All righty, here we go – the last few drawings of Mermay!
First off, some character introductions. There’s Arlo, our firestarter merman. Super shy and withdrawn, he has been picked on and ostracized by other mermaids (none of the ones here – they think he’s cool) due to his “unusual” power of pyrokinesis. He tries to keep things under control, but sometimes, it can all come out at once…
One of Arlo’s biggest supporters, though, is Caspian, the punk merman. He knows what it’s like to feel like an outcast, given his status as one of the few male Sirens, capable of controlling people with his voice. He’s embraced it, however, and doesn’t care what people think at all. He’s super energetic and has a very upbeat personality, despite his appearance. He can be a bit reckless sometimes, but he means well. Honest.
Last up is Fen. Frankly, no one knows what Fen is. They are very clearly not from Earth, having appeared sometime after a meteor shower on a nearby beach. Anemone was the first one to discover them, taking them in once she discovered that they thrived in water, just like mermaids. They’re very curious and willing to learn, even if it takes them a few tries to get something right.
And there we go! All the mermaids, front and center! The other couple of drawings here are ones that I hadn’t gotten around to posting before. I really like the shark drawing – it definitely shows Octavian’s character.
And with that, Mermay is done! For me, least. Had a great time, it was fun drawing something new – but now, it is time to return back to our regularly scheduled I Draw Walruses.
These guys probably will show up again, though. Again, I have developed an attachment to these characters, as I am wont to do.
Hope you all enjoyed! And tell me which one your favorite is!
First up, we have Kai, a Carp Mer. He’s hydrokinetic, the most widespread of mermaid powers. A perfectionist, he is very hard on himself, constantly pushing himself to be the best. The other mermaids view him as very serious, but extremely loyal. It’s best to have him on your side – he’s very good at holding grudges. Also terrible at relaxing.
Which brings me to Octavian. He’s a bit of a mystery, just showing up one day and hanging out. He acts as a sort of yogi for Kai, helping him to slow down and achieve some sort of inner peace. He’s a gentle giant, on the soft spoken side, but hides a great deal of power. Like Lyric, he finds humans fascinating – especially their cuisine. He has made trips on land just for food.
Next up is Selkie. She’s a Seal Mer, specifically a Harbor Seal Mer. She’s on the quiet side – definitely more of a listener – and tends to be a bit awkward around others. She’s much more comfortable hanging out with her sea creature buddies, especially seals. She is not super fond of humans, especially when they hurt her animal friends, and doesn’t quite understand Lyric’s fascination with them. She is curious about selkies – mythical seal people who can shift between seals and humans, which she is named after. She’s yet to see one, but she’s hopeful. She is cryokinetic, able to control ice and snow.
Last up is Lore. Lore is a Crustaceous Mer, a very rare form of mermaid. She’s a bit of an oddball, living apart from the rest of the mermaids. She’ll sometimes say the strangest things, which always have a kernel of truth to them. She spends most of her times with her crab friends – according to Lore, they are much more friendly than lobsters, which tend to be gross.
One of the prompts was Star Wars (May the 4th, of course), hence the first drawing. But, I decided why not make that part of this particular character?
So, here we have Lyric. She’s a bit like Ariel, in that she is fascinated by humans, but mostly in their pop culture. Lyric especially loves science fiction, and what humans have done with the genre as a whole. She’s also interested in outer space, and the fact that humans have actually been out there and explored it blows her mind. Most nights, she can be seen perched on a rock, looking upwards and staring at the stars, sometimes dragging a friend or two with her. She is a descendant of Oracles, a high position in the Mermaid community, giving her the ability to see things no one else can. Which she mostly uses to spy on humans, because she can.
And then there’s probably one of my favorite characters I’ve drawn lately, Anemone. She’s a Jelly Mer, a rare kind of mermaid that’s half human, half jellyfish. She’s got a very buoyant personality, trying to keep everyone upbeat and cheerful. She’s willing to befriend just about anybody, as you’ll see later on. She likes all things frilly and lacy, and takes an interest in antiques and artifacts both mer and human. She’s very much a historian at heart, which is kind of what brought her and Lyric together: Anemone likes looking into the past, while Lyric is always looking into the future, so they balance each other out. As a Jelly, Anemone is capable of delivering “stings,” ranging anywhere from a mild shock to causing total paralysis. She only breaks those out when danger rears its ugly head.
So, I’m taking a break from Dot’s story (don’t worry, we’ll get back to that soonish) to participate in Mermay, which is what I’ve been doing for the past couple of weeks or so.
Basically, Mermay is like Inktober, in that there is a drawing prompt per day. You don’t have to follow it, but if you want to, you can. The main thing is that all the drawings feature mermaids. I’ve seen some gorgeous stuff on Instagram, and being the FOMO person that I am, I decided to take part.
And as is what happens whenever I draw new characters, I’m getting way too attached and giving them names and backstories, because I can.
I am going to try and post every day this week (whaaaat) because I’ve got a bunch of drawings that I just haven’t posted for whatever reason. I’m going to posting them in batches, mostly by character.
Today, we’ve got a lionfish mermaid named Leona. She’s one of the top warriors in the North Atlantic Army and a very well decorated hero. She’s very stoic, keeps to herself, and doesn’t open up to others very well. She’s got some issues that she’s dealing with, in the form of survivor’s guilt – as seen here with the death of her close friend Finnigan – and possible PTSD from her service in the army. She will start working on it soon, though.
…what a way to start the week. But anyways, enjoy!
Honestly, I just felt like drawing these guys. And from the look of things, they’ve gotten themselves into a bit of mess with some magical pests that just won’t leave…
I did say I wanted to branch out a bit and do more with other original characters that I have, sooooo…
I don’t know if I’ve ever properly introduced these guys, now that I think about it. From left to right, they are Thorn, Stella, and Miranda. Thorn’s a cactus golem, while Stella and Miranda are witches (more witches, Drew? Gasp). Still fleshing them out, but more will come, hopefully.
I’ve been wanting to post more art on Instagram for a while now, just to get more eyes looking at it, and I’ve been trying to figure out what I should be posting. I mean, I’ve got this backlog of comics here on this website.
The only problem is, I look at some of it, and…it’s rough. Or at least I think it’s rough. Especially the earlier stuff. So that’s probably just going to stay here on I Draw Walruses.
Maybe it’s just an artist thing to think all your early stuff is bad, I dunno. I mean, I’ve definitely improved on some level, thank goodness. Maybe I’ll redraw a few. Who knows?
I was scrolling through Instagram, as I am wont to do, and I kept seeing these different comics featuring these ghost-like, shadowy characters, most of which represented the creator’s anxiety/depression/whatever. And I thought to myself, “Hey – those kind of remind me of Dot.” Which was quickly followed by, “When was the last time I drew Dot?”
Dot is one of my oldest characters to date, preceding even Lars, who wouldn’t show up until middle school. She popped up sometime during 6th grade – I have this very distinct memory of first doodling her on some homework assignment that we were going over in class. Originally, she was just this black blob with eyes, based off of this one Powerpuff Girls episode where the girls take on different superhero personas, one of which was this dark, shadowy character with glowing green eyes.
So basically, Dot was a Powerpuff Girls rip-off. Because I was mildly obsessed with them back in the day.
I would usually draw Lars and Dot together, featuring them as this odd couple of best friends – Lars would be bright and cheerful, with Dot being all gloom and doom. Eventually, I would coin Dot as a living shadow, capable of shapeshifting into different forms, including a human one.
When I hit college, Lars and Dot both disappeared, as I moved onto focusing on art school and trying to survive. Then of course, I stopped drawing all together due to stress, anxiety, and a load of other fun mental things going on. So, everything took a backseat.
When I started up this blog, Lars came roaring back into the picture (clearly – he is the walrus here on I Draw Walruses). And yet, Dot stayed back, mainly because I had forgotten about her altogether. Which is kind of sad, when I think about it. Nobody deserves to be forgotten.
So, after seeing these comics, I decided to bring Dot back. With a bit of a redesign, as seen here, just to give her her own character, rather than being just a shadow with eyes based off of a cartoon. And I’m glad I did – I forgot how fun she is to write.
So. Dot. She’s back. And she won’t be soon forgotten.
I am well aware that I have a very small audience.
A handful of people reading this blog, a slightly bigger handful following me on Instagram – not a whole lotta eyeballs looking at my work.
So, one of the things that I do find myself fantasizing about is gaining that audience, having people follow me and seeing what I do. And maybe, if I got big enough, I could even try and make this a career. I mean, that was the dream when I was younger, right? Professional cartoonist.
However – and this is a very BIG however – there are moments where I pause and say, “Do I want that? I mean – really?”
Because people, in my honest opinion, are terrifying.
They whine if you don’t do this. They can rip you apart if they so feel like it. They complain, spread rumors, drag your name through the mud, try to get you “cancelled” – again, all terrifying.
There is this YouTuber that I enjoy, Kurtis Conner. Nice enough guy, I like his commentary. He had a friend who said something stupid, and suddenly he got dragged into it simply by association, being the bigger name. Another artist who just released a generally well recieved cartoon pilot is facing people digging up dirt from when she was a teenager – stuff that she had already apologized for and was, overall, generally irrelevant.
And don’t get me started on the Pokemon community as of late. That’s more than enough to make me want to hide under my covers forever.
So right now, I’m feeling stuck in this odd place – wanting to get my name out there, and scared of what would happen if I do. Fun stuff, all around.
I’m going to keep chugging along and drawing, of course. But, man. People. Exhausting.