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About the Movie

"Herstory: The Visionary Life of Lydia Ruyle and the Banners of the  Divine Feminine," is a new 1-hour documentary film by Dr. Isadora that shows the colorful  and heartwarming story of Lydia Ruyle, a scholar, author, professor,  political activist, matriarch, and iconic artist. At age 60, she began  creating her Goddess Banners, which are visionary images of the Sacred  Feminine drawn from all cultures. The collection grew from 18 banners to  over 300, which she used to inspire, empower, teach, and share their  herstories all over the world. The film also documents the incredible  story of how her worldwide community came together, with less than 2  weeks notice, to celebrate her, say goodbye, and how they honored the  passing of a matriarch.


Lydia Ruyle, also known as Ya-Ya was an 81-year old crone and matriarch who passed away in March 2016. She was an artist and scholar who had been pursuing Goddess research for decades. Her Goddess Banners depict sacred images of the Divine Feminine from the many cultures of the world. Since 1995, the icons have become spirit banners, which flew around the globe weaving the sacred energies of the Divine Feminine. Her research into sacred images of women took her around the globe. She created and exhibited her art, did workshops and lead women’s journeys throughout the U.S. and internationally. Lydia was the author or two books, Goddesses of the Americas was published in 2016 and Goddess Icons was published in 2002.

About Lydia Ruyle

How did Lydia find the Goddess? She called her and she listened. The Goddess asked her to listen, see, touch, learn, laugh, cry and share with art, stories and sacred places of Mother Earth.


Over 30 years ago, she began collecting images of women from art history, which she taught at the University of Northern Colorado in Greeley, Colorado. In 2010, the university created the Lydia Ruyle Room of Women’s Art to continue Lydia’s mission to teach. In March 1987, an art exhibition at the Loveland Museum and Gallery in Loveland, Colorado called “Better Homes & Goddesses” was the first display of Goddess icons, born for National Women’s History Month. In 1993, Lydia invited other women to travel to sacred places with Goddess tours in England, Wales, and Cornwall. Since then, over 300 women have joined her to travel in 14 countries.

Lydia made her first Goddess Banners in the series for an exhibition in 1995 at the Celsus Library in Ephesus, Turkey where they flew and spread their energies throughout the month of July. Since then the banner collection has grown from 18 to over 300. She has used them to empower, teach, and share their stories at sacred sites in 38 countries.

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Dr. Isadora is a highly sought after creative talent. She is a PBS filmmaker, TV producer, public speaker, author, designer, and all-around creative businesswoman and visionary entrepreneur. Her award-winning, internationally known Red Tent movie “Things We Don’t Talk About" has been seen by over 1 million people, is subtitled in six languages and has been screened over 1,000 times in three years in 75 countries.

Dr. Isadora is trained as both a filmmaker, a textile historian, and a feminist folklorist.Her mission is to create multi-media to empower women. She is also the author of two eBooks and one Audiobook.

About Dr. Isadora

Dr. Isadora holds a BFA from the Rhode Island School of Design and a Masters and a PhD from the University of Wisconsin-Madison. In addition to her educational experiences, Dr. Isadora has owned and operated Soulful Media, her film production company since 2002 and has produced 13 films since she began. Dr. Isadora continues to be inspired by international travel and many of her films have led her to live in and travel in more than 18 countries.

Film Credits


Director & Editor

Isadora Gabrielle Leidenfrost, PhD



Isadora Gabrielle Leidenfrost, PhD

Lydia Ruyle

Doreen Bryant


Fiscal Sponsor

House of the Goddess



Amy Larson


Music Producer and Composer

Donald Quan


Music Composing

Donald Quan           Piano & Programming

Bob Cohen              Guitar and Mandolin

Jim Gelcer               Percussion

Yvette Tollar             Vocals

Gary Honess           Recording Engineer

Kul Muzik                 Recording Studio

Jamie Browning       Music Assistant


Audio Restoration and Mastering

Marisa T. Dery at Tamar Forensics


Celebration of Life Ritual

Thank you to the House of the Goddess for designing and facilitating the Celebration of Life Ritual.

Laura Krajewski, Delphine DeMore, PhD, Ellen Jolley-Dotson, Letecia Layson, with ALisa Starkweather, Vicki Noble, Rev. Sheila Dierks, Katherine Skaggs, Marilyn Christenson, and Leeden Rukstalis.


Additional Footage

Lydia Ruyle

Balca Ergemer

Katie Phelan Player

Rev. Christian Ortiz, PhD

Mike Chenery


Advisors and Consultants

Bradley P. McCabe, PhD

Doreen Bryant

Katie Hoffner

Teresa Moorehouse

Shelli Mullins

Susan Mendenhall

Delphine DeMore, PhD

Laura Krajewski

Vicki Noble

Anne Key

Amy Larson

Donald Quan


Alle Struve
ALisa Starkweather
Anique Duc
Ann Filemyr, PhD
Anne Key
Annette Williams, PhD
Arisika Razak, PhD
Apela Colorado, PhD
Ava Park
Bonnie Dean

Carol Burkhart
Cristina Biaggi, PhD
Colette Pitcher
Constance Tippett
Frances Santiago
Kathy Jones
Jackie Johnson
Jean Shinoda Bolen, MD
Joan Cichon, PhD
Joan Marler

Julie Felix
Katie Hoffner
Katie Struve
Keith Struve
Laura Fragua-Cota
Leeden Rukstalis
Lisa Levart
Louise Keirnes
Lucia Burnbaum
Lydia Ruyle

Maria Veronica Islesias
Max Dashu
Pat Alles
Paulett Weaver
Phyllis Eaton
Phyllis Curott
Resit Ergener
Rev. Sheila Dierks
Robin Struve
Ruth Savig

Sandra Román
Susan Anderson
Sid Reger
Susun Weed
Vicki Noble


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Photo Licenses

Ann Cook

Amalya Peck

Celia Jorgensen

Doug Keirnes
Hannah Swick

Heide Gottner Abendroth

Joan Cichon

Katie Phelan Player

Marion Brigantia  

Lisa Levart  

Lydia Ruyle

Resit Ergener                                
Robin Struve

Sandra Román

Susan Anderson                         
Union Colony Civic Center


Music Licenses

"This Little Light of Mine" performed by Arborea Music. 2018, Buck Curran and Shanti Deschaine. Publisher, Arborea Music.

"Joy in Our Hearts" (Joy in Our Hearts album)- Words and Music by Karen Drucker and JD Martin. "Power of Women" (Beloved Album) - Words and Music by Karen Drucker. "We Are the One's" (Shine Album) - Words and Music by Karen Drucker.

"This Little Light of Min" performed by Anique Duc.

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Production Assistance

Robert A. Ruyle

Katie Hoffner

Sandra Roman

Amy Larson

Patricia Alles

Zoe's Cafe

Anne Key

Goddess Ink

House of the Goddess

Sue Faria

Jason Evenson

Skyline Studios

Jason Loeback, J.D.

Donna Connolly

Union Colony Civic Center

The Parliament of the World's Religions

Goddess Spirit Rising Conference

Association for the Study of Women and Mythology

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Marketing and Development

Isadora Gabrielle Leidenfrost, PhD
House of the Goddess
Robert A. Ruyle
Doreen Bryant
Laura Krajewski
Delphine Demore, PhD
Donald Quon
Teresa Moorehouse
Katie Hoffner
Bradley McCabe, PhD

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