Apollo and Daphne after Bernini Picture

Featured song for this work is "Lamento di Apollo" from the opera Gli Amori d’Apollo e di Dafne by Francesco Cavalli (www.youtube.com/watch?v=Tfpild…):

Miserable Apollo, now vaunt your triumphs

Of creating day by turning the lights.

Only changed into the breeze of sighs

Can you kiss the leaves of the perfumed plant.


Let bitter tears gush forth with doleful office

From my languid eyes,

Let them in a double stream irrigate

The sweet roots of a laurel.

It was better for me that fleeing,

But surpassingly beautiful, I had seen you,

Than with numb and unjoyous arms

To embrace a tree on this shore.


Apollo’s first love is the nymph Daphne, who is scornful of love and wishes to remain a virgin. It is all due to Apollo earlier having belittled Eros/Cupid, the child god of love, for his choice of the bow and arrow as his weapon. Insulted, the younger god retaliates by shooting an arrow of love into Apollo’s heart, and an arrow of hate into Daphne’s heart. Thus Apollo falls in love with Daphne, who rejects him.

This scene depicts the moment when Apollo pursues Daphne, with the former about to reach the latter who gets exhausted from long running. Fearful of becoming deflowered, she prays to her father Peneus a river god for help and for her own beauty to be destroyed; this transforms her into a laurel tree in order to escape her suitor’s advances. Forced to give up his first love, the radiant god decides to make the laurel his symbolic tree, which this time she accepts. Hence, we see the crown of laurel leaves given to the victorious in tournaments.

Pose inspired by the sculpture Apollo and Daphne by Gian Lorenzo Bernini (media.web.britannica.com/eb-me…)

Used COPIC markers, watercolors, watercolor pencils, pens, white opaque.