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Nocturne

Mistress of shadows, queen of dusk, matron of thieves and spies, lady of secrets and goddess of the night. Nocturne came into being as a concept almost six years ago as an answer to a nameless character in William Joyce's book about the Guardians of Childhood. Starting out as a reincarnated, spirit version of Lady Estelle Pitchiner, she has become a spirit/guardian of her own, more ancient than the Earth but younger than the cosmos. She is a neutral force that watches over the night hours, helps guide nocturnal predators, thieves and spies and collects secrets all for her own knowledge and amusement. Her motifs are birds (owls) and a midnight, star-filled sky, evident in her hair and glowing freckles across her greyish lavender skin. In life, she was a rogue and a thief herself before marrying into nobility - her reincarnated, divine form is an amalgamation of both.

Originally inspired by Daedric Prince Nocturnal from The Elder Scrolls, and the Greek Goddess Nyx.

Aleksandra markaryan nocturne5
Aleksandra markaryan nocturne

A cleaned up sketch

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Blocking shadows on another layer with a watercolour brush

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Adding background colour to immediately get the sense of the nightly atmosphere to work with

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Blocking colours with low opacity watercolour brushes to maintain the same feeling of darkness and mystery

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Rendering hair, feather details, jewellery and eyes. Speckles of lighter colour are drawn in the hair and on the face to resemble stars. This is a quicker, rougher piece, one I am wary to ruin with needless touch ups