Tuesday, 23 June 2015


Umarvas are creatures with rusty red fur, a dark dorsal stripe, and dark paws; they are about thirty centimeters high, have large bright eyes, and seem plump in their thick pelt. In the wild, these nocturnal animals are very shy; around humans, they can only be found in voice halls. Here, they are peaceful co-dwellers of the voices, ostentatively ignoring visitors. Umarvas can be found everywhere except southern Sawa.
"As if the voice hall wasn't creepy enough, around midnight all the umarvas got up, gathered in the garden and silently stared up to a dwarf woman in a frock, who had appeared seemingly out of nowhere, then collectively turned around and returned to the hall. I've never slept in a hall again."
— Enipomor, mercenary
As mysterious as the umarvas are is their unnamed queen. As all her subjects, she seems to only talk to voices. She can be seen travelling with them and is most often spotted in northern Gdera. As a human, she has the appearance of a dwarven woman with umarva-coloured hair, in simple clothing and hairdo. The queen has a habit of quietly standing at the path's edge and observing, but leaves when others than voices come near. She has been reported to behave the same way in the Area, where she has been spotted frequently.
"Maybe it's not important what she's called when she hasn't introduced herself. I think you'll know when you call her her right name."
— Huun, voice

Artists' notes
Another animal lord, or rather, lady. Umarvas are another strange addition to the voices, who harbour so many secrets - from what makes the world go round to why only left socks ever go missing. I also enjoy quiet animals in games that you meet in the wild and for a change do not want to eat you.

Wednesday, 17 June 2015

Art on deviantArt: Gahatenge

The lord of the gubras has been painted to accompany a later blog article, and can now be seen on deviantArt: Gahatenge.
It also appeared on cgsociety.com, where you can also see sketches and wips of Genius Loci artworks.

Thursday, 11 June 2015

Animals and animal lords

Animals are not mindless beasts. The dwellers of Gdera's Lower forest maybe know this best - their beastly neighbours are smart, some even wise, and have a mind of their own; some are tricky, others helpful, yet others ignore people as long as they can have their way.
The animal lords are not their masters - as many examples have shown, beasts are strong-willed and individualistic. But they all acknowledge the undeniable power of their lords, and follow most commands. Gross mistreatment of a species may result in their tribe declaring war on the violators.
"I will not tolerate you mistreating my kindred so badly. You will release them by dawn. Fail to do so, and I will swear my people to follow and harm you any way they can, for as long as our brethren's suffering lasts. Do not test me."
— Asgaan, queen of the orlas
Bug fairies all know animal speech, and gladly act as translators. As most people don't understand beasts well, fairies help in repelling them from fields and houses, guard flocks, and protect children from being harmed by animals, but also talk beasts into becoming pets, not always to the joy of parents.
"Oh, for crying out loud. Get the fairies here, the naddis are ruining the vegetables. And make sure they don't use them for jousting this time, the poor things didn't give milk for two days after their last brilliant idea."
— Laqihe, farmer
Famous animal lords are the proud lord of the gubras Gahatenge; the mysterious umarva queen; and Eonorora, the sad and gentle lady of the neribrees. Most can take human shape but show features of their kind, like colouring or strength.
Not all lords are known (some even regard a lortsen lord as a ridiculous idea). Neither is it known if there is a hierarchy, or just one lord - or pair thereof - to each species. There seems to be a difference between the Crowned and the Uncrowned Lords, but what it is, remains unclear.

Artists' notes
I very much love stories that tell of the times when people and animals still lived together and humans knew they were just one kind of animal too, and understood the language of animals. So given the opportunity of my own world, I put Kitas in that era.

Thursday, 4 June 2015

Art on deviantArt: Lozirian cave cities

A concept not previously published in the blog is now on deviantArt: Lozirian cave cities.
There may be an article on them someday, but for now, other articles take priority.