Mythological Being: bird hybrid


Let’s continue or mythological journey with more pictures by Ghene Snowdon, this time shot in the largest public square in London.



If in the previous article I was an undead mermaid, then in this one I’m more of a siren, even if I’m still wearing my dead mermaid dress from BlackMilk.

Feathers and fishtail

They now tend to be conflated, and for instance the French word for mermaid is Sirène, but in Greek mythology at the beginning, sirens were the ones luring sailors with their enchanting songs.


However sirens looked like, basically, harpies, with a half bird half woman appearance.


Originally, harpies were wind spirits but they morphed into guardians or hunters for the Underworld. Scary!


In The Amber Spyglass, book 3 of His Dark Materials by Philip Pullman, the Harpies guard the Underworld as well but they end up helping Lyra.



As you might remember from some previous articles (Moscow and Margarita, City Cosmonaut 1, City Cosmonaut 2, Metro 2019, Moscow pics and Saint Petersburg pics), I spent some time in Russia back in November/December 2018.


A book I read during my stay is the Secret History of Moscow by Ekaterina Sedia. It’s a lovely book about some people getting lost in some sort of Moscow Below full of Slavic Mythology creatures, Russian history with the Napoleonic invasion and the Soviet period and art.


Some creatures I discovered are very similar to Sirens, and loosely based on Greek mythology. In fact, one of them is called Sirin. Based on sirens, hence the name!, they would sing to saints and later came to symbolise eternal joy.



Meanwhile, also in Russian mythology and a character from Ekaterina Sedia’s book, Alkonost would make people forget everything.


Victor Vasnetsov painted both Alkonost and Sirin in 1896, in “Birds of Joy and Sorrow” that explore the dual nature of the two counterparts.



Gamayun is another hybrid from Slavic mythology, a prophetic creature that is supposed to know everything. Vasnetsov painted her as well.


β€œThe bird Gamayun was related to Alkonost and Sirin in some vague fashion–even the most casual observer would’ve noticed that all three of them were not entirely birds; they had the faces and breasts of women, severe but beautiful. And when their lips opened, they sand in women’s voices, deep and rich and bittersweet.” 

Ekaterina Sedia, The Secret History of Moscow


The cape I’m wearing belongs to the photographer, a friend of the designer, John Herrera. His collection Aswang is inspired by Filipino folklore.


Aswang refers to a shape shifting evil spirit form the Philippines, who can transform at night into a crow, among others.



πŸ“· Pictures by Ghene Snowdon:Β @snowdonphoto/Β

Model, styling: me, @lyraophelia

πŸ§₯ Cape from the Aswang collection by @johnherrera

πŸ‘— Magic Death Mermaid velvet dress by @blackmilkclothing

πŸ‘  Shoes from a charity shop in London

πŸ‘„ Labret piercing by @magdapiercing from @nemesistattoo

πŸ’„ Everlasting liquid lipstick in Reverb by @katvondbeauty

πŸ‘οΈ Tattoo liner in Trooper, shade + light eye palette, lash liner, highlighter from the Alchemy palette and brow pomade in Satellite Blue by @katvondbeauty

😊 Lock it foundation, concealer and setting powder by @katvondbeauty
highlighter from the Alchemy palette by @katvondbeauty

Hair by @pedro_plastic from @miemanihair

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