-6, No. 083013-21081-A
Artist: Nene Thomas
Painting: original
Puzzle: Not a trivial puzzle to do, as almost all of it is grey scale or near enough. The best guides are clear borders between black and white, and the regions of black dress and harness, black dragon, white mane, snow, and white folds of the dress, so those are good regions to start. Most of the remaining picture is the web of tree branches. Good patterns to look for are the darker vs lighter greys. Thicker branches and trunks make good vertical guides. At this point, it might be helpful to sort the remaining pieces by shape, and work along the borders of empty regions. Good lighting is a plus.

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Puzzle: Fairy Dance


Size
: 550 pieces
Dimensions: 60.96cm x 45.72cm
ProducerCeaco, Meiklejohn Graphics, 2003, #2333-14

Notes: The folklores of the British Isles contain a wealth of fairy lore, including the idea from which fairy rings take their name: the phenomena result from the dancing of fairies. In 19th-century Wales, fairies were almost invariably described as dancing in a group when encountered, and in Scotland and Wales in the late 20th century, stories about fairy rings were still common; some Welsh even claimed to have joined a fairy dance. Victorian folklorists regarded fairies and witches as related, based in part on the idea that both were believed to dance in circles. These revels are particularly associated with moonlit nights, the rings only becoming visible to mortals the following morning. [Wiki]

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Puzzle: Heart and Soul by Josephine Wall


Size
: 500 pieces
Dimensions: 33.02cm x 48.26cm
Producer:  Mega Brands America, 2008, #50884
Artist: Josephine Wall

Notes:  The butterfly maiden looks inquiringly up at the heavens, soul-searching as she watches the clouds form layer upon layer of strange and wonderful lands.Beneath her multicoloured, gossamer headdress beats the heart of a lion offering strength to the gentle souls in flight.A swirl of flowers forming a garland around the “Queen of the Jungle”, gradually blends into sea and stars.This transitional plane is the meeting place between the butterfly’s ethereal and gentle world and the lion’s proud and powerful domain. The outcome of this meeting is a perfect blend for life. [Josephine Wall’s site]

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Puzzle: Iris – Keeper of the Rainbow by Josephine Wall


Size
: 500 pieces
Dimensions: 33.02cm x 48.26cm
Producer:  Mega Brands America, 2008, #50884
Artist: Josephine Wall

Notes:  Throughout the ages, the rainbow has been the symbol of hope, a promise of better things to come. The ancient Greeks personified the rainbow as the goddess Iris, the favourite handmaiden and messenger of Hera, the queen of the heavenly court of Olympus. Carried by her shimmering wings, Iris travels so swiftly that mortals can see only the trail of her rainbow-coloured passage across the sky. [Josephine Wall’s site]

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Puzzle: My Lady Unicorn by Josephine Wall


Size
: 500 pieces
Dimensions: 33.02cm x 48.26cm
Producer:  Mega Brands America, 2008, #50884
Artist: Josephine Wall

Notes:  All Unicorns are special creatures with magical powers beyond our imagination, but on a distant world lives a species called ladycorns! These beautiful and mysterious beings are able to communicate either by voice or with an array of musical sounds created by a harp like growth on their forehead. Their world is one of tranquillity and peace where nature is revered and the balance of the universe is maintained. [Josephine Wall’s site]

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Puzzle: Faery by Nadia Strelkina

Size: 750 pieces
Dimensions: 51cm x 68cm
Producer: Lafayette Puzzle Factory, Goldenline Fairies series, #3921
Artist:
Nadia Strelkina
Painting: photo
Box: photo
Notes: 
A fairy (also faery, faerie, fay, fae; euphemistically wee folk, good folk, people of peace, fair folk, etc.) is a type of mythical being or legendary creature, a form of spirit, often described as metaphysical, supernatural or preternatural.

Fairies resemble various beings of other mythologies, though even folklore that uses the term fairy offers many definitions. Sometimes the term describes any magical creature, including goblins or gnomes: at other times, the term only describes a specific type of more ethereal creature.

Much of the folklore about fairies revolves around protection from their malice, by such means as cold iron (iron is like poison to fairies, and they will not go near it) or charms of rowan and herbs, or avoiding offense by shunning locations known to be theirs. In particular, folklore describes how to prevent the fairies from stealing babies and substituting changelings, and abducting older people as well. Many folktales are told of fairies, and they appear as characters in stories from medieval tales of chivalry, to Victorian fairy tales, and up to the present day in modern literature. [Wiki]

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