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The Faces of Beardsgaard • Strongfell

Posted on February 24 2021

The Faces of Beardsgaard series takes you inside the story and the world of each of our products ~ our real live regular clients, cut by the barbers of Beardsgaard, groomed by River Peak Apothecary, on location, often just off the beaten path.

Journey to our realm, nerds.

SCENT MEMORY

The human animal has five senses, but only two of them pass through the portion of the mind linked to emotion and memory. Of the five, only taste and smell can instantly bring to you faraway and long ago places.

Dawning light mingled with the scent of wood smoke floating over thick snow blankets.

Herbal cell walls pierced by frost and warmed again.

The ozonic blue green those of Middle Western blood can smell on the breeze and know the real melt is on and spring is nigh.

It is for this simple reason that we made our grooming products in the scents of the seasons, so that you can change along with them.

Strongfell is for: Darkling skies over days of biting winds and aching cold

THE STORY

Having created the world of Beardsgaard, you can imagine that when we decided to delve deeper into our craft and introduce our own product line, we felt we also needed to delve deeper into the mythology we had been creating amongst ourselves.

We already had the map of the Realm on the wall, after all. So when it came to creating the scents of our grooming goods, we first looked to the seasons that our corner of the world has in abundance, all from natural sources.

And then came the names, which are added as locations on the map, each with a mythology all its own.

Our shave oils are created by barbers to our rather exacting barberly preferences to both nourish your skin and withstand the rigors of the blade, but more than that, they tell a story.

This is the story of Strongfell.

THE MYTHOLOGY

The mythology of the realm of Beardsgaard grows and grows. And we do not speak of some metaphorical mythos of a business, we actually started writing origin stories, and kept writing.

In the Strongfell mythology, long ago during the Exploration age, humans and dwarves ventured north into the giant lands, building outposts in the remote mountains. At the end of the Iron Wars when the giants erected the Wall of Winds, a small contingent of humans was trapped at the Strongfell keep. What happened there became known as the "Strongfell Horrors."

Keep up with the story as it unfolds right here.

THE FACES

These two are Stephen (left) and Ross (right). Stephen is a long time regular client of Beardsgaard and super fit nerd, so he was an excellent fit for the doomed Captain of the Strongfell guard.

The dark horse turned out to be Ross, who, while not among our regular clients, Blademaiden has known since high school, along with his identical twin brother (not in this shoot, but how would you know?)

Ross's character is the very hungry guardsman who is thinking Stephen there looks like a snack. Despite being a sweet, gently, soft spoken father of four, Ross knows how to turn on the Kubrick stare and creep it up. This adventure was way more fun than a high school reunion.

Costuming for these shoots is largely furnished by local gem All Dressed Up Costumes, generally augmented with things from our personal, getting extensive, costume closet. Any weaponry is just stuff we had lying around.

THE SETTING

MATTHIESSEN STATE PARK • OGLESBY, ILLINOIS

Matthiessen is Starved Rock's next door neighbor, both home to hiking path ridges dropping down sandstone cliffs into canyons below, with waterfalls every so often. As we mentioned in the Deepwell post, given the right conditions, you get some serious ice waterfalls.

This is a far less traveled park than Starved Rock, with some lovely bridges, and the famous wishing stones you can walk across a big pool. Not that we could see them this day.

THE SPIRIT OF STRONGFELL

The clash of steel and stone in the biting air, echoing from training grounds, healer's chamber sharply smelling of winter herbs used to calm blade-bitten and windblown skin, fragrant coals focusing the mind to a razor's edge for battle.

Let us take you there.

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