Concept Art: Lady of the Moon

Sep 7, 2016, 1:00:11 PM

This week's concept art:

Chang'e, The Lady of the Moon

I've talked about where she comes from before. She's the Lady of the Moon.

In fact, the mid-autumn festival is coming up this month, so this is Chang'e time to shine.

And a good time for you to grab some mooncakes.

Included in this concept art page is also art for Hou Yi, Jade the Rabbit, and early drawings for the demon wolf.

Hou Yi and the Ancient Past

He shows up in the beginning of the story -- the only part of it set in the ancient past circa the Yayoi era in Japan's history. Around the same time in China was the Han period -- and I use these dates very loosely. When I created the story I needed the ancient past to be set sometime ago, and once I had pinpointed what that was in Japan I tried to find the correlated period in Chinese history.

This was all so I could get some points of reference for clothing and architectural style. Shrines built during the Yayoi period don't look like modern Shinto Shrines. In fact the one you see in the story was based more on (if I remember my research right) a warehouse. Yayoi shrines were also built on high up stilts. I didn't want to draw/render it so high, so that's why the wolf's Shrine was squat to the ground -- I'll put some concept art together of the Shrines later on and maybe extend the concept art to include how the 3D process worked.

The other thing I needed to know was clothing. How should the characters dress? For Chang'e it was easier since she's got a lot of paintings depicting her in flowing robes. I adapted her look to appear more like a simple kimono. Hou Yi was a lot harder. I did find some photos of Han era clothing and armor, but my main point of reference was the movie Red Cliff, which is set close to that area.

As for the Demon Wolf, I rarely ever attempted to draw critters of the four legged variety, and giant wolf was pretty much what I went with.

Jade, obviously a bunny rabbit, but for me, Jade was more about his personality which seemed to grow more cantankerous and curmudgeonly every time I wrote him.

Homage to Watership Down

With Jade, I also pay a bit of homage to Richard Adam's Watership Down. Jade uses a few of the Lupine words created in that novel such as "Oswala" which is the rabbit's "police" in their underground warren or "elil" which means "enemy." At one point Jade says "For Frith's sake!!" and "Frith" is the sun god who granted all of the animals different abilities in Watership Down. In Adam's novel, the rabbit hides and only his butt and hind legs are visible to Frith, so the sun god grants the rabbit speed and called him the Prince of A Thousand enemies, or "El-Ahrairah." (In lupine-speak a "hrair" refers to "a thousand" which for bunny rabbits is anything above five.) The rabbit would have to use his cunning and speed to run from every other creature because he had no chance to fight back otherwise.

That's all for this week.

Not much of an update for the Shrine. There's new features, but it hasn't been pushed online yet and probably won't be for another week or two.

If you follow the Instagram, you'll have seen some new art for new characters at The Shrine, which I'll leave you with:

Finished this for my #visualnovel! What should I call these kids? Do dark eyed children even have names? Would you stop long enough to ask?? ? Still requires another piece of art to go with it but then they can show up at #TheShrine! Remember, they may be #cute but don't let them in.

A photo posted by Glenn Song (@albinogrimby) on Sep 1, 2016 at 5:55pm PDT

Have a good week and there'll be more concept art next Wednesday!