On this last days I was challenged to create a special illustration of "lemanjá", the Orisha of the Ocean, who owned the status of Queen of the ocean, Mother of the sea and all marine forces and creatures.
I didn´t know her symbolism, I knew so little about Yemanja, the major water deity from the Yoruba religion.
Yemoja is motherly and strongly protective, and cares deeply for all her children, comforting them and cleansing them of sorrow. She is said to be able to cure infertility in women, and cowrie shells represent her wealth. She does not easily lose her temper, but when angered she can be quite destructive and violent, as the flood waters of turbulent rivers.
Yemoja is often depicted as a mermaid, and is associated with the moon, water, and feminine mysteries. She is the protector of women. She oversees deep secrets, ancient wisdom, sea shells, and the collective unconscious. According to myth, when her waters broke, it caused a great flood creating rivers and streams and the first mortal humans were created from her womb.
As a child of the Ocean I feel that I am, I felt instantly inspired by this deity, and besides the short deadline to create it, I was able to give her life.
The result was a Ocean goddess, in a blue pallet. Half Human, half mermaid. A queen in nature and a force in seas.
The main purpose behind the illustration was to print it on a new surf board for one beautiful soul I met some years ago - My friend Rita, as a Christmas gift to be given to her by hers boyfriend.
I couldn´t refuse, mas here goes the result ;)
I hope you like it Ritinha.