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Even a Feather Can Tip the Scales

A prelude for Book III, Challenge IV

 

Winda knew that her mission was important, but even so she did not like the man riding behind her on Bandea's back. He smelled bad. But Henjin Quilones and, more importantly, Galaria, had commanded her to carry him to his desired location. But he did smell bad, an unwholesome combination of fermented sweat, rancid garlic, and stale wine. Bandea agreed, but she also knew the importance of the mission. 

The had to save the Queen. 

What they had to save the Queen from was not as clear, but Winda was willing to do her part to preserve the hard-fought peace that the ascension of Ylspeth had brought to the Guilds. Years of civil wars and bloodshed had come to an end with her coronation, and all of the realms were more prosperous than ever, even if they did not all feel like they were. Winda had sat through more council meetings than she had cared to on Druidham, hearing about this Mitgardian lord's harvest or that Varlyrian lady's vineyard, about villages reborn and cities flourishing. Except for Nocturnus, Historica had never had things so good. 

And yet there was discontent from east to west, from north to south, even in Avalonia, which was flourishing best of all. Perhaps the years of war had made the Historicans intolerant of peace. Without conflict abroad, they created their own conflict within. Sword hands were itching for something to strike. Dragonriders from Druidham had visited Mitgardia recently, and spoke of the palpable tension in the air, as neighbor looked askance at neighbor and wondered which side he was on. Others reported that Varlyrio was slowly killing itself with assassinations and minor rebellions. Yet each had the freedom to rebel only because the Queen had brought peace and respite from the constant conflicts. 

As Bandea glided over the thermals, her golden feathers catching the uprising air, Winda saw down below the cliff that her passenger had pointed out. Who was this guy? How was he going to save the Queen? And what were they doing off the coast of Varlyrio?

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My lone entry to the Summer Joust this year. C&C welcome.

Just the dragon and passengers:

Spoiler

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This is really cool. Those wings are really stunning; very well done shaping. They give the dragon a lot of dynamic and grace. The landscaping looks good as well and the flowers blooming everywhere resonate nicely with its colour. :classic:

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Such a beautiful shot, the lighting is perfect and the sea blending into the sky makes it very realistic.

Great job!

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Great picture.  The dragon is nicely done, I actually like the pink it works with this dragon.  The touches of gold for the horns, wings, tail tip and claws is a nice touch.  The tail looks good.  The cliff side looks great.  The tree placement makes the scene I think.  The roots coming out of the trees is a great idea.  Nice job.  

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Love the rock work here; it seems like we rarely see much variation from the jumble-o-slopes technique, so this is a cool, novel approach that looks very realistic. You’ve done a great job with the vegetation and the ocean backdrop (love how the trans-blue plates transition to tiles between “middle ground” and “background”), and your dragon, as usual, is really, really cool.

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The rock work is spectacular!  I've been trying to notice some of the ways that rocks form cracks, and there are a lot of larger segments with some grueling that then have larger cracks between them, and I think you captured that perfectly.  Your dragons are always a treat to see, too, as they are top notch, and this is no exception.  I'm astonished how you were able to get the dragon to hold on with only those clear bricks!  Great job!  How'd you get the stormy sky and the sea like that?  Is the sea a bunch of bricks?  I can't quite tell.  It really looks good.  Thanks for building a nice prelude for us!

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On 9/4/2019 at 8:04 PM, Eoin Wallace said:

Nice dragon!:dhappy:

Thanks! I love dragons. 

On 9/4/2019 at 9:11 PM, Littleworlds said:

This is really cool. Those wings are really stunning; very well done shaping. They give the dragon a lot of dynamic and grace. The landscaping looks good as well and the flowers blooming everywhere resonate nicely with its colour. :classic:

Thanks, I like the wings myself. I tried something similar on a past dragon but they did not look as full. These look much better. 

On 9/5/2019 at 2:47 AM, Basiliscus said:

Such a beautiful shot, the lighting is perfect and the sea blending into the sky makes it very realistic.

Great job!

Thanks, realism is something I aspire for. 

On 9/5/2019 at 10:49 PM, zoth33 said:

Great picture.  The dragon is nicely done, I actually like the pink it works with this dragon.  The touches of gold for the horns, wings, tail tip and claws is a nice touch.  The tail looks good.  The cliff side looks great.  The tree placement makes the scene I think.  The roots coming out of the trees is a great idea.  Nice job.  

Pink is a fun color if done correctly, and with the right fantasy vibe. Glad you like it!

On 9/6/2019 at 11:20 AM, The Stad said:

Love the rock work here; it seems like we rarely see much variation from the jumble-o-slopes technique, so this is a cool, novel approach that looks very realistic. You’ve done a great job with the vegetation and the ocean backdrop (love how the trans-blue plates transition to tiles between “middle ground” and “background”), and your dragon, as usual, is really, really cool.

I happen to dislike the jumble of slopes technique, as it ends up being too busy and not cliff-like enough. Glad you caught the transition of textures on the water, it was both intended, as a way of adding depth, but also necessitated by my limited supply of trans-light blue pieces. 

On 9/9/2019 at 12:47 AM, Grover said:

The rock work is spectacular!  I've been trying to notice some of the ways that rocks form cracks, and there are a lot of larger segments with some grueling that then have larger cracks between them, and I think you captured that perfectly.  Your dragons are always a treat to see, too, as they are top notch, and this is no exception.  I'm astonished how you were able to get the dragon to hold on with only those clear bricks!  Great job!  How'd you get the stormy sky and the sea like that?  Is the sea a bunch of bricks?  I can't quite tell.  It really looks good.  Thanks for building a nice prelude for us!

Thanks, Grover! I, too, look at rocks, and I think this approximates the look pretty well. The dragon is a bit precarious, and there is some strain to the transparent Technic beams, but it held long enough to take pictures and only fell twice...

The water is trans-light blue tiles (1x2 and 1x4) near the horizon, then 1x2 plates, then 1x1 round plates, all over a green 50x50 baseplate. The sky is a piece of cardboard painted blue, as I generally dislike brick-built skies since the faint lines between the bricks ruins the illusion for me. The stormy appearance is due, perhaps, to the single light source and the variation in light intensity on the background and water. 

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