Inspired by: The Nutcracker


Hello! The holiday season is in full swing and I’m dashing by for the next instalment of Inspired by!

Inspired by is a self-imposed monthly challenge Riikka and I started together almost 2,5 years ago. We challenge each other each month to create something with a particular theme or thing in mind. This theme or thing can be anything: a film, an object, a painting, an artist, a city… and for this Inspired by I, off the top of my head, suggested The Nutcracker.

I’m not sure what I had in mind when I suggested it… I didn’t pin it down to the ballet or just Tchaikovsky’s music. I was just looking for something seasonal, but not something that would force me into creating something Christmassy. (Hmmm… funny how that worked out!)

Anyway: Riikka and I didn’t discuss which particular version or production to use. So the first thing I did was trying to remember if I had any specific memories of The Nutcracker. I know I must have seen it on TV at least a couple of times and I might have seen one real life performance once, but I’m not positive. I know I went to see a ballet performance once when I was a kid, but I cannot remember what it was exactly.

I also know (parts of) the music very well. I think I have to blame years of ballet lessons for that, though I’m sure that hearing snippets of it over and over again in the media helps me to never ever forget.

We also had a LP at home, that I’ve dug out for the occasion:

I felt I needed some visual reminders too, so I did a YouTube search for the ballet and I’ve found quite a few versions. I watched this one.

After watching, I had a vision in mind that involved tutu-like circles, silver glitter, silver stars and definitely some ballet pink. I had my heart set on something not related to Christmas, but I guess watching the ballet lured me into the Christmas spirit.

It reminded me of how much I loved ballet as a little girl and how I must have loved to watch The Nutcracker around Christmas time. So here’s what I created:

Conclusion: I had a couple of revelations during this Inspired by and most of them aren’t related to The Nutcracker at all. I won’t exhaust you with them, but I will share one thing:

I had to change the colour of my photo to black and white. I’ve come to believe the colour pink did not exist in the seventies. I don’t remember anything but my ballet shoes being pink and those weren’t even pink-pink, they were more of a nude colour. Everything else was red, yellow, green, orange, blue, brown or even purple… and everything in that original photo just looks horrible combined with pink!

Marsha Valk | Inspired by: The NutcrackerAnd now… we get to see what magical fairytale Riikka has created with The Nutcracker in mind! Oooh, I just know it’s going to be good!!!

Edited: almost forgot to share this Pinterest board with more Nutcracker inspiration!

2 thoughts on “Inspired by: The Nutcracker

  1. I love this Marsha!!! Gorgeous ‘tutus’ and the colour combination is a winner! So much nicer than a 70’s palette ;) The Nutcracker is the ballet I took my girls to see as their first ballet and is the one that I am taking Ruby to in January!! As always you have put your contemporary, graphic spin on it; the black journaling is GORGEOUS!

  2. Oh how I adore that page! And I love the tutu inspired circles <3 They are so precious and darling!

    This time our projects are so different but still it's fun to see that we both chose the ballet version!

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