Creature Feature – The Enchanted Moorish Maiden ~ Video

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Art by StarTwo

We revisit the Enchanted Moura with a video of the digital inking process.

A lament in the wind whispering “Save Me”, a voice impossible to ignore pulls you towards the direction that made the hair on the back of your neck stand. But the dulcet voice is too sad and you feel compelled to accept the challenge to free her of this cursed afterlife. And you advance as many have done before… At your own risk.

Check the lines and full colour posts on the links below!

★Stay safe and stay inspired★

Creature Feature – Caretos de Podence

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Art by StarTwo

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Nice try, but a mask won’t hide a voice she can recognize!

Portugal is a land of many traditions and among them, there’s one in particular that has been officially recognized as part of the “Intangible Cultural Heritage of Humanity” by UNESCO this month of December 2019! It is none other than the Caretos from Podence, in Trás-os-Montes e Alto-Douro, Portugal. A millenarian tradition celebrated in Winter, but festivities are more intense on Shrove Tuesday and its previous day.

There are several speculations about its origin and it’s believed to have Celtic roots, from a pre-Roman period. Probably related to the existence of the Gallaeci and Bracari in Galicia and North of Portugal.
A rather interesting theory also speaks of the connection to the Roman Saturnalia, the agricultural god Saturn and Lupercalia festivities, in honour of Pan, god of shepherds and flocks.  And when you think of satyrs and their chase on the nymphs… Well, let’s keep going.

The Caretos are creatures that blur the lines stipulated by religion and profanity, born yearly when groups of men and boys dress in Continue reading

Creature Feature – The Enchanted Moorish Maiden ~ Lines

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Art by StarTwo
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Our Enchanted Moorish Maiden still lingers waiting for someone to break the curse, knowing that freedom will require someone with bravery – and knowledge of the dangers.  Here are the lines from her Creature Feature full colour post.

★Stay inspired★

Creature Feature – The Enchanted Moorish Maiden

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The plea of StarTwo’s enchanted Moorish Maiden. “Oh noble traveller, save me…”

If you happen, wondrous traveller, to find yourself roaming by the moonlight and chance upon the ruins of a castle or wet your feet in a cooling river or ocean waters, beware of the enchanting, warm voice beckoning you to come closer and hear its sultry plea with promises of riches and eternal flesh made human again, to be forever yours.

There are enchanted Moors in the land of Portugal and if you can not bring them salvation, they will most certainly bring you doom.

Moorish Maidens or Enchanted Moorish Maidens are fantastic spirits and according to traditional folktales and legends, they are princesses of great beauty and are known to be dangerous seductresses.
They are obliged to live in certain places, in a supernatural stupor until a certain chain of events releases them from their curse and most stories do speak of the incidents that made them become spellbound, the main ones being that the Maidens fell in love with Christians and by consequence were forsaken and cursed by their families, or as daughters of Moors with magical powers who depart in warring campaigns against their enemies, are left eternally enchanted as means to protect the treasures their fathers left behind.

The ways to free a Moorish Maiden from her enchantment are usually also revealed – by the Maiden herself, as she uses all her charms and otherworldly beauty to make those that hear her feel tempted into aiding her, while ignoring the risks. These usually involve tasks that range from an apparent simplicity to tricky demands such as offering a salt-less bread, milk, to proclaiming certain words and resisting the urge to look at a curiosity inducing matter and of course, giving the Maiden a kiss.

To fail completing these tasks means doubling the enchantment on the Maiden, dooming her forever and losing her and the treasures she is guarding, not to mention putting your life at risk as well.

It’s in the south of Portugal, due to the historical Moorish invasions that these tales and legends became intertwined with the origin of city names and castles which were built by the Moors. Although a Christian country, paganism was a normal happening and the supernatural mixed with the real to create these folktales about amazing treasures and the tragic Maidens that guard them for eternity.

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A Moorish Maiden in Vila de Moura’s Coat of Arms

To this day, many believe they still haunt several places (especially in the region of Algarve), maybe a means to keep some modern Indiana Jones away.

But are Enchanted Moorish Maidens truly just related to Moorish princesses?
Then, what of the Marwo of Celtic origins, present in northern Portuguese folklore and Galicia, way before these lands ever saw a Moorish invader?

That will be a subject we will gladly share with you on a future post, where we shall compare these mystical, beautiful Maidens that populate Portugal’s rich folklore! This was a particularly charming theme to illustrate and we tried to mix both the mysticism of the Maiden and her sultry charm with the danger that lurks if you pay attention and don’t fall for her charms right away.

★We wish you a wonderful weekend and stay inspired★

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

A Portuguese Folktale – Spider Groom

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Sometimes the first idea becomes a draft of a second one and that’s exactly what happened to the Folk Tale “Spider’s Bride” that we posted before.

This was our first illustration for the Spider Bride Folktale, but we felt that more than the main character, we wanted to portray a quirky yet beautiful spider turned into a human bride.

Even when a work is finished it doesn’t mean that it will be shown, just like the one above. Except we felt it was an interesting fact to share about the times when you don’t share!

Enjoy your weekend and stay inspired.