I've removed all my character reference pictures due to them breaking copyright law, as stated in the FAQ of this site, specifically:
It may not be scanned, copied, modified, published, displayed or otherwise distributed in any manner without the prior written consent of Warp Graphics, Inc.
Nobody's told me to, but I want to be on the safe side and not be branded a law-breaker.
At some point I may ask Richard if it's ok to use the mannequins provided in the roleplaying game, and if it is, re-draw them all, but right now I have neither the time nor the energy to go through all that work.
You are, of course welcome to doll my characters based on the dollz previously posted by myself and others, or from whatever recollections you may have of my reference pictures.
I'm sorry to have to do this, but I don't want to end up in trouble.
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Hello, and welcome to Shadesong's character reference thread!
This is where I'll be posting reference pictures, character descriptions and tribe information for the characters I'm dolling. The reference art, unless otherwise noted, was made by tracing Wendy's art and changing it, I don't claim to have created it from scratch, and am only posting it for reference and only in this group. The characters are posted in the chronological order in which I first dolled them, and each character has her/his own post. The order so far is:
- Firethorn with twin kitlings
- As yet unnamed Sea Elf
- [ Saved for future growth. ]
The dollz I've made of these characters are collected in this thread:
Shadesong has been my "self-elf" since 1998 ( I've been a fan of Elfquest since the early nineties ). She was created to be my character in a Holt a friend and I started, but this Holt never really took off.
In short, her tribe ( co-created by myself and my friend ) is called Dreamwalkers and is a pure-blooded, reindeer-riding kind of "shamanistic" ( Native American / Saami inspired ) tribe living a semi-nomadic life in the northern part of the continent later known as Junsland.
The crystal hanging around her neck after a certain point in her life is a piece of the Palace, broken off when it crashed, and marks her as a member of the Council of Elders. She has the power of "going out", likes dancing and playing her bone flute, and is in training to become the tribe's next Keeper ( like Howlkeeper for the Wolfriders or Mother of Memory for the Sun Folk ). She's usually quiet and serious, not the most social person except in her capacity as storyteller, but she can be very silly and playful too.
Huntress and gatherer, in the hunt relying more on speed and accuracy than strength, her main weapon is a sling ( the kind Ember used in "Right of Passage", just a piece of leather and no wooden part ) for small prey when hunting alone, but she also carries a dagger ( metal, they trade with Trolls ) and uses a spear in tribal hunts to harry the prey, though she's rarely the one making the killing blow.
Having my colours, clothing colour preferences, and much of my personality, she's who I might have been if I were born as an elf on the World of Two Moons. She has very lightly tanned skin ( they're a day-active tribe living far north ), long, straight and dark brown hair, blue-grey eyes, and for reference the body of Dewshine and... I guess her face is like a mix between Dewshine and Nightfall ( more angular than Dewshine's, narrower than Nightfall's ).
1. ) Shadesong as a fawn. Her fawn name was No-Moon, since she was born on a night with no moons ( the opposite of full moons ). I don't think her... skirt-thing... was this tattered, really. The little triangles and circles on the hem of her poncho are the same lighter blue as the main part. Hair to mid-back.
2. ) Shadesong in her early teens with lovemate Hawkwing. Her top ends below her breasts with a ragged edge, and the waist of her pants is just "a straight line", no belt or anything. Hair to mid-back.
3. ) This is my first design of Shadesong's leathers. At this point she's several centuries old and has received her crystal. Her belt, which can't be seen properly, kind of "dips down" in the front like the bottom of Skyfire's headband.
4. ) A closeup of her face, for colour reference and the little dot in the triangle on her headband only. The shape of her face and her eyelids are... weird. It's the same headband as above, I just didn't come up with the triangle until later, but it's supposed to be there from the start.
5. ) Shadesong's white-cold leathers. This is actually the only picture I have of this costume, but I remember the jacket was supposed to close in the side, kind of like Vaya's.
6. ) New leathers, reference for the front of the belt, though the colours are supposed to be more like in the second picture.
7. ) New leathers, better reference for the colours and the feather hair ornament, which, again, was thought up later but supposed to be a part of that outfit from the start. ( The little pearls are green, if you can't see that. )
8. ) This may be her most recent leathers, or just an AU experiment. This outfit looks a bit "over the top" to me, but I still sort of like it. There's a braid in her hair kind of like the one Teir had when we first met him, if it doesn't come across in the pic/scan. The colours are supposed to be the same blue and grey as in the previous picture, but I'd bought new pencils and couldn't match the colours.
If Shadesong is my "self-elf", then maybe Firethorn can be described as... my "anti-self-elf"? Not "anti" as in evil, but as in the opposite of me: she's a leader, a warrior, and the mother of twins. ( Twins are common in her tribe due to their cat blood. ) She's the Chieftess of a tribe called ( Tuft- ) Catriders or ( Tuft- ) Cat-Elves.
They're the descendants of a crazy High One who was like a mix between Timmain and Two-Spear, and several Tuftcats, a large feline species looking very much like Earth caracals. The tribe lives on the plains to the east and south of the Wolfriders' Goodtree's Rest Holt. This takes place a couple of centuries or a couple of millennia after the Palace crashed, and like during Rahnee's time, the tribe is torn between pure blood and animal blood, and also between the solitary nature of the Tuftcats and the community-building nature of the High Ones, struggling to find their identity both as a tribe and as individuals freed from the rule of a mad High One.
As you'll probably be able to tell from the pictures, Firethorn was inspired by Rahnee and Ember. Her hair is a slightly darker shade than Ember's, semi-curly and wild, down to a bit below her shoulders, with a braid described more in detail later, her eyes are amber with black around them and black lines running from the corner of the eye down the sides of her nose ( tribal characteristic ) like cheetahs ( the Tuftcats don't look identical to caracals, only very similar ), black lips ( tribal characteristic ) and fangs ( same ).
Her ears look like a cross between those of an elf and those of a caracal ( also tribal characteristic ): the backs of the ears are black and often slightly furry, with a large white spot, and the tips of the ears end in black tufts. I haven't quite decided yet if their eyes have whites, or if they're all dark like in the last picture.
Their skin is dark due to living on a savannah, but I don't think quite as dark as that of the Sun Folk. The pictures don't reflect some of these later changes. I still haven't finalized their look as a tribe completely. This tribe has no access to metals, so Firethorn uses a flint-tipped spear and a flint dagger. I'm not quite sure of the shape of her body and face yet, but I'm picturing her as a slightly less voluptuous Leetah in body, and a face with softer edges than Shadesong's, though not as heart-shaped as Leetah's.
This specific cat elf tribe is my creation, but of course I know the general idea of a cat-blooded tribe isn't original.
1. ) This is the first picture I made of Firethorn ( I called her Firecat at first ). Several things in her design changed, but I included this for a reference to her braid and her eye colour. I don't think her fangs stick out of her mouth like that, I just wanted to show that these elves have fangs like the Wolfriders do.
The braid: The pearls ( sky-blue and amber, more blue pearls than amber ones ) comes from Thylai, the crazy High One who was their ancestor. Each Chief/-tess wears the pearls in the way s/he chooses. In Firethorn's case, she's put them on a leather string that she's added to one of the three parts of a braid and then braided it all together. Kind of a weird description, but I hope that in addition to the picture, you understand what I mean. She does not have earrings, this was part of my first design of the character.
2. ) Full costume and ear references. Her skin is supposed to be darker, the yellowish parts of her leathers less yellow, more fawn, and the reddish-brown parts less red. Again, I couldn't find pencils to match the colours in my head. No earrings.
3. ) Just a random, and somewhat messy, sketch. I only have these three pictures of Firethorn, so I thought I'd include them all. The eyes are somewhat different in this picture, and I haven't quite decided which version I like best.
Firstborn of Firethorns twins, the boy Flamekit has inherited his mother's colours: red hair and amber eyes. He's boisterous and rough, but extremely protective of his sister.
Secondborn of Firethorns twins, the girl Frostkit has inherited her father's colours: silver hair and violet eyes. She's shy, skittish and almost fragile-seeming. When Firethorn was carrying the twins, she sensed that the girl was going to be a magic-user, but it's still unknown what kind of magic.
During my years as an Elfquest fan, I've come up with lots of elves somehow related to the canon elves, especially my favourite, Rayek. My first "self-elf" was a Wolfrider who Recognized Rayek and had this super-magical daughter..! Lately I've been more into creating my own elves and tribes totally unrelated to the canon elves. But the "related-to-canon-elves" characters still pop up now and then.
Yurin was born from the question "What if Rayek had a little sister who inherited their mother's colours?". As you can see, she has her brother's levitation power, though she hides it because she doesn't think Rayek would deal very well with the competition. She's maybe 200 years younger than him. I haven't really come up with anything else about her aside from this.
While not as close to me as Shadesong and Firethorn, I'm including Yurin here because I've found myself recreating her in various dollmakers. There's just something so exotic and otherworldly about a dark-skinned, silver-haired character with purple eyes...
As yet unnamed Sea Elf
She doesn't have a name yet, but she's a Wavedancer / Sea Elf with limited and very slow self-shaping. She can change her hair and skin colours, ears, fins, etc over the course of days or even weeks. Technically she could shape herself a mermaid tail, but that would mean spending months or even a year in bed, her tribe seeing to her every need, so she won't.
Her hair is usually long, light blue or shifting into green or grey, her eyes blue-green, her skin albino-like ( yes, she's sensitive to sunlight and spends most of her time either in the deep waters or on land in a cave ) with a blue or grey tinge and stripes, speckles or wave-like markings.
She has the height of a High One, webbed fingers and toes, fins on her lower arms and lower legs, ears with three "tips" on them ( like Brill but without the long earlobes ) and is amphibian ( can breathe both air and water, though she can't spend more than a hand of days out of the water and stay healthy ).
When she wears clothes ( she's often swimming naked ), she likes to wear very little, usually something resembling a bikini or swimsuit, in sea-green with accents of pale blue and white. She often wears blue or white pearls.
She's an explorer of far and deep places, a gatherer of pearls, shells, food, and sometimes returns home with things nobody has seen before.
Her name probably contains the word "seal" and might be "Sealskin". I'm still in the process of deciding.
Personality? I have no idea yet...
Kidnapped from his tribe as a toddler, and raised by the trolls until his "rescue" in his twenties, Tinker isn't exactly like other elves. Being smaller and with far less physical strength than the trolls, he had to rely on wit and quick learning to gain some sort of status in troll society. With the trolls his only role-models for social interaction, he's grumpy, arrogant, defensive and tends to complain a lot.
Already as a very young boy, he used to examine the trolls' mechanical devices, picking them apart and putting them back together, soon even improving their design. This earned him the name "Tinker". He's an expert metal worker and inventor ( think Two-Edge/Flam! ).
Raised underground, he believes, like the trolls, that sunlight is harmful. He may or may not be allergic to citrus. His soul name is Mer, and he was inspired by the question "What if Rodney McKay of Stargate: Atlantis were an Elfquest elf?".
In this picture he's just been "rescued" by his tribe, gotten a sunburn, and mutters angrily: "Whatever gave you the mistaken impression that I needed rescuing..?!".
As usual, the colours are wrong due to the quality of the pencils and the scan, they're supposed to be a lot darker, along the lines of this ( and yes, the actor's hair gets curly when it grows out! ):
David Hewlett as Dr Rodney McKay of Stargate: Atlantis.
[ Saved for future growth. ]
Now you're welcome to post!
The pose is from The Elfquest Gatherum vol. 2 / The Big Elfquest Gatherum. I'm in love with this pose and have used it far too much..! :p
No wonder I couldn't recognize the pose. I've never read The Elfquest Gatherum vol. 2/The Big Elfquest Gatherum.
Any way I could see the original?
I don't know what's the policy on scanning and posting EQ material that WARP themselves haven't put on this site... but there's a "requested pictures" thread on the main Scroll, isn't there? I think it's best if you ask the people there what the rules are, and if it's ok to do it, I could scan it and put it up in that thread ( unless somebody beats me to it ).
They look great ... awesome designs! (yes, I know it's based on Wendy's drawings)
I love Shadesong's design ... and I admire the effort you put in the developement of different looks and clothing for different ages and seasons.
Like the cub picture ... not her usual look for sure - but easily to imagine that she came home once or a while in such a torn skirt. Maybe the reason why she changed to trousers.
The teenage one is not very developed and more on the practical side ... but she has her feather already. Her friend is a cutie.
Rather cosy winter leathers - the pose proves it
Great developement in her mature outfit. The second one is beautiful - created with much love for detail and imagination. My fav for "practical" reasons.
The last one I love - all the adornments make it look amazing. It reminds me of Moonshade saying "... making clothes which only have to be beautiful ..." or something like this. The new hair-do is in perfect harmony with this style. and ... the more intensive turquoise suits her
I've already mentioned that I love Firethorn's caracal ears. Her look may remind of Ember as far as the colors match. She doesn't look like the Wolfchieftess for me at all - different ears, eyes and "cat-face" and obviously different attitude. Much more adult and catlike alluring. I like the many feathers ... tho they remind me of a "joke" once made on the Scroll
In case you want to take a look - scroll down for The MEOW Files
Dreamy mood in the last sketch!
Though her outfit is rather minimalistic Yurin's design with jewelry shows your love for details once more.
Tinker is pure fun! Carefully thought out ... and your explanation about the situation you portaited him made me snicker. Just think it would have been fun to have this character in original EQ!
Thank you for the long commentary on my pics!
I totally agree that the teen leathers for Shadesong are less developed, but that was based on the early design of Wolfrider cubs'/teens' leathers, that they were far less detailed than the adults', and details added later to what would seem to be the basic design of the cub's/teen's leathers. For example Dewshine, when they killed Madcoil, had a simple fawn-coloured tunic without the feathers, and Cutter's trademark peacock feather on his loincloth isn't there yet. Also, compare with Newstar's and Dart's leathers at the beginning of the Quest: plain, one-colour, unadorned tunics. This changed, of course, with Ember and Suntop, being born in the peaceful Sun Village where there's no need to blend in and hide ( and with Wendy's art growing in complexity ).
But then, with her cub leathers, I wasn't consistent and made them more complex, actually based on her grandfather's leathers. This tribe never met humans, and trade with trolls, they've never been at war or had to hide from enemies, so they've always had the leisure to, as Moonshade said, "make clothes that are more than just useful". I think the plans for our tribe weren't fully fleshed out when I made these pictures... or maybe I wasn't thinking it through properly!
I don't have any talent for drawing, and while I know that with a lot of effort, everybody can improve their drawing somewhat, I guess I haven't been patient or motivated enough to put in that work. My imagination for aesthetic things is a lot better than my ability to render it visually. I guess I just never found it worth all the effort to really work at my drawing skills, when it's the actual imagining/idea that gives me joy.
So you found Tinker, eh? I haven't been dolling him yet, but he just showed up in my head and insisted on being "born" when I found out that two people in the thread I frequent on the Stargate forum also were fans of Elfquest. Stargate is actually my main fandom right now, but Elfquest has been with me for some 18 years now ( pretty much half my life ) and no matter what fandom I'm currently the most passionate about, every year I draw some EQ pictures, re-read some of the comics/books, lurk the Scroll, keep an eye on the news on the movie, "The Final Quest". I think EQ will always be a part of my "fan/creative life" though not always the main fandom, like it was during the nineties.
Also, thank you for the information on posting pictures! I figured it would be ok, but I wanted to know I got the details of credit right. Maybe part of why I'm still in EQ fandom after so many years, with so little published this last decade, is how Wendy and Richard deal with their fans. They've always been so generous and hospitable, truly willing to interact with and respect their fans as long as the same respect is returned. This, I think, is probably a very rare thing in the entertainment industry, and something I feel should be treasured and appreciated. I'm not very knowledgeable about copyright laws and concerns, but I fully understand their importance, so I felt the need to make sure I wasn't unintentionally doing anything against the wishes of Elfmom and Elfpop.
Finally found something about using EQ art on other sites ... it's closest to what I remember from the old Scroll so far:
Oh, lovely! Thank you! That's a good idea actually, I didn't think of that! Most doll bases are so small that it's hard to show all details properly, but this one is great! I'm not very good with drawing on the computer, but I guess with enough patience and liberal use of layers and eraser, I can make it work.
The idea you also mentioned about using the "character design sheets" from
the role playing game has also been done and you can find doll bases made
with these here if you scroll down a bit. I also have them available as just black outlines if
you wish to get them just PM me.
Good luck with your dolling and remember to have fun!
It's a pity that your reference pics are gone but I fully understand that you want to play fair and save. You should ask for permission about the traced dress-up templates! I would think that you have a good chance when you show them only on this site (you can even host here). I got permission for my collages as well ... and they include scanning and modification for sure!
If not - you (and we) can doll your characters nevertheless. There's more than one OC here that was developed by dolling only. And you are d... good in making use of doll makers.
The "character design sheets" and the base Nightsea adepted (edit is fab!) are other good possibilities.
Yes, there are a couple of different possibilities. I'll be exploring them when I'm sure my back/neck can handle the computer time, and I'll try to limit the time to... well, less than the hours every day I've been spending during my vacation. I have a tendency to get too caught up for my own good in creative things I'm passionate about. It'll take some work and some time, but my girls and boy will be up in this thread in some form again!
My variation of Shadesong as a High One
... what do you think?
Hope you'll return some day and find them: Firethorn, Yurin and "Doe", the Sea-Elf
They look beautifull!!
WOW! Your High Ones dolls are incredible awesome, Embala! I especially love Firethorn.
WOW ... incredible that I've impressed you so much, Vojira! Thank you!
Embala - Oh, they're so beautiful! You got all the characters and their outfits, personalities and preferences so spot-on! Love how you added the flute to Shadesong and the cat to Firethorn! You even got it right that Shadesong and Yurin would most likely adopt the High One clothing style, while warrior Firethorn, and the sea elf who wants as little clothing as possible ( so that she can slip out of it and into the water easily ) most likely wouldn't.
Shadesong! *glomps* Great that you are looking in again.
I'm so happy you like your High One girls! They were fun to do - especially because they were for you. All I had to do was listening to them ... Firethorn grabbed the leather armor without hesitation and the kitten sneaked its way in.
And no matter what dress I offered to "Doe" (does she have a name meanwhile?) she rejected it ... the loincloth was her only concession.
Have a Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year!
Updated with brief descriptions of Firethorn's kits in her post.
Already like the kitlings! Very different characters ... I'm curious to learn about Firethorne's Recognition (?).
Judging from Frostkit's look it must be Yurin's forgotten twin *grin*
I made supers of some of your characters, hope you like them.
Firethorn, Yurin, and Frostkit.
I hope you will look in again some day and find this ... *is missing you*
... Flamekit and Frostkit might follow
There's also a Shadesong doll...