I took advantage of the Alkaid election posted recently by Chris Warnock of Renaissance Astrology, and made myself a primitive silver talisman. The image of a melancholy man is beyond my capabilities, so I stuck with the image of a Bull.
It's not particularly beautiful, but I like it a lot. You can see, sort of, the image of Ursus Major engraved between the bull's horns. I spent the afternoon preparing the talisman for the engraving, and that was my usual fun time of heating and beating the silver until it was large enough to give me the room I needed to engrave the horns and the rest of the bull freehand. I practiced a lot with different images of a bull on paper before deciding on the final image.
I conjured the spirit of Alkaid to consecrate the talisman, and it was a very smooth spirit to work with. I felt a coolness, a very comfortable coolness of spirit. It's not like other silver talismans I've made, and I like it a lot. I plan on using it with the Box to interview the Intelligence of Alkaid.
I also made a Moon Talisman of Gabriel relatively recently. I did it during the Mercury Retrograde, but I haven't felt any ill effects from it. On the contrary, this is my favorite Gabriel Talisman I've ever made.I was going to use the image from Considerations for Monday from the Heptameron, but I checked the comparison link from the Golancz folio, 35a in Joe Peterson's comments and I liked it better. It felt right, and even though I was a little concerned about trying to engrave the two 6 images, I decided to take a chance. In the Hour of the Moon on a Monday, I engraved it free hand, and it went so smoothly I was shocked. In trying to engrave the image from the Magical Calendar, I ran into a lot more difficulty.
One thing I've noticed about this talisman is a complete lack of tarnish. The Alkaid talisman is a week or so younger, but it is already beginning to darken, as silver talismans do. They don't turn black over night or anything, but they are shiny bright when first beaten out and polished with a dremel tool attachment, and then sort of ... get darker. They lose their shiny newness.The Gabriel talisman almost glows in the dark. I used the same dremel, and I believe they're both from the same silver coin that I melted and cleaned out magically a while back. (I have lumps of various planetary metals scattered around my garage.)
I've used this talisman with the Box already, and the presence of Gabriel was tangible in the air. He spoke in a clearer voice than I've heard him use before.