Rebecca: What inspired your current mermaid persona & look ?
Hannah: I have always been inspired by the mermaid mythology. As a tiny child I was drawing images of underwater sirens with flowing hair and snious tails. When I saw the film SPLASH starring Daryl Hannah when I was 9 years old. it seemed like the perfect embodiment of what a mermaid should look like. Natural, innocent, beautiful and other worldly. My first tail (at age 9) was modeled on the tail from that film. Since then I have found a particular style and look that has been created from my own preferences, materials available, and my own aesthetics sensibilities.
Rebecca: Being a mermaid that has been featured in short films, I was curious to know your feeling on how the mermaids were portrayed in "POTC4" and Peter Pan.
Hannah: The mermaids in the big Hollywood blockbusters in the last few years have been continuously portrayed as flesh eating vampiric type characters, which is strange and disconcerting to me. I think that characterization stems from our fear of the UNKNOWN and Hollywood's tendency to sensationalize anything they can. I prefer to think of mermaids as ethereal and otherworldly, not evil or viscious. Most of the enduring legends of mermaids have been about their great beauty and alluring nature. While many stories speak of mermaids luring sailors into the depths of the ocean to drown, I think this is more of an allegory for diving into and surrendering to our emotions, rather than a literal death. I see mermaids as a bridge between the unknown ocean depths of nature and the known human form, combined in one creature to give us a vision
Rebecca: You can hold your breath for 2 min and swim to depths of over 30 feet how did you train to achieve such unique & extreme mermaid talents ?
Hannah: I was always a water baby, despite not having grown up near the ocean. I felt comfortable in water and played endless games diving to the bottom of the pool and having breath hold competitions with my little sister. I already swam like a mermaid with my legs held together before I saw the film SPLASH and created my first tail at age 9. I have practiced yoga and deep breathing my whole life which is invaluable in breath holding, and also dance and movements to create a flexible spine and fitness.