Fantasy Art Wednesday

Get inspired with this week’s Fantasy Art Wednesday, where fun fantasy artwork is combined with a writing prompt to get your creative juices flowing.


 

It’s not much fun getting caught in a downpour, especially when you’re carrying a bunch of stuff. That was me today–the minute I had to leave the house, the skies just opened up. I will admit, there was some grumbling as I, and all my belongings, got thoroughly drenched by a cold rain. This image made my soggy toes feel toasty again…and then hot, dry, dust-covered, thirsty. Very, very, thirsty. Looking at it for a while, and imagining myself there, I gained a sudden appreciation for the rain.

If a drop of rain has ever fallen in this place, there is no sign of it. Yet it seems that there was once a civilization, now buried beneath the shifting sands. Those stone fingers reaching upward, just breaking the surface, are full of longing and desperation. If they could only break free. Whom did this carved figure represent, and what else lies with him in his desert tomb?

Carrion birds seem to be following the poor person trudging along the barren landscape. How did he find himself here? Is he lost? Seeking treasure? Was he abandoned here as a form of punishment? Perhaps he found respite in the shade of those carved fingers for a while, but to stay there too long is certain death; there is no food or water to sustain him, and the birds know it. Can he make it to that rocky mountain he sees ahead? If there is anyone living in this desert, perhaps it is there–the entrance to an underground society with access to a spring. There must have been something good in this place, once up on a time, to warrant the carving of such a statue. Does that good remain, yet to be found, or is there now nothing but dust, unbearable heat, and eventual death?

desert

Fantasy Art Wednesday

Get inspired with this week’s Fantasy Art Wednesday, where fun fantasy artwork is combined with a writing prompt to get your creative juices flowing.


If you follow my blog at all, you know that I love anything medieval. This image reminded me of my time in Europe, walking along cobbled streets in winter, the old timber framed and stone structures still surviving amidst the modern ones. Touching┬áthem always brought about a sense of amazement and wonder. ┬áHundreds of years later, I could still run my fingers along the grooves and marks made by chisels and axes belonging to someone now forgotten. If only the buildings had a voice, they could tell me who made them, and about all the generations of people who had used them since. Such stories they would be…

Those old buildings had character to be sure, full of oddly shaped rooms and cubbies, narrow hallways, and circular staircases. Ceilings were low, sometimes with uneven slopes. Window glass warped and discolored, thicker at the bottom as time gradually changed its shape. Floors creaked, and doors were smaller–not made for the average height of a modern day person. Sometimes those doors were tiny, or in odd places, or even went nowhere at all–at least not anymore. Surely they had a practical function of some kind in their day. But the sense of mystery was often the greatest inspiration of all. As much as I longed to know what those buildings would say if they could speak, it was the not knowing that fueled my imagination. Since I didn’t, and couldn’t know, the longing pressed me to fill in the details for myself.

The warmth of that door, and the stone around it, contrasts with the cold and gloom of a winter day. It’s clearly not the main entrance to this city–it’s one of those mysterious little back gates, or side doors. Who uses it, and for what purpose? Where does the road beyond it lead? There are no guards on watch, and the wall isn’t overly high. In the background the spires of a church rise above everything else. I can imagine that on the other side of the door I will find a cobbled walkway. It will twist through back alleys and narrow streets, wedged between corbeled buildings pressed too close together, leaning out above everything. Every little crevice and arch I pass by contains layers of history, and mystery too. I’d love to take a stroll through this picture, even if only in my mind, and weave a few tales as I go. Of days, and people long passed into history. What will you find on the other side? Or is it your destiny to emerge from the door, to leave the village behind, and follow the snowy path into winter’s gloom?

art-by-edmund-koken

Artwork by Edmund Koken