Thursday, April 20, 2017

Sen, My Shinto Shrine Maiden

A few days ago, I commissioned a graphic artist to bring to life the character of Sen, one of the main characters in my novelette, The Shrine War. Sen is a nine-tailed kitsune, the head Shinto shrine maiden of a temple to Inari Ōkami in a densely wooded forest near Mount Tomuraushi on the Japanese island of Hokkaido.

After sharing some story segments and my own mental impressions of the character, Kalika graciously crafted two separate versions: the first of Sen in her daily appearance as a miko as she serves at the shrine. However, on festival days when she and her sisters dance in the Kagura-den, they dye their hair black and allow two long braids to hang down so they can twirl as they go through their graceful movements.

I am delighted with Kalika's vision and I hope you will be as well. You can see other examples of her art style here.   
Regular appearance
Hair style for festival days

Currently, The Shrine War is part of The Dogs of War anthology edited by Fred Patten. It is my hope to release an expanded version of The Shrine War later this year along with The Inugami, a companion story. Stay tuned.

1 comment:

  1. Oh, this is beautiful! How in Heaven's name did I ever miss this being posted?