There’s some strange things going on with some of the shading, and I really don’t like how I did that fire, but I think this is a good first pony. I’m happy and proud that Mattatatta’s stylish art and character design got to be the subject for my plagiarism learning experience.
heylasfas and I were in the vendor hall yesterday at EFNW and we saw that a little girl was helping out at one of the booths and making cute drawings. Heylasfas had the idea to commission the girl, whose name is Ella, for a drawing of Pippywish.
After a little wrestling with the internet, we gave her a reference and left her to work on it. We came back an hour later and were absolutely floored by her work. Her attention to detail is really good and thoughtful, and I especially love how cute and adorable Pippywish is. The mane, the little tufts, even the heartbeat lines I draw in eyes are present!
Enough doom and gloom, time for my honestly favourite thing to draw: CUTE PONES
Here, have a cute, festive Pippywish!
“I decided to help raise money for charity this year! It’s very cold most nights, but I get to ring the bell as much as I want so that makes it okay. When somepony drops a bit or two in the bowl I get so happy that I have to ring the bell even more!”
Pippywish knew that there was once a pony who loved the night very much, and somehow, that pony found herself in the moon where she could gaze upon stars and planets and everything! She could even see what this planet looked like up there!
After learning that there was a pony living in the moon, young Pippywish spent many an afternoon playing make believe. With her friends, they played out daring adventures to the moon, divine teaparties with the mare that lived there, and always came down in their applejuice-powered lunar ship just as the schoolbell rang.
Oh, how wonderful would it be to actually meet her! The pony up there must know everything about the stars! Maybe she’d like to have a visitor who’d ask lots of questions? Maybe Pippywish could take her own telescope and stagaze on the surface of the moon - that sounds like so much fun!
The mare in the moon could be Pippywish’s best friend forever!
‘I’m not sure if you’ll want to meet her, Pippywish, she’s actually very, very mean'
A few seconds of wriggling later, and the Earth pony’s head popped out from the duvet and plopped onto the pillow. As the door opened and light from the hall poured in, Pippywish shut her eyes and feigned being asleep.
The heavy hoofsteps immediately told her that her father was home now, but she didn’t move - it would give away the act!
Pippywish’s father, a plump but strong stallion, smiled at his fellow stargazer and gently brushed a stray lock of her mane from her face. He nuzzled her gently so he wouldn’t wake her, and then carefully plodded over to the window - avoiding the creaky floorboards as Pippywish noticed. A low thunk dropped onto the floor, followed by the stallion’s ‘hmph’ of approval, and a moment later Pippywish’s father walked out and closed the door behind him.
It wasn’t until Pippywish heard the last hoof leave the bottom of the stairs that she sat up in bed once more. She stared across to the window on the opposite wall, landing her gaze on the three little stars she could usually see from her bed. In a blink of an eye, a shooting star leapt between them and traced a purple streak in the sky. The little pony smiled, and then looked at what her papa had left behind.There, propped up against the window sill, was a box.
With a furrowed brow, Pippywish slipped out of bed and crept over to the box. The moonlight brought out the deep purple and gold colour scheme as near-black and pale yellow, and with a similar night-tinted sheen over the lettering, Pippywish quickly deciphered the text on the mystery box.
The Earth pony flung her hoof over her mouth before she could squeal in joy. Her father had given her a brand new telescope - the one that she had been told was too expensive for him to afford.
Taking this as a sign of divine intervention, Pippywish cast an excited and giddy look up to the moon, mouthing 'thank you’ to her new best friend. She looked back at the telescope and then out to the stars that would soon feel much closer to her now.
Light flickered in her room, and without knowing better Pippywish whirled around expecting to see that a falling star had landed in her room. She was wrong, and the light grew from behind her and then winked out with a metallic jingle.
Pippywish glanced back, seeing only the wall beside her window. Something was different, though, and it wasn’t until she stepped into the moonlight that she realised that it was her who was different.
She had earnt her Cutie Mark.
Pippywish’s stocky hooves could not hold her happiness back.
How could a pony be ignored so easily when she shared such a wonderful talent with everypony? How could poor Princess Luna be made into such a meanie? Did nopony like her sky? Did anypony really look at her sky? How– Why did this have to happen?
Pippywish sat up in her bed and stared across to the window on the opposite wall. Even through a little window, Pippywish could see a few twinkling stars beckoning to her. Taking great care to not step on the squeaky floorboards, Pippywish slipped out from under her covers and quietly shuffled over to the window sill.
The mare in the moon shone down upon Equestria, and the little Earth pony looked up at the pony trapped up there. Alone. Without knowing if anypony even looked at the moon anymore.
The words came naturally, and flowed about as well as a filly her age could make them.
Princess Luna…? Um, hello. This is Pippywish, and I uh, I just want to tell you how much I love what you did with the night. Momma says that you’re Nightmare Moon now, but I don’t think that changes who you really are. Sometimes, when I get really mad I say some really mean things too, and sometimes I get called a nightmare too! Lots of fillies and colts get called that sometimes, but it doesn’t change who anypony is. Nopony is a nightmare forever, right?
I… I just want to say I love your night. I love the stars you arranged before you went away, I love the shades of blue and purple you used for the sky - they even match my eyes and coat! Oh! I love those beautiful, streaky things… what did Momma say they were? Shooting stars? Oh yes! I love those too! And I especially love your moon and how it helps me not step on the squeaky floorboards.
Pippywish giggled and clamped a hoof over her mouth. For a few minutes, the little pony waited in silence to be sure she had not been heard downstairs. She breathed in gently, tracing a circle in the wood grain on the window sill.
Momma says you fell out with your big sister. I don’t have a sister, but I think it’s like having a best friend that has the same momma and papa as you, so it’s probably no different to falling out with friends. I once got very mad at Knick Knack for tearing some pages out of my astronomy book. I uh, I may have hit him once or twice, and he hit me back, and then we both got sent home and grounded. Did you get grounded, Luna?
Well… I was angry at Knick Knack for a long time - almost a whole week! But then he said sorry, and then I said sorry, and now we’re friends again, so it was happy in the end!
Princess? You don’t have to be grounded forever. You shouldn’t stay in your moon without any friends or your big sister. If.. if you want we can be friends. We could talk about the stars - I love the stars! We could be best friends even! I… I just wish you didn’t have to be alone every night.
Pippywish heard a stir downstairs, and as soon as hooves started clacking up the steps, the little pony skittered back to her bed, leaping before a squeaky board and landing at the bottom of her covers.
Are there other ponies who like looking at the stars? Why don’t many ponies wait for night as they do day? Why does the sun hide away all the stars? Do they need to sleep too? Why is night time so short? Couldn’t it last for a whole day? Maybe forever?
‘No, Pippywish, not forever.’
'All of these questions! My, you’re really abuzz inside that clever little brain of yours! But it is time for bed, Pippywish, you know the rules.’
Oh, okay… Night night, stars! Momma say night night too!
'Night night, stars!’
Night night, mare in the moon!
'Night night, mare in the– hm’
What’s wrong, momma?
'Do you know the story of the mare in the moon, Pippywish?’
Questions about anything and everything quickly became questions about anything and everything to do with the night. Pippywish learnt that the night sky was very different from the day sky. While day allowed ponies to see with ease, the sky only went up so high before nothing could be seen beyond the sun’s brilliant rays. Once the sunlight left to grace another part of the world however, the view of space - as the scholars simply named it - became crystal clear. This balance between night and day had been so for more years than little Pippywish could grasp, but the balance seemed fair - like taking turns on the swing at the playground, she once said.
‘Yes, much like that.’ said the grown ups she spoke to.
Strangely, an answer like this only rose more questions - an unusual occurence in Pippywish’s mind.
It should not come as a surprise, then, that a filly with a virtually endless imagination would be drawn to the endless possibilities of a starlit sky. To Pippywish, there was no greater reward for having a good day than seeing it off with a show of stars upon a moonlit stage. Once the sun bid farewell for the day and parted the curtains for twilight, the young Pippywish could often be found leaning against her bedroom window, eyes cast upward, and enjoying radiant twinkles and enchanting auroras that night would bring.