This is an odd piece. It is at once old and new. It is a total redraw of an older piece done back in 2007 but contains much that is new. It came about because I missed posting on Monday because I wanted to show something that wasn't done yet. So, why not start a whole new piece. Sure.
And then it began to take on a new life and connection to the other new piece, which is a map of the Nightswane region. That map is already drawn and scanned but I'm not sure how I am going to render it. It might have a nice old antique version and then a color version. Of course, so might this one. A color version of WispTale Manor might be nice.
Anyways, here's a bit of backstory that goes along with the House. Enjoy.
In the rugged land north of the old ruined city of Heve lies a rolling valley on the very fingertip of enchantment. The Volnarnd, or Vale of Smoke, rests in the mountains on the edge of Gorse. Not yet a part of the Shadow Vale, it does bare traces of that twilight energy.
Down at the mouth of the vale sits the lively town of Ninigrag, on the serpentine, wandering river Hvuln. Known for full bodied brews and spicy concoctions, Ninigrag is a mellow town, even for all its lively and boisterous activity.
If you take the forest road north out of town, you will eventually pass the one-time estate of Thurlis Marn who was, of old, a lord of Gorse but who died of grave injuries incurred on a hunt long ago. The object of that hunt was never spied or caught, save for Lord Marn himself, though it is believed to be the source of Marn's fatal injuries.
Thurlis, having no wife and as such no legitimate progeny, had no heir apparent to take over the grand estate and so it fell to delinquency and disrepair for a time.
Then one crisp cool day that all changed.
The home was claimed and repairs begun. None had seen the Manor's new Lord nor was aught known but scanty whispers, half-heard and ill-informed, if not, indeed, ill-conceived. The new Lord was not one for public scrutiny and lived a splendid and reclusive life within the arms of the Manor's reach.
The name, as well, changed, though it was not spoken to the public at large and was long a mystery known only to the grass and wind. Yet, on a legal scroll in the basement archives of the Town Hall under lock and key held by the Shreve of Ninigrag is scrawled the lawful name of WispTale Manor, the Autumn Wyrm's House of Smoke and rightful home of Szilhnar of Nightswane.
Look out for the map of Nightswane, coming soon. Possibly next week.
And chance you will map this house or estate later? It's one of those that has such lovely feeling that I want to explore it and stay awhile. Maybe read a good book by one of the fireplaces.
*Adds to Watchlist*
Yeah, this is a big house and would have a lot of rooms for such a mystery.
And then there are some peripheral buildings on the property that might be accessible by cellars or secret passage ways.
Other people have already said it, but the smoke is fantastic!
I may do a color version, which will be fun.
I am glad the people are enjoying the smoke.
I wasn't sure about the smoke at first.
That's quite an impressive history, plus a neat bit of intrigue woven into the tale. The repairs came along beautifully, though I'm sure most of the architectural charm is from the original mansion. It's a shame there aren't more visitors, even workers, to appreciate the full-on beauty of the place. Fantastic… well, downright amazing pencil work getting in so much gorgeous bits of detail while making sure the building stands out as a whole too.
While the landscape out front is a bit sparse it seems that it has some nice forests for privacy in back. Also, it's pretty magical how the smoke from all of the chimneys is being caught in a horizontal breeze to square out the scene. I can't quite figure out the "vine" on the left that comes up from the roof to meet the smoke's left elbow, but no matter. Beautiful work on the title banner too. Thanks for sharing.
Yeah, I really do need to get some life into my work.
Even a few birds would help.
Though, Szilhnar is pretty solitary, so not a surprise.
Do you have any suggestions for what you might have added to the landscape in front?
The bit of vine/leaf stuff was just a nod to autumn leaves drifting on the breeze, but obviously didn't convey well.
I wonder what the smell of the place would be. Is all the smoke coming from the dragon, I wonder, or are there indeed seven different fires in seven different hearths, with each chimney giving off a distinct aroma? Even if the smoke is from the dragon, it would probably have a drastically different character if the dragon was good (old, spicy, pleasant) or bad (foul, choking, hints of brimstone).
Anyway, excuse the ramblings XD Nice work!
I would answer that, but then the mystery of it is gone.
Ok, since you asked... Probably seven or more different hearth fires.
But, it likely smokes all the time, even without the hearth fires.
Szilhnar is a smoky character.
I'm sort of leaning toward the Old Spice variety nice and earthy and woodsy and pleasant with a touch of spice.
The Autumn Wyrm is not malicious. Just has a low tolerance for being hunted by townsfolk, wealthy ones no less.
I was initially a bit worried as the smoke looked really overwhelming.
Then i erased a bit and did some of the curly q's and swirls and realized I liked it.
I did a bit more to it after that and was really happy with it.