Deer Woman by Lynnette Shelley

The Deer Woman is a shape-shifting woman in Native American mythology.

She sometimes appears as an old woman, or a young and beautiful woman, or a deer. In some depictions she has the body of a doe, and the upper body of a woman. In human guise, she can be recognized by her deer’s feet and her brown deer’s eyes.

She is a femme fatale / siren figure (much like the mermaid in folktales) and in most Native American stories, she lures men to their death. Once the man is lured away by Deer Woman, he is stomped to death when she transforms back into a deer. Deer Woman can also be seen a symbol of personal transformation or as a warning.

I took some liberties with this depiction, and gave Deer Woman antlers, as well as white hair, to signify she is a spirit creature.

The original artwork measures 19 × 12.5 inches and was created with oil pastels, colored pencils, gold paint pen and black art marker on “bisque” tcolored Canson paper.

View more of my artwork at

Having a great love animals, fairytales, and world mythology, Pennsylvania artist Lynnette Shelley fuses these influences into her strikingly unique illustrations. Her artwork strikes a primal chord in many viewers, with almost Jungian associations to the colors and shapes. Her artworks have been likened to images from an undiscovered ancient civilization or culture.

View Full Profile


  • Arletta
    Arlettaover 5 years ago

    Very interesting .. the writing and the depiction.

  • Thanks Arletta. It is amazing how every culture has a similar “siren” type of figure – half woman, half animal, all bad news for men lol.

    – Lynnette Shelley

  • Lynsye Medalia
    Lynsye Medaliaover 5 years ago

    Lovely! I love her little smirk!

  • She is totally up to no good lol

    – Lynnette Shelley

  • Alexandra Felgate
    Alexandra Felgateover 5 years ago

    Love it, a great legend, and I really love the colours you have chosen for her.

  • Thanks Alexandra

    – Lynnette Shelley

  • MoonSpiral
    MoonSpiralover 5 years ago

    Love this!! She reminds me of my Sava that I did awhile back. Of course you got to give her antlers!

  • ©Janis Zroback
    ©Janis Zrobackover 5 years ago have been featured in the First Things Group

  • Wow. Thank you!!

    – Lynnette Shelley

  • danita clark
    danita clarkover 5 years ago

    She is stunning Lynnette

  • Michael Scholl
    Michael Schollover 5 years ago

    she has my vote! :) (Mixed Media Painted Lady)

  • Hey thanks! I appreciate it!

    – Lynnette Shelley

  • stephanie allison
    stephanie allisonover 5 years ago

    Congrats! Your image is the inspiration for the Mythelogical Painted Lady Challenge


  • Thanks!

    – Lynnette Shelley

  • eoconnor
    eoconnorover 5 years ago
    great depiction and story ,love your site.
  • Thank you!

    – Lynnette Shelley

  • Impressionism
    Impressionismover 5 years ago

    Congratulations, your beautiful painting is Featured !!

desktop tablet-landscape content-width tablet-portrait workstream-4-across phone-landscape phone-portrait
desktop tablet-landscape content-width tablet-portrait workstream-4-across phone-landscape phone-portrait

10%off for joining

the Redbubble mailing list

Receive exclusive deals and awesome artist news and content right to your inbox. Free for your convenience.