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About TreadingWater

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  1. Hi guys and gals! I really like to draw ponies so I thought that it would neat to show some of my drawings, some are pretty recent and some are older. Some of these are requests that I have gotten on Deviantart, some are drawings of my OCs and some are just drawings that I made for fun. I am still learning and am still relatively new to drawing digitally (on top of that I only recently got a new computer) so some of my earlier works are kind of messy in some areas. Please enjoy!
  2. As I mentioned earlier, this is a basic concept for one of my first characters. There is a lot more retooling and expanding on certain concepts that I am planning on doing before he is a finished character, you had some good points that I will take into consideration. I am sort of a newbie when it comes to making OCs so sometimes I just gets lost in my ideas and don't realize how unoriginal some of they are. I have a few more ideas when it comes to his backstory but I didn't want to write a 80 000 word document in case nobody would want to read through the whole thing. However, I think that you misunderstood what Blight actually represents. He doesn't represent decay, he represents corruption. Especially so the corruption of the mind and the heart. Hence the satanic symbols in the animal-parts I chose (goat representing Bathomet, fly representing Belzebub and both snake and dragon from the bible). It was something I didn't realize until I had chosen the animals but it fitted the theme really well. This is also why mind-control and manipulation is a big part of his powerset. I suppose that I perhaps could take the madness-angle a step further to make that clear. As well, the poison/pullution-part of his power is something that I am going to expand on in the future. And the reason he is vulnerable to the Elements of Harmony is that corruption doesn't take hold in places where the elements represented in MLP are still in place, it is the whole reason why he is able to take over Colshire as relatively easily as he did. His weaknesses is something that I am planning to go back to the drawing-board with, you are right in that it kind of sucks. I will concede that he is similar to Discord in certain ways but I am planning to make him a more serious threat. What I wanted to do with Blight was to make him an embodiment of what Colshire is compared to Equestria, a sort of dark reflection. Unlike Discord who might cause a bit of trouble but really won't do too much serious harm in the long-run, Blight causes disasters wherever he goes because he twists the minds of the ponies around him and makes them perform horrific actions they wouldn't otherwise do. And unlike Discord's little mindgames like in 'Return of Harmony', Blight's mindaltering can linger for many years and can be incredibly difficult to fully shake off. He is sort of like a demented sadistic puppeteer who enjoys the suffering of his puppets, breaking their minds and blackening their hearts for the sake of his own amusement. One of my early ideas was that he only existed inside the mindscape after he was sealed away and that is why he appears as a draconequus. Perhaps I could play around that a little bit? I have a lot of things to think about regarding this character and I will continue to work on him. Thank you for your input!
  3. Hi guys! I have been working on this villain-OC for a while now and, while I don't have a finished design yet that I can show, I do have a concept for my character. And as such, I would love some input before I start to design him in case my concept sucks. After all, I don't want to have put in a ton of work into a design (since all of my pony-designs are handdrawn) for a character that isn't even good to begin with. And by the way, he is supposed to be a dark menacing character so keep that in mind before you complain. My world of Colshire is a darker place, one where the once happy and peaceful kingdom has been shattered by one distaster after the other. So a lot of characters from there are darker and less cute and innocent. Just saying that beforehand. So with all that said, this is my first villain-OC and one that I had a lot of fun coming up with. Blight - The Embodiment of Corruption Genderless Species: Draconequus Powers and other Talents: Mindcontroll, Shapeshifting, Emitting poison and other harmful substances, Skilled actor, Incredible knowledge of the mind and the heart. Weaknesses: Relies almost entirely on mind-games, Incredibly vulnerable to the Elements of Harmony, Not a physical fighter, Is so confident in his ability to control and manipulate that he often overlooks a pony's capability to overcome his powers. Personality: Manipulative, he knows how to make ponies listen and how to make sure that his words sink in. Patient, he can lie in wait for years if his plans require it. Sadistic, both emotional and physical pain offers him much amusement and even more so when he barely has to lift a paw to cause it. Poetic, as mentioned he has an amazing skill with words and when he isn't plotting his next move he often puts together poems that he stores in massive volumes (one of which is said to be kept under lock and key in Colshire's royal library). Though incredibly beautiful and masterfully put together, it has been said that the ponies who read them for too long loose their minds. Appearance/Design: His body is covered with large sheets of dead skin that drapes over his head, back and the base of his tail. He has the head and left front-hoof of a pony, the right arm and one wing of a dragon, the horns and the left hindleg of a goat, the body of a raven, the right hindleg and a wing of a fly and the tail and eyes of a snake. Background: He is a mysterious evil that has haunted Colshire for hundreds of years, it is said that he was born from the chaos and corruption that ravaged the kingdom after the death of the king. He watched with glee as dark desires and thoughts begun to break free within the once innocent ponies and begun to see himself as the new ruler. He wrought destruction and misery wherever he went as the mind of the ponies warped within his presence and soon a good chunk of the population was under his control. However, his reign of terror was put to an end by the royal unicorns who managed to fight back against his corruptive influence and seal him away deep within the mountains in a dark cave. However, even thought Blight might have lost the battle, his legacy still lives on. The influence that he once had on the ponies can still be seen in them to this day, as their minds are still haunted by the darkness. This has led to increased crime and other illegal actions, especially from the cult known as The Keepers of the Fog who worships Blight. They are looking for a way to free Blight from his prison and it is said that he whispers to them in their minds, giving them instructions to prepare for the big day when he will be able to join them...
  4. The weeks that followed were like something straight out of a campfire story. Objects moved on their own accord, sometimes directly in front of her eyes. At night, she felt hooves streaking down her back and pulling on her tail. Sometimes the radio would turn on by itself, allowing sinister whispers to flow through the speakers. Whispers that promised unspeakable pain and suffering. Afraid of being branded as crazy or superstitious, Trixie kept quiet and endured her new ghostly tenant. She was asked by plenty of concerning ponies regarding her recent bouts of paranoia and insomnia, especially Starlight and Twilight, but she turned them away. They wouldn't believe her. It wasn't until roughly one month afterward that a nightmare-inducing incident in the bathroom convinced her to finally tell her friends what was going on. Trixie had been preparing for a warm bath to soak the autumn chill out of her body, as she sunk into the water a cold chill traveled up her spine and a high-pitched laughter made her coat stand on end. Suddenly the lights flickered and eventually died, smothering the bathroom in complete darkness. Emitting a faint glow from her horn, she anxiously looked around the dark room as she rose up to get out of the bathtub. An invisible force suddenly flung her down into the water and Trixie felt the air being knocked out of her lungs. Her head was pushed beneath the water and she thrashed around madly as she tried to get back up. Her panic grew as her oxygen was draining fast and her attempts to get air only resulted in water splashing everywhere. She kicked fervently against the bathtub, dearly hoping that someone would hear her. As she started to lose consciousness, the muffled sound of someone frantically banging on the door reached her ears and moments afterward the door was blasted open by a powerful spell. The force pushing her down suddenly disappeared and as she was able to breathe once more, Trixie had never been happier to see Starlight's face. She got a glimpse of a white, spectral shape gliding through the wall and she barely comprehended the world around her as a blanket was placed over her body and she was being led out of the house. By the time her mind caught up with her surroundings, Trixie noticed that she had been taken to Twilight's castle. The alicorn in question awaited them within the throneroom, anxiously pacing while muttering under her breath. Upon entering, Twilight immediately walked over and gave Trixie a comforting hug. "Thank Celestia that you are okay. Here, sit down." Twilight motioned towards a collection of pillows and Trixie laid down, her shaky legs buckling under her as soon as she got there. Starlight soothingly rubbed circles on her back and she settled down next to her, desperately wanting to comfort her friend. Twilight cleared her throat. "Trixie, I need to know what happened in the abandoned house. These incidents didn't start until after that visit." Teary-eyed of guilt, Trixie managed to retell the traumatizing events that had been haunting her both figuratively and mentally as well everything that happened afterward. It wasn't until she was done that she realized a particular detail in Twilight's sentence. "Wait, there have been more hauntings?" Twilight nodded and Trixie's heart sunk into her stomach. "There have been many supernatural incidents over the last month. Rarity's mirror started to warp her reflection and at one point tried to pull her inside. Pinky Pie was making cupcakes when the batter suddenly came alive and attacked her. And just the other day, Fluttershy was lured out to the train-tracks by a voice shouting for help and was almost run over by the train. And that is just the tip of the iceberg." Trixie began to cry, this was all because of her. Just because she hadn't been able to say no, so many innocent ponies had been put in danger. "This is all my fault. If I hadn't gone in there..." She was immediately hugged by the two ponies in the room, desperately trying to soothe their friend. Twilight gently lifted up her head, allowing their eyes to meet again. "You couldn't have known that this was going to happen. I am going to keep researching in the hope that I can find something in the old texts that can put an end to this. It is kind of tricky though, spirits are very rare here in Equestria so there is no concrete manual for these kinds of things..." Twilight turned to face the window, a serious expression present on her face. "The first order of business would be to recover the identities of the ponies that once lived there, uncovering and understanding a spirit's past is usually the most important part of getting rid of it. Hopefully, the Mayor might have some information. I going to contact her tomorrow." Starlight also enthusiastically added in her own two cents as well. "And I will be helping too, I will comb through every shelf of the entire library if I have to. I am also going to ask some of my contacts outside of Equestria if they know something that can help us." Trixie started to look up, Twilight had not failed her yet and few entities could stand up against the Elements of Harmony. Perhaps this nightmare would come to a close soon after all. But a small voice in the back of her mind kept telling her that it wouldn't be nearly that easy...
  5. Trixie knew deep down that this was a terrible idea. The old house had stood abandoned for many years and nobody remembered the ponies that once lived there, only that they apparently just vanished without anyone noticing. The house itself was falling apart and the ceiling was close to caving in, it was kind of a miracle that the house was still standing at all. There had been plenty of times where the prospect of demolishing the building due to the risk of cave-ins had been brought up but so far nothing had actually been done about it. Nobody was willing to buy it and restore it either. The cause of that being that plenty of ponies believed that the building was haunted. Echoing clapper of hooves in empty corridors, terrifying howls in the middle of the night, items and furniture moving on its own and ghostly faces; this house had it all. The first and only time someone seriously tried to bring the house down it ended with disastrous consequences and even more haunted hijinx that could have easily killed several of the workers. Tools went missing, heavy objects were placed on precarious ledges where they could easily fall on an unsuspecting pony, the electricity in the wiring was suddenly going haywire without any explaination and one pony almost being pushed down the stairs by invisible hooves all occurred within the first week of the workers setting hoof on the porch. The project was canceled due to nobody wanting to work on it and the house was left alone ever since. Until now. As she stood there looking up at the large building in front of her that sure must have looked stunning at one point on time, Trixie shuddered as all sorts of horrible scenarios began to play out in her head. Nightmarish images of her broken body lying at the basement of the marble staircase or drowned in the fishpond outside were sending shivers down her spine but she mentally silenced the voice telling her to flee. She had an image to keep after all. She had been dared by Rainbow Dash to go into the haunted house and bring something back that proved that she had been inside. Her first response had been to refuse but Rainbow kept poking at her pride until she gave in. So here she was, standing in front of the most infamous house in all of Ponyville. She took a deep breath and opened the broken door, carefully stepping into the Main Hall. The smell inside was unlike anything she had ever felt before, heavy and nausiating with decay. The wallpaper was peeling off the walls and a thick layer of dust covered everything within sight. Nothing seemed to be out of the ordinary. So far so good. Trixie jumped slightly as the floorboards creaked beneath her weight, frantically looking around for something to bring back so that she could leave this wretched place. She stepped into the foalie and to her delight spotted a small statue on top of an old piano. It was still intact and more importantly small enough to easily carry. As she took a few more steps across the threshold, a cold breeze made her shiver and she could swear that she heard a sinister voice whisper in her ear. Not wanting to remain in the old wreck any longer, she reahed out for her magic and grabbed the statue. She had not been prepared for what came next. The piano suddenly came alive in a horrifying fashion. The lid flew up in a grotesque parody of a jaw and an unnarutal sound was coming from its hollow casket, like a funeral-choir played on broken keys. Its wooden legs bent and twisted in ways that should not be possible and a pale blue flame inside its gullet emitted a sinister glow. Paralyzed with fear, Trixie's mind was going blank and she couldn't look away from the monstrosity that was rapidly stumbling towards her. She tried to run away but suddenly screamed out in pain as the living instrument had unhooked the wires from within its chassi and had latched on to one of her legs. The steel was digging into her flesh as the piano pulled harder and harder to try and get her to let go off the lightfixture that she was clinging on to for dear life, having no desire to know what was awaiting her within the monster's belly. Suddenly the light in the room swayed and Trixie looked up to see a massive chandeleer hanging from the ceiling, right above her adversary. She spotted the chain and fired off a magical bolt, praying with all her heart that it would be enough. Thankfully, Trixie was in luck that everything in the house was a decrepid as it was. The rusted chain snapped, sending the heavy chandeleer smashing into the floor and smashing the piano into hundreds of pieces. The second the pressure on her leg vanished, Trixie limped out the front-door as fast as her legs could carry her without looking back even once. If she had, she might have seen the pale fire rise from the remains. As the frightened unicorn limped home with shaky nerves, she never noticed the second quartet of hoofprints that followed her home. Nor did she hear the sound of faint laughter above the howling of the autumn winds.
  6. Well, for me there are a few things that are important to think about. The biggest factor here is to ask yourself what kind of villain that you are trying to make. Are you trying to make a villain that you feel really sorry for? Or are you trying to make a villain that you are scared of? After that, the single most important part of any villain to get right is their backstory and motivation. We need to understand why a villain do the evil things that they do in order to get invested in them. Their backstory is what forms their motivation so I am putting both into the same category. If you are going for a legitimately intimidating/scary villain, I personally think that it is really important to not make them too sympathetic. Off course, a good villain needs some form of humanity (or whatever the pony-equivalent is) in order for us to relate to them. But it is kind of hard to be afraid of someone while also feeling sorry for them at the same time. A little bit of sympathy is always necessary but a tearjerking backstory distracts for the fear that you are supposed to feel from the villain. Also, remember that a villain does need some positive character-traits. If they are comprised of nothing but negativity then they stop being interesting to follow. I would also give the advice to let them be a challenge of both the physical plane and the psychological plane. Have them really get into the hero's brain and make them question what is truly right and wrong or if they even are a hero at all. Maybe it is just my fascination with psychology but I always thought that a villain who can get into your head without having to lift a finger is far more intimidating than any superpower, that is part of the reason why I like the Scarecrow so much. One of the hardest fights to win is a fight against your own psyche. Don't make them goofy or annoying, that not only sucks out all the intimidation that they could have had (Dolores Umbridge could have been incredibly intimidating if it wasn't for how annoying she was) but it makes it hard for us as readers to take them seriously. Happy writing!
  7. Hello everybody! So a while back, I was thinking about what I was going to do with my two alicorn-OCs and after a time of thinking I came up with the idea of creating an entirely new kingdom for them and all of my other OCs, not too far away from Equestria (and our lovely cast of ponies) and similar in some ways but different in others. The idea for this kingdom went as follows: I pictured a kingdom that had once been peaceful like Equestria but fell into disarray after the alicorn that once ruled them passed away. The two new alicorns destined to rule the kingdom didn't get along and their fighting resulted in the kingdom being split down the middle by a large mountain-range, one side a beautiful grove of aging trees while the other was a craggy extension of the mountain. At the very north, there is a place that is always covered in snow and ice. Because of the unrest created by the change in leadership, dark powers have begun to sink its claws into both the citizens and environment alike and horrifying monsters emerges from the shadows. So something similar to Cephiro from Magic Knight Rayearth. My first question, embarrassingly enough, is what I should name it. I was thinking Coltshire at first but it doesn't sound enchanting enough. So some help in this regard would be really appreciated. The second is what you guys think about this concept. I have always wanted to tackle some slightly darker themes (like what happens to the ponies who die) but didn't want it to feel too out of place in the MLP-universe. We have seen from examples like the Crystal Empire that the ruler dictates the state of their kingdom in more ways than just the obvious, so a peaceful kingdom with a good ruler (like Equestria) would result in peaceful and kind citizens for the most part. But when a kingdom is in chaos and unrest, that negative energy spreads to the citizens and surroundings as well. I have a huge chunk of my cast, both heroes and villains alike, planned out with backstory and everything and all I really need to do is finish up their portraits. Is it too dark for MLP? If so, what kind of changes would you recommend? I would be grateful for any kind of advice, I am still kind of new to writing within the MLP-universe. Have a nice day and stay creative!
  8. As a struggling artist, I can safely say that I have a ton of fun drawing ponies and coming up with new characters. It is something that continues to bring me joy even when the rest of my life is incredibly dull and monotone. Any kind of constructive criticism on my work is very appreciated since I am still learning in many areas. I also write plenty of stories, both MLP-related and otherwise (not a whole lot published though since I am still working on them). Currently, I am working on the creation of my own kingdom where pretty much all of my OCs live and the myths that surround it. I have plenty of ideas and I can't wait to show them to you!