A Portuguese Folk Tale – Cardil, the Bull ~ Lines

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The colour illustration for the folktale of “Cardil, the Bull” wouldn’t be complete without at least a detail of its lines.
Poor Cardil… If you’re wondering why he’s looking so upset, don’t miss the opportunity to read the story on our previous post. Or even quicker, by clicking right here.

★We hope you have a great week and stay inspired!★

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A Portuguese Folk Tale – Cardil, the Bull

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Today’s folktale is a simple tale of Temptation versus Loyalty swirling around a prized bull named Cardil. Curiously, we were unable to discover the meaning of the name in Portuguese, but we discovered the name in Ireland having its origins in an old Gaelic word, “ardghal”, which means “high valor”.  Very fitting for the esteemed pet of a king!
This story, with deep roots in Portuguese tradition is usually told in the island of Madeira, in the region of Algarve and the city of Coimbra. In the Sicilian tales we discovered a similar tale but instead of a bull, it is a goat that will test the hero’s faithfulness.

Now without further ado, let’s begin our retelling of this tale!

Cardil, The Bull

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A Portuguese Folk Tale sneak peak

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Temptation and loyalty, is what our next Portuguese Folktale will bring you! Probably in the least expected way and the least expected results…

So be sure to visit soon and we’ll tell you all about it with the final illustration!

★Have a great week and stay inspired!★

A Japanese Folk Tale: Okiku ~ Lines

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Lines for Okiku, the wronged maiden of the ten plates

Hair and more hair, that’s what can be summarized from the illustration of Okiku, twists and turns made quite the therapy to carefully ink and “sculpt”.

In case you missed it, the coloured finished version and her ghostly story is waiting for you at a previous post: A Japanese Folk Tale: Okiku.

★Have a great week and stay inspired!★

A Japanese Folk Tale: Okiku

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The relief of the word “ten”

Okiku or “Banchou Sarayashiki” (The Dish Mansion at Banchou) is one of the most popular ghost stories in Japan and as expected, has several versions. Within all of them we settled for its folk version.

The story tells us of a beautiful girl serving a samurai called Aoyama Tessan, who constantly made advances towards her and every time was met with refusal.
Tired of her resistance, he plotted to make her accept him through a cruel plan where he accused her of losing one of the family treasures, a Delftware plate from a set of ten.
Haunted by the terrifying fate of such an offence -none other than death itself- Okiku desperately counted the plates time after time but to no avail as there was no tenth plate, no matter how many times she recounted them.
Under the guilt she confessed to Aoyama, in tears, and was received with an offer of him disregarding her wrongdoing if she gave in and became his lover. Okiku once again refused him, and this infuriated him to the point of throwing her down a well as punishment and killed her.

The story says that due to that unfair death, Okiku turned into a ghost who haunted her murderer. Counting up to nine, then shrieking loudly, agonizing, unable to find the missing plate.
It is told that her haunting was broken by an exorcist who shouted “ten”, just before her shriek after her usual count. Finally finishing the set and releasing her from the fixation on the missing plate.

Other versions involve the anger of a jealous wife, another one where she finds out a plot from her master against his lord and contributing to dismantling it, unfortunately all the versions have her die and return as a ghost.

The most romantic version is where Okiku is actually guilty of breaking the plate, hoping that her lover proves his devotion for her, but instead she is killed when confessing that it was intentional. When appearing as a ghost, the beauty and calm displayed on her face instead of ugly and vengeful feelings reaches out and touches his heart, leading him to commit suicide (seppuku) to join her in death.
Romantic?… Yes.
Right-minded?… Well, Love and Passion are complicated matters. We’ll just leave it at that.

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A Portuguese Folk Tale – The Maiden’s Pearls ~ Lines Detail

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We’re revisiting the Maiden’s Pearls illustration, this time with a detail of the lines of its cascade of waves, quite fun when it came to inking how the curls turn and curve, each with it’s own twist. Also works as therapy to calm the brain!

★Have a great week and stay inspired!★

A Portuguese Folk Tale – The Maiden’s Pearls

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It’s time for another retelling of a Portuguese folk tale!

The original translated title is something to brag about when it comes to length : “The Maiden from whose Head Pearls fell on combing herself” and this one is an open proof that sometimes the oral narration of stories ends up getting some parts either jumbled up or rushed, as a key element on this story appears out of nowhere despite being essential to the plot.
Despite that, this story immediately placed irresistible imagery in our heads and there was also the universal tell-tale of envy: Careful to who you trust your good news and beware of ill intentions towards others.
And now, story time!

There was once a woman with a son who was a sailor and a daughter that helped and kept her company.
Alas one day, the woman felt Death’s grasp coming to take her away but before this happened, she called for her daughter. Continue reading