John William Waterhouse The Soul of the Rose magnet. Oil painting on canvas from 1908. English painter John Waterhouse found inspiration in mythical and literary themes. The Soul of the Rose is inspired by the Alfred Lord Tennyson poem by the same name, and features a young redhead in a blue dress standing in a country garden. She lifts a pink rose to her face, closing her eyes to take in its fragrance. A great gift for fans of J.W. Waterhouse, the Pre-Raphaelites, literary painting, and romantic art.