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I’m making an animation inspired by the ‘external heart’ myth’ that features in a few old fairytales.

The characters in the story are all plant-people. This is my first concept sketch for one of the main characters… I’m calling him ‘the guardian’ for now.

I’m basing him on a plane tree, which can grow to an enormous size in New Zealand. The local council where I live prune these trees mercilessly, so they wind up looking really stunted and tortured. The guardian is really into the idea of order and maintenance, so he likes to ‘prune’ himself quite mercilessly, too. This sketch hasn’t captured this yet, but it’s a good enough start. Plenty more to come.