So this was the final for my Gesture class, in which we had to design a character. I opted for two characters because its easier for me to develop characters when I’m working with more than one.
I decided to go with a Norse and Turkish girl concept for two reasons. One being that I was already behind on the project and since I’ve already done research on Norse/Viking culture (and already have a folder full of reference), it would be easier on me and I would be able to focus more on researching for the Turkish girl. The second reason was I wanted to create two characters who contrasted. I wanted the different backgrounds, cultures and lifestyles to clearly reflect in the two characters.
The story for these two characters was this:
In the late Medieval Era, a Turkish Nobleman has received a grave threat on his life, his wealth and his family. Paranoid of those around him and unable to trust those anyone, he seeks help from the outside. Due to their famed battle prowess and unwavering loyalty, he convinces and hires a group of Norse merchants to act as his temporary bodyguards until he feels the threat has passed. The youngest merchant, a young woman named Dagny, is put in charge of guarding the Nobleman’s only daughter, Alara. They have a rocky start, mainly due to the language barrier, as well as the vast differences in lifestyle. However, over the months, and even years, the two develop a strong friendship.
Unfortunately, due to time restraints and stress, I do not believe everything is 100% historically accurate (but it is historic fiction, so I think I’m allowed some leeway haha). I had originally wanted the story to take place in the 10th-12th century but hunting down Turkish clothing for that period was a nightmare and the earliest labeled designs I was able to get my hands on were 15th century. I gathered some other designs that I believe might have been earlier, however, I could not find a date for them.
If this was a project I planned to develop further, I would most certainly take the time to research MUCH more and smooth out some of the questionable details. However, I believe it served its purpose in terms of a character design project.
We also had to choose an artist whom are designs were inspired by and I chose Claire Hummel (aka Shoomlah), one of my favorite artists. If you haven’t checked out her stuff, I would recommend it.