First Nations Fairies
First Nations Fairies

So, this morning I came across this article about a live-action remake of Peter Pan, and had to facepalm so hard I almost bruised myself. It was a pretty racist movie to begin with, and instead of trying to update it for the modern clime, they’ve decided to cast a non-native actress as Tiger Lily and make Peter Pan the “saviour of the Natives”. Greaaaaat. Awesome. That’s not super racist or anything, Hollywood.

Anyway, I was chatting about it on twitter and Lar (of Least I Could Do/Looking for Group) mentioned that it wouldn’t be as racist if the ‘natives’ of Neverland that they were referring to were the fairies instead of . I agreed, and one thing led to another in my head and I found myself with the sudden urge to draw Native-themed fairies. After all, there’s many North American legends about fairies and little people, much as there is in European mythology, so why not try drawing a few of those? Also, somewhere along the line, someone mentioned mermaids and I had to draw those two.

So, voila. The first fairy is based off a ladies fancy shawl dancer, since the shawls so often look like wings. I opted for beetle wings instead of butterfly because a) they’re transparent, so you can see more of her outfit and b) beetle wings look dang cool. The second figure is Octopus Woman, from one of my favorite Haida legends. She’s wearing a traditional Haida cloak, held with a seashell clasp.

If I get the time, I want to shade these in with pencil for more of a Brian Froud look, so maybe you’ll see these drawings on another sketch Friday!

News: Posted March 14th, 2014 by Alina

^ 41 Comments to “First Nations Fairies”

  1. NC Says:

    Speaking of your heritage… there was a very interesting feature on German radio on “Idle No More” the other day (the journalists were very positive and supportive about it). It was pretty hard to swallow to hear how again industry lobbies seem to have a greater influence on politics than the public weal.

    Of course from an outside view it’s always hard to get how important such a movement is. Did you hear about “Idle No More”? How is your view on it?

    Posted March 14th, 2014 at 4:05 am
  2. Wanderer Says:

    To be entirely fair, Neverland is the land of dreams. The “Red Indians” were little Michael’s dream, so they’re really no tribe at all. Likewise, the pirates are big brother John’s dream, with all of their romanticized sea life. (Wendy? She had adventures with her dream of a pet wolf, and I honestly think we could have stood ONE chapter devoted to that…)

    Posted March 14th, 2014 at 5:56 am
  3. Bran Says:

    Have you read anything by Charles De Lint I recall he has a blend of European and Indigenous People’s folklore in some of his work. A tribe of otherworldly fae in Moonheart comes to mind.

    Posted March 14th, 2014 at 7:01 am
  4. sjcottrell Says:

    OMGPONIES!!!1!
    This is pushing all of my story buttons!
    I would buy a book of this SO FRAKING HARD!

    Posted March 14th, 2014 at 9:09 am
  5. Zile Says:

    This is really cool, I’ve never seen anyone do somehing like this.

    Posted March 14th, 2014 at 9:31 am
  6. Murrday Says:

    Your Native fairies are super cool! I’d enjoy seeing more, if you are inspired to sketch others of them!

    Posted March 14th, 2014 at 11:31 am
  7. jubilee Says:

    Happy pi day!

    Posted March 14th, 2014 at 1:14 pm
  8. Gingkage Says:

    Am I the only one that wants to see them somewhere in the actual comic itself? Maybe as random NPCs in the DnD game?

    Posted March 14th, 2014 at 1:55 pm
  9. BanditoWalrus Says:

    Loving all kinds of folklore, I went ahead and googled “Octopus Woman” to learn more about the lore, as it looks really interesting…
    However all of the results I got were all tentacle porn…
    O.o
    Any chance you could provide a link to the folklore of the octopus woman?? I’m… scared to continue searching for it.

    Posted March 14th, 2014 at 3:14 pm
  10. Alina Says:

    Posted March 14th, 2014 at 4:03 pm
  11. Kenneth Says:

    Moar.

    Posted March 14th, 2014 at 4:56 pm
  12. BanditoWalrus Says:

    Awesome!! Thanks!!

    Posted March 14th, 2014 at 8:09 pm
  13. Satorui Says:

    The Cherokee actually do have stories of fairies or ‘Yunwi Tsunsdi’ but they might have picked up the idea from European immigrants. Still some of the stories are pretty interesting

    Posted March 14th, 2014 at 9:15 pm
  14. IonOtter Says:

    “I am digging clams, Raven. I am digging clams.”

    Posted March 16th, 2014 at 12:58 am
  15. Laughing Matter Says:

    Oh, Hollywood, with your perpetuating of tired racist narratives for the sake of pandering to the same audiences by essentially telling the same stories over and over, instead of trying something new and being more inclusive to the wider audiences. You so silly.

    Posted March 16th, 2014 at 4:38 am
  16. HeavyP Says:

    Oh. Oh this is gonna be GOOD. I retract all my previous kvetching, Alina is actually going down the “Mark has difficulty telling reality from fantasy” road and not just sweeping all those gaping plot holes under the rug (shut up, you can *totally* sweep a hole). I am now REALLY looking forward to this resolution.

    Posted March 17th, 2014 at 10:03 am
  17. DragonStryk72 Says:

    The problem with that is, why isn’t he in a mental hospital?! Seriously, Mark is now dangerous. He is not someone I want to read about, and now even the name of the webcomic is a complete misnomer. It should read “delusional psychotic”, because that’s really all there seems to be, and Alina is confirming that as the reality.

    Posted March 17th, 2014 at 10:56 am
  18. HeavyP Says:

    I’m going to chime in with some of the others who’ve mentioned this, and take it back a notch on the mental comments.

    Mark has a very obvious issue, and he should probably be talking to a professional about his difficulties with immersion gaming, but he doesn’t belong in a mental facility. By everything else shown in the comic, he’s a fully functional normal human being. He’s been shown to enjoy tabletop gaming sessions and video games normally, maintains friendships both within and outside of his “geek” circle, holds down a standard office job, and up until the drama caused by his between-game emails with Sara, had a lovely (if non-geeky) girlfriend. He’s not nuts or psychotic (which is a specific classification of mental illness that probably doesn’t apply here), he just appears to have a real issue with immersion gaming (LARP gaming).

    If I were his friend, right now I’d ask him to cut out all LARPing and just stick with more standard issue gaming, and I’d advise him to see a professional about that reality issue. He doesn’t need a straitjacket or to be carted off.

    Posted March 17th, 2014 at 12:02 pm
  19. Travis Says:

    You don’t know what he has issues with this has been predominantly shown thru marks eyes and Mark thinks he’s normal. The relationship that was mostly shown out side of geek circle was Jess and that Failed. You can’t trust anything prior to this IF this isn’t still part of the LARP’ing demonstration , which I’m hoping it is. that Mark is playing a role to an audience at the Con.

    Posted March 17th, 2014 at 1:00 pm
  20. HeavyP Says:

    Fair point, I’m only basing my case on the information given. I posit that there’s no need to have his non-LARP interactions be biased, as they don’t require the level of imagination and immersion that the LARPs do. Also, the relationship failing isn’t a strike against Mark on this – it didn’t fail because she lost him to his geek fantasies, it failed because of some pretty heavy trust issues set off by his between-LARP story building emails with Sara.

    Posted March 17th, 2014 at 1:05 pm
  21. Travis Says:

    the key word there was LARP. apparently he can’t distinguish LARPS from reality so that is suspect as well that Jess lost him to his geek fantasies because he can’t distinguish larp from reality . it colors everything mark does. Also he had issues with board games too when he ran away from the zombies a few weeks ago

    Posted March 17th, 2014 at 1:16 pm
  22. Hurbster Says:

    So Mark is actually insane and needs urgent medical help. Well, if that’s what happened then that is what happened.

    So, do we get to go through counselling and therapy with Mark ?

    Posted March 17th, 2014 at 1:45 pm
  23. Snail Says:

    I’d appreciate it if people didn’t immediately jump from “has mental problems” to “should be locked up immediately because he is obviously dangerous”.

    There are people with mental problems, even people who hallucinate, who still function and lead mostly normal lives and are not dangerous to anyone. And you know what? Those people actually do not have enough stories about characters like them, because too many writers think your characters are only allowed to have mental problems if they are either serial killers or tragic victims of their own minds. We still don’t actually KNOW what’s going on, but if Mark is hallucinating? There are people who want to read about that. There are people who need stories about nice geeky guys who have jobs, relationships, and hobbies, and also have brain issues.

    Posted March 17th, 2014 at 6:32 pm
  24. aerion111 Says:

    I would actually have preferred it to stay slightly supernatural. If the writer decided that the sub-plot was getting tedious, just have it fade into the background – the only reason there was a building pressure to finish it is because they put so much focus on it, there wouldn’t be any expectation of it finishing anytime soon if they hadn’t.
    By doing it this way, they’re not just removing a potential side-plot from the story – which means that currently, we’ve got some gaming that threatens to not happen for a while (the group’s still somewhat split up) and a soap-opera-level romantic plot. So, nothing special, especially compared to not that long ago when they had both a semi-unique geek-hunting plot AND several game-related scenes.
    They’re also making me feel quite uncomfortable; The idea of waking up one day and finding that the world doesn’t make sense and my memories being untrustworthy is basically my worst nightmare, so the only emotional reaction the comic gets from me right now is panic, as it fuels my paranoia.

    Posted March 17th, 2014 at 7:30 pm
  25. Pibald Says:

    Heh, the fun twist would be that it is only mostly a LARP. And that at least some, maybe even only one, hunter is actually quite real. Maybe not the same threat as the massive group, but one guy trying to off the geeks, hiding behind their own creation? I could see this being a thing.

    Could lead to some fun with Mark being considered crazy, and actually being the ‘one sane man’.

    Posted March 17th, 2014 at 7:54 pm
  26. KenderBryant Says:

    Native-themed fairies? You gonna do a Froud and make a whole book on ‘em?

    Posted March 18th, 2014 at 4:38 am
  27. MerchManDan Says:

    It’s OK, everybody, Mark et al. were having some fun at Joel’s expense. No need to worry about anybody’s mental health.

    Posted March 18th, 2014 at 4:41 am
  28. Old Brit Says:

    Or maybe Alina is having fun at the commenter’s expense.

    Posted March 18th, 2014 at 5:41 am
  29. aerion111 Says:

    While this makes me not paranoid anymore (but there’s still lingering unease. Unreasonable fear is unreasonable fear, it’s not going to go away with slight proof) I still don’t like it on the basis that it’s STILL removing the only interesting plot-line left.
    Yes, eventually they’ll get more plot-lines, but I’d like to have something that brings emotional investment FIRST, rather than making me feel bored until the comic gets around to finishing its current sub-plots.

    Posted March 18th, 2014 at 6:09 am
  30. Kirby Says:

    Really, 200 something people really need to learn to calm down a bit, I think. xP

    And about time! I’ve been waiting for vengeance since the first Vampire LARP ended. >D

    Posted March 18th, 2014 at 6:31 am
  31. NS Says:

    And now we see that Alina was really just rickrolling everybody who jumped on the “Mark is crazy!!!!1!!1!!!!” train :D

    Posted March 18th, 2014 at 7:33 am
  32. catprog Says:

    Ok that is a good reason for that.

    Posted March 18th, 2014 at 8:16 am
  33. Death Proof Says:

    She got us.

    She got us GOOD.

    Mark – still sane

    Abbie – still adorable

    Werewgeek – still my favorite comic.

    Well played, Alina. Well played. :)

    Posted March 18th, 2014 at 8:37 am
  34. HeavyP Says:

    I give up.

    Posted March 18th, 2014 at 9:33 am
  35. Nicktwolf Says:

    I think Joel deserved it after what he did to Mark in the beginning.

    Posted March 18th, 2014 at 9:37 am
  36. Hurbster Says:

    Oh well, at least it’s over and we can forget about all the massive plot holes and move on. So much not explained, but more room mow for more Shadowrun stuff.

    Posted March 18th, 2014 at 9:49 am
  37. Celticdragon38 Says:

    Well played. :)

    Posted March 18th, 2014 at 10:07 am
  38. Thomas Says:

    Lol, you got me too Mark I was started to be worried. Also that third panel is my favorite Joel face ever.

    Posted March 18th, 2014 at 10:52 am
  39. Laughing Matter Says:

    This was… brilliant. I love it. Mark really got Joel this time, and the readers as well. The student has become the master.

    Also, the genuine concern Joel shows Mark in the first panels makes me like Joel a bit more, too. I mean, I knew he was a good guy underneath all the devious GM act, but this just reinforces that knowledge.

    Posted March 18th, 2014 at 11:32 am
  40. Blackjoker Says:

    *tips my hat* Well played, well played

    Posted March 18th, 2014 at 11:46 am
  41. Otterkit Says:

    My first thought was ‘sweet mother of Cthulu’ and then I felt awful when I realized it was Grandmother Octopus. I’m half Menominee myself, and I COMPLETELY AGREE with your irritation directed at Hollywood. I also LOVE the idea of doing more of the American fae, this NEEDS TO HAPPEN. I’d love to see drawings of Coyote, Grandmother Toad, Gloosglap, the Hobya and the Trenvay and the other fae heroes and races of America done in a way that’s honoring. :D THANK YOU

    Posted March 25th, 2014 at 9:25 pm

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