As I had mentioned an unfortunately long time ago, here is my review for the “Long Price Quartet” by Daniel Abraham.
This book contains the complete “Long Price” series by Daniel Abraham. I originally received the first book in the series for free from the publisher and was so intrigued by the world Mr. Abraham had created that I had to complete the series. The first book “A Shadow in Summer” sets up the world perfectly. Imagine a world where a force of nature or maybe a God could be spun into existence and controlled by an elite few who became the power behind the rulers of the world. What would happen if one day the rulers fell into fighting through these chained Gods?
The story picks up centuries after the fall of the mighty empire created by the controllers of these powers. The remnants of the empire are much diminished but still have chained God’s to do their bidding economically and also serving as deterrents to invasion by any hostile forces. In one city, a rival nation sets a deadly plan into motion in an attempt to weaken the city’s hold on the textile industry. Their target is the Poet in control of the chained force known as Seedless. Seedless enables the city to control the cotton industry by being able to instantly remove the seeds from farmers’ cotton bales. He is also able to remove unwanted babies from pregnant women who ask for help in what is called the “sad trade”. The “sad trade” is very repugnant to the Poet in charge of Seedless.
The Faction attacking the city’s status hope to make the Poet use Seedless to perform the “sad trade” on an unwitting woman who does not want to have her pregnancy ended. Their hope is to so disturb the Poet, whose constant attention is needed to contain the power of Seedless, such that he ends up setting him free. The worst part of the plot is that Seedless himself is one of the collaborators. A force such as Seedless does not want to be contained and always fights to be released.
The characters in this story become swept up in the terrible events in the city, which will have far reaching consequences. The remaining stories dig deeper into the costs of holding onto old ways and un-natural powers over learning to do for yourself. The world is fascinating, the characters richly written, and the story deeply moving.
I have been making some headway in the little spurts of time I have to work on this painting. As you can see I have gotten a third tentacle’s white parts laid out better even after going back and readjusting them in the second tentacle. I had noticed that I had made far too many small bits from the first one I had reworked and the effect was bad. Lesson learned going forward. I was planning on holding off doing any more painting on the tips until after I got the white done on all the tentacles. However, I am impatient and was also worried that I would not be able to replicate the look from the first tentacle. I think it is going well.
On another note, I finally sent out for a print of Sarah Seadragon for my sister, whom this project is for. I can’t wait for her reaction. Also, I want to get an idea on print costs because that is one of the perks I plan to give supporters once I re-establish my Patreon page. One thing to understand about that is, while you can buy prints from my deviantart page, they will come from jpeg copies of my work. The compression these files use distorts the final product a bit. When I send out for prints myself, I use tiff files, which do not use compression for a truer print of the work. I will be talking more about Patreon and rewards in future posts.
Had a pretty crappy weekend. I always have high hopes of getting a lot done on the weekends to make up for doing little during the week, but it unfortunately my job takes so much out of me that I spend the whole weekend recuperating so that I can face another week. I am back into that sucky cycle again and it saps my creativity too. I did; however, manage to make some more progress on the background defining more rock shapes. So it was not a complete lose, just mostly. Sigh. I could use some support right now.
As you can see, I have decided to use the lichen or whatever it is on the rocks under the starfish as a background for my painting. I loved the varying colors and subtle layer demarcations. This gives me a head start for a solo print of this painting unlike the red seahorse and Sarah Seadragon, which I feel need some kind of background for a print. What is nice is that the layers I use make it easy to peel away the starfish from the background for inclusion in the book illustrations.
Here is a progress image for the red starfish painting. Please enlarge the image so you can see where I am heading with the red parts of the tentacles (lower left tentacle). Looks like a patchwork or crochet quilt to me. This one does have the color I have been craving lately, but more importantly, it has lots of interesting texture.
Duh, … Wait a minute, I know the answer to that one? Duh ……….. Anyway, while we wait on Patrick, this is the beginning of my next project, which is this really cool looking starfish. Stay tuned for further updates.
Here she is, the new it girl, Sarah Seadragon. Isn’t she lovely in here shimmering jewel encrusted evening dress, ahem … well, this is the end of another painting in my project for my sister. I hope you have enjoyed watching the development of this painting as much as I did. I really did need a splash of colors to get me going.