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Flight of the Swallow by Art-Zealot Flight of the Swallow by Art-Zealot
On Tumblr.

"We created this ice monster. We will not leave this lake. Listen, and hear how death is hastening to you!"

I don't think I've ever felt as satisfied with the ending of a book as with Anderzej Sapkowski's The Tower of the Swallow. That man can think up some nasty, terrible, awful, hateable characters, and he has them all relentlessly pursuing the characters you love. Then in a marvelous turn of events, hunted becomes hunter on a frozen lake, complete with deadly figure-skating. Because Ciri is a boss.

I must confess, I've been kind of obsessed with the world of The Witcher recently. It started over Thanksgiving, when I watched a playthrough of the games (well, I was also intrigued by this trailer at E3), but when I realized they were based on a book series, I decided I should start there. Whoah dang, I'm glad I stumbled upon these. After collecting up all the books and short stories in print, and picking up some very nice fan translations of the ones that were only in Polish, I'm one book away from closing out the saga (well, the ones in English; I think there's one more book I can't read yet, alas). I am out of my mind with hype for the Witcher 3 because Cirilla, aka Ciri, the Lion Cub of Cintra, Witcher and Sorceress, is not only in the spotlight but is actually a playable character. And I'm so crossing my fingers for this ice scene to be included...

I could probably gush about the series forever, but I'll just end with a heartfelt recommendation to read the books (and here's a handy chronological list for you). I'll warn you that they're quite as graphic as Game of Thrones, but ten times more poetic.

The Witcher © Anderzej Sapkowski
Art © H. Lazo (Art-Zealot)
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:iconspare74:
Spare74 Featured By Owner Apr 16, 2019
I just finished The Tower Of The Swallow and had to find some art of this scene. 
So here I am, this piece is amazing!

I'd very much like to get a print of it, is there anyway to make that happen that's not me downloading it and printing it via an external website? Because that way you wouldn't get anything out of it :s
Reply
:iconart-zealot:
Art-Zealot Featured By Owner Edited Apr 18, 2019  Professional Digital Artist
Thank you very much! It was too good of a scene to pass up. :D

I'm unfamiliar with DeviantArt's print system, but I've just submitted this one to make available as a print for you, so hopefully that will work! I'm not sure how long it will take to process, but if for some reason it doesn't end up working, I won't be offended if you have to print it elsewhere— especially since the character doesn't belong to me, so I'm not looking for a profit.

Best of luck! I'm glad you like it, and I appreciate you wanting to support the artist!
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:iconspare74:
Spare74 Featured By Owner Apr 22, 2019
Thanks a lot for doing that, the printing service is indeed activated but I sadly won't be using it.
It would cost more than $50 on top of the print's price itself to have it delivered to me in France...

I'll look into getting a print from somewhere else but I'll send you a picture once I get it framed :)
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:iconart-zealot:
Art-Zealot Featured By Owner Apr 22, 2019  Professional Digital Artist
Ahh I suspected as much, which is why I don't usually go for that option. The price return to me is minimal in any case. I hope you still get to enjoy it!
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:iconundefinedscott:
UndefinedScott Featured By Owner Feb 8, 2018  Professional Writer
This is amazing. 
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:iconart-zealot:
Art-Zealot Featured By Owner Feb 9, 2018  Professional Digital Artist
Thanks very much!
Reply
:icongrahamhorridge68:
Grahamhorridge68 Featured By Owner Nov 17, 2016
Cool 
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:iconart-zealot:
Art-Zealot Featured By Owner Nov 17, 2016  Professional Digital Artist
Thanks
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:iconnuxyrryxun:
NuxyrRyxun Featured By Owner Oct 12, 2016
I'd like to have this as a wallpaper...
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:iconart-zealot:
Art-Zealot Featured By Owner Oct 12, 2016  Professional Digital Artist
I'm fine with that if it's for personal use!
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:iconnuxyrryxun:
NuxyrRyxun Featured By Owner Oct 12, 2016
It would be, but I can't download it through the DeviantART-App.
Can you unlock that option?

P.S.: thanks for the quick reply!
Reply
:iconart-zealot:
Art-Zealot Featured By Owner Oct 12, 2016  Professional Digital Artist
For sure! I normally don't opt for full-size downloads, but since it's fan art (and you asked so nicely) I'll do it. C:
Reply
:iconnuxyrryxun:
NuxyrRyxun Featured By Owner Oct 12, 2016
Thanks, I appreciate that^^
Keep up the good work!
Reply
:icongaspode5:
Gaspode5 Featured By Owner May 16, 2016
I love the composition of this. It's dynamic and elegant. Nicely balanced with Ciri's body almost becoming the diagonal of the painting and a nicely off centre focus. The contrasting colour of the blood is a nice touch.

My thoughts on the blood on the sword (not that it matters much since I do believe in a certain amount of artistic licence): Ciri is moving at high speed here and using the mist as cover. It's perfectly believable that she might have struck her opponent with the less suitable part of her blade as she zoomed past.
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:iconart-zealot:
Art-Zealot Featured By Owner May 16, 2016  Professional Digital Artist
Thanks very much! I'm glad you like it!
Reply
:iconterkontar:
Terkontar Featured By Owner Edited Mar 13, 2016  Hobbyist General Artist
Ah, yes, the lake of Tarn Mira. I've always adored this scene for some reason, despite it being being somewhat... well, let's just say that it does not make much sense combat-wise, lol ^^ 

I have to say one thing - guys behind the official Polish Witcher fanpage have a damn good taste if it comes down to the art. You did an amazing job. Sincerely. I love the colors, the pose, the dynamics, the composition, the way you've handled the background... but I think I may have a small, huh, tip for you. A curio, really. It's about the way you've drawn blooded Zirael - only the middle part of the blade is covered in blood. Normally in a swordfight you'd want to strike your opponent with a "weak" part of your sword that is closer to the point of a blade; thus, it's the tip-part that would be covered in blood, not the mid-part ^^ as I said, a curio.

Out of curiosity - have you finished the Witcher saga? Or any other Sapkowski's book, perchance?
Reply
:iconart-zealot:
Art-Zealot Featured By Owner Mar 13, 2016  Professional Digital Artist
Thanks very much! Ah yes, your note about the blood makes perfect sense. It was a purely visual choice.

I've read all of the books and short stories except for Season of Storms (book...8?) which doesn't have a full English translation yet, I think. And I have yet to finish Witcher 3 because of time constraints.
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:iconterkontar:
Terkontar Featured By Owner Mar 13, 2016  Hobbyist General Artist
Huh... I honestly don't think that Season of Storms counts as a part of the saga, aaaand from what I've heard it's not the best novel under the sun. I'd recommend the Hussite Trilogy though, should there be an English translation - in my opinion the Trilogy is better than the Witcher. I kind of sympathize with you, actually, for there's one sad thing about Sapkowski's work - a LOT is lost in the translation. It really loses a lot of its magic.

Miłego dnia (;
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:iconart-zealot:
Art-Zealot Featured By Owner Mar 14, 2016  Professional Digital Artist
I certainly felt the poetry and elegance of his thematic storytelling throughout all of the books, so I'm all the more impressed (though not really surprised) that it's even  better in the original translation.

You too! C:
Reply
:iconterkontar:
Terkontar Featured By Owner Edited Mar 14, 2016  Hobbyist General Artist
The funny thing about his work is that I do not like it that much (I find it unpleasantly tedious at some points, to be honest; even more than Shallan's chapters at the beginning of the Way of Kings by mr Sanderson), but there is something that makes me admire it, that magic I mentioned. It's mostly because of... well, how native, how Polish it is, both in the language and spirit - no translator would ever give it its due, I'm affraid.
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:iconryuu1222:
RYUU1222 Featured By Owner Mar 12, 2016
I was brought here by the official Polish Witcher fb site : ) You really depicted this scene amazingly. It always inspires me to see such amounts of talent and hard work to pay off in the form of incredible art! I wish I had illustration like this in the books when I was reading them years ago : )
Best of luck! (forgive me my english ^^" )
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:iconart-zealot:
Art-Zealot Featured By Owner Mar 12, 2016  Professional Digital Artist
Ah! Dziękuję bardzo! I'm glad you like it!
(Don't worry, your English is excellent!)
Reply
:iconvgamall:
VGamall Featured By Owner Apr 27, 2015
I really like this scene in the book. Ciri is sooo skilled, and her ennemies just wet their pants during the fighting. You depicted it so well!
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:iconart-zealot:
Art-Zealot Featured By Owner Apr 27, 2015  Professional Digital Artist
I was grinning so wickedly my face hurt while I read that scene. :XD:

Thank you!
Reply
:iconmalduki:
Malduki Featured By Owner Mar 9, 2015   Traditional Artist
Another fun fact about the game relating to this scene: they were at one point planning on adding ice skating fighting like this in the witcher 3 but had to cut it last minute.

However, there is a very strong chance that they will add this to DLC for the witcher 3 game in the future. If anything, I think this was a huge nod to the fans and the written material of the books (especially if they were having Ciri conducting the Ice-Skating game mechanic while in game).

I don't know much about it personally, but I think that it would be awesome if they added that to the main game!
Reply
:iconart-zealot:
Art-Zealot Featured By Owner Mar 10, 2015  Professional Digital Artist
Haha, yeah I was watching the Twitch stream and almost lost it when they brought that up. I'm honestly just happy they even considered such a specific nod to the book fans, sad as I am that it didn't fit. I don't know how much of a chance it actually has of becoming DLC, but the dream is alive. Witcher Olympics 2015! May the most deadly kingdom win!
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:iconelmenora:
elmenora Featured By Owner Mar 6, 2015  Student General Artist
Ooh, new books for my reading list!  Anything that inspires art this cool has got to be a good read.
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:iconart-zealot:
Art-Zealot Featured By Owner Mar 6, 2015  Professional Digital Artist
My work here is done. :salute:
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:iconfancyhatshop:
FancyHatShop Featured By Owner Feb 14, 2015
wooooooow I love this pose :D
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:iconart-zealot:
Art-Zealot Featured By Owner Feb 15, 2015  Professional Digital Artist
Thanks very much!
Reply
:iconfancyhatshop:
FancyHatShop Featured By Owner Feb 15, 2015
ya! its reallllly cool ^.^
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:iconrivas78:
Rivas78 Featured By Owner Feb 8, 2015  Student Filmographer
Very dynamic!
I love this!
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:iconart-zealot:
Art-Zealot Featured By Owner Feb 8, 2015  Professional Digital Artist
Thanks much!
Reply
:iconrivas78:
Rivas78 Featured By Owner Feb 12, 2015  Student Filmographer
No probl ^^
Reply
:icontiberia123:
Tiberia123 Featured By Owner Feb 7, 2015
Ack, so after seeing this amazing artwork and hearing how much you liked the story, I went and watched the trailer for the games - holy cow!!! I showed it to my husband because the graphics in it just blow the mind away and I can't believe the scope for story telling and adventuring they have managed to capture in the games! It has completely piqued mine and my husband's interest, to the point we have started saving up for an xbox :D Might I ask where you found the english translations of the books? Both my husband and I want to read them while we save up our money to buy the game when it comes out :D
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:iconart-zealot:
Art-Zealot Featured By Owner Feb 7, 2015  Professional Digital Artist
Oh, and also: I'd suggest saving up for a PS4 instead; it's the more robust of the two...and I'm totally unbiased...>.>
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:iconart-zealot:
Art-Zealot Featured By Owner Feb 7, 2015  Professional Digital Artist
Haha! Victory! I linked to a handy-dandy list up there in the Artist Comment, which is how I tracked down all my fan-translations and eBooks. That should lead you on the right path!

I look forward to geeking out with you in the future! ;]
Reply
:icontiberia123:
Tiberia123 Featured By Owner Feb 9, 2015
Started reading The Sword of Destiny. Only 20 pages in and already hooked :D!


Haha, and let the saving up begin! 
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:iconkalia24:
Kalia24 Featured By Owner Feb 1, 2015  Hobbyist General Artist
Regarding the comment - ice scene won't be there, since the events in game are set after the events in books. Sorry :(
Reply
:iconart-zealot:
Art-Zealot Featured By Owner Feb 1, 2015  Professional Digital Artist
No apology necessary! I'm aware they happen before the books, but to my pleasant surprise CD Projekt released a screenshot of a scene in Kaer Morhen that looks suspiciously like flashback of young Ciri, and they've hinted that they'll give Ciri a proper introduction. I also have my suspicions that this shot might actually be their interpretation of her flight to the Tower. I'm not putting anything off of the table at this point. ;]
Reply
:iconmalinaithil:
MalinaIthil Featured By Owner Feb 1, 2015  Professional Interface Designer
This has such tesion and movement - stunning :love:
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:iconart-zealot:
Art-Zealot Featured By Owner Feb 1, 2015  Professional Digital Artist
Thank you, Malina!
Reply
:iconshaydesmar:
Shaydesmar Featured By Owner Jan 31, 2015  Hobbyist Writer
I
 I have a terrible feeling that you've just recommended yet another series of books that I am going to have to hunt down and read. Thanks :)

 And she looks like such a badass, which is always a good thing.
Reply
:iconart-zealot:
Art-Zealot Featured By Owner Jan 31, 2015  Professional Digital Artist
Haha, well these books are a bit less accessible than others that I've recommended, but still worth the hunt, my apologies. ;]

Always a good thing.
Reply
:iconbergischerhammer:
BergischerHammer Featured By Owner Jan 31, 2015
Oh man, i loved that part in the books.
Thank you for this, bro :D :D Heart 
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:iconart-zealot:
Art-Zealot Featured By Owner Jan 31, 2015  Professional Digital Artist
My pleasure!
Reply
:iconsammiyad:
Sammiyad Featured By Owner Jan 30, 2015
oh wow oh wow OH WOW!!!!!!! LOVE THIS!!! I adore the layout, and the beauty of it, so much motion and emotion...just LOVE IT!!!!
Reply
:iconart-zealot:
Art-Zealot Featured By Owner Jan 30, 2015  Professional Digital Artist
Thanks much, Sam!
Reply
:iconinkpawstudio777:
InkPawStudio777 Featured By Owner Jan 29, 2015  Hobbyist General Artist
Oh no...A pretty bloody kille- wait...r those ice skates???
Reply
:iconart-zealot:
Art-Zealot Featured By Owner Jan 30, 2015  Professional Digital Artist
Yes indeed. :D
Reply
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