Charles Kingsley has a lot to answer for. When the VV was seven years old, she joined the town library and The Water Babies was the very first book that she chanced to draw down from the shelves. From  that point on she was obsessed with stories set 'under the water' - so much so that she has now written a novel called Elijah's Mermaid, which is based on a Victorian artist who is obsessed to the point of madness with painting his muse as a mermaid or nymph.

The following lovely images have greatly inspired the story -

A Mermaid by Warehouse

Hylas and the Nymphs by Waterhouse

The Wave by Bouguereau

Nymphs and Satyr by Bouguereau

 Galatea by Louis Dorigny

Water Baby by Herbert James Draper

The Fisherman and the Siren by Leighton

Lamia by Waterhouse

For more gorgeous, watery artwork, see the VV's Mermaids and Nymphs page on Pinterest.


  1. I love this post so much! I am a little obsessed with under the sea too, especially maids of the waves. Excited about your novel! x

  2. Beautiful pictures, I especially like the Waterhouses. Your novel sounds very intriguing.

  3. I was so just about to post this on your facebook page, Kelly-Marie! It's beautiful x

  4. Sorry VV,had problems to log in... So came back just to confess that if there is any "anonymous" comment above, I might be one of them... Apologise
    Great Post!!! Great idea!!! Very exciting!!!

  5. Thank you Kelly-Marie, jtwebster and theatreoffashion - this post was so hard to put up because I have so many pictures I love and mermaids are SUCH an obsession of mine. I always come back to the Waterhouses though...

  6. Hello VV
    Might not worked my first post?!... Grrrr... Sorry again.
    I was only telling you that I just arrived from a trip in Congo and, overthere, the people say that if you let a few drops of milk fall into the water, in the middle of the ocean, away from the river, first it will let spray the little white spots (meeting all the colours indeed), let them dissolve into the salty liquid, and then will attract the "Mamiwata" who, puzzled, will come finally to surface and seduce the stranger sailerman... But better not watch her beauty....
    Brrrrr.... Scary! Isn't it?!...
    Bonne Journée!

  7. The images were phantasmagorical, and I can't wait for the novel--great post. I, too, love mermaid mythology and have written a children's book, entitled The Lost Mermaid~A Shem Creek Moonlight Jamboree. The story sensitizes children to marine life and teaches a social lesson about the danger of judging others by appearance or language. The illustrations were done in watercolor and are also whimsical. Jan DiRuzzo, www.lilythelostmermaid.com

  8. Interesting is the story of the "Nymphs and Satyr" by Bouguereau: the Hoffamn House in New York city and, its owner Mr.Stokes, a kind of a story there too which I didn't know!
    Because of this, some of us might be curious to see that too:http://www.nationalcigarmuseum.com/History_of_Cigars/Censorship.html
    Have a nice day!

  9. Such sensual and lovely mermaids. I'm so happy to hear you've come full circle with your obsession for mermaids and stories in "Elijah's Mermaid". Wonderful.