November 1, 2011


Finally getting around to catching up to Dan. We (Dan, Sho and I) decided just before I left for the honeymoon that we'd start back into the weekly sketches. We flipped through a mythological creature dictionary that I have, and pulled out 3 candidates to design. Dan has promptly posted each week, making me look like a total slacker, so now it's time to try to jam out some neat designs and get things back in order.

First up is the Pouaki, the entry for which reads:

In Maori legend, Pouaki is a monstrous bird that hunts for people and livestock. Its predations were ended by the cunning plan of the hero Hau-o-Tawera who caused his people to fashion a great net in which to trap the bird. Waiting in hiding, they baited the trap and entangled Pouaki in the net while stabbing it to death. A similarly named bird, Poukai, who may be the same being, is similarly trapped by a pair of hunters led by Pungarehu who travels into the Otherworld after many people have been taken away by it. They chop off the bird's wings and find the remains of their fellow villagers, but on their return they find that all their relatives have died or become much older, since their time in the Otherworld was longer than they had imagined.

What interested me most about the entry was the section regarding the "Otherworld", and its temporal relationship to the normal world. As I was sketching out ideas, trying to come up with something, it dawned on me that the Pouaki could theoretically be incredibly old, given the way time passes in the Otherworld. With that in mind, I started on something that looked like an evolutionary step between dinosaurs and birds, and then gave it a bit of a magical look on its outer edges to suggest its capability to move between worlds. 

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