something i'd love to see from the eldritch!skywalkers au is either anakin or leia saving their boys from a threat and going out to town with the 'angry rampaging hell-monster' aesthetic as they raze entire armies to dust with their fiery gaze (1)
(2) and han/obi-wan cracking a witty joke to hide the fact that they are scared shitless by the display (also i am so sorry to tell you that i have taken to calling your eldritch!anakin cthulukin aND YOU CANNOT STOP ME *runs away at high speed*)
“Close your eyes,” says Anakin, his breath quick and hot in Obi Wan’s ear, and Obi Wan finds himself obeying, clamping his lids shut. Sensible phrases, Kenobi-phrases, teeter on the edge of his tongue – we are surrounded, this is not the time to start to order me about padawan-mine, we cannot defeat this many Seperatist droids – but he swallows them back (why? he’s never in his entire life felt that Anakin knows best about anything, ever, and yet – )
He closes his eyes, pulls his awareness of the Force right against his skin so he is only aware of the movement of the hair on his arms, and nothing beyond that. His heart jumps into his mouth beats. Once. Twice. And –
The light flares across his closed eyes. For a moment he sees his own capillaries. The light, and then the noise: tearing metal, screaming –
Then: a ghastly silence. The reek of smouldering electronics. The smell of blood. Obi Wan uncurls an inch at a time, aware that – at some point – his legs had given out. He does not remember falling to the floor. He does not remember clutching at his ears with his hands and he certainly does not remember bleeding from said ears. And yet he did, and he did, and he has, and there are spots of red on his palms.
All around them is death.
Anakin stands in the midst of it. His eyes are the burned orange of industrial skies. For a moment the heaps of the blackened, broken droids flanking him are part of his body: great wings arching towards the sky. The blood of the Seperatist high command congealing around his feet is a great lolling tongue; the heavy-bellied stormclouds behind him (where did they come from, did he summon them) is his mouth, his hungry and endless mouth –
A profound terror comes over him. Anakin Skywalker is a monster, a monster.
And then he smiles. It is a small smile; a frightened smile. A child’s smile. And the terror drains away; Obi Wan isn’t a man facing a monster, but a Jedi facing his padawan – his padawan who is pale and trembling and blood-stained and scared.
“They were going to kill you,” says Anakin, still smiling that small, tight smile. “They were –”
“I know,” says Obi Wan. “I know.”
Anakin falls into his arms. Obi Wan sinks to his knees in the bloody slurry that had been a proper battlefield, not seconds previously, and kisses Anakin’s forehead.
“Has anyone ever told you,” he says, “that, just very occasionally, you go over the top?”
Here’s week 5 of our Artist Q&A for team Geneologie! This is Helen!
+ How do you work best? | I work best with some background noise. I like listening to documentaries, Korean pop, ‘Whose Line Is It Anyway’, or Celtic music. I am used to a rambunctious family, and noise can be comforting. I also have a 6 month old Shiba Inu that sleeps under my desk. Having a work buddy makes all the difference.
+ What’s your background? | I grew up in Vermont with my father working in the ski and snowboard industry (he introduced me to many types of art at a young age). My mom worked as a printer for many years. I remember staring at her light table when I was little. I went to college at the Savannah College of Art and Design, and received my BFA in Illustration. I work on all sorts of projects in my free time: Dungeons and Dragons style games, labels, custom tattoo design, and lots of fan art.
+ Favorite place you’ve traveled to? | Honestly my favorite place is in Vermont behind my parents’ house. I think I only knew how much influence that place had after I moved away. I spent my childhood playing in the woods and building mountain bike trails, going on midnight snowshoes, and endless days hiking. I can still smell the fallen leaves of autumn and the bright cold crisp air at -5.
+ Favorite medium to work with? | I really love sketching; building an idea and having loose, sketchy lines. I usually refine the sketch and ink it. I like seeing an artist’s process, and I so often like my sketches better than the finished piece of work.
+ Describe a real life situation that truly inspired you. | We had to do artist interviews in one of my introduction to illustrations classes in college. I decided I was going to try and get in contact with Kinuko Y. Craft. She does some of the most detailed illustrations I have ever seen. I was not sure if she had the time or if it would be easy to get in contact with her, but I did talk to her. I talked to her for an hour and a half. She was so kind and really took the time to explain things to me. I really am grateful for that hour and a half.
+ What is the weirdest job you’ve had? | I was an intern for a designer one summer and I helped pour paint (and clean it up) over famous snowboarders for a photoshoot. Nothing too weird.
+ Why art? | I’ve always been interested in art. My parents helped cultivate that interest, and have always supported me. Not once did they question the path I chose. Creating for me is breathing. I feel lost and stuck if I don’t create a little something every day.
+ Tell us an embarrassing moment. | I passed out in my 11th grade biology class when they were talking about amniocentesis. I’m really afraid of needles and I can not listen to stories that have to do with medical things.
+ What do you do to get inspired? | I like making color schemes and that usually helps me to figure out a subject matter that would be appropriate. I really enjoy making terrariums and often just looking at some of those plants. Nature makes such beautiful patterns. I have a few books that really inspire me…Jugendstil-Schmuck//Art Nouveau Jewelry, Japanese Design Motifs, Ukiyo-E, The Art of Japanese Print, and Lalique. I love Art Nouveau and looking to the past artists for inspiration.
+ What is something you can’t do without? | My puppy Umeko. She makes everything better.
+ What is your favorite drink? | Milk, most any kind of milk. There is usually always 2% milk and chocolate soymilk in the fridge. Almond milk and rice milk are also delicious.
+ What is your favorite book? Favorite movie? | I struggled with reading for a long time so the first book that made me fall in love with reading in 6th grade was The Alanna series by Tamora Pierce. She was a magic welding lady knight. My favorite movie is hard to pick…way too difficult. I can give you a few: Hellboy, Everafter, Song of the Sea, and Howl’s Moving Castle.
+ Do you have a nickname? | Hardware Helen. My parents have owned a hardware store since I was 14, and I have been helping out at the store since I was 12. I have a lot of information about hardware…you want to know what brand of paint is going to have the right coverage and if you’re going to need a primer? I can help you with that. What size copper fitting are you looking for? ¾ elbow? You need me to match that bolt? Would you like it in stainless steel? It looks like its a 8/32 pan head. I like hardware projects.
+ What is the best and worst thing about being an artist? | I can not stop. I don’t take days off…which makes me really afraid I am going to burn out. I work with the wonderful people at Geneologie during the week, and during the weekend I work on freelance projects, commissions, and getting ready for conventions. It is often times exciting and scary at the same time. I want to try my best at everything I do and I really like working/being busy. My favorite thing is when I create something and it really clicks with people. I get some messages on my Tumblr and they are so often messages of support and thanks. That is really an amazing feeling. I try to let the artists I follow know how much their art has inspired me. Having a connection with someone through art is a huge motivation in my life.
Volvo-Powered Ecogroomer could make the perfect ski slope a little greener
The Ecogroomer is a new grooming solution for ski slopes that aims to cut fuel consumption and costs. The system consists of augmentative grooming units that make standard groomers more efficient than ever before.
While going green is a cost-saving measure or nice PR move for many businesses, it’s a necessity for the ski industry. Without delving further into the hot topic of global warming than we need to, suffice it to say that even the smallest hint that the earth could warm to the point that snow becomes a memory is enough to get every ski resort executive in the country shutting off his lights and recycling his beer cans.
We’ve already seen a solar powered ski lift, and now a company called Ecogroomer is rethinking ski grooming equipment in order to make it cleaner, more efficient and less expensive. Instead of reinventing the large, tracked grooming machines that currently smooth snow out into its soft-skiing form, Ecogroomer builds upon those existing machines. Its system consists of self-powered augmentative grooming units that attach to each side of a traditional grooming machine. Each one has its own small engine and grooming equipment, allowing the machine to cover 200 percent more surface area on each pass-through.
According to the company, its machines increase fuel efficiency by 30 to 35 percent over current market offerings. Company numbers indicate that if major resorts used Ecogroomers in place of part of their grooming fleets, they would collectively save 20 million gallons (75.7 million liters) of diesel fuel and US$150 million by 2020. It’s not entirely clear what percentage of resorts and groomers those figures are derived from, and the company did not respond to an email requesting elaboration.
Ecogroomer even suggests that the cost savings could be passed on to the consumer in terms of lower lift ticket prices. Unfortunately, given that grooming is just one of many costs to operate a ski resort, there’s no guarantee that the adoption of Ecogroomers would lower or steady ticket window prices. That claim reads like wishful public relations speak, at this point.
In order to help pry its way through the door of a rather small, tight-knit industry, Ecogroomer plans to essentially lease its equipment for the first few years. Instead of selling machines directly to resorts, Ecogroomer will charge the resorts a usage fee based upon the number of hours the resort actually uses the equipment. That fee will cover any necessary maintenance and will save resorts the expense of buying equipment up front. It will also give resorts a relatively risk-free way of trying the Ecogroomer equipment out.
Now you might be wondering: why not just cut out grooming equipment entirely and save money on equipment and fuel while cutting out all emissions? That’s a fair point, and some resorts do indeed groom little to no terrain. However, ungroomed terrain only appeals to some skiers and can become quite hard, icy and dangerous if it hasn’t snowed in a while. So yes, ski resorts could eliminate grooming, but for most, that would also eliminate a lot of business.
Ecogroomer announced recently that Volvo will supply the engines for its equipment. It plans to work with several other US and Canadian companies in manufacturing its units, and will get its first units to resorts around the Rocky Mountains by the 2012-13 ski season. It will then increase availability across North America and onward to Europe.
We’ll leave you with a piece of random trivia. The two illustrations shown above were done by James Niehues, an aerial topographic artist who has rendered trail maps for ski resorts across the United States and the world.