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(Music: Dead Can Dance – Medusa)

Medusa, in Greek mythology, the most famous of the monster figures known as Gorgons. In a late version of the Medusa myth, related by the Roman poet Ovid, Medusa was originally a beautiful maiden, "the jealous aspiration of many suitors," priestess in Athena's temple, but when she was raped by Poseidon in Athena's temple, the enraged Athena transformed Medusa's beautiful hair to serpents and made her face so terrible to behold that the mere sight of it would turn men to stone. (What a terrible injustice!)

Art prints with this piece available on society6

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:iconprotophanes:
protophanes Featured By Owner Jun 24, 2018  Professional General Artist
Heart 
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:iconjpmneg:
JPMNeg Featured By Owner Jun 13, 2018

Amazing as usual, your art is in a class by itself.

Fantastic!

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:iconfat-butt:
Fat-Butt Featured By Owner Jun 11, 2018  Hobbyist Writer
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:icontyrannuss555:
Tyrannuss555 Featured By Owner Jun 10, 2018  Hobbyist Artist
I've always had a soft spot for Medusa
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:icongildedxremains:
GildedxRemains Featured By Owner Jun 7, 2018  Student Traditional Artist
Ovid had a nasty reputation for turning Greek myths involving mortal women and gods into stories that made the women the lustful, and weaker sex.

He did so with Medusa, and the worst one (I translated these stories in Latin Class) is the story of Arachne. At least in the Greek story, it was a lesson of not to defy the gods, but they at least gave Medusa the sympathy of the audience. She indeed was given the power to change men to stone with a single glance, and there is some evidence (mostly written) that her image was used to signify a sanctuary for women. 

Point to conclude: Ovid was an asshole, and turned Greek myths to what he wrote so they would carry the "Roman Way".
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:iconseraphonfire:
seraphonfire Featured By Owner Edited Aug 5, 2018
One important thing to keep in mind when looking at Ovid and his writings. You can’t look at the Greeks and Romans with a 21st century feminist mindset and here is why...

Ovid was a Roman poet, born March 43 BC 17/18 AD), not a historian like the one born 440 years earlier who documented Medusa cults, Herodotus Born: 485 BC, norm in Halicarnassus
en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Herodo…

Poets are never accurate for history, but make for good storytelling. Unlike Herodotus who documented the actual cultural significance.  Medusa was an cult, a sex and fertility cult attached to Artemis. The one thing about these cults is that there is a lot of sex and fertility worship. Herodotus wrote about both Aphrodite and Artemis cults to whom Medusa was actually attached through the Gorgon. 

In classical antiquity the image of the head of Medusa appeared in the evil-averting device known as the Gorgoneion.

en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Medusa#/…

The 2nd-century BCE novelist Dionysios Skytobrachion puts her somewhere in Libya, where Herodotus had said the Berbers originated her myth, as part of their religion.  According to Hesiod and Aeschylus, she lived and died on an island named Sarpedon, somewhere near Cisthene.

Sex especially for woman was a huge part of these cults.

The Greeks believed she actually existed and her iconography was intermingled with the gods and goddesses of their time period such as Artemis temple in Corfu.

Most of the time they involved sacred prostitution. According to Herodotus, the rites performed at these temples included sexual intercourse, or what scholars later called sacred sexual rites: Herodotus wrote...

The foulest Babylonian custom is that which compels every woman of the land to sit in the temple of Aphrodite and have intercourse with some stranger at least once in her life. Many women who are rich and proud and disdain to mingle with the rest, drive to the temple in covered carriages drawn by teams, and stand there with a great retinue of attendants. But most sit down in the sacred plot of Aphrodite, with crowns of cord on their heads; there is a great multitude of women coming and going; passages marked by line run every way through the crowd, by which the men pass and make their choice. Once a woman has taken her place there, she does not go away to her home before some stranger has cast money into her lap, and had intercourse with her outside the temple; but while he casts the money, he must say, "I invite you in the name of Mylitta". It does not matter what sum the money is; the woman will never refuse, for that would be a sin, the money being by this act made sacred. So she follows the first man who casts it and rejects no one. After their intercourse, having discharged her sacred duty to the goddess, she goes away to her home; and thereafter there is no bribe however great that will get her. So then the women that are fair and tall are soon free to depart, but the uncomely have long to wait because they cannot fulfil the law; for some of them remain for three years, or four. There is a custom like this in some parts of Cyprus.

aphrodite is one of the most widely used goddesses in real witchcraft, originating from Isis-Ishtar and spread through the cult of Isis.

en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sacred…

So when you take into consideration any of the Greeks, Romans, Babylonian and Egyptian gods/goddesses (all morphed between regions) you see a lot of debauched cults.
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:iconwavangel:
WavAngel Featured By Owner May 22, 2018  Student General Artist
what a terrible price to pay for your own rape - fuhcked up
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:iconcra-zshaker:
Cra-ZShaker Featured By Owner May 10, 2018  Professional Digital Artist
Love the composition and color scheme. :thumbsup: :D 
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:iconjwa2277:
JWA2277 Featured By Owner May 13, 2018  Hobbyist General Artist
Why dise ugltness turn men into stone? 
You medesua, dose not look that bad. 
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:iconcra-zshaker:
Cra-ZShaker Featured By Owner May 13, 2018  Professional Digital Artist
:nod:
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:iconjwa2277:
JWA2277 Featured By Owner May 13, 2018  Hobbyist General Artist
Do you think your art is ugly?
Reply
:iconcra-zshaker:
Cra-ZShaker Featured By Owner May 13, 2018  Professional Digital Artist
What? no. Where is that coming from? :confused: rvmp 
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:iconjwa2277:
JWA2277 Featured By Owner May 14, 2018  Hobbyist General Artist
Then, she is a beautiful Gorgon, like you :)
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:iconcra-zshaker:
Cra-ZShaker Featured By Owner May 14, 2018  Professional Digital Artist
Um... okay  Confused 
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:iconjwa2277:
JWA2277 Featured By Owner May 14, 2018  Hobbyist General Artist
Hay, don't hit me with a frying pan!
:iconsmolderplz:
You don't make good monsters. But you do make beautifule art. :heart:
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(1 Reply)
:icongabygirl1243:
GabyGirl1243 Featured By Owner May 6, 2018
Me encanta :D
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:iconehsol-namu:
Ehsol-namu Featured By Owner May 2, 2018  Hobbyist
I'm very curious why the versions of myth I learned depicted Medusa or Poseidon as the bad one but the common version of the myth everyone else seems to know about depicts Athena and Poseidon as the bad one, especially Athena. 

1) Poseidon did rape Medusa in Athena's temple and Athena actually gave Medusa with the power to turn "men" into stone to protect herself. And as such, Medusa was often used as a symbol of protection at female sanctuaries in Greece I think. 

2) Medusa and Poseidon's bad in this version. Medusa (who is not a mortal here mind you, the THREE Gorgon sisters remember?) being so beautiful and catching the attention of Poseidon, Medusa boasted and dared to compare herself to Athena and Athena punished Medusa to show how fickle skin-deep beauty is. 

I honestly don't like Ovid's version because I think the Romans interpreted the story with girl-hate elements in it. 

Nice work with her eyes, though. 
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:iconseraphonfire:
seraphonfire Featured By Owner Edited Jun 8, 2018
The Greeks had a fear of anything outside the city walls, such as forest, rivers, and any wilderness. Hence why all stories take place there. Much of the Greeks iconography came from the Egyptian/babylonians of Mesopotamia. Like Cronos originally Baal Hadad/Molech the child devourer.

Medusa wasn't a story, she was a cult. So were Mermaids from Atargatis. -> en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Atargati…

In classical antiquity the image of the head of Medusa appeared in the evil-averting device known as the Gorgoneion.

She's actually pretty hideously ugly...
en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Medusa#/…

The 2nd-century BCE novelist Dionysios Skytobrachion puts her somewhere in Libya, where Herodotus had said the Berbers originated her myth, as part of their religionAccording to Hesiod and Aeschylus, she lived and died on an island named Sarpedon, somewhere near Cisthene.

The Greeks believed she actually existed and her iconography was intermingled with the gods and goddesses of their time period such as Artemis temple in Corfu. Artemis/Selene is also a popular occult figure tied to Wicca and the moon. Hence why most monsters are moon based ones. The Greeks were also sex addicts and many of their cults arise around sex and fertility from Babylon and Sumeria.

An archaic Medusa wearing the belt of the intertwined snakes, a fertility symbol, as depicted on the west pediment of the Artemis Temple in Corfu

a Gorgon, generally described as a winged human female with living venomous snakes in place of hair.

en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Medusa

You can see the same influence in the minoan snake goddess of Crete.
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:iconehsol-namu:
Ehsol-namu Featured By Owner Jun 8, 2018  Hobbyist
Not so surprising. And BY JOVE, you know a lot. Where'd you learn all that? 
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:iconseraphonfire:
seraphonfire Featured By Owner Edited Jun 11, 2018
Thank you! I read a lot and watch a lot of documentaries! That and I love ancient history. But if you look at history and start at Mesopotamia around 3750 BC, (Sumeria the origin of civilization) and then look at the gods and goddesses from all other civilizations, you can see how Inanna (Sumeria-Canaan) becomes Isis (Egypt) becomes Ishtar (Babylon) becomes Aphrodite (Greek) becomes Venus (Rome). The same ones are in India and China too. Like the dragon of China was originally Tiamat. en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Tiamat

Fertility goddesses in particular are associated with violent rituals involving sex and sacrifice. Like at Stonehenge.

I'm full of weird and useless information! ^_^
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:iconehsol-namu:
Ehsol-namu Featured By Owner Jun 11, 2018  Hobbyist
lol No, it's not useless at all! XD It helps you give a wider perspective of things. Not to mention that they provide great ideas for a story! 

I myself am a mythology and folklore geek (tho i have been forgetting thing i already knew because i've hardly been using those info) and it often helps me understand the more obscure side of a nation's culture, especially in art work. 

Hey, do you have any documentaries or books you'd recommend? 
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:iconseraphonfire:
seraphonfire Featured By Owner Edited Jun 16, 2018
sorry for the late reply! I definitely have a long list that I would recommend. All the Greeks stuff came from Egypt/Mesopotamia/Babylon. There are some good documentaries like the Celts that showed how sophisticated they were, and that their Druids practiced ritual sacrifice to the goddesses (like the Aztecs) They also used Carthiginian builders, which are Phoenicians. the Semitic language of the Phoenicians, written in an alphabet that was the ancestor of the Greek and Roman alphabets.

Some my favorites...

Myths & Monsters

Legend of the Witches Documentary 1969 (Really slow, but gives a very accurate history)

The Celts - The Complete Series
www.amazon.com/dp/B00EM6MGHI/r…

Celtic Monsters documentary is really cool

Gods & Monsters with Tony Robinson


Myths, Magic & Monsters
www.amazon.com/dp/B012U42KJW

The Egyptians/Sumerians influenced almost everything related to the Greeks. Including Magic (Heku)
You can trace the Egyptians to the Romans by their gods and goddesses
Isis -> Inanna -> Ishtar -> Atargatis -> Aphrodite -> Venus
Amun -> Baal Hadad -> Zeus -> Jupiter -> Thor

Moon god Sin -> Allah (without the daughters)
en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sin_(myt…
saltimpact.com/the-moon-god-pa…

Those are just two very well known examples. The others are just morphed from the same.

The documentary patterns of Evidence is also pretty good.

Also if you like witches, vampires, and things like the very first mummy (Osiris) then you might like some articles like this. I don't know why they used (Imohtep) although Imohtep was super influential in the priesthood.

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:iconblood-ish-god:
Blood-Ish-God Featured By Owner May 20, 2018  Hobbyist General Artist
It makes me so happy to know that someone else knows the other version of Medusa's story. 
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:iconehsol-namu:
Ehsol-namu Featured By Owner Edited May 22, 2018  Hobbyist
Yeah XD Me too!!!! I honestly get very sick of people just knowing one version of a myth and blaming it all on Athena. 

And have you ever wondered why Medusa specifically compared herself to Athena and not Aphrodite considering that Medusa was specifically boasting about her beautiful apperance and not her wisdom, talent, or skill (like Arachne for example)? It was a really curious detail to me since I was a kid. 
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:iconblood-ish-god:
Blood-Ish-God Featured By Owner May 22, 2018  Hobbyist General Artist
To be honest, I did wonder that... But I wonder if it's because she was linked with Athena's temple more than she was linked with Aphrodite - considering the fact that she was raped in Athena's temple.

If you keep that in mind it does make some sense as to why she compared her beauty to Athena's.

But after learning both versions - one that depicts her as evil and the other a victim - I pitied her. In both versions, she is violated and no one blames Poseidon. In one she is cursed right after being defiled and in another, she's had to be turned into what everyone considers a "monster" just so that she can't be harmed again...

vnv I'll be getting a tattoo of Medusa's head somewhere on my back because I'm a total Mythology nerd. >~>;; Already got Fenrir on the back of my right shoulder...
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:iconehsol-namu:
Ehsol-namu Featured By Owner May 23, 2018  Hobbyist
Right? No one seems to remember that Poseidon raped her or had a fling with her and then went bye bye. He’s the real jerk in the story. 

Also, I think in the story Athena was brought up is because the real moral of the story is that skindeep beauty and the affection/lust of those who likes you for your looks only is fickle and dangerous.
Wisdom striked skindeep beauty down. 

A Medusa tatoo? Cool xD May she ward off those who’d harm you! 
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:iconblood-ish-god:
Blood-Ish-God Featured By Owner May 23, 2018  Hobbyist General Artist
Yeah. They focus only on the fact that she was turned into a monster that turned men into stone and was eventually killed for her powers. There was never any mention about Poseidon raping her... Actually, thinking about it, I don't even think it was ever mentioned how she came to be "monstrous" in most of the stories that I read... 

But I think that was more along the lines of those stories based around her being a Gorgon sister rather than a woman raped and cursed, whether or not as punishment or salvation... But, nevertheless, I think the Greeks were leaning more towards pity for Medusa considering her head was placed on buildings that served to help women, I think it was changed later on to suit someone else's perspective.

And yeah, I'm hoping it will be cool. And live up to the reputation to ward off potential harm. xD But just in case I'll probably get other Deities and such on my back for more protection.
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:iconehsol-namu:
Ehsol-namu Featured By Owner May 24, 2018  Hobbyist
Yeah, I agree that the Greek's view was far more sympathetic and empowering(?) towards Medusa for what you've said. It's part of the reason that I don't like the Roman(?) interpretation of Medusa's story. 

Woohoo, what more deities are you thinking of getting tatooed? 
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:iconblood-ish-god:
Blood-Ish-God Featured By Owner May 24, 2018  Hobbyist General Artist
I myself am not sure which side made her the villain and which a saved victim, but whichever one made her the villain needs a punch in the face. >:I 

But I've never really looked into any of the Roman mythology. I mean, once you learn that Zeus was basically a sex pest with weird fetishes you kinda just want to learn what other sex-capades he's been doing.
But dang, in terms of punishment I want Hades to give it to me. He's more lenient than Zeus. xD

Some from Egyptian mythology like Bastet or Set. Definitely getting Hades and Cerberus from Greek mythology. 
And from the Norse mythology Jormungund, Nidhogg, possibly Odin? But definitely Hati, Skoll, Huginn and Muninn. >~>;; For others I'll have to look up what they're known for and get them as I go. 

My back is going to be covered. xD But I don't mind, I like tattoos and currently in the process of getting two sleeves done.

But I totes look forward to getting Drogon tattooed on me. Though I need to watch it because I'm lagging behind - I'm still on Season 2, I believe. xD
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:iconchauffeusetoinsanity:
Chauffeusetoinsanity Featured By Owner Apr 28, 2018  Hobbyist General Artist
The way you drew her eyes is captivating, very well done!
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:iconmartyrmedusa:
MartyrMedusa Featured By Owner Apr 24, 2018  Professional General Artist
I've always thought Athena's "curse" was more like her attempt at a gift. 

No man could hurt Medusa in the same way again
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:iconkenco810:
kenco810 Featured By Owner Apr 29, 2018
it was victim blaming
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:iconehsol-namu:
Ehsol-namu Featured By Owner May 2, 2018  Hobbyist
It depends on how you look at it. In some places Medusa was actually used as a symbol of protection for women against "men," so I don't think it's too far fetched that the curse was meant to be a "gift." 

Then there's also the version in which Medusa and Poseidon are the bad ones. Mind you, in this version Medusa is not a mortal/human. She's one of the three Gorgon sisters, and they have Titan blood in their veins. 
Medusa after catching Poseidon's attention due to her beauty (especially her beautiful hair it seems), she boasted her beauty and claimed she was even more beautiful than Athena, and Athena punished her for arrogantly comparing herself to a goddess and to show her how fickle skin-deep beauty was. 

I said it before, but I don't like the Roman's interpretation or more modern retake on myths because I think people are seeing too many girl-hate elements in it. 
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:iconmartyrmedusa:
MartyrMedusa Featured By Owner Apr 30, 2018  Professional General Artist
it was, which is why in my mind I like to change the story 
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:iconcapicuche:
CapiCuche Featured By Owner Apr 23, 2018
Simply perfect
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:iconchocolabizarre:
ChocolaBizarre Featured By Owner Apr 23, 2018  Hobbyist Photographer
Thanks for that !
It's an amazing drawing !
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:icondaria102205:
daria102205 Featured By Owner Apr 22, 2018  Hobbyist Traditional Artist
Fabulous work!!  :clap:
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:icongordhanx:
gordhanx Featured By Owner Apr 22, 2018
One of the best monsters of all time. Deadly yet tragic, with an awesome design and power set, how can you not love Medusa? Great job showing her hauntingly terrifying form.
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:iconehsol-namu:
Ehsol-namu Featured By Owner Edited May 22, 2018  Hobbyist
Lol i didn’t like Medusa when I first learned about her. She so arrogantly dared to compare herself to a goddess (Athena to be specific) because she attracted Poseidon’s attention and Athena punished her for her arrogance. Considering that Athena and Poseidon don’t get along that well, it was NOT a smart move. Then again, since WHEN was it smart to disrespect AND challege a god in greek myths? 

Why Medusa didn’t compare herself to Aphrodite I would never know (cuz she was boasting about her beautiful appearance, not her skill or talent like Arachne), but perhaps it’s Athena because WISDOM needed to strike SKINDEEP BEAUTY. I think the original intention of the story is that skindeep beauty and the affection/lust of those who like you for your appearanc is fickle AND dangerous. 

I personally think the popularity of the other version in which Medusa is a beauitful priestess and all that, stems from people’s desire to like to lessen Athena (an epitome of a “goody two shoes”) and call her a b****.
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:iconvardruna:
Vardruna Featured By Owner Apr 22, 2018  Student General Artist
Очень круто! Вот уж когда глаза - точно центр композиции
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:iconhartsangel:
HartsAngel Featured By Owner Apr 22, 2018
Woah.............. Love it! I think I've fainted. Love 
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:iconhpixel:
Hpixel Featured By Owner Apr 22, 2018
Medusa uses 4/20 to stoned them
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:iconthe-black-catt:
the-black-catt Featured By Owner Apr 21, 2018  Student General Artist
Right. Medusa was the victim here yet she's the one that gets punished :| 
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:iconveganvamp:
VeganVamp Featured By Owner Apr 21, 2018  Hobbyist
If you look into my eyes
you will see nothing,
because they are cold as ice.

I am the creature, that they
will fear and avoid,
because if I gave them my look
every part of them will be destroyed.

I was always alone and I will
always be,
because nobody will ever see
whats deep inside of me.

(your picture inspired me to write this, hope you like it) Meow :3 
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:iconmrremoraman:
MrRemoraman Featured By Owner Apr 21, 2018  Hobbyist Traditional Artist
Lovely job! You really captured the horror of those penetrating eyes.
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:iconskullgrin-140:
Skullgrin-140 Featured By Owner Apr 21, 2018  Hobbyist General Artist
Stunning work on capturing the look of Medusa, you made her look very creepy but also very elegant. Plus I love the statues behind her as a way of foreshadowing showing what happens when trespassers come along. 
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:iconneurotic-ink:
neurotic-ink Featured By Owner Apr 21, 2018
Absolutely love this! Always been fascinated with Medusa, and this really seems to hit how I've always envisioned her right on the nail!
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:icontimmcjimfrompl:
TimMcJimFromPL Featured By Owner Apr 21, 2018
Amazing!
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:iconmr--gone:
Mr--Gone Featured By Owner Apr 21, 2018  Professional General Artist
Love this!
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:iconblackolivecreates:
BlackOliveCreates Featured By Owner Apr 21, 2018  Hobbyist General Artist
I think your Medusa looks so epic!
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