petal shape

The Complex Geometry of Islamic Design

In Islamic culture, geometry is everywhere. You can find it in mosques, madrasas, palaces and private homes. This tradition began in the 8th century CE during the early history of Islam, when craftsman took preexisting motifs from Roman and Persian cultures and developed them into new forms of visual expression. 

This period of history was a golden age of Islamic culture, during which many achievements of previous civilizations were preserved and further developed, resulting in fundamental advancements in scientific study and mathematics. Accompanying this was an increasingly sophisticated use of abstraction and complex geometry in Islamic art, from intricate floral motifs adorning carpets and textiles, to patterns of tile work that seemed to repeat infinitely, inspiring wonder and contemplation of eternal order.

 Despite the remarkable complexity of these designs, they can be created with just a compass to draw circles and a ruler to make lines within them, and from these simple tools emerges a kaleidoscope multiplicity of patterns. So how does that work? Well, everything starts with a circle. The first major decision is how will you divide it up? Most patterns split the circle into four, five or six equal sections. And each division gives rise to distinctive patterns. 

There’s an easy way to determine whether any pattern is based on fourfold, fivefold, or sixfold symmetry. Most contain stars surrounded by petal shapes. Counting the number of rays on a starburst, or the number of petals around it, tells us what category the pattern falls into. A star with six rays, or surrounded by six petals, belongs in the sixfold category. One with eight petals is part of the fourfold category, and so on. 

There’s another secret ingredient in these designs: an underlying grid. Invisible, but essential to every pattern, the grid helps determine the scale of the composition before work begins, keeps the pattern accurate, and facilitates the invention of incredible new patterns. Let’s look at an example of how these elements come together. 

We’ll start with a circle within a square, and divide it into eight equal parts. We can then draw a pair of criss-crossing lines and overlay them with another two. These lines are called construction lines, and by choosing a set of their segments, we’ll form the basis of our repeating pattern. 

Many different designs are possible from the same construction lines just by picking different segments. And the full pattern finally emerges when we create a grid with many repetitions of this one tile in a process called tessellation.

By choosing a different set of construction lines, we might have created this any of the above patterns. The possibilities are virtually endless.  

We can follow the same steps to create sixfold patterns by drawing construction lines over a circle divided into six parts, and then tessellating it, we can make something like the above.

Here’s another sixfold pattern that has appeared across the centuries and all over the Islamic world, including Marrakesh, Agra, Konya and the Alhambra. 

Fourfold patterns fit in a square grid, and sixfold patterns in a hexagonal grid. 

Fivefold patterns, however, are more challenging to tessellate because pentagons don’t neatly fill a surface, so instead of just creating a pattern in a pentagon, other shapes have to be added to make something that is repeatable, resulting in patterns that may seem confoundingly complex, but are still relatively simple to create. 

This more than 1,000-year-old tradition has wielded basic geometry to produce works that are intricate, decorative and pleasing to the eye. And these craftsman prove just how much is possible with some artistic intuition, creativity, dedication along with a great compass and ruler.

happy (belated) birthday to our beloved sunshine ♡

we don’t fall in love with soft smiles or bright eyes or a bank account with more numbers than our birthday
and we don’t fall in love because of extravagant outward expressions of infatuation; we don’t need a trail of rose petals or heart-shaped chocolates

we fall in love because of the little things that no one even notices
like when they wake up in the morning and checks on you first, instead of their phone
like when they make you coffee just how you like it and leave it to wait for you until you’ve woken up
like when they get you a copy of that book you once told them you can’t wait to read, even though your room is already overflowing with books you haven’t read yet
like when you come home and find your favorite flowers sitting on the kitchen table “just because”
like when you once told them that you love flowers, but hate it when they die, and for your next anniversary, they got you a flower carved out of soap so it can live forever in your room
like when they post a picture of you on instagram just because they want to talk about how lucky they are to have someone as beautiful as you
like when you feel like you’ll never smile again but they effortlessly make you laugh
like when you feel lost and they remind you how to anchor yourself
we fall in love with the things that nobody even thinks of
the things that we don’t even notice at first
the little things
that slowly become the big things
—  poptartskitty said: can you write something about a bunch of reasons people fall in love??
(cc, 2017)
voiceless #2

This ending won the poll:

Hanahaki Disease GOOD ending - Lance has feelings for Keef. However, he can’t say anything because his voice is gone. But everything turns out fine and Lance’s voice is back :)

here’s part 1

And here is part 2! whoops it’s a lot longer and langstier than i originally intended

WARNING: yup there’s still LOTS of langst even if the ending is good, best prepare yourself


“Shut up, you stupid boy. I ought to get rid of your whiny voice.” Lotor snapped before grinning with realization. “Perhaps I should.”

Lance’s eyes widened. No, he can’t do that, it’s all I have, it’s all I have from Earth, it’s all I am, I’m useless if I’m voiceless, please, no, anything but that-

But Lance couldn’t say anything. He couldn’t talk, god, he couldn’t breathe, he was choking. He couldn’t do this to Lance, he couldn’t take his voice away. Lance desperately grasped at his throat with his sweaty, chained, hands. No, no, no, no… 

“Foolish human, I haven’t even done anything. You really are pathetic,” Lotor spat, looking down at Lance’s trembling, crumpled form as if Lance was nothing more than a pesky piece of gum on the bottom of his shoe.

“N-no-” Lance’s breathing was labored and forced. “-don’t, please-” Lance’s voice cracked, and it sounded so broken and weak.

“Reduced to begging at my feet?” Lotor cackled, voice shrill and unforgiving. “How fun this will be. Tell me, little paladin, all of your secrets.”

Lotor was approaching, looming over Lance, and he couldn’t do anything. He was helpless to whatever sick thing Lotor had in plan for him.

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Bluestar, for anon

shes my second favorite, after hollyleaf…… and you cant tell me she wouldnt be covered in scars. made her a blue spotted tabby silver smoke, combining my hc moonflower (blue silver spotted tabby) and stormtail (longhair black smoke) I was told this is genetically impossible so nvm!! this is just an overly fancy design now lmao. She’s got her mothers beautiful long nose and strange petal-shaped ears. 

i think i maybe overdesigned her a little but. eh it’ll do for now

2

Boo ya! I actually love this story. It took me a bit of reworking to figure out how I could keep the OUAT elements whilst also keeping Loki in character, but I did eventually get there. If you want some soundtrack for this, play “Where’s Hiccup?” from the HTTYD OST at the line detailing the flower “gifting [Loki] a second chance”. Thank you to the anon who asked for this one; @chloecat48 also wanted to be tagged. Hopefully you all enjoy!

Prompt[s]: Can you write a Loki x reader where the reader is captured by an enemy of Loki’s and is put under a sleeping curse (OUAT style), Loki believes the reader to be dead and administers the kiss that saves the reader? 

‘I Will Always Find You’

They called it Witch’s Hollow. To some, the name was purely fictitious; a myth woven like cloth and strengthened by years of superstition to keep small children from wandering too far into its depths. However, a handful of people knew that the shadows in Witch’s Hollow held eyes of wicked green. The stories were not just to keep the children away…

On any other day, the glade would be calm. Nothing more than the odd bird song to fill the air. Today, however, brought change. A timid fox emerged from her den, raising a curious snout to the sun and sniffing twice. She pushed her head fully into the daylight and shook off the dirt behind her ears. Suddenly, those ears pricked upward, and her focus turned north, dark eyes narrowing as she felt a rumbling in the soil.

When the drumming hooves got louder, the fox turned and scurried inwards once again. The horse’s flanks rippled with every hoof and his breath huffed out in rhythmic bursts. His rider was cloaked in green, leather reins in one hand, and a compass in the other. They snapped the lid of their compass shut, and pulled the horse to a halt.

The oak tree stood proud and strong, roots firmly planted into the surrounding area. From the outside it appeared no different to any other oak tree. However, when the rider took their boot to it, the trunk tore like paper and they were able to climb inside, needing only to duck their head as they did so. The tree’s interior was bigger than it appeared outwardly, lanterns in each corner of the darkened room being the only indicator of the room’s size; dark magic was at work here, but there was no other choice…

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anonymous asked:

gorgeous gorgeous gorgeous!! i love your nouveau stuff ;o; do you have any advice/tutorials for drawing filigree?

hello! i’m guessing you’re talking about the art nouveau kind instead of the generic one

the most important thing in art nouveau is long, graceful lines and a very intentional, calculated placement/shapes of concentrated detail to create airiness while avoiding clutter, wrong shapes and boring empty spaces; so you really have to think about:

  • overall shape and amount of space taken up by the filigree/element as a whole
  • overall shape and amount of space taken up by more detail-heavy areas
    • for these two, you might want to refer to the more common shapes in art nouveau (it’s more visible in jewelry design, i think the most common is an elongated guitar pick/flower petal kind of shape)
    • rene lalique made a peacock brooch which really sums up the importance of the overall shape created by your detailing
  • the general kind of detail that is involved (this can be pretty subtle? i find that one of the ‘wrong’-looking things that people do is give their swirls more than two whirls so to speak) (basically you want either sweeping, gentle elegant curves and ellipses but it really depends on your subject/general mood)
    • the key is to pare the details to the minimum required to create the mood that you want to make (usually people over-detail and things end up looking more rococo, which isn’t a bad thing in itself unless the aim was specifically art nouveau in which case they missed the mark)
  • the angle of your curves, at least in the long sweeping portions of your filigree (this is going to sound a bit odd but usually it’s 30 degrees within a 90 degree angle or just the horizontal 0 degrees)
  • a good way to make things interesting is to have parallel lines, lines that diverge from the same point, or regularly intersecting lines like this

alphonse mucha released a book called Documents Décoratifs, which includes a whole bunch of art nouveau design elements, trims, compositions, silverware designs, etc., which will definitely help you familiarize yourself with the kind of curves and shapes that will help your work fit with the aesthetic (a bonus composition exercise might be to block out the general areas in white, grey, and dark grey depending on the level of detail to see how he separates the page; honestly the cover itself is a good example)

i think you might also notice though that usually visual artists don’t use a whole lot of filigree (alphonse mucha’s poster styles tend to rely more on sweeping lines and strategic placement of detail, usually via flowers or drapery, as well as careful division of the canvas into certain shapes); if you look at art nouveau furniture or architecture though you’ll find better, much more clear examples of the kind of stuff you’re looking for

good luck anon! art nouveau depends a lot on subtlety and you’ll find that even a small change can make things look better or worse, which might sound intimidating but also it means that the more you experiment the more you’ll be able to nail down the mood you want in one go in the future!

eta: i have an art nouveau tag

Host Club - Sungwoon Au

- Admin Xion <3

Originally posted by choigiraffe

genre: fluff but like mature fluff ?
member: ha sungwoon
word count: 1065
requested: yes
side notes: this scenario is mainly based off of ouran highschool host club, the anime. this scenario itself made me, the writer, shookt 



requested by: pinksungwoon [fuck off annie ily <3]


can i get an ouran highschool host club au with wanna one??? it can be any member you want!!



- for those of you who dont know what ouran highschool host club is
- its an anime where a group of guys serve girls some drinks for a certain amount of time and entertain them
- sorta like a maid cafe but
- with boys
- and themed shit
- and no maid costumes or cat ears
- well sometimes cat ears but-
- anyways
- also ouran highschool host club also takes place in a really rich school
- so your friend, lets name her jeongju, was dragging you to the club
- in which was something you honestly didnt want to do for multiple reasons
- you tried to prevent from going there bUT NOPE
- as you entered, 11 guys stood there in a line smiling brightly as some had fake cat ears one matching the colour of their dyed hair
- “welcome! all i wanna do, wanna one-immida!” they all chanted
- you stood there, slightly questioning life as jeongju squeeled
- two guys [in which both of them wore cat ears and chokers] assisted you guys to a seat and served you both tea
- since tea was the only option there
- “we are…” one out of the two said
- “ONG”
- “NIEL”
- “IS”
- “S C I E N C E !” they said as they clasped their hands together
- jeongju was in shock as she was blushing so hard
- you softly smiled
- in a way you wanted to laugh but didnt
- “oi? is this your first time coming here?” one of them said as he pointed to your nose very very closely
- “yess..¿” you replied
- “OOO! WELCOME! IM DANIEL AND THIS IS SEONGWOO!” he introduced
- “whats yourrrr name?” seongwoo asks
- “i’m y/n, im in third year,” you replied
- “ohmygod, third year? sungwoonie is in third year!” daniel spoke happily as he suddenly got all jumpy
- jeongju, whom was still dying couldnt even speak properly
- daniel and seongwoo made eye contact as you stared at them both blanklessly
- “RIGHT LETS DO THAT” seongwoo said after their intense eye contact
- “fucking telekinesis,” you said to yourself
- “we’ll be right back!” daniel spoke
- they both skipped off as you sat there and drank the tea from the rose petaled shaped teacup
- jeongju wandered off to the short looking guy and the guy who looked extremely handsome and had a group of girls surrounding him
- soon enough, a boy whom was being pushed by daniel and seongwoo approached you a bit confused
- he sat across from you as he shyly smiled and daniel and seongwoo bLASTEd off
- “h-hi! y/n right?”
- “mmhm, sungwoon? you’re in my class right? sorry if im wrong,”
- “yup! so it’s your first time coming here?”
- “yeah, seems interesting,” you replied
- sungwoon softly chuckled
- “everyone here sorta as their own persona, i guess. like ongniel is that one couple everyone ships despite some of the girls wanna have both of them, and over there is daehwi. the most innocent playful child you’ll ever meet,” sungwoon spoke as your eyes scattered the whole entire room
- “so what does that make you?” you asked
- “guess,” he replied
- you observed his whole body
- he wore quite grunge-casual clothes as his hair was styled nicely
- “the normal one?” you replied
- you both softly laughed as he shook his head
- “nope,”
- “then what are you?”
- “it’s best if you find out for yourself,” sungwoon replies with a cheeky smirk
- you played it off and nodded
- “you should come to next weeks host club, it’s royal ball themed,” sungwoon suggested
- “royal ball? as in, big poofy dresses and guys in suits?”
- “okay- not big puffy dresses but classy dresses and yes- guys in suits,” he replied
- you hesitated a bit to reply
- “sure,” you said hastily
- “i mean- you don’t have too if you don’t want too,”
- “how would i figure out what category you are if i dont hang out with you then?”
- “well said,” he replies
- tIME SKIP WOOOOSH
- being convinced you decided to go to the ‘royal ball’
- and like every other fanfic
- you wore a black well fitted dress with high heels
- with hair parted and curled
- as it exposed a part of your collarbone and dangling earrings
- you entered the host club as you spotted jeongju already there trying to make conversation with the innocent daehwi
- you noticed a door open as sungwoon exited tying up his tie all sloppy
- as he took a few steps away from that door another girl left
- he spotted you as he approached you
- “hey y/n,” he spoke still tying his tie terrible
- “hey, uh, did you just come out of that closet with a girl?” you questioned as you decided to take his tie and tie it for him
- “maybe, wasn’t really into her though,” he spoke
- “o h? thats interesting,” you replied as you finished tying his tie
- “and dont get the wrong idea, it was just a small-”
- “make out session- i see i see,” you interrupted as you slightly chuckled disbelieving him
- music began to play
- and no- not your edm hype music
- your “royal ball slow dance” music
- “may i have this dance?” sungwoon asked cheekily as he placed out his hand
- “you shall,” you replied
- sungwoon placed his hand on the back of your waist as you followed his lead within the dances
- “you’re waist is really thin. are you seriously wearing a corset?” sungwoon asked as you did a small turn
- “nope. i hate them, they make it hard to breath,” you replied
- sungwoon grinned softly
- “so you’re saying your body is naturally this beautiful?” he asks with a smirk
- god hes so smooth
- im shaking in my boots
- i wrote it but its too much for me
- you scoffed a bit as a small smile formed
- “maybe,” you replied as sungwoon twirled you around
- “look at that, you’re already like a princess,” he commented as he placed his hand at the back of your waist again
- FUCK THIS IS TOO MUCH FOR MY HEART TO HANDLE
- suddenly, he pulls you in closer as both of your steps become slower and slower
- as you only soon get lost in the look of his eyes
- as that small smirk remained on his face
- he leans in closer and closer
- and immersed his lips onto yours
- “hey sungwoon really knows how to keep up a persona,” daniel spoke
- “wait whats his persona?” guanlin asks
- “you dont know?
- hes the flirt of the group,” said seongwoo

nepenthe (m)

members: jeon jungkook, reader, a hint of jin on the side.

words: 5,261

summary: you’re jin’s soulmate. jungkook is an immoratal who’s been bound to you from the beginning of his existence. he’s helped you through everything in your past lives. this time is no different once you discover commitment isn’t your best friend.

a/n: this may or not be the start of a small series, idk depends on whether or not i finish my list by my birthday lmao. but anyway happy EARLY birthday @jinxkook​!! since this was meant to be posted on your birthday, and i prepared a sweet lil letter and all, i’m not gonna delete it, but i sincerely hope it’s a good day for you, you really deserve it dude. stay happy (and please take care of yourself) much love. ;]


Originally posted by jjks

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The Flowers We Speak

A/n: something for Marichat May: copycat. Gahhh. Flowers and a prequel to retrouvailles essentially. Can sort of stand alone?

There’s a hardly a star to be seen beyond all the golden lights of the city. The sounds have all become a vaguely muted hum, wrapped up in the petals of his hurt.

(There’s such a strange quiet in the aftermath of a farewell. He is still numb from where she’d kissed him goodbye just two days ago.)

He can feel the ache of loss thud harshly in his chest, boring jagged roots through his memories and affection.

He’d tried to laugh. He’d tried to smile after she said she wanted to keep her secrets. He’d tried to leap high enough into the sky, that he just might touch the cold stars in the distance.

But trying to catch a star is like trying to hold a ladybug. It’s thing that happens to a lucky few and he’s not necessarily the luckiest cat in Paris.

His tears are blurring the way. The city lights distort into starry flares that are useless to him. He can’t make wishes on them.

(And for once he’s glad he blends in so well to the night. Because an official statement has already been made. Ladybug and Chat Noir have officially retired.)

The quartier he arcs over is vaguely familiar. Beyond all the smell of smog and dirt and vague smell of sugar, there’s something intangible and sweet.

Familiarity pierces dully through his thoughts as his next jump takes him into the roof across the street from a strange corner building.

The gilded letters of the boulangerie glitter dimly in the lamplight. He’s not sure why he’s ended up here of all places. He’s not sure why, but he’s hurting and the smell has flowered into something freshly wonderful in his haze.

His keen eyes spot a splatter of color on the terrace. An orang lawn chair nearly creaking with the weight of all the potted flowers place haphazardly on it.

The closer he looks, the more he realizes that the entire area is covered in blooms. Here, a clutch of peach colored roses flutter delicately in the breeze. A brief smattering of lavender that curls against the railing. Creamy cyclamen flowers ringing the small table that rests closer to the back.

Curiosity gives him his last prompt. Makes his legs tense and aim for the little terrace that belongs to one of his good friends.

He lands quietly, enough that’s he’s sure he wouldn’t wake up anyone.

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I Don’t Care (Dylan Strome)

Anonymous said:

Could you do number 34 with dylan strome? ps I really liked your last auston matthews imagine!!

#34: “You broke what?!?” - “Don’t worry, I’m okay.”

Word count: 974

Originally posted by smolsnakeking


You happen to think you have the best boyfriend in the world. Dylan really is a great guy; he always surprises you with your favorite flowers, takes you on little dates on a whim, cooks you breakfast in bed and, most importantly, he cares immensely about you. You haven’t had the greatest luck with relationships, so having Dylan as a boyfriend was something that you really had to get used to. Even though you really did love Dylan and were happy to brag about how great he is, sometimes he acts like a complete idiot.

Alex and Dylan are having one of their ‘bro days,’ which mainly consists of the two of them sitting at someone’s house and being dumbasses together. On this particular day, you’re studying in the den for a big test you have coming up, listening to the sounds of Dylan and Alex messing around in the living room. At one point, you hear the two get hockey sticks out and start calling to each other.

“Do not play hockey in the house!” You yell, not bothering to look up from your textbook.

“Yes, Mom!” Alex calls back at you as you roll your eyes, not giving him the time of day. It’s quieter in the house, so you can only assume that they took their game outside. You get back into the studying zone, intently memorizing the different facts that were mentioned on the study guide, when suddenly it happens.

Shit!” You hear Alex yell out as a loud crash is heard from the next room. You freeze, fearing the worst as you set your books aside.

“Be quiet!” Dylan hisses.

“What did you break?” You ask, not wanting to get up quite yet. Dylan cautiously laughs.

“Definitely not the coffee table!” Alex yells, letting out a yelp immediately after.

“You broke what?” You slowly stand up and make your way to the living room. Dylan and Alex freeze, shuffling to hide the carnage behind them. You clench your jaw and close your eyes, breathing deeply.

“Why in the hell is there a hockey stick through the coffee table?” You ask, deadly calm. Sure enough, there’s a hockey stick sticking straight out of the nice coffee table that your mother had gotten you as a housewarming present when you and Dylan had moved.

“Don’t worry, I’m okay.” Dylan says sarcastically. You shoot him a glare that causes his gaze to wither under you. You open your mouth, trying to figure out what to say before finally just closing it again, clenching your hands at your sides. You’re pretty sure that you’ve never been this upset at Dylan before, not even when he accidentally sent a nude photo of you to half of his contacts. Your eyes well up with tears as you turn away, walking quickly to the bedroom so that Dylan can’t see how upset you are about a damn coffee table.

After slamming and locking the door behind you, you slide down the door and fall to the floor, crying. In all honesty, you’re not quite sure why you’re so upset about the table. It is just a piece of furniture, after all. Really, though, you think that you’re so upset because Dylan just doesn’t listen to you. Everything you say or do, he usually always counters with a snarky remark before continuing on with what he was doing. You always tell him that he’s going to break something if he doesn’t listen to you, and now it’s finally happened. You can faintly hear the front door opening and closing, but at this point you don’t really care. ‘Let them run to their friends and tell them all about how Dylan’s crazy girlfriend snapped,’ you think. ‘I don’t care anymore.’


You wake up to the door jabbing you in the back. You groan and roll over, holding a hand up to your eyes in an attempt to block out the light suddenly streaming into the room. You can see Dylan’s silhouette against the light, a shy smile on his face.

“Babe?” He leans down, stroking your hair from your face. “(Y/N), hey, you awake?” You nod and mumble out what you think is a response. “Why’d you fall asleep on the floor?” He asks. You shrug, sitting up.

“I just did.” You’re still the slightest bit mad at him for what he did, even though you shouldn’t be. Dylan holds out a hand.

“Can you come with me for a minute? I have a surprise for you.” You shoot him a curious look, not quite sure what the surprise is. You take his hand anyways, letting him lead you to the living room. You gasp when you reach the living room, hands flying up to your face.

There’s rose petals everywhere as soft music plays on the speakers, the only light in the room coming from the candles strategically placed throughout the room. The centerpiece, however, is the new coffee table, which has petals in the shape of a heart on it.

“Oh, Dylan.” You breathe out, not sure what else to say. “You did this for me?” Dylan shrugs and rubs the back of his neck.

“We should have listened to you. I’m so sorry for being the biggest dumbass in the world. Forgive me?” He asks sheepishly. You look at him for a few long moments before quickly walking towards him and pressing your lips roughly against his. Dylan’s taken aback at first, but quickly responds to the kiss, throwing his arms around you and falling back onto the couch with you. You finally break the kiss, breathlessly grinning at him.

“You’re forgiven. But if you break another coffee table it’s going to take at least double the amount of candles you have tonight.” Dylan laughs and kisses your nose as your eyes flutter.

“Deal.”

venus in aries: a glowing fire twirler, sparkling flames of fiery hearts into the ether
venus in taurus: a woman of the earth, her hair twirled into the vines, her fingers shaped like petals
venus in gemini: a bubble that pops a pinata of cosmic candy, captivating conversation, and cool charisma
venus in cancer: a sail into a sea of moonlit madness
venus in leo: a carousel ride around the cosmic princess palace, a caramel crown of the heavenly heiress 
venus in virgo: a flickering fairy of the flowers, a mind glowing with beguiled nature nourishment
venus in libra: a goddess rising from a bed of strawberries, cream, and roses, a mesmerizing enchantress with the love of the divine spilling from her eyes
venus in scorpio: a crystal temptress, the most curious puzzle, a captivating mystery that seduces with bewitched luminosity
venus in sagittarius: an enchanted wander through the pure heart of a divine guru, the archer’s shot of glowing hearts into the heavens
venus in capricorn: a majesty of the highest accord, resting on the most ascended star, her hands coated in sparkling glossed snowflakes
venus in aquarius: a tiny angel of humanity whose voices radiates powerful social love, appreciation, and change
venus in pisces: a charmed doll that lies by the seaside, watching her lover rise and fall with the tides, she guides sailors home with the light in her heart

cherry

anonymous asked:

78 & 94

78. Can you be romantic for once?

“What’s this?”

Robert snapped his head around, surprised to hear his husband home so early.

“No!” he protested, suddenly panicked, scuttling towards his husband and grabbing him by the shoulders, turning him around and bundling him straight back through the front door and into their porch.

“What you doing, Robert?!” he moaned, face screwed up in confusion.

“You’re home early,” Robert explained playfully. “You’re not mean to be back yet, it’s meant to be a surprise.”

Aaron sighed, unimpressed.

“Why are you moody?” Robert queried, more than a little annoyed that not only had Aaron come home early and ruined the surprise, but that now he was acting like an ungrateful teenager.

“Because, Robert, I’ve been at the scrapyard all day in the pissing down rain and my feet are fucking freezing and now you’re telling me I can’t even come into my own home to get warm?” Aaron snapped at him.

Robert’s temper flared.

“Sorry, but I was only trying to do something nice for you!”

“Well it’d be nice if you’d just let me inside my own home, Robert! So move!”

Robert huffed out a breath in disbelief, standing hands on hips with a tea towel in his hand as Aaron pushed past him and back into the house, heading straight up the stairs for a shower.

It was thirty minutes later when Aaron reappeared, Robert back at the stove making the finishing touches to his starter, table now laid out with the candles and rose petals Robert had intended for Aaron to walk into before he’d ruined the surprise.

Aaron winced at the sight of it, feeling more than a little guilty that he’d dismissed Robert’s plans with his mood earlier.

He stood in the doorway, leaning up against the door frame with his hands in his pockets.

He was waiting for Robert to turn around and see him, but he was too engrossed in his culinary masterpiece, so Aaron had to cough to get his attention.

Robert turned to face him, eyebrow raised.

“Sorry,” Aaron muttered quietly, the words sticking to the back of his mouth.

Robert sighed, unable to stay mad at him when he realised he was wearing that tight, black sweater than Aaron knew he loved him in.

“You finished being miserable?” he asked, almost light-heartedly.

Aaron pushed himself away from the doorframe, and sauntered over to Robert.

“What’s with the…stuff?” Aaron gestured towards the kitchen table that Robert had decorated with rose petals and heart shaped table confetti. “Are you gonna feed me off your fork, too?”

Robert rolled his eyes.

“It’s for our anniversary,” Robert explained. “It’s, y’know, the kind of romantic thing people who are in love do for one another.”

Aaron raised his eyebrow.

“Bit soppy, though, ain’t it,” he teased, and Robert looked up to see the glint in his eye.

“Can you be romantic, for once?” Robert pleaded, leaning to get something out of the oven and flicking off the heat as he did so.

“I did get you a card,” Aaron smiled sheepishly as he produced a rather large red envelope from behind his back.

Robert looked at him and softened immediately, pausing to take in the growing smile on his husband’s face as he ripped open the envelope.

He read the message on the front of the card, simple and understated.

To my Husband, on our First Anniversary.

He opened it up and saw the printed message inside.

Thanks for the best year of my life.

And then he glanced to Aaron’s scribbled handwriting underneath.

Messed up with you forever, Robert.

Love you.

Aaron

X

Robert’s heart imploded in his chest, and he bit his lip as he looked up at his husband, doe-eyed and overwhelmed with the sentimentality of it.

“Shut up,” Aaron dismissed, embarrassed, without Robert having said anything.

“I knew there was a romantic in there, somewhere,” Robert teased and he placed a kiss on Aaron’s lips.

“No chance,” Aaron denied, despite himself. “And anyway, I don’t need to be romantic. You’re romantic enough for the both of us, aren’t ya?”

I’ll do 94 for you tomorrow :)

Forget Me Not by Team Todo

Todomatsu’s life has been absolutely perfect, not a thing out of place. All his life up until this point has been exactly as he’d hoped, living successfully and bringing pride as the only Matsuno son. That is, until a strange man catches him on his way home one day and gives him a petal-shaped gem. 

 One that fits perfectly into the five-petaled necklace he’d had all his life. 

Was this really his life?

As part of challenge 4, to write a novelette. Please enjoy~

You can read the novelette here.

The historicity of Satine Kryze

I feel kind of awful discussing Satine Kryze after so many weeks of Maul but, well, when in Mandalore…

Duchess Satine Kryze is pacifist the ruler of Mandalore first introduced in The Clone Wars episode The Mandalore Plot. Her initial design was drawn from an unused McCaig concept for The Phantom Menace, but it has also been stated that Cate Blanchett was a key influence in her overall design. (given the appearance of Governor Pryce in Rebels season 3, it’s apparent that Blanchett is someone’s favourite over at LFL.) Blanchett’s role as Queen Elizabeth I was particularly drawn on, Satine’s key costuming borrowing many late Tudor/early Elizabethan elements, and certain parallels between the two women’s lives. 

L: Elizabeth as portrayed by Cate Blanchett with Robert Dudley (Joseph Fiennes) in Elizabeth. Preparing to be escorted to her incarceration in the Tower of London at the order of her sister Queen Mary I (’Bloody Mary’). R: Satine Kryze being rescued from her imprisonment by Obi-Wan Kenobi in Lawless.

Satine, as a young woman, lived her early years constantly at threat during the Mandalorian Civil War, her pacifist ideology at odds with ‘true’ warrior-like Mandalorian ways. Eventually peace was brokered, and Satine ruled over the New Mandalore even as violence, danger and oppositional factions brewed. In a way this could be seen to draw from Queen Elizabeth I’s tumultuous childhood: first as a child out of favour with her father King Henry VIII, being the child of ‘treasonous’ Anne Boleyn, then as a protestant young woman in the reign of her Catholic half-sister Queen Mary I. In this time Elizabeth was raised as a figurehead for Protestant rebellion, which eventually led to her detainment in the tower of London despite her claim of innocence. Throughout her reign Elizabeth faced a number of incidents of opposition from catholics and the Roman Catholic Church, though her attitude was one of pragmatic compromise in many aspects of religion. These parallels are loose but notable in their broad brushstrokes. 

Original Amidala sketch by Iain McCaig for The Phantom Menace

When designing Amidala for The Phantom Menace, McCaig was working through a ‘Space Nouveau’ aesthetic, borrowing elements from the works of Mucha, the Pre-Raphaelites and retro-futuristic romance of the first half of the twentieth century. Technology and nature in harmony. This design, when stripped back for animation to be practical, emphasised those now notably familiar Star Wars lines that borrow from Japanese fashions, whilst still retaining the Romantic aspects. the shapes of Satine’s headpiece echoes the increasingly elaborate ruffs and wired collarettes that grew exponentially throughout the fashions of the sixteenth century. The headpiece and gown are also heavy with symbolism: shell earrings and embellishments, the repeating petal shapes in her sleeves, skirts and tabbards as well as the literal lillies woven into her hair and headpiece loudly communicating her pacifism. She is visually placing herself within her own principles for all to see, decrying the past violence of her people, and the relative simplicity of this costume despite its ceremony (block colours and controlled embellishment - though the fabrics are clearly indicated to be silks) saves her message from being drowned out. These symbolic embellishments have been a popular aspect portraiture for centuries to communicate and sway power and impressions, in portraits of Elizabeth I the symbolic choices appear in their multitudes from props to tiny embellishements to the very styling of her hair. In the famed Rainbow Portrait (below) of Elizabeth I - a fantasy portrait painted late in her reign, but depicting a young newly crowned queen dressed for masque - embroidered eyes and ears show that she is a queen that Sees and Hears all. A queen in absolute control of her land. 

L & C: McCaig’s design reworked and streamlined by Killian Plunkett to work both within The Clone Wars aesthetic and for the character. This is a great example of concept recycling and adaptation for character, as when this design was originally selected as a base design for Satine, it wasn’t known that she would be quite so active and ‘dynamic’ as she ended up in the episodes. [X] R: The Rainbow Portrait, 1600-02, attributed to Marcus Gheeraerts the Younger. 

This organic silhouette at odds with the old is also visible in Satine’s landscape. Mandalore was designed drawing heavily from the Cubist movement in the most literal way. Their cities are built inside cubes within their destroyed environment. Sharp angles occur in everything from buildings, hair, food and ice cubes, floor texturing. Interspersed throughout are the diamond shapes and lines of Mandalorian armour, shifting into an Art Deco boundary between the Cubist harshness and Satine’s Nouveau romance. This mid-design point means that Satine is not entirely in opposition with her environment - her world and her people. These diamond shapes are present in the cut of her open oversleeves. She visually acknowledges Mandalore’s history whilst representing the new. (Equally, this could be seen in that her costume - despite it’s ceremony - holds little impediment to action and self-defence when necessary.)

The main plaza on Mandalore, clearly showing the Cubist influenced design, complete with detailed mural depicting the war with the jedi, and repeating diamond shapes.

Satine’s next notable costume looks a lot like she just walked out of an ‘80′s fantasy film and it is fantastic. The romance is heavy in this look with the long, soft lines and the muted pinks, particularly as she and Obi-Wan investigate the Death Watch on the industrial Concordia. She wears a shortened surcoat that mimics the cut of a man’s doublet, a fashion that was favoured throughout the sixteenth century, and appeared in both French and Italian fashions (Italian styles fell out of favour in much of Europe in the latter half of the century as Spain became increasingly influential.) This fashion has appeared, heavily embellished, in a number of portraits of Elizabeth I, reflective of her dichotomy as woman and sovereign, as expressed in her famous address at Tilbury, 

I know I have the body of a weak, feeble woman; but I have the heart and stomach of a king 

Satine’s ‘80′s adventuring costume.

The harsh cutaway style of Satine’s surcoat also mimics late eighteenth century frock coats and equestrian fashions, clearly communicating to the audience that is Time For Adventure! even whilst calling back to the late Tudor fashion for skirts cut to reveal heavily embroidered petticoats. Again, echoes of those Mandalorian armour diamonds are introduced in this cut, whilst organic elements are retained in shell detailing and the floral line of her chemise. Satine, too, must address her dichotomy of being in her very appearance.

L: Portrait of Mary Stuart (aka Mary Queen of Scots), c. 1559, Francois Clouet. R: Portrait of a Noblewoman, c. 1580, Lavinia Fontana. Mary Stuart is shown in a French doublet-styled bodice, whilst Fontana’s portrait is in the Italian giuppone style. The possibility of a Mary Stuart influence in Satine feels particularly apt given their mutual martyrdom. Mary, a devout Catholic who also lived a tumultuous life at odds with her country, was executed by Elizabeth for her movements to depose the heretical English queen. 

Satine’s final costume - in both its forms - is by far her most interesting and most historical. Its basic silhouette is a slimmed down take on the late Tudor/early Elizabethan bell shaped gown using the verdugle, or Spanish farthingale. As I mentioned above styles were influenced by politics, and the Spanish styles were favoured from the marriage of Katharine of Aragon to Henry VIII until late in Elizabeth I’s reign, when French fashions were favoured due to threatening war with Spain. (Anne Boleyn was known to have been bold in her favouring of French fashions as a couriter in the time of Katharine of Aragon, though styes were generally mixed.) Obviously Satine is not wearing a farthingale - it would be impractical, and her gown is later stripped away. But this is a politically influence shift in style: the symbolism in dress is stripped away, the flamboyance is gone. I have joked in private that maybe Satine borrowed the Naboo royal dressmaker, but there is little doubt that her ceremonial costume was designed with an eye to the wider galactic stage and what would be recognised as regal garb. This is a much stricter silhouette - upright, austere though still richly (but subtly) embellished. It is a design turned inward. Those Cubist elements are creeping into the lines of her skirt as she is taking a stand for her people and for New Mandalore.

L: Duchess Satine Kryze in Shades of Reason. C: Elizabeth I when a princess, c. 1546, attributed to William Scrots. This early fashion for oversleeves is also evident in Satine’s first ceremonial costume, as is the split skirt. R: A Young Lady Aged 21, Possibly Helena Snakenborg, Later Marchioness of Northampton, 1569, the British School (a personal favourite.) Here you can see shoulder rolls and the broad neckline with delicate open infill. 

Again, we are seeing a dichotomy between the feminine and masculine, her sleeves and stand neck calling back to those borrowed from the pourpoint doublet, the sleeves studded and bracciali, shoulder rolls, taking on the look of armoured pauldrons. The broad neckline introducing that diamond shape yet again and placing it directly against petal shapes of the stiff stand collar mimicking the guimpe, typically soft infill, now strengthened and yet vulnerable and exposed. Satine is strong in her beliefs, but the ground beneath her feet is vanishing rapidly. 

As this arc progresses, the costume is ripped, stripped away and softened. Embellishment - such as her jewels and belt - are removed, her hair is loose, her skirt shortened. It is here that those Cubist elements become even more apparent in the front tabbard-like section of her skirt, echoing the split-skirt Tudor fashion. Interestingly, these stylistic elements were favoured by Elizabeth when she was young, unstable in her position as princess and then, later, queen. 

Satine Kryze, deposed, imprisoned and the worse for wear.

It is relevant to notice at this point Satine’s colour palette. Her main colour is blue - particularly this deep prussiany blue - feminine whilst also strong. The colour of Mandalore. She and her people are not part of the war, but at this point she is caught - personally - between the personal vendettas of Maul and Obi-Wan, both of whom are sliding into bloody reds and browns. She is the middle ground, trapped. Pinks and reds emerge in her costumes at various points when she is knowingly heading into danger, the pinks of her Adventuring costume, the red of Coruscant costume when she is on the run in The Duchess of Mandalore. Satine’s primary ceremonial gown has elements of purple and greens - she is in power, and in control. A ruler in her prime. But in this final arc she is blue and stripped of everything but her principles, and yet perhaps at her most Mandalorian? Considering Padme’s watery funeral gown, it appears that blue is the colour of martyrdom. 

Next Time: The path unfollowed: the heroics of Padme & Leia

Last time: Darth Maul and the fashion of Nemesis - Part II