Tanith Lee's fantasy tales are like opera or old-fashioned silent movies: over-the-top drama with stock characters who act on revenge or jealousy or greed. "Val Mala" is obviously an Evil character since her name is "Mala," like "Maleficent" or "Malware." She is dressed in "Hollywood Babylon" attire with white makeup on her face. I think I borrowed her image from an old film player from the silents era. The author writes in many of the details, including the nasty white cat.
Technically I was still searching for a good pen to replace my Graphos, and I was using a kind of reddish-brown ink which worked all right for thicker paper but which sank into thin sketchbook paper. I'm having the same problems with the sketchbook drawings with my Pitt pen, the brown line just isn't strong enough to stand up to marker colors. I suppose I could use colored pencils again which was my standard formula for my winery drawings. I won't use watercolor again in a sketchbook though, too messy.
Brown ink and watercolor on sketchbook page, about 3 1/2" x 6 1/4", September 1980.