The Hürrem collection

The love story that inspired Elena to dance


Meet Elena, belly dancer

Elena and I met amongst the knights, ladies and peasants of a Medieval Faire. After that, for the longest time, she taught me beautiful belly dance routines via video (well, as long as the internets played nice).

I asked Elena, is there a story you want to tell about your dancing? She told me a tale that inspired her love of dance – a sweeping love story straight out of history, starring a heroine who shares Elena’s Ukrainian heritage, set in the opulence of the Ottoman Empire.

Hürrem Sultan & Suleiman the Magnificent:
One of the greatest love stories you’ve probably never heard of.

Against the lavish backdrop of the Ottoman Empire in the 16th century, a Ruthenian slave girl captures the heart of the sultan. He names her Hürrem, “the cheerful one”, breaks centuries of tradition for her, and writes poems to her eyes.

Hürrem, danced by Elena

The making of

Want to see how Hürrem’s story inspired this collection? Here’s the making of video – see how each image came to life, along with behind the scenes photos, and footage of the lovely Elena dancing (keep watching till the end for the amazing shimmy and back bend!)

If you enjoyed this video, please help me out and like + comment on YouTube!

We had a lot of fun getting the photos for this artwork...

A huge thanks to Elena and her husband, Yevgen, for you enthusiasm, support, and inspiration.

Giving back

Part of the proceeds from the sale of these prints go to Elena so she can continue to spread her love of dance.