Tuesday, March 18, 2014

Sarkond's Flying Ship

The savage world of Iridar has no modern technology as we know it. You don't see barbarian warriors checking their smartphones nor do you see hospitable courtesans warming up snacks in a microwave oven. But there is magic, which works by its own laws and gets things done. Sarkond the Enchanter wasn't the most pleasant person, but he was a great magical technologist. This floating airship was one of the most outstanding of his achievements. Sarkond frees the hero Chandar and his burly mentor companion Bram from prison and transports them on the airship to the ice wall surrounding the city of Iophar, where he plans to use the powers of Chandar's magical axe to chop through the barrier. 

The ship doesn't fly very high; as described in the book it floats over the sea or ground at about no more than a hundred feet. The green color around the hull is a sign of its mag-lev (magical levitation) technology. While its levitation is magical, it sails like a regular ship, using wind to propel it. In my conception, the sea-going ship is equipped with magical artificial bat-wings along its hull, which serve as steering and possibly extra speed when needed. The ship can withdraw the bat-wings into the hull and seal the entrances if it wants to float on the water like a conventional ship. Sarkond and his belly-dancing companion Mnadis occupy the captain's quarters which you can see at the stern of the ship. This amazing craft, alas, was destroyed when the ice walls crushed it.

Pitt technical pen in black ink with marker colors on sketchbook page, 6" x 5 1/2", March 17-18, 2014. I used a drawing reference for the ship from the excellent volume "The Book of Old Ships," by Henry B. Culver, illustrations by Gordon Grant.

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