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  1. #241
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    Nice job on both of the pics. The coloured work seems much better with that than with what I offered... I need to study colouring and colour-harmony more.
    Also, I love that lizard creature. Cant wait to see it finished =P


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  3. #242
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    Breaking in a New Sketchbook

    theredshoe- I think I'll have a simple environment in the background, as you suggested. Just to show what kind of habitat it lives in.
    monsterkill- Thanks!

    I was forced to decommission my old sketchbook the other day, since it was full. It's always a bittersweet thing to move on to a new sketchbook, at least if you're sentimental like me. Anyway, the new sketchbook is treating me well so far. Here's what I gots:
    -More linework on my Dragolope. Slow going on this, with all my schoolwork and other distractions. I'm going to have an art marathon in my semester break, to make up for lost time.
    -Color schemes for the dragolope. None of these seem right. The top left one is just plain ooogly.
    -Bridgman studies! Here's the neck, in case you couldn't tell.
    -And the torso.
    -And the torso, continued. I drew a Mr. Torso to test my new anatomical knowledge. He's quite a mediocre character design, if I do say so myself.

    And there you have it.

    Edit: Oh yeah, page five! I always get a bit excited when I get to a new sketchbook page or gain a level, because I am a geek. Only took a month to get through page four. Just zipping along! I have a feeling it has a lot to do with the faithful commenting of my sketchgroupies. So, thanks guys and gal!
    Last edited by Moai; April 30th, 2007 at 12:56 PM.

  4. #243
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    I've got no critique to give, but a suggestion about the colour scheme of the creature.
    I thought it would possibly look good if it was like the top right scheme, but instead of a light tail and dark head, throwing it the other way round.
    Not sure, but it just might look better that way.
    Great studies. Can't see anything to critique. That little zombiegnome-thing is nice =P

    Keep up the good work!

  5. #244
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    Good idea with the color scheme, Monsterkill! I'll test that out.
    "Zombiegnome-thing"

  6. #245
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    Now that's some kick ass patterns, man! Unbelievably gorgeous and why cant I do it?...
    Tried some of your suggestions on my raptress...Although, I always get "muddy" colors...hmmm....

    You kick ass! Nice Bridgeman studies too!

  7. #246
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    Hey hey! Bridgeman studies are looking nice! The linework for teh dragolope is really good, and for the colours, I'm feelin the top right, yep. He/she? looks meaan with the orange maroon scheme. Haha, Mr. Torso, I like! Can'really imagine the location of his buttocks/pelvis though. Cool update mang, later!

  8. #247
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    Hey Moai. WOW! Your Dracolope is very visually appealing! Once again, as usual, you’ve made a wonderfully plausible creation. As for the color scheme, I think that the top right is the best. But you say that you don’t really like them. Well…what’s the animal’s environment? That could influence it’s markings and designs. As for the animal’s design, nothing to crit.
    Incessant Doodlings of a Wandering Mind (my sketchbook)
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  9. #248
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    Bard- Thanks so much, man! You're way too kind. Post some of your raptress experiments and I'll see if I can't critique them, okay?
    amer-nazri- Thanks! Pretty much everyone's been liking that one. Probably because it was based on a real animal (the tiger lizard), rather than invented by me. Gotta hand it to that Mother Nature. Mr. Torso doesn't have a buttocks/pelvis. That's why he wears a loincloth, to hide his shame. Just kidding! Thanks for pointing that out. I'll need to do some more work in that area.
    Ignonimious-Gah! You leaked my real name onto the internets! Haha. Seriously, though, I'm honored that you quoted me in your signature. I'm glad I was of help! It's not that I don't really like the color patterns that I made, it's just that sometimes I draw a creature and no color pattern seems right for it. There's a creature I posted in page 2 (kinda like a dinosaur with a tall head, in with the posts of my older drawings) that I had a similar problem with. I dunno. I'll probably end up going with something similar to the upper right one, perhaps reversed like Monsterkill suggested.

    Here's the finished lines of my dragolope. I'm going to post them over in the coloring book thread.

  10. #249
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    Sigh...it's pitiful how little I've drawn in the past several days. I've been more focused on getting schoolwork done. Anyway:
    -Coloring the dragolope! This might change, but I'm fairly happy with how it's going. I think that This is a young male during breeding season. His pelt has reached its full brightness and he's nearly fully grown, but his single horn is only beginning the forward curl that will mark his full maturity. Only once the forward-raking section of his horn is large enough will he be able to battle his rivals for a chance to mate.
    -Last night I suddenly got the idea of a lightly-built, long-legged battle robot, almost predatory robot. Since I don't get inspired to do robots very often, I jumped right to drawing. I did the bigger drawing first and all the little sketches afterwards. The second one from the top right is my favorite. I think I might render a larger version of it.

  11. #250
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    Hey Moai, great to see you doing a large rendering this time around. I'm really enjoying the design of the dragolope. Great to see your tackling the studies as well. I really think the color scheme idea that MonsterKill said really worked out for this. I'm also interested in how that robot will come out. I really liked that cloaked skull guy on the previous page. Think you might ever take him further.

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  12. #251
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    Dude! See that one is nice with the robot! Applying what you know organically and switching it to be some sorta droid.. That is some gorgeous design. As I said before, you are probably (till I find someone better) My second favaorite next to dougbot on creature design!
    Nice Dragon!

    I will post some of my crap work...hehe..

  13. #252
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    Yautja892- Thanks, man. Yeah, I really do want to do a full rendering of the horse skull man, but I imagine him with a fairly complex, layered robe, and cloth wrinkles, along with complex mechanical bits, are my weakest link. I really have no idea how to draw them. So that piece will have to wait until I do some studies.
    Bard- Thank you. Yeah, Dougbot is awesome. The whole AreaNet team that he works for is awesome. They're the only team that I know of that could possibly rival Massive Black in awesomeness.

    I finally finished by self portrait today! I really like how it turned out, though I may still have to fiddle with the background (saturation and all that). So yeah, that's done.
    Still working on the dragolope. The color sketching is done and now I'm going through with the actual rendering. Expect some supplementary sketches of this guy fairly soon.

    Edit: Changed my self portrait a bit, just a few minor refinements. I lowered the point of my right (your left) jaw and made it a bit less defined (since I'm no Kurt Russel, if you know what I mean), refined a few tiny forms on the nose, changed the hair ever so slightly, and erased a tiny bit of my shirt to give my shoulders a less hunched appearance.
    Last edited by Moai; May 9th, 2007 at 04:58 PM.

  14. #253
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    Oh man, I love your Dracolope!! It's coming along woderfully. I love the texture on it's teeth and skin. The stylized hair and color palette for your self-portriat is equaly great. I'm so jealous
    Incessant Doodlings of a Wandering Mind (my sketchbook)
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  15. #254
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    Ignominious- Did you know that, until yesterday, I was spelling your name with the n and m switched? Anyway, thanks so much.

    Finally, some more sketches to show! I've been very preoccupied with school stuff lately, since the semester has less than two weeks to go, so I haven't been drawing very much at all. It's been hurting me, too. Anyway, the images:
    -Some more ever-so-helpful Bridgman studies. Also, a long-legged monkey, some crazy Asian guy with Morpheus glasses and a weird beard, and a robot, all fairly mediocre in design and execution.
    -My final page of torso studies, for now at least.
    -I'm now starting work on the arm. I'm really happy with the way these studies turned out, particularly the flexed arms. Bridgman is so great.

    I'm so impatient for this damn semester to be over, so I can draw again!

  16. #255
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    Cool update! Sorry for not replyin earlier, Ive been away for a bit. The dragolope looks really cool, and I like how you've added lore about it too, it makes it even more real. The sp is lookin cool too! Real nice colours on it. Studies are lookin fine also. This Bridgman guy sure is somethin. Later!

  17. #256
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    He's Back!

    Amer-Nazri- Thank ya kindly.

    Well, my essays and finals are all out of the way, so I'm once again free to draw and paint and post and do all that other good stuff. Man, it's good to be free again!

    I have been sneaking a little art in between my note-taking and essay-writing. I went on a little field trip to the Santa Barbara Museum of Natural History (a long and cumbersome name, no?), and after I got my note-taking out of the way, I whipped out my sketchbook and drew some fossils and taxiderminated animals. Then I went to the Santa Barbara Zoo and drew some more lively animals (some altogether too lively).
    So, the images.
    -My dragolope is nearly done! I added a few snails into the picture, since he looked a bit hungry. I'm going to add a simple environment of river rocks and shallow water, and probably alter some hues to make things more harmonious, and then the dragolope stage of my life will probably be complete. I'll also add some detailed notes on its natural history.
    -Remember my skinny two-legged robots? Well, I'm working out some picture ideas for them. My current idea is to have a sort of platoon of techno-warriors traveling through the desert. There will be a mysterious, robed, priest-like techno-man standing on a small hover platform at the lead, a number of dome-headed techno-troops, and my leggy mech towering over them. It'll have a red-orangish analogous color scheme, since I'm thinking it'll be set on Mars. Here I was doodling my ideas for the techno-troops, who have massive, dome-shaped, pulp-magazine like helmets/heads. I really struggled with these guys. Also, a bad drawing from Bridgman. I wasn't in the drawing mood that afternoon, I guess.
    -Some fossils and specimens from the museum. They had some great fossils of ice age lions, smilodons (saber-toothed "tigers"), pygmy mammoths, brontotheres (massive, rhino-like ungulates with slingshot-shaped horns), and the skull of an ancient toothed whale that was bigger than I was (just the skull). Also, a decent collection of squids and crabs. Some idiot woman went up to a jumbo squid preserved in liquid and said "I think it's alive!" Being raised on the Discovery Channel and Zoobooks and being generally an intelligent person, I feel like smacking people for such ignorance. That's the only bad thing about going to museums and stuff for me, hearing the idiots say idiotic things.
    -The animals in the top half of this picture are stuffed museum specimens, and the ones in the bottom half are live ones from the zoo, with the exception of the beetle, which was also a preserved specimen.
    -Lemurs, monitor lizards, elephants, and penguins! The two things that you must remember about lemurs are that 1) they never hold still and 2) at any given moment, at least one lemur out of the group will be leaning his or her ass over a branch and dropping some droppings. Monitor lizards, on the other hand, do nothing but sleep with their heads in uncomfortable positions. The elephants were kind of neat. I got some good information from drawing them; for instance, the way the skin sags on their front legs gives the legs an odd curved-backwards appearance.
    -When I drew this page, I experienced my most entertaining moments at the zoo. First of all, the gorillas were great, even if I didn't draw them that well. They were kind of sleeping and lounging around, and they struck these great expressive poses while doing so. They also have great muscles to study. Anyway, after sketching them for a few minutes, one stirred, sat up, and started eating something. A minute or two later and it became apparent that he was eating his own poop. Everyone went into convulsions of yelling "Ewww!!!" and laughing, and the whole time the gorilla was just chewing on his own excrement with this merry little look in his eyes. What a character. Moving on, the giraffes were also fun to draw. I love the way the masses of their bodies are arranged. And when I was drawing the giraffes, the lions in the next enclosure suddenly started roaring (they're as loud as sports cars revving their engines, and that's no exaggeration), and all of the giraffes just froze. When I went over to the lions, they weren't roaring anymore, but a big male was lounging right next to the glass. So yeah, that was fun.
    -This is probably my favorite page of sketches since my page with the horse-skull shaman and the kidbots. I had a lot of fun drawing this. Hopefully you recognize that long, lean critter in the middle. To the right I drew some of the dragolopes favored prey items: large snails, large shelled arthropods, and the eggs of large birds (and, if possible, the birds themselves ). Below, some more ideas for my long-legged mech. I was working out and attractive yet functional mechanism for its long, flexible neck, which I arrived at with the leftmost sketch. Also, I finally did a satisfactory rendition of my techno-trooper. So there you have it.

    I'm glad to be back.

  18. #257
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    Those robots look great!!!Really like them,and that dragon like creature is great too!!!!Very good work once again!

  19. #258
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    I am loving that Dragolope! Especially the face, all the detail just captures the eye... and the markings, very striking! I can't wait to see the background you're going to add XD.

    Wish I had a more intelligent comment for you.... but yeah, keep up the awesome work!

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  20. #259
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    Really nice lines! You really make those bots on the last page feel 3d.

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    wow i miss this place!

    your dragon is coming along really nice- i want to see more work like that!!! if you're looking for new inspiration regarding character design and presentation, check out keiththompsonart.com

    your bridgeman studies are becoming really well made as well as with your line work.

    cheers!

  22. #261
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    My 1st Rendered Robot

    Thanks for all the comments, people! Ah, it's good to be back!
    Camara- Thanks, man! I always enjoy your enthusiasm. I'll check up on your sketchbook too, okay?
    Caskin- Thank you. I must let you know that lately my creatures have been influenced by your designs and informed by your use of anatomy. So, the feelings are reciprocated.
    Kvick- Thanks for visiting!
    theredshoe- I missed this place as well last week. Keith Thompson is already one of my faves, man! I love his designs. But thank you very much for providing that link anyway. If I hadn't already known about the wonderful Keith, that would have made my day.

    Speaking of inspiration by Keith, see these pics. As the title of this post says, this is my first rendered-out robot, digitally or otherwise. It's the same long-legged mech that I've been sketching for a little while now. As I was working, I periodically saved the steps. I don't know if it's necessary to post all of these and explain them, but what the heck, I'm doing it anyway.
    1. I blew up my original doodle by several hundred percent, and then did a few linework passes over that, changing the neck design to match my earlier sketch. I had no idea how to do the feet, so I browsed some of Keith's robots for inspiration.
    2. My color idea was a vague blue-silver, so I filled in the back with a warm neutral (with some slight noise) and blued in the robot.
    3. Highlights, working from the blue midtone to the whitish-yellow speculars.
    4. Shading, plus a few reflected highlights from the "ground."
    5. After consulting some reference (photos of silver cars), I changed things up a bit. I made the shadows warmer, with more distinct shadow cores and reflected lights from the ground. After looking at robots drawn by another artist (my favorite MC Barrett), I reduced the size of the specular highlights. And finally, since the robot seemed more like a silvery blue than a bluish silver, I replaced some of the blues with very desaturated greens. I left purer blues on the top planes because those would reflect the blue of the sky.

    Writing things out always helps me to digest things, so by writing all that down I got several ideas of things to do further. So thanks, text!

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    nice man. posting the steps gives us a better chance to appreciate your pieces more because you add your thoughts in it thus giving us a better understanding of your thought process. great idea on using warmer colors as shadows although, i believe that the reflected light is too much. its like something from below is shining light on it. the shadow color is way too close to the background color, i think a desaturated red would probably be better. i loose shadow underneath would help make this piece feel more complete also it would give a sense of ground plane (learned that from keith!)

    looking forward to new works, moai!

  24. #263
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    Thanks for the crits and tips, man! I'll do what you suggested and post an update in a while.

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    I think I've decided to scrap my plans for a background in the dragolope piece. It's simply too hard to create an environment from scratch around an already completed creature and have the two mesh. So, I instead filled up the surrounding space with text, which I hope you find interesting.
    I've worked a bit more on the robot. I don't think it's too far away from being completed.
    Continuing with the steps:
    6. I intensified the blues on the up-planes, since those would be reflecting the sky, and I made the specular highlights even smaller. Theredshoe, I know you advised me to differentiate the shadow colors and the background color, but after thinking about that I don't think it's a good idea. The robot is made out of reflective metal, so it makes sense that the color of its surroundings would reflect off of it. Plus, with the shadow colors and the background colors similar, the edges in the shadows would blend in with the background. This is desirable, since usually you want the lit portions of an object to stand out crisply from the background, but the shaded portions to blend in a bit more. I followed your advice on toning down the reflected light, however.
    7. This really isn't worth showing, but since theredshoe said he liked reading about my thought processes and whatnot, I'm including it. One of the things I've been coming to not like about photoshop--or rather, my technique on photoshop--is that it doesn't have much texture. So, I decided to throw in a texture of concrete that I found in the internet. Seemed too lazy and artificial to just slap on a texture like that, though, so I deleted it. I lowered the values on the robot, since I have a tendency to make my pictures too light. Oh, and I added some bits that I'd forgotten to include from the beginning sketch (the fins on the legs).
    8. Linework nearly complete.
    9. Line work done. The color work in the previous steps was kinda messy, and I'd changed my mind and learned a few things while painting it, so I decided to completely do that over. It didn't take very long, so don't worry. So here's where the piece stands now. I'm going to blend all the tones together and try to achieve a subtle, not-too-smooth texture, and add a rudimentary background of rocks and a plant or two.

  26. #265
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    Interesting creature that last one, looks elegant.
    Love that Dragolope, great render on that one.

    Hard to give crits, maybe on that last creature, putting a groundshadow would help I think.

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    Thanks, Epias. That last creature is actually a robot. I will add a ground shadow. I'm going to have a whole background, albeit a simple one.

    Here's Step 10. Blending, rendering, adding reflected highlights and little highlights on the grooves. I have a somewhat low attention span when it comes to the actual "work" of doing a digital painting, so I'm having to exercise some will power to keep working on this.

    Update: Step 11. Pending future crits, the blending and rendering on the robot is done. In my next robot, I'll have to tackle rendering different types of materials, since this guy's a bit monotonous. I made some of his lower leg joints a darker color to add some variety, but I'll have to work on that more on the next one.
    Last edited by Moai; May 31st, 2007 at 01:47 PM.

  28. #267
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    SWEET STUFF since I last commented! I really love the Bridgeman studies! They're just so.....contoury. I'm really lovin' the smooth lines on those. They make me want to go out and buy a Bridgeman book right now.

    I really love the Warty Dragalope. It's got an awesome design and tight rendering. I know you didn't want to make a background for it, but for some reason it just looks like a sticker stuck onto that brown wash behind it. Maybe a quick way to remedy that would be to add some subtle atmosphereic pespective to the further regions of the creature (like the tail)
    to integrate it more with the brown background.

    That robot is awesome. < 3 If you're interested in texture here're some resources: http://www.mayang.com/textures/ http://www.cgtextures.com/
    It's best to use several layers of different textures, change their angles, mess around with the opacity settings and use the eraser to your heart's content. You can also try adding texture using the Noise filter.
    It's also useful to get your hands on some good textured brushes. You can find some really nice brushes in this thread ---> http://www.conceptart.org/forums/showthread.php?t=82641
    I found some of Bumskee's brushes to be the most useful.

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  29. #268
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    dragalopes!!! soo cool The linework is great, and I love the expression on his face
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  30. #269
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    You may have already stated this somewhere, but a high percentage of your critters are very reminiscent of the Star Wars Wildlife Field Guide, it's not a bad thing, but it'd be cool to see you expand a bit more and study other artists aside from Terryl Whitlatch.

    Wayne Barlowe is a pretty cool artist to check out for 'oddity' inspiration.

    All of your other studies are very good *nods*, anatomy is always fun to pick and pry at

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    Roboscapes

    Katfayheirti- Yay! You're back! You really should go out and buy a Bridgman book. His Complete Guide is very reasonably priced on Amazon. I agree with you on the dragolope. I'll do some of that atmospheric perspective, and toss down a bit of a cast shadow as well.
    As for the textures, I figured a bit of multi-layering and angling was necessary, but I guess I just didn't feel like doing it. I actually did use noise when rendering this, but the file is so huge (2400 x 4200 pixels) that all the pixel-level noise isn't really apparent. Thanks for the texture links, as well. I've paid a few visits to Mayang already, but the other link is new to me.
    And as for the brushes, I use PS7, so basically I'm cut off from the world of downloadable brushes.
    Thanks for the comments!
    BohemianChaos- Thanks.

    So, the backgroundation of my robot picture didn't go very smoothly, but I like where it is now. Here are the steps.
    12. I had a vague idea of a rugged, rocky, orangish-colored background. Here's my first attempt at that. The horizon was shaping up to be too low, and things were too messy, so I scrapped it.
    13. I liked this before I went to work, but once I came back from work I couldn't get into it again. It was too striking, and once again too messy, so I scrapped this one as well. I liked the distant silhouettes, though, so I kept those for the next try.
    14. I was going for a similar layout, but more low-key, with more rounded rocks. Looking at it now, this step seems promising, but I was getting impatient, so I did away with this one as well.
    15. Remember how I said I was getting impatient? Yeah.
    16. Yay! I finally struck the right chord with this one. Rather than mess with rock forms and all the special difficulties that go along with those, I just laid down a flat horizon line and worked out a flat dirtscape with atmospheric perspective. Then I started texturing things up a bit with some small brushstrokes and some subtle yellows and purples mixed in with the warm dirt hues. Then, for some reason, it occurred to me to add some reflective puddles. So I did. Since the landscape was obviously moist, I decided to add some sort of growing life. Photos of the weird plants of the Galapagos Islands served as inspiration. I used the same brush for these plants that I used for the background vegetation in my Robot Grove EoW piece. Then I added some cast shadows for the robot's legs, and some clouds. It's a very simple environment, but I had a blast working on it. I'm not too sure how its painterly roughness goes along with the robot's precise lines, though. Any opinions?
    One more things: I decided to name this piece "The Tidewalker." It's more the name of this particular robot, rather than the general name for this model of robot. I'm not sure what kind of environment this is, with its puddles going all the way to the horizon. One of my theories is that its one of those places where the water level changes by like thirty feet with the tides, like that one place in England or wherever. Thus, the Tidewalker. It better hurry up before high tide comes back in.

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