With totem poles. Something about them gives me total diorama nostalgia (I'm recalling some A+ results-- the revolutionary war, civil rights, the marina towers), and I like it.
So according to Native American tradition, a totem is a symbol that can represent your family, clan or a certain individual. Also in this tradition people have animal totems, spiritual guides that follow you around throughout your life. Duh, totally. This fully explains things for me-- so that's why this omnipresent, invisible snapping turtle has been my constant companion for as long as I can remember.
But seriously this chick Denise Kupferschmidt's art is really cool: www.papermountains.net