Lolita Fashion #23: Holy Lantern
Oct 6, 2016, 2:11:56 AM
Holy Lantern by Angelic Pretty is Lolita Fashion #23.
Below is the reference for this design. It's mostly just a copy of Angelic Pretty's dress. They also show tile-able patterns that they use for their dress designs. I used that for the texture on her dress. I mesh transformed the repeating pattern and at the folds and creases I broke it up a bit to make it look like they were overlapping.
The theme for this design was "lantern" and I incorporated other lanterns into the image. At Kamiko's feet are the paper lanterns folks light for Obon, which is a mid-August Japanese festival to worship ancestors.
Since Kamiko has a hand free, I had her holding a lantern, and decided it wasn't enough just to be something you'd find at Target, but a custom lantern that's made from a wolf's skull -- it's a throwback to the first Mortal Coil story, The Rabbit and the Moon.
Also, since Kamiko is a Shinto deity herself, I made the other Lolita elements reflect it. Instead of a lacy bow, her hair piece is a large rope, the Shimenawa, in the shape of a bow. The zig-zag papers coming from her bow and hanging from her wolf lantern are called Shide, which is used in Shinto purification rituals.
It's a fairly popular dress (or so it seems), and if you want a somewhat goofy take on it, you can watch this video by Deerstalker Pictures:
Here's the wolf lantern in much closer detail. It's a skull with a glass jar holding in a flame. It's got the shimenawa wrapped around the base and shide hanging below it. I guess she could use it for purification rituals.
When I was drawing this, I concocted a short story in my head of how she got this thing. Some kind of gift from some tricky little spirits. One day I'd like to get that down on paper.
Close-up of Kamiko's wolf skull heels and the obon lanterns.
I was thinking, it would be interesting if they were actually made from bone, but I don't know what kind of wolf/animal would have a shape like that -- it would seem highly improbable and to force a skull into something like that probably inhumane (but we're talking about spirits here and they can be inhumane and disgusting). Also, it seems somewhat delicate despite bones being strong enough to hold us up. Maybe it's fabricated and stronger/denser than bone.
Maybe done by a bonesmith?
The strap is again a shimenawa. Also, the heel itself was supposed to be a femur (or something) -- like a femur cut in half with the bottom shaved flat.
She's also standing on water since that's where the Obon lanterns would be. I figure why not, she's a goddess after all. Can't they stand on water? :) At least for a Lolita pinup.
You're probably also wondering how I have such giant images to share. All of the Lolita turntable images have been done at 2048 by 2048 px, but recently I began to vectorize the inked versions of them giving me large scale line art such as these above. Great for close ups and also, I thought it could be fun for a coloring book. I'll have more details about that in another post.
I like the odd things I designed for this illustration. The shoes and lantern I really uncommon and fit into the bizarre world of This Mortal Coil.
That's all for this week. Till next week...