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A mantis-styled Jadean tries to figure how how to explain himself. Jadeans aren't literally arthropods, they're just shaped and inspired by them (and not just insects, either). On the other hands, they're not centauroids either, because that lower half isn't any particular animal's body. So while the shapes are similar, they're their own thing.

Śina is another mantis-Jadean, although she's got three pairs of legs instead of two. She was born that way - there's probably some scorpion or lobster clan in her family background, but she doesn't talk about her upbringing much.

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More sketches, still playing with poses and expressivity. Cedar, Iris, and Qida are the subjects this time, and figuring out how to draw Iris collapsed on the floor like that was a fun challenge.

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Bonus sketches! Another duck-person, Vassa, a random cat, and a scene of Cheq Lopez (plus two of his revolving set of backup musicians) putting on a concert at Elseways' Riverfront, an abandoned amusement park turned artist colony.

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A page full of sketches of bird-like folk (plus one Neena). I want to get better at expressiveness and anatomy and such, so occasional studies like this are very useful. Also that's one of the better Iris sketches I've done - I think her design is solidifying nicely.

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Just some sketchy renditions of Ube and Iris. Working out their designs a little more - I tend to forget that Ube wears that flower in her hair (headfeathers?) and has the big print on her skirt, and I thought that style of sleeve would look interesting on Iris. The thing Iris is carrying is her own attempt to make a custom weapon for herself - she calls it a "swand". Half sword, half wand. It's not that useful yet - Iris is a lot better at theory than practice, and the swand manages to get in its own way a lot - but there's the seed of a good idea there.

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Playing with designs for the Jadeans a bit more, so here's a roughly bee-like one. Jadea is a very large and diverse place, a massive continent divided into over a dozen nations - it's just that it's so far from anywhere else that the rest of Delyria hardly ever sees visitors from there, and vice versa. Its people are arthropod-based, but in a very loose sense where their physiology and everything is a mixture of real species and softer more mammalian traits. The bee here is covered in a chitin-like skin that's still soft and flexible, and those wings are more decorative than anything.
That's the Jadean flag next to him, a black swirl on a field of green.

mh (+) 

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Nei of Elseways, a fully-dual red panda. Unlike a lot of other two-headed people in the city, their two sides don't behave in sync; they act more like a pair of twin sisters who happen to be stuck into the same body. They can concentrate to synchronize and act in unison when they want to, and they're still close enough to share a single name, but they still prefer the plural "they" to a singular "she" pronoun, even though they only have one copy of anything internal.

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A spaceborne foxlike robot, equipped with force-field-based impulse wings and a similar weapon that fires little plasma bubbles. She's part of the defense force for a space station; being a robot means she doesn't have to eat or breathe and can survive hard radiation just fine, although she wonders sometimes what it would be like to have an organic body. She was created to have a full complement of emotions, even though they're all emulated, because her creator decided that she needed to feel there was a purpose to her existence and that the people inside the space station were worth protecting. She's a unique one-off, but not the only model in her particular series.

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Got my computer and everything set up in a new location, and this is a much more comfortable space. But I couldn't think of what I wanted to draw, so ... I drew that. Some random foxtaur in a helpless shrugging pose. But it made a good test that the new system works and everything.

Gwah. Okay, obviously no sketch tonight, but I am also utterly exhausted and sore from today. Moving! To a house! This was the one day I rented a truck for, to get everything that needed a truck to move, so my roommate and I have spent the day moving heavy furniture around.

The effect is amazing, though. The living room feels like a living room and not an empty space, but it's still spacious. And, of course, the Internet connection and the cat came along with today, so we're now set up to actually live here. A few more trips to ferry the remaining things down and clean up the old apartment, and this will be permanent.

πŸŒƒ All I need is some proper decor to remind me why this matters so much.

🎨 :dragn_owo:
Zijin's name is written with the characters for "purple metal", which gives you some hint to his color. He normally has three heads and twelve legs, despite my drawing him with two (these are just initial design sketches anyway). As you can see, he's a dragon of the many-legged wingless variety I'm fond of. He's about horse-sized (if much lower to the ground), with silver eyes and mane, and is generally friendly as long as nothing has upset him. Zijin is a sensitive soul and would rather keep to himself most of the time, but he has a small group of close friends he trusts.

Humans tend to come from worlds where humans are the only sentient species. Non-humans tend to come from worlds with all kinds of mixed populations.

πŸŒƒ
The question of if Elseways has human residents has been on my mind, and I think I have an answer, but it means rethinking a little of the setting outside the city. The answer is no. Not because they're not allowed or anything, but because there are already plenty of human cities out there with millions of residents. Elseways, as the name indicates, is a place for everyone else.

πŸŒƒ
Elseways has a population of about half a million, served by ten (so far) high schools. While they all serve the normal educational purpose, they're also the city's main sports league - since travel outside Elseways is difficult thanks to the hazardous regions of flux that need specialized equipment to pass through, competitions can only really happen inside the city. But the school clubs love to compete with their counterparts across the city - not just in physical sports, but in math and science competitions, debates, music festivals, and anything else they can find a way to compete at. These competitions get a lot more outside attention than you'd expect from high-school level contests, but what else is a sports fan going to root for?

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A feline teenager waits on a bridge somewhere in Elseways. He's an incoming freshman at Fresnel Tech, but he's still proud of his high school - that's its mascot on his shirt, the trident-wielding dolphin of the Channel High School Wavebreakers. He was the star player on its soccer team, but now he's just some college kid. From king of the world to a face in the crowd is a tough transition to take, but he'll manage.

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Part 3 for comparison: City Theme by Vanessa Mae. The comparison is a little looser here, but it definitely has the same feel, doesn't it?

Also, the melody proper starts at 0:28 and is rather pretty. The whole thing suits Elseways pretty well.

youtube.com/watch?v=lcRE6QjvFj

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...And now compare it to the bass line of the Fourside theme.
youtube.com/watch?v=wlY84u8fkA

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The Club Caribe "loading new area" theme. I can't remember where I got this - it was an MP3 on some fan page where they'd recorded it from a real Commodore 64, I believe. Pay attention to that bass line.

The Club Caribe main theme (from the old QuantumLink premium service) used a lot of 9th chords in it. So did the Fourside theme from Earthbound. And so does Piano Lessons by Porcupine Tree. And City Theme, off Vanessa-Mae's "The Violin Player" album. They all sort of hit the same spot for me, as well, of sounding sophisticated and a little futuristic, the way a city ought to.

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