Odette the Swan Princess
Odette is inspired by the magical Swan Lake ballet, composed by Tchaikovsky, which tells the story of Odette, a Princess turned into a swan by the curse of an evil sorcerer. The only way the curse can be lifted is if she marries out of true love. And then she meets the Prince…
I must admit I found making this doll particularly challenging. When I was asked to create a custom made doll as a graduation present for a young lady who was in love with ballet, my immediate reaction was, well, I’m not making a ballet dancer. Too cliche and too obvious a route to follow. So I started playing around with some other ideas. But the more I thought about it the more I realised that making a ballerina would be the ultimate challenge for me! How was I going to portray the gracefulness, delicateness and beauty of a prima ballerina as a SO SOPHIE mixed media art doll!
So Swan Lake was the ballet that came to my mind. To get in the mood, I watched the Warner Classics version of Swan Lake by the Kirov Ballet and was mesmerised. I was quite familiar with Tchaikovsky’s music but not with the choreography as such. Watching it from beginning to end, several times, was a wonderful experience. One day, I hope to go and see a live performance of it!
I wanted to make a delicate and semi transparent ballet skirt …. so I started experimenting with tracing paper and paint pens and glitter. So much fun! Experimenting with different arm positions and even, albeit chubby, legs was quite tricky. But the result, I think, too cute!
And I could not make Odette without her swan self. Swans are a symbol of true love with fidelity, as well as, motherly love. They also represent expressing our love creatively through poetry, music, and dance. White swans are symbolic of cleansing and purifying ourselves and our lives. They are a sign of hope and promise and a symbol of new beginnings! The white swan is a sign of pure potential representing a clean slate upon which anything can be created.
So, Odette is here to remind us to spread our wings, take flight and make our dreams come true!