[2020-02] Some novel character portraits

EmuMusicFan

2nd Lieutenant
Sosa

Sosa.jpg


I'm much happier with the coloring of this one. Certain facial feature of the character is combined with Holly Gagnier's later style, which is a little simpler and tougher.
 

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EmuMusicFan

2nd Lieutenant
Pliers is perfect!

Thanks for your encouragement!

I have uploaded Sosa's portrait. Actually I am planning to try to supplement the "High-tech Pay-back" part of WC4 with a fan fiction scenario where Melek's Kilrathi mechanic came to teach Pliers the advanced cloak technology. I'm thinking Sosa and Catscratch could appear in this part, which would correspond to the conversation they had with Blair later on at dinner.
 
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wiese.hano

2nd Lieutenant
I recognized her instantly without reading her name in the painting. You should use Catscratch's and Sosa's romantic relationship somehow in that story. :D
 

EmuMusicFan

2nd Lieutenant
I recognized her instantly without reading her name in the painting. You should use Catscratch's and Sosa's romantic relationship somehow in that story. :D

Certainly. That's expected.

I could imagine that Sosa needed to go help Pliers and the Kilrathi mechanic with some data format conversion or something, and Catscratch feared for her safety (though it was simply not necessary), insisted on accompanying her. Then the Kilrathi Mechanic, recognizing his intention, asked a question:


The Kilrathi Mechanic: "Are you two __________ ?"

Catscratch: "What?"

Sosa: "What? NO! We are... just friends... well, at the moment..."

The Kilrathi Mechanic: "Uh-huh."


Please fill in the blank with an appropriate phrase. 😆
 
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EmuMusicFan

2nd Lieutenant
Catscratch

Catscratch_talking.jpg


Catscratch_sketch.jpg


"I have been thingking about what you said, sir."

This part of the story is really funny. 😆

EDIT: 08-12 @Wedge009, I have just corrected the hair color. Is it better?
EDIT: @wiese.hano, I have deepen his contours of the cheeks. Is it better?
 

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capi3101

Admiral
(I'll do the Kilrathi version later...)

"Ni'dyaha'kdalpa erg ja'lhu ri'lek, laq. Ni'le durai dule'i'ni'wuni: NIS JUK!"


(Real word twisting here. Assuming "allez cuisine" means roughly "go cook", it presents the problem of there being no Kilrathi word meaning"to cook", which itself goes back to Freedom Flight and the idea that "Cats eat their food raw but spiced". Nis juk, a contraction of nis ji'uk = "go burn food", was the closest I could get. Might have to add juk = "to cook" to the official lexicon now, dammit..)
 

EmuMusicFan

2nd Lieutenant
Real word twisting here. Assuming "allez cuisine" means roughly "go cook", it presents the problem of there being no Kilrathi word meaning"to cook", which itself goes back to Freedom Flight and the idea that "Cats eat their food raw but spiced".
I remember a shot of Thrakhath eating roast pork (or something similar) in the Academy animation. Is this a difference in story design? Or we could regard that cooked meat is the norm in the Terrans' diet, and raw meat is the exception appears in certain foods, while the opposite is true for the Kilrathi?
 
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capi3101

Admiral
I remember a shot of Thrakhath eating roast pork (or something similar) in the Academy animation. Is this a difference in story design? Or we could regard that cooked meat is the norm in the Terrans' diet, and raw meat is the exception appears in certain foods, while the opposite is true for the Kilrathi?

It's most likely a difference in story design; even in Wing Commander 3 they mention how Angel was served up as a roast, IIRC. That said, it could easily be that raw meat is the standard in Kilrathi cuisine, with cooked meat reserved either for special occasions or for the very wealthy/important (e.g. Thrakhath) - cooking meat might also be seen as aberrant behavior if done by members of the lower social strata. That last bit is admittedly a bit of a stretch.
 

EmuMusicFan

2nd Lieutenant
cooking meat might also be seen as aberrant behavior if done by members of the lower social strata.
Maybe we could think of it this way: For the Kilrathi people who are really in the bottom of their social ladder, eating simple cooked meat is a low-cost way to ensure as much health as possible because of the poor quality of the food available to them.
 

capi3101

Admiral
Maybe we could think of it this way: For the Kilrathi people who are really in the bottom of their social ladder, eating simple cooked meat is a low-cost way to ensure as much health as possible because of the poor quality of the food available to them.

I can roll with that. Might still be a case of social stigma involved - it might be assumed that those who cook meat can't hunt. There'd probably have to be a level of distinction between cooked meat for lower classes and cooked meat for celebratory feasts, say something like juk = "to cook / burned food / to burn food" versus jukrakh = "roast" (lit. "honor burned food").

And thus, once again I get a good discussion and a couple of new out of what was originally intended as humor....
 

EmuMusicFan

2nd Lieutenant
And thus, once again I get a good discussion and a couple of new out of what was originally intended as humor....
I am glad to hear that. 😆

I've actually been making up background story for one of my semi-original characters, and the discussion helps:

In one year of Terran calender early 2660s, on a noble-owned livestock-breeding, hunting-ground colony planet, there lived poor Kilrathi people. As the war continued, they could only eat some simply cooked low quality meat left over from the livestock hunting industry. A cub, with his foster mother and sister, depended on each other for survival. One day, he got information that the hunting ground was holding an event similar to a rodeo. He knew it was picking up potential recruits from the bottom class poors, but all he cared about was the prize for the top 10 this time: owning the live-stock. He was doing well, making the top ten. While some of the other winners couldn't even resist enjoying their tasty prey on the spot (finally, fresh raw meat and blood), the cub just took the prize home and tamed it, regularly drew some blood as nutritional supplement for his foster mother and sister. A few months later, several noble family servants knocked on his door...
 
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capi3101

Admiral
In one year of Terran calender early 2660s, on a noble-owned livestock-breeding, hunting-ground colony planet, there lived poor Kilrathi people. As the war continued, they could only eat some simply cooked low quality meat left over from the livestock hunting industry. A cub, with his foster mother and sister, depended on each other for survival. One day, he got information that the hunting ground was holding an event similar to a rodeo. He knew it was picking up potential recruits from the bottom class poors, but all he cared about was the prize for the top 10 this time: owning the live-stock. He was doing well, making the top ten. While some of the other winners couldn't even resist enjoying their tasty prey on the spot (finally, fresh raw meat and blood), the cub just took the prize home and tamed it, regularly drew some blood as nutritional supplement for his foster mother and sister. A few months later, several noble family servants knocked on his door...

Since I began work on Elegy a few years back, I've considered Kilrathi society to be a lot like that of feudal Japan, with the particulars of the Cult of Sivar standing in for Shintoism and Buddhism with a few adjustments needed due to the obvious differences in philosophies. This would put the Imperial Family at the top with their relatives just below them, the Clan Barons and their families just below them, and other courtiers below them. Planetary governors would come next with their bannermen just below them, with the military structure just below that and members of the clergy (the Cult of Sivar) at roughly this same level. Individual community leaders would fall below them and would be at the bottom of what could be considered thrak'hra. A flip occurs when you get to the kilra'hra levels, in that those who deal with death would not be considered unclean in Kilrathi society as they would under Shinto - rather the opposite - while those who grow plants, while providing a usable service, are inherently dishonored. So, at the top of the kilra'hra level are the ranchers (in place of farmers) and tanners, followed by scholars and artisans, followed by entertainers with merchants and traders bringing up the rear (though still wielding significant power - money is money, after all, and still important in any society). Below that are the "unclean" citizens, the utak, who are either criminals (duxal'hra), pariahs (sa'guk), beggars (rathk'rakhali) or scavengers (ukhusuli), or who have dishonorable professions - such as gardeners and farmers (wirali = lit. "things that plant", whose products such as birha groves and ak'rah leaves are still necessary and appreciated by upper society - ak'rah bushes are used as livestock feed). Lowest of all are the privy workers, utak (which I've translated to mean "filth water"), who give the unclean caste its name - these are the guys who clean out the sandboxes and sell the solid chunks to the farmers. The crap doesn't go as far up as it would've in Japan...

All this is my opinion, of course, but it served as a good starting point when I was developing the main characters for Elegy.

I might suggest your "rodeo" be a livestock mustering - what we'd call a "roundup" in my part of the world, where the herds are gathered from the fields in preparation for any number of things. Perhaps the rancher in question is shorthanded on account of all his ranch hands being called off to war and is looking for replacements. Your foster child could be someone who has to hide his caste identity to compete.

As far as Kilrah-native creatures I know of that have a degree of canonicity, there's the boryangee (an unclean animal similar to a racoon), the rugalga (a creature so docile that the hunting of which is considered an exercise merely to fill the stomach - and therefore the most likely creature to be successfully husbanded IMHO) and traggil (an antelope-like creature known for being easily trapped). Some sources say these animals are extinct on Kilrah by the time of the Terran-Kilrathi War. Me, I'm of the opinion that it'd be difficult to support a society of obligate carnivores if there's no freakin' meat anywhere......

Just a few thoughts; hopefully they're helpful ones.
 

EmuMusicFan

2nd Lieutenant
Just a few thoughts; hopefully they're helpful ones.
Thanks a lot!

As you said, kilra'hra levels reflect the 士農工商 (hierarchy of samurai, farmers, artisans, and merchants) system of feudal Japan.

... merchants and traders bringing up the rear (though still wielding significant power - money is money, after all, and still important in any society).

I agree with that consideration. I think this can be used to support the family background of Haga Kaligara as we discuessed earlier: coming from a merchant family, he had the opportunity to become a pilot, although he was still despised among the Empire pilots.

I might suggest your "rodeo" be a livestock mustering

Thanks! Got it.

Perhaps the rancher in question is shorthanded on account of all his ranch hands being called off to war and is looking for replacements. Your foster child could be someone who has to hide his caste identity to compete.

I'm actually envisioning that, while it's true that it was ostensibly a rancher who needed to recruit some new hands, behind many of the similar activities was high-ranking nobles screening for cubs with unconventional warrior personality traits -- lower bloodlust, high self-control and the ability to live peacefully with a different species. OK, the cub's portrait as he grows up is in #43.

And the one who needed to hide identity were the cub's foster mother who could not have been accepted by her own hrai because she persisted in following a warrior of another hrai. With the warrior's death in battle, she had no hrai to live in because this warrior's own hrai rejected and even hated her, but wandered to this ranch planet with her child and adopted the cub. Okay maybe a bit soap opera 😆 , but I am writing a folk song that is set in the story to be sung by this foster mother. I'm hoping I could make a draft done soon.
 
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Wedge009

Rogue Leader
I haven't read through others' remarks but Sosa looks great. I immediately recognised Catscratch's face on first glance, but the golden streaks in the hair skewed the overall impression for me. I think you said you're working on the colouring though.
 

EmuMusicFan

2nd Lieutenant
I haven't read through others' remarks but Sosa looks great. I immediately recognised Catscratch's face on first glance, but the golden streaks in the hair skewed the overall impression for me. I think you said you're working on the colouring though.
Got it. Actually the golden streaks in Catscratch's hair is the renderning result of the coloring software. I need to correct it manually later. Thanks!
 
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