Wampus Cat

The Wampus Cat is a Native American Legend from the Cherokee tribe.  The story tells of a woman who would disguise herself in the skin of a cougar to be able to observe the “male-only” rituals performed by the tribesmen.  When she was discovered, a curse was put on her, combining her body with that of the cat.  She is said to be a ferocious animal that still terrorizes the wilderness in Tennessee.  Here is my depiction of what this mythical creature would look like in real life-

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For any who are interested, here are a few of the steps I took along the way to creating this beast-

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The last rough draft.  Scroll up again to see the finished image.

Jinn

The Jinn are (according to arabic mythology) one of the three sentient creatures of God, besides humans and angels.  They have been described as a smokeless fire.  My version isn’t smokeless, nor firey, but rather a variation of classically portrayed Jinn (more commonly known in American culture as genies).  

Jinn, like humans, can be either good or evil, and contrary to popular belief, they actually have free will, and are not meant to be a wishing well for a fortunate human.  Thus I have portrayed this Jinn to be escaping his lamp prison on his own accord, mixing the Eastern and Western ideas of Jinn.

Here are a couple earlier depictions of Jinn-

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Hungarian stamp representing a jinni from the One Thousand and One Nights.

And here is the Western interpretation from the popular Disney film, Aladdin.

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As usual, my interpretation varies from both of these.  I thought a Jinn who had been imprisoned in a lamp and escaped would be scrawny and angry.  Here is my Photoshop-

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If you enjoy my work or have critiques, please comment and/or follow my blog.  Have a great week!

Basilisk

This week I have created a Basilisk.  The legend of the basilisk has changed overtime, and had several variations from the original concept.  The most common concept of the basilisk today was created in Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets, and was depicted as an enormous serpent.

The traditional idea of a basilisk is a creature that came from a serpent’s egg, but hatched by a chicken, thus having both qualities of both a rooster and a snake.  Here are two olden-day depictions-

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Woodblock Print of a basilisk from Ulisse Aldrovandi, Monstrorum historia, 1642 

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The basilisk and the weasel, print attributed to Wenceslas Hollar.

My concept was simply a combination of what I might imagine would be the offspring of a chicken and snake.  With a hard beak, two snake-like front legs, and a long serpent body, my basilisk hides in caves, and going along with tradition, a gaze into it’s eyes could end one’s life instantaneously.

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