Note: The Wander Series, visuals and original ideas contained here are my own intellectual property and sharing or using them elsewhere is not permitted.
One of my lofty goals this year was to start writing my fantasy story (novel?), which I refer to as The Wanderer series. That is just a working title, a placeholder for what will surely become a brilliant and intriguing title later on.
So today I thought I would share the general idea of the story, and the background to how it came about.
For as long as I can remember, I’ve been enthralled with fantasy writing - and especially the visuals that go along with it. As a child, my father read me the Lord of the Rings. When I was 10, I was gifted the illustrated book Dinotopia: A Land Apart From Time, by James Gurney.
I also had a giant poster hanging in my room, Ecstasy by Maxfield Parrish.
Works like these, a combination of realism and fantasy, drove my love for art. The seed of fascination with fantasy was planted deeply within me. I was drawing from a young age, and I dreamed of someday being able to create imaginative realism and evoking a sense of wonder in the viewer.
It wasn’t until very recently - when I joined Twitch and began streaming my artwork (January 2015), and more importantly painting DAILY, that I took real steps towards this goal.
Last fall, I began a series of fantasy landscape paintings, based on an idea I had for a story. The story follows a “wanderer” - in fact he is a galactic cartographer - through many fantastical worlds. Each painting was a different setting from a different universe.
The goal was to practice my ability to paint imaginative realism, as well as begin to understand the story.
Book one introduces and follows the protagonist through epic adventures in countless galaxies. His burden is to map out the mysterious worlds, continuing the work of the previous Wanderer*, cataloging them and taking notes of the cultures within each. The magic he possesses enables him to build a living index within his body of anywhere he has explored. He may access and teleport to any coordinate within the index. A mysterious phenomenon wherein some of the older indexes are vanishing leads him on a quest to uncover the truth, along the way avoiding capture by the [insert evil name] clan who wish to use his abilities to access and destroy the seven sacred places.
The story comes to me visually before words do. One of the goals of this blog is to help me feel more comfortable writing and expressing myself, in the hopes that it makes writing my story possible.
For now, I have little to show of this project, considering it’s been brewing inside me for over 10 years. But we all have to start somewhere right?
Below is a short glimpse at what I've written so far. It will be a long process, but I'm enjoying it!
As far as he knew, he was currently at the highest point of this world, and it needed to be archived. Standing on the precipice, staring out over the vast Cloud World, he lifted his staff in front of himself and started the chant.
The words began as they usually do, a deep guttural sound, spilling forth into purrs and hisses. Every seven syllables, his staff drove sharply down onto the surface of the bluff at his feet, sending an invisible energy pulse into the air around him.
Deep within, his spirit engaged the spell, and he turned his gaze skyward. From afar the Eagles could see the setting sun refracting off his glassy pupils.
His third eye gazed upon the galaxies, noting the precise coordinates of his location. The pulsing energy around him was suddenly drawn inward as he muttered the final charm needed to complete the spell.
The smell of burning skin wafted around him as the coordinates were eternalized upon his skin, burned into their rightful place among the others he had already collected that day.
Here are some preliminary sketches of the main character, aka The Wanderer, aka Awesome Name That I'll Eventually Come Up With