Guest Post: Papaya for Mermaid Week

For today’s mermaid week post I’d like to welcome the artist Papaya to talk about what inspires her.

Which historical myths did you draw from when creating your artwork?

My interest in mermaids was certainly first piqued when I heard about the Sirens in Homer’s Odyssey and other common lore, who’s descriptions varied from half bird-like creatures and women with a fish-like lower body.
I was most fascinated by the thought of their seductive skills to lure sailors into the dangerous depths of the oceans, either with their voices or outstanding beauty.

The whole mythology around mermaids combines my favorite components of a good story: tragic death and beautiful, dangerous women 🙂

Do you have a favorite mythical mer-person?

My favorite fictional mer-person is probably Princess Shirahoshi from the popular and fantastic manga/anime of One Piece. She’s gigantic, beautiful, and harbors some immense power. She’s also the daughter of King Neptune in this world, and after starting out as a crybaby, she learns to grow up and take on responsibility.

Tell us about your new artwork for mermay this year.

I usually draw a few mermaids for mermay every year since I discovered this trendy hashtag a while ago, and this year my new favorite illustration features a stranded mermaid, struggling on the beach. I love to include some other familiar aquatic features into my mermaid designs, and this time I had the idea of adding some poisonous and deadly spikes on her spine for a dramatic effect! The scene is open for interpretation and everyone can make up their own story behind the stranding and what her destiny could be!

Support Papaya while sprucing up that dull phone or laptop. Take a look at an inspiring custom case or other artwork at redbubble!

Hope you’ll join these other fine authors and artists to learn why merfolk inspire them and their work!

D. H. Willison (22 of Mermay)
D.N.Frost (23 of Mermay)
C. Willison (24 of Mermay)
Rosalyn Briar (25 of Mermay)
M. A. Phillips (26 of Mermay)
Papaya (27 of Mermay)
S D Simper (28 of Mermay)


1 thought on “Guest Post: Papaya for Mermaid Week”

  1. I haven’t heard of that manga (yet) but I’m sure DH has. Your latest artwork is simply – WOW – those dorsal spines add so much and then the eel-like hair, it’s amazing. An awesome mermaid! I can’t help but feel sorry for her despite her menacing looks,.struggling on the beach like that…


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