I usually have a pewter Green man as the centre piece of our display on the market or craft fair. He always attracts attention. This goes beyond fashion. He strikes a chord with how many people feel about the world. People ask me: What does he mean? I can't give a straight answer to that because I don't really know. Books on the subject give all sorts of answers to this question from the full blown New Age interpretations in which he is seen as a Pagan deity, to the prosaic, scholarly ones that ascribe no meaning to him at all.
My view is that we invest him with with the deep feelings we have about Nature. We are animals that have lost touch with our senses and, therefore, struggle to connect with the natural world. We yearn to be reunited with it. The Green Man offers path by which we can do this. He invokes that sense of the numinous that we get hints of now and then from walking in the woods, watching the sun set over the sea, creating a garden or watching birds.
Personally, trees give me that special feeling of connection with Nature particularly oak trees such as these ones in an area of old parkland near where I live. These trees and others like them are the source of our inspirarion for our Green Men pictures. I took this photo on a bright misty morning last winter:
And here's a real live Green man lurking in a thicket in Belvoir Woods last summer:
As caught by Sharon . Note Green Man T Shirt.