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Cavetown by SpikedMcGrath Cavetown by SpikedMcGrath

At the confluence of the great subterranean rivers, beneath the green glaciers and sheltered from the blinding snowfields lies the isolated settlement of Cavetown.

Many generations ago the nomadic tribes of the frozen tundra took shelter in this cave and have remained there ever since- their small band growing into the prosperous settlement you see today.

In the middle, towards the top- you can clearly see the temple garden where the high priests congregate. This is one of only three places in the cave where sunlight reaches, and where plants can grow, giving it great significance to the people. Only during festivals or ceremonies are citizens permitted to enter the garden, and fallen leaves from the holy red tree are worth a half-dozen catfish to the average villager.

To the left of the garden is the temple itself- its many lanterns burning fiercely. A typical example of Cavetown architecture- it uses a strong stalagmite as a central pillar on which the roof is supported- the roofs are thatched with long reeds that grow at the rivers edge in summer.

Towards the bottom right you can see one of the eel pools, where catfish and eels are farmed for food. They are also hunted from the lake far below and from the many rivers and lakes that extend deep beneath the mountains. High above some sacred finches fly. The local people believe the glowing birds are spirits of their ancestors, and tend to spoil them rotten. In return, the birds hang around, and their bioluminescent feathers provide a valuable light source to the villagers.

Light is a big deal to the people of Cavetown- so they adorn their houses with torches blazing with catfish oil, to show off their wealth and status. Light is also a necessity for navigating the precarious terraces and pathways that jut from the cave walls, so acolytes from the temple are tasked with keeping the pathway lamps lighted day and night.

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Add a Comment:
 
:iconschizocatgirl264:
schizocatgirl264 Featured By Owner Nov 10, 2015  Hobbyist Artisan Crafter
Should put that in a video game
Reply
:iconspikedmcgrath:
SpikedMcGrath Featured By Owner Nov 10, 2015  Professional Digital Artist
I'd love that :D
Reply
:iconrndave:
RNDave Featured By Owner Aug 19, 2015  Hobbyist Traditional Artist
:clap: :+fav:
Reply
:iconalphadyne:
Alphadyne Featured By Owner Edited Aug 12, 2015  Student Digital Artist
can i have your skills please? just for a little bit...
Reply
:iconspikedmcgrath:
SpikedMcGrath Featured By Owner Aug 13, 2015  Professional Digital Artist
I would let you but the paperwork is just... *shudder*
Reply
:iconthelonelygolem:
TheLonelyGolem Featured By Owner May 4, 2015
Dangit! Why does this not exist in real life? Very beautiful little village here, makes me think of "A Story About my Uncle."
Reply
:iconspikedmcgrath:
SpikedMcGrath Featured By Owner May 5, 2015  Professional Digital Artist
Thank you :)
Hadn't heard of that before, but it looks fun
Reply
:iconthelonelygolem:
TheLonelyGolem Featured By Owner May 6, 2015
Great game. Should play.
Reply
:icondracowormart:
DracowormArt Featured By Owner Mar 13, 2015  Hobbyist Filmographer
very cool! :)
Reply
:iconmensjedezeemeermin:
MensjeDeZeemeermin Featured By Owner Mar 13, 2015
Just utterly wonderful.  Beautiful, great sense of depth, wonderful whimsy mixed with natural beauty and grandeur.  Thank you for shraring it!
Reply
:iconspikedmcgrath:
SpikedMcGrath Featured By Owner Mar 14, 2015  Professional Digital Artist
Ohh you! Thanks :)
Reply
:iconalex-29:
alex-29 Featured By Owner Mar 11, 2015  Student Digital Artist
very nice
Reply
:iconspikedmcgrath:
SpikedMcGrath Featured By Owner Mar 11, 2015  Professional Digital Artist
Thank you :)
Reply
:iconalex-29:
alex-29 Featured By Owner Mar 11, 2015  Student Digital Artist
YOU'RE WELCOME :)
Reply
:iconuriak:
Uriak Featured By Owner Mar 11, 2015  Hobbyist Digital Artist
Doing landscapes with a backstory is neat! I really ought to it too, especially as I love the idea of subterreanean cities.
Reply
:iconspikedmcgrath:
SpikedMcGrath Featured By Owner Mar 11, 2015  Professional Digital Artist
You should! Once you start thinking about a back story for your artwork all sorts of new questions and ideas pop into your head-  it makes you think more and it's a good way to add depth to your art
Reply
:iconuriak:
Uriak Featured By Owner Mar 13, 2015  Hobbyist Digital Artist
True. :) I'm just currently struggling more with my lack of training. Most of the time I wonder how much time should/is spent to achieve a given level of detail. For instance, could you tell me which resolution you worked with for this piece?
Reply
:iconspikedmcgrath:
SpikedMcGrath Featured By Owner Mar 13, 2015  Professional Digital Artist
Well this one was was 4100px by 6000px. It took me a few spare hours here and there strewn over several weeks.

General principle: Always work with the highest resolution your computer can handle efficiently- you can always scale down from there when you're done.
When I say "handle efficiently" I mean your brushes have to feel nice and fluid. No brush lag. The more little irritations you feel when painting the less time you spend painting.

I'm sure you've heard this before but don't obsess over detail! People often don't even notice things that can take you all day to paint :/ Save the detail for focal points!
Reply
:iconuriak:
Uriak Featured By Owner Mar 13, 2015  Hobbyist Digital Artist
I guess I'm gonna try ramping up my working res, then, (even it means getting more sober on layers)
Thanks for the fav, btw, even if that one was far from my more detailled works!
Reply
:iconzaddy23:
Zaddy23 Featured By Owner Edited Mar 10, 2015
This is beautiful, I love myself a bit of backstory too.      Awesome 
Reply
:iconspikedmcgrath:
SpikedMcGrath Featured By Owner Mar 11, 2015  Professional Digital Artist
Thanks :) It was only intended as just a rough painting but I got really into it...
Reply
:iconpetethegrouch:
PeteTheGrouch Featured By Owner Mar 10, 2015
Like something straight out of an RPG.. Beautiful. Clap 
Reply
:iconspikedmcgrath:
SpikedMcGrath Featured By Owner Mar 11, 2015  Professional Digital Artist
Thank you :)
Reply
:iconotikuy:
Otikuy Featured By Owner Mar 10, 2015
wow, wonderful!
Reply
:iconspikedmcgrath:
SpikedMcGrath Featured By Owner Mar 11, 2015  Professional Digital Artist
Cheers :)
Reply
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March 10, 2015
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