Princess Perdita

In deciding Perdita’s princess design I chose colors and patterns that had meaning. I wanted her first character portrait to represent something she’d wear in court to signify royalty.  I knew I wanted to use a floral motif, but I needed to find a flower that fit her character. After some research I knew petunias were Perdita’s flower; fitting that it started with a ‘p’. It took a while to settle on the color scheme. I had decided on purple early on, but it took a little longer to settle on the yellow—not because they are complimentary, even though that is a plus.

I started this piece before I thought to record my process so I only have this video of me working on it. There are more videos about the process of this and other Three Lives pieces here.

I’ve copied/pasted some snippets from a color theory site about why I decided on the the two colors.


If yellow is overused, it can have a disturbing effect. Dull (dingy) yellow represents caution, decay, sickness, and jealousy. Lurking in the background is the dark side of yellow: cowardice, betrayal, egoism, and madness.


Light purple hues represent feminine energy and delicacy, as well as romantic and nostalgic feelings. Dark purple hues evoke feelings of gloom, sadness, and frustration.

There is a combination of light and dark purples, but I wanted her dress to have more light purple to represent a facade; something she has to wear literally and figuratively.

Petunia Symbolism

The petunia flower symbolizes anger and resentment especially when they are presented by someone with whom you have recently had a heated disagreement. They can also symbolize your desire to spend time with someone because you find their company soothing and peaceful. According to some sources, petunias are also a symbol of not losing hope.

Perdita means lost


Since this a single image in a series of five, I wanted to make stylistic backgrounds that had a clear uniformity to them, while still offering an option of character customization. I’ve always loved stained glass and decided it would be a fitting frame.

About DySwann

In my personal projects I work with concepts like numbness, bitterness, and/or depression; all states of being I know well. A goal is to raise awareness about the dangers of living in these places—and hopefully help others make better choices than I did. I always believe in hope, even when it seems there might not be any. If there is hope for me there is hope for others; and there is.

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