All Thalissa wants to do is go home.
To her new home, that is, where her family moved four years ago. Back then, there were reasons why she stayed behind in her childhood home of Redvale, but those reasons no longer pertain, and she's ready to go. One problem: her new home is near the kingdom capital, Alstopho, and that's clear across the continent. With the trip so long and expensive, at the rate she's earning money she'll be stuck in Redvale until she's old and grey--that is, until she finds a necklace in the sand. She sees it as a chance to earn the funds she needs, but the necklace proves to be far past priceless--Hanging from that blood-gold chain is the gilded heart of a magician, and the star he tore from the sky!
But a grumpy magician isn't the worst thing she'll encounter: An angry dragon haunts her dreams, blaming her for things she hasn't done, and the world she knows is slowly falling into turmoil as conquered colonies of beastmen and other beings fight and bicker on whether or not they deserve sovereignty.
With all this adversary, will she make it to her distant home?
The basic idea of Crystal Ball has been in my head for quite a while; it was initially inspired by a Keane song by the same name. The story since then has changed, but the idea of being able to physically hide away one's heart remains a focal point in the story. I tried to draw out this story before, but it was never truly to my liking: lining the art on paper proved too time consuming, and lining it on the computer proved impossible with the small Graphire I had. It was this dilemma that gave rise to A Celestial Story's art style, with its shapes and blurred shadows. With the purchase of a larger tablet, though, I'm now able to line on the computer with confidence: apart from the thumbnails, Crystal Ball is made exclusively on Photoshop.
A Celestial Story is a story about the hunt for the truth which is being chased by two creatures that should be mortal enemies.
For as long as anyone can remember—except for the star gods, whose memory is infinite—the star-god-created Celestials have battled with the scientist-god-molded Uries. According to the story the sky gods told their humans, the Celestials and Uries were just weapons in the battling that raged between the sky gods and the earth gods. The Uries were made to terrorize the humans and the Celestials were made to protect them.
But as the scientist gods faded from the world, the Uries’ purpose did too. Now they are just another inhabitant of the world, though it is still in their nature to attack humans. So the Celestials remain to protect the humans, in turn slowly trying to exterminate the Uries once and for all.
With this violent backdrop, a Celestial Story begins: a peculiar, horse-formed Celestial is summoned to punish the nearby Urie clan, after the Urie-destroyed bodies of a horse and rider are found nearby.
Instead of rushing in to destroy as many Uries as he can, this nameless Celestial gains access to the Urie clan’s Elder, so he can ask for an explanation. That’s when the perceived truth begins to fray for the Celestial, and with the companionship of a Urie who’s thrown from his home, the Celestial begins his quest for the real truth, the dirty, smeared truth that for so long has been covered by the brightly embroidered truth the star gods have woven.
A Celestial Story is my little lovechild and combines two things I’m passionate about: art and storytelling. It’s pretty much a storybook on steroids, with a more mature (and far more epic) storyline. I’ve tried many times to make more traditional comics, with boxes and speech bubbles, but they always get too tedious and eventually become flat (I’m bad at keeping the energy up, I suppose). In ACS’s current style, I have the ability to not only make the art more detailed and colorful, but I can also tell the story rather than have to show it. It allows me to get all extravagant on the wording, if I wish.
An in progress story, Windsail/Of Two Cities is an illustrated novel. I've been working on the story itself for a long time, but never was sure how I'd bring it to life. I wanted to have part of it illustrated, but I wasn't ready to make it another comic. An illustrated novel is a nice compromise.
The project is very much in progress, so there isn't too much recent art for it.