Alter Ego Progress C: Hra, and the others.

The third blogpost will focus on the concepts and mainly sketches, digital and traditional, for Hra and Ún-Aier. Hra being the origin, and chaos and Ún-Aier being magic, trickery and creativity. These names, these deities, are part of the way that I am doing a school assignment called Alter Ego, have a look at the first progress post for a little bit more info on the assignment and my first thoughts and ideas! This first post is in Dutch though, but I would assume most browser are able to auto-translate webpages you visit.

The Spark

The spark for my idea of projecting my own characteristics came from two things (and maybe some more): the first one is the exploration of the self, in this case the me. What are some of my strongest characteristics, and what are some of my weakest characteristics; second are deities that belong to a/multiple mythological pantheon(s).

I had this spark moment a little while ago, which really helped me determine the direction I am going with this assignment. Which also made me reflect on the first deity I brought to life: Ún-Ur, the eternal monolith. I will explain this reflection on them at the end of this update. Anyway, this ”spark” gave me a new direction, how to explore and how to create. It has given me a vision: I will visualise a pantheon of gods, be it abstract or figurative, realistic or cartoonish, digital or physical. And these gods, these deities, these beings will have dualities. An inner conflict. Where there is trickery and magic, there is often illusion and deception. Where there is happiness, humour and ligt heartedness, there could be something lurking in the dark. And where there is willpower, determination and confidence, there can also be doubt and moments where confidence is lost.

That’s also why this post is the reveal the complete list of names, subject to change, of the deities and the original primal power(s).

  • Hra – The Origin, the chaos and order that attempts to hold all the other powers/deities in harmony.
  • Ún-Ur – The Eternal Monolith, a sharp mind, confidence, and willpower are their main traits, although doubt and fear often show up.
  • Ún-Aier – The Infinite Reflection, the powers of creativity and magic are their tool of trade. However… deception and trickery always lurk in the shadows.
  • Ún-Etra – Theatre, Music, TV. gaming and the arts. Basically my love for all these things, put into a godly vessel.
  • Ún-Orber – For life, enjoyment and energy of life, but also loss, and sadness and tiredness.
  • Ún-Alfor – Caring for others, like a herder. But also can leave people (intentionally or not) out of the picture, or focus on the wrong ones. Sometimes misguided.
  • And Ún-Ektar – The Shaper, the creator. Narrowly works together with Ún-Aier and Ún-Etra, as if they were in a very intense relationship. Sometimes, however, the will to create and shape leaves Ún-Ektar. Often seeking help from Ún-Ur or one of the other Úns.

The ones in bold letters I have chosen to work out in different ways: music, painting, sketches, food and experimental stuff. All presented on a type of cloth, with gathered and made trinkets that relate to the different deities. I might have to cut down to three deities instead of four due to time or vision, or wanting too much.

Starting with…

Hra: Chaotic Origin

Chaos is eternal, and people that know me personally would probably confirm my chaotic nature, but also, often to my surprise, a rather controlled nature as well. Although this is also the way I have learned to see it nowadays. As someone who, even though chaos is a reigning force, finds ways to control that chaos and do things in certain controlled (still chaotic) ways.

And Hra is the visualisation of that. With the initial idea that it is a power that is moving very fast, like the static of an old television. Colours bouncing and shooting outwards. Or inwards. Into or out from a black void. This ”mass” of colours and void is surrounded by countless eyes, like those on the tail of a peacock, that watch. And from there, thin strings of gold, silver and other materials disappearing in space.

Although I can’t find the specific scene online, it’s a colourful spectacle where colours, and shapes, and lines go fast. That being said, the art style of this movie is beautiful and a real recommendation.

Here are is looped amateur animation of 15 frames per second. Just as a test, not looking at any techniques or things that are needed. I will possibly do that if I want to really develop it more, into a real short, possibly one minute animation. Perhaps something for the school weeks where I can discover or learn something new I am interested in.

Ún-Aier: The Endless Reflection

Ún-Aier is the almost limitless creativity in me, the sense of magic and wonder, but also trickery and deception. Things I both wish I’d have more or less of.

Ún-Aier is also the deity that loves food the most, which is why offerings to this deity are almost always food based. It’s tastes are always something to guess about, but there’s at least some agreement among Ún-Aier’s followers that it likes food and dishes that are sweet and sour, but also earthy. And due to ancient depictions of prayers and offerings in carvings that got (mis)interpreted most believe it’s all in the form of wrapped foods, or forms of pancakes. Often topped with jams, berries and other sweet confections to also depict the different aspects of magic and wonder. Something that to Ún-Aier (and thus also to me, Niek) is often seen as a sweet smelling and tasting power, with a sour and earthy edge.

This is also, partially, the reason that Ún-Aier’s main symbol is a grand mirror in a field filled with different types of fruits and sharp looking plants.

See the sketches below as an example of these environments (with the Meadow of Fallen Mirrors being the main one):

Ún-Ur: Small Update

Surrounded by the current references I am using for the rocks and vegetation. I foresee quite some extra hours for this piece is a bit more important for me.

Ún-Ur will probably be presented during the presentation as a collection of rocks, with one rock in the centre, being a representation of the Monolith, slightly painted over with the above colours.

Ún-Etra: The Endless Song.

Taken from my interest in theatre I want to depict Ún-Etra with an atmospheric sound, or song. Something with low and high tones. A great experiment, as I will be working (at least learning to work) with sound/music editing programs, be it Adobe or not. All sounds are voice or improvised instruments only, be they tuned or not, no instrument instruments.

Inspiration for the sound I will be searching for are things like these:

The musical play by Dutch group Club Gewalt, and then mainly their sounds, not use of words. An amazing piece of musical theatre by the way!

The theme of Assassin’s Creed Revelations (video game) with it’s main sound being a woman’s vocals. This song was composed by Lorne Balfe.

This part of this song from the The Witcher series soundtrack has some great vocals (starting from the 3 minute mark). Soundtrack was composed by Sonya Belousova and Giona Ostinelli.

Or the vocals of the theme for a power hungry cult in the Assassin’s Creed Odyssey game, music composed by The Flight.

I think I will be sharing more inspirations soon.

The sound I am searching for however, is something like that from the above, but also as if it would be heard in temples and churches. I will be aiming for a track of a few minutes long that can be looped easily.

Well, that’s it for this update. The next updates will follow up more frequently, as we are nearing the deadline. Some things I need to look out for, as I just now think of it:

  • make sure that things go together.
  • don’t try too much (maybe).
  • keep better track of time next time, because this is all part of a list week (minute) power push towards the finish line. Really, work on my time managed for the next periods and beyond.

That’s it, for now. I want to let you all know that I will be, after the presentations have been done, uploading a reflective post near the end of the month/semester. Reflecting on my progress, my final pieces, the semester as a whole, and so forth. With pictures, quotes and more all being a part of that post.

Greetings and have a nice remainder of your day!