In this time, no one had memories of the planet Earth. They hadn’t known of the green grass, the vast oceans, the wild forests, because no one has ever been there. They only knew Minerva. At first she was a barren home, small amounts of water, few mountains, but she was vast in deep yellow grassy fields. Those fields were as if the sun had lost a piece of itself, and landed onto Minerva, dressing her in the most beautiful gown she had ever seen. They felt as if they would go on forever, until humanity was knocking on her doorstep. Space travel had come radically far since the first landing on Earth’s Moon, what came even faster was the creation of cities on Minerva’s surface. Eventually Mega-cities popped up all over, some of the first to colonize the planet believed that the skyscrapers could reach the stars faster than any ship could. This sprouting of cities congregated people to them, and when where large crowds go, they need to be fed. The parts of Minerva that weren’t plowed and covered in metal were turned into farmland to feed the mechanical giants that were still expanding.
For many years, Minerva was at peace, until The Navy showed up. Even though they were human, The Navy was treated as a separate being by Minerva’s people. They were ruthless, war hungry, and had come to the colonials exclaiming that humanity has taken a different path, and that they would be led to prosperity through victory and conquer. The people of Minerva were hesitant, they didn’t want to give up their peace, but they accepted anyways, for they would never win a fight with how many gunships The Navy had brung on their grand entrance.
Thankfully for Minerva, The Navy would have come at the right moment, as years later, the first contact with alien life is made. That ended in bloodshed. Soon instead of buildings, the cities of Minerva were building ships in the coming defense of their planet. The Navy, who were not caught off guard when humanity was attacked, had already been planning for war, preparing everything necessary for a planet-wide draft to gain as many pilots as possible.
The Navy is strictly a space faring unit. They have little to no troops for ground operations, and are equipped for ship to ship combat only. Compared to the enemy, The Navy has less firepower, but what they lack in strength, they make up for in speed, having faster and more maneuverable ships.
Even in his childhood, Cage was tall, undoubtably tall. Enough to pick him out in a crowd of 100 kids. His mother would always comment on how they’d need bigger doors when he got older (They did). Not only was Cage tall, but he was strong. Being born and raised on a farm away from the high rising cities was enough to build up quite a bit of muscle on the boy. By the time he was 18, he was plowing the fields more than he was spending time with his family. But sadly by the time he was 18, the draft was put into effect.
Cage’s family was very backwards, they were extremely distant from technology, so distant that they downgraded their farming equipment. Cage’s mom seems to think it was because his father lost his brother in an accident while harvesting grain in their youth. This distaste was put early into Cage’s head, but that didn’t stop The Navy from taking him away from his home, shoving him in a fighter and giving him the most barebones crash course on how to pilot the thing they could lawfully give. Cage was a natural. He learned how to fly faster than many other new recruits, yet he still hated it. He would have quit The Navy right from the start if only he had the option.
Cage was terrified of the new life he was thrown into. He never knew of the technologies that were now a part of his daily routine, he almost believed he was eating, drinking, and sleeping metal, it surrounded him. To cope, he took to smoking. He would almost go through a pack in two days or so, everyone would always see him with a cigarette in his mouth. Due to this immense amount of smoking, his lungs began to weaken, he became one of the few pilots to need a respirator when they were sent out. No one ever told him to stop, some even joined him, most everyone needed a way to adjust to their new lives.
Before the draft, Cage was a quiet young man, working from sunrise to sunset in order to keep his family living. After The Navy took him, he became even quieter, somewhat of a loner. At least on the farm he enjoyed himself, spending time with his family, taking care of them. But in the cramped quarters of a frigate ship, he couldn’t enjoy his mother’s dinner, he couldn’t play cards with his father after a long day of work. The only thing that followed him was his star gazing, but instead of searching through them on his roof, he was living amongst them in the stars, just a sky above his home.
Black and White
He is a farmer so I thought it right to make him muscular considering that small scale farmers like the character work from dawn to dusk using nothing but a couple tools and their bare hands. I wanted to show his rebellious nature, which is why he has a Mohawk and has a slight bump on his military uniform. He extensive use of a cigarette is used as a coping mechanism from a new life being thrusted upon him.
There is a lot of hatching and cross hatching used for shading, cross hatching especially around the area below the chin as to deepen the shadow. Lighter lines were used on his inner parts such as his collar and ribs, to show that they are more of an indentation than they are an outstanding feature of the suit. There are few lines used for clothes folds because it is a skin-tight suit, therefore having folds in only the most folding intensive parts of the body like the armpits and the crotch. To signify the cigarette was actively lit I made very light lines to express smoke, having more lines be closer to the cigarette and then spreading them out as they go up.
I used a system of heads to create the body of the character, like how many heads tall or wide he is.
From chin to bottom of pectorals= 1 head
From bottom of pectoral to belly button=1 head
Groin= 1/2 head
Arm= 2 heads
each segment of the leg= 1 1/2 head from top of the groin
Foot= 1 head long
Thigh Width= 2/3 head
Arm width= 1/3 head at the widest
Shoulder width= 2 heads
The reasoning for the odd colorization on the suit was not so much to create a realistic suit for a young military recruit, but was more so calculated. The blue brings out the power of the pink areas, drawing your eye to the areas that are there to protect the character. To protect, they need power, and that is what the blue does to those areas. Heavy highlights and shading were used on the faces to give a sense of 3 dimensionality and lighting, that this character is not flat but has a curved surface that light bounces off and can cast a shadow on. Purple is an unusual color for hair, and is generally associated with royalty, however I thought of it as a color to show rebelliousness. It does not conform to the conventional red or blue tints, but is a mixture of the two. The black hair makes the purple stand out, giving it a sort of pop. Unlike the shadows, which are just a flat color, I lowered the opacity of the smoke, mainly to show that the smoke is not a solid substance but is a clear, see through gas.
Things I’ve learned from this is to always check your proportions, you can never be too safe when trying to stay on mark. Another thing is to scan images instead of taking pictures, it saves a lot of work and will make them look 10 times better.