Teela Darkstalk

Sci fi/Fantasy image by

Jon Dixon

'At least one of my parents must have been from the south, or so it would seem from my colouration - light-eyed and tallow-skinned, the pallor of my face made the more striking by the mop of coarse, black hair that frames it. Not a pretty face, if truth were known, gaunt, strong-featured, almost androgynous, with a wide mouth and a nose that could have been described as aquiline had not a sharp blow somewhat bent it several years ago...' Teela Darkstalk is the main character in a novel that I am currently attempting to complete (my first attempt at writing at an extended length). Like Caeci Wolfsong, her origins are in the role-playing games that I played in the early 1980s. She is a street-wise and intelligent thief (thievery being a recognised if not especially well-thought-of profession in her world), who was brought up in a great library. She has an enormous store of apocryphal and esoteric knowledge and a dark and cynical take on the world. Not an entirely likeable character but complex and honourable according to her own lights. I was going for an 'old master' look here with lots of subtle tones in the shadows. Created in Photoshop from an original render in Poser (textures and mapping mine, created in Photoshop also).

Published More than a year ago

Category Fantasy

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More by Jon Dixon

The Birchwood Cub

The Birchwood Cub is a bit of an experiment, and is an attempt to write a 'folk-tale' from another culture, in this case the Elfen, the non-human race to which Caeci Wolfsong belongs (see 'Of Mist and Marshlight'). The elfen were created over the course of several years in the 1970s, both as another race of characters in the Dungeons and Dragons games that I played a lot at the time, and later, in my writing, as a useful way of exploring humanity through the eyes of a non-human character. Over the years I created a huge 'back-history' of the elfen culture and mythology, of which this story is a fragment. It is the kind of story that story-tellers have been handing down through the generations in every time and culture. I was very influenced by the tone of old Russian folk-tales when I wrote this short piece, particularly by a small volume of Russian tales for children, told by Alexei Tolstoy and published in the U.K. in the 1940s by George Routledge & Sons.

Of Mist and Marshlight

Of Mist and Marshlight is the autumn story of 'Shymeyric tales', a suite of four stories based around the four seasons (Wolfwind is the Winter story) and features the elfen Caeci Wolfsong, a character that I return to a lot in both my writing and artwork. Caeci, estranged from her people for the majority of her life, is very non-human, both physically and in her way of thinking and looking at the world. But she is forced by circumstance to live as human in a human world. This makes her, for me at least, a fascinating character, as outsiders often are. This extract is the first part of the as-yet-uncompleted story...

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