Although I personally feel that Breath of the Wild’s iteration of Zelda has some flaws, she’s one of my favorites in the series. It’s a shame that we didn’t get to see more of her elegant yet headstrong personality in the game, as throughout the series, she is too often relegated to the role of the damsel in distress, even after being portrayed as strong-willed and self-reliant (Tetra always seems comes to mind).
In this gorgeous work of art by Atelieriji, the delicate damsel in Zelda is very clearly emphasized, but it’s so beautifully drawn that I can’t help but forgive it.
Yuga’s Art Gallery is a series in which we highlight our favorite artwork from The Legend of Zelda community, as well as some official artwork from the franchise from time to time. Zelda is a series that is constantly changing its style, and after over 30 years of evolving and shifting its visuals, it continues to inspire endless ways for artists to interpret their favorite characters and moments.
What I really love about this piece is its realistic style, which truly brings Zelda to life. She’s the spitting image of a young medieval princess that you might find on an old painting or illustration for a book. I’m glad Atelieriji chose to draw her in this dress, as it’s my absolute favorite in any Zelda game – it’s breathtaking. The realistic style also really draws attention to her delicate features, which reveal a look of concern and fragility that remind us of just how vulnerable she is, despite her own determination. She’s still young and in need of support from a hero, as well as the power of the Goddesses, as portrayed by the blue Champion’s fabric and a piece of the Triforce flying above her.
I also can’t help but notice that Atelieriji included the iconic Silent Princess flower in Zelda’s hand, once again alluding to her fragility. But it also reminds us, as Zelda herself says in the game, “The princess can only survive out here in the wild. All we can hope… is the species will be strong enough to prosper, on its own.” I think that, despite the damsel motif, this piece of art draws from the Silent Princess metaphor. It reminds us how, despite her moments of weakness, and the fact that she may need the support of her Champions and the Goddesses right now, Zelda will find her own strength one day.