Imagination Tree or, Maiden of the Wood

Maiden of the Wood, 8.5″ x 11″ Copic Markers, digital sky

For “Imagination” at Illustration Friday. Have you joined yet? Why not?

This is the Maiden of the Wood, sometimes called the Dreaming One, another daughter of Gaia. One night for this maiden equals one thousand years for us. She makes her bed underground and dreams of magical things while hundreds of human years pass overhead. Often her dreams come to life on the earth just above her slumbering form.

Like the footie socks? I’d like to tell you they were planned all along but no, I tried and tried to do feet. I need to practice feet!  In any case, my favorite bit includes the socks and the underground reading room above them.

Tons of progress pics below (including some close-ups of the final), in case anyone is interested in the way the sketch changed as it went along. I could not get the colors right on the computer – arrgh! – but this is close. I’m not sure I love the greens. I think the underground should be darker. Also may go back and do a trunk design like in some of the sketches. Though more likely I will just move on to the next thing!

[portfolio_slideshow size=large]

Figure reference photo.

43 thoughts on “Imagination Tree or, Maiden of the Wood

  1. aimee

    I could absolutely live here! Love the progress pics — it is fascinating to see how you got from start to finish on this piece!

  2. Mary Walker

    I don’t know how to respond to blog posts at my site and figured since I liked you tree’s tiny details I could tell you that and also that there was no glitter it was colored with Copics.

  3. Sheri McClure-Pitler

    I really enjoyed the progress pics on this one. I had to keep pausing it and going back to see all of the tiny details. I have a particular fondness for drawing trees myself and I love how yours are complete Fantasy Habitats!

  4. clara nilles

    Wow! This is simply fabulous! I love the intimate details of the tree, the sleeping creatures, the fruit tree within, the mystery doors, and the winding stairs that take you down into the underground chambers of the roots…..where the roots cradle the spirit of the tree. The entire image draws the viewer within…..into a world full of story, wonder, and dreams………

  5. NatashaMay

    Hey Cindy, I just adore your illustrations. I never participated in IF because it was confusing to me. I can see now they have a better format so I just might participate once in a while. :)) I love seeing how your illustration comes to life from sketch to color. Gorgeous!

  6. Rod MacGregor

    Interesting image and take on imagination…I like the idea about adding football socks to a drawing when feet aren’t going well…it will surely catch on and maybe become your signature::::!!!!!!;)

  7. Laurie Conley

    This is delightful! I love the story, too. And I really like the way you do your process “slideshow”.

    Yep, feet are hard to draw! But your solution is perfect. The socks are really a fun detail.

  8. Julie

    I love your Imagination Tree – and yes, the socks are great. I like to sleep in socks, too, so it makes perfect sense to me. I also love that you posted the process. So interesting.

  9. Creations By Mit

    What a fun illustration!! So much to look at, its candy for the eyes! I especially love the lattice-type branches at the top, the fruit in the middle, & all the sleeping critters.

  10. Theo Padavano

    I much prefer a tree of imagination rather than one of knowledge. I was so involved with investigating the little rooms within the tree’s braches, that I didn’t even notice the sleeping maiden! Terrific concept and story.

  11. shirley

    Fantastic Cindy! Your imagination is one of the most colorful and creative I’ve seen. This piece is fabulous! I especially love how she’s slumbering in that position and she’s supporting the world above. You are so kind with your sweet visit recently. Thank you so much for your support!!

  12. The Beast Tender Post author

    Hooray! And thanks so much for all the wonderful comments. I have the best visitors EVER!

  13. Alicia

    Cindy, I see reference to that hat from a few weeks back,keep going with this compartmentalized town idea, very nice and I love the rope swing! Your figure entwined is working also really well. (BTW everyone needs to practice feet!)

  14. jennifer

    I love the details and colors in the tree, I can imagine living there. Beautiful work. The slide show id fantastic, i always love that you show us your progress!

  15. michele

    Hmmmmm….so many fabulous elements in this. The flow of her body confuses me a bit. but…..i love the tiny homes in the tree and always love your little critters. beautiful imagination!

  16. hedwig

    Hi! You made something completely different! A tree with cosy compartments where one can sleep, play and dream. I allways liked the thought of living in a tree house, hidden in the leaves, not disturbed by anyone but the wind. Lovely idea!

  17. nik

    The most luxuriously appointed treehouse community I’ve ever come upon…and a tree swing! Simply arboreal heaven.
    And I love footie socks. With stripes. Lucky Maiden. :)

  18. Curious Art

    Oh my goodness, it has been too long since I visited your site! I missed a lot of goodies, but this one especially rings ALL of my chimes: I love cutaway views, & always used to imagine living inside a tree as a child… now I believe I’ll go & dream of sipping tea & reading in my very own snug, secret library… ahhh!

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