‘When thaws dissolve the snawy hoord,
An’ float the jingling icy boord,
The water-kelpies haunt the foord,
By your direction,
And nightly travellers are allur’d
To their destruction.'
Although most of Scottish folklore speaks of male Kelpies, there is the rare occasion of female ones; but regardless of the gender, their power of shapeshifting resides in their bridle, and anyone taking possession of such an item would have the ability to force the Kelpie to submit to their will.
I've always found the folklore of water creatures to be interesting, but this is the first time I have depicted a Kelpie. She lies in the water with a rather mystical allure, while her bridle is hung up in the branches above the water...almost beckoning for someone to take a chance and take it. She almost looks sad, like a tragic Ophelia gone mad with 'grief', yet at the same time is this just a ruse of her supposed innocence so that some daring individual will just dive in and lose themself?
Regardless, I love how this piece turned out. I chose to give this as a birthday gift to a certain artistic someone who I knew could appreciate it fully because of the folklore origins and symbolic nature involved.