Finally, a project I feel more confident about! Our task is to create a female warrior either from India, Africa, China or Japan. This is surely something different and I'm really excited!
Initially I thought of choosing a lady from Africa. She would have a lovely skin tone, bunch of unruly hair and a scary wooden mask on her face. I had a sudden vision of browns, reds and yellows. I imagined a mysterious shaman woman with her face painted. I heard hissing fire and people singing. I saw the dancing. Colours, colours, colours.
Then I found this photograph and changed my mind.
Our brief doesn't say anything about Mongolia, but considering its common history with China as well as their close resemblance, I decided to alter the brief a tiny bit.
I am mostly interested in XIII century history when Mongol Empire was founded and ruled by Genghis Khan.
Rather than focusing on their ethnic features, for now I should probably make some research on armour.
Most Mongolian armour was of scale and lamellar variety. It was made of hardened leather and iron,
lanced together onto a fabric backing, sometimes silk. Mail armour was quite rare, due to its weight and
difficulty to repair. Mongol archers demanded the armour to be light
enough so that when riding, it didn't interfere with their mobility.
It is also possible that the Mongol armour lacked mail and was
generally lighter because the
nomadic habits of the Mongols were not conducive to the labour,
intensive practices and permanent facilities necessary for making mail
or large plates. Sometimes arm protection was removed so that a rider
could draw their bow. The helmet was made of mostly iron, but leather
and other materials were also used.
Although I may append small amount of lamellas to my warrior but I want to keep it light and swift. Not a big fan of heavy armour.
I found this sketch, taken probably from a history textbook, picturing a typical armour for archers.
Here we have a very simple deel (could be also used as a blanket or tent) with leather belt, a furry hat and traditional Mongolian boots - gutul.
(Apparently in old times it was considered a humiliating punishment if the zangia - a round shaped knot decoration crowning the hat, was torn off. To
tread or step over it is considered to be insult to the owner.)
There is a rather small bow, equally small shield and a saber. Their hairstyle were quite charming but I think I'm going to skip it, considering I couldn't find any evidence of women having her head shaved like this. It must have been reserved for men. Thankfully.
I think I know what I want to do now, so let's do some concepts.
For now I think I like no1 first although my friends prefer the furry hat and cream vs. green colour scheme. I will do more designs before deciding on my final one.