Ode to Old OCs: #3- Áine Cardea - she/they

Just going to jump right into it, you know the drill by now. If not, check out my past blogs on the subject to learn more about this series I’m doing.

This is a treat for y’all, a newish OC! I think I made her within the last year! I haven’t really done anything with her yet, but I can definitely talk about my influences with her design! Áine (which I believe is pronounced awn-yah, it’s Irish, from a goddess of the Sun) is a witch, from the same story that another character, Luc Concordia, is from. Her last name needed to be alphabetically very close to Luc’s last name, since they’re classmates in the story and I wanted them to always get paired together for things. I recalled in a lot of classes the students who came close to me alphabetically that I was always with so they get that treatment. Cardea is a roman goddess of doorways and hinges, which is sorta niche but it’s fitting as I wanted her character to always feel like she’s about ready to pivot, to cross a threshold, to make a change. Her character is kind of like a mix between types like Diana Cavendish from Little Witch Academia, Sasuke Uchiha from Naruto, and the like, but turned on its head. In those stories, the cool demeanor rival-cum-love interest is very good at their magic, and seems to always get it right. Áine struggles. I have her and Luc as two sides of the same ADHD coin, Áine is struggling to succeed, burning out and overworking herself to be as good as her peers, whereas Luc has the blessing of a god inside her (unknown to both of them) and succeeds very easily, without needing to try.

Here’s Áine’s concept art. She actually went through two revisions of Picrew Designs that I don’t currently have (if I remember I’ll edit this blog entry to include them), trying to make her seem more high-school aged. I’m not sure if my new art really captured that. I was thinking about 16 for her and Luc. I very intentionally drew my inspiration from LWA and Naruto when designing these two, keeping the blonde-vs-dark hair dichotomy. Áine’s vibe feels very early morning to me. Sunrises, still dark sky with a glow at the horizon, dew on leaves and fog in the air, hot coffee, morning routines. She isn’t the type to have a very organized life, but she pines for the people who do. She herself isn’t the perfect Dark Academia Witch she wants to be, wearing rough thrifted clothes and pushing herself to her limit. Makeup for her is an overcompensation, drawn on heavy and dark to make it seem like she has it together and is perfectly feminine, because if she tried to manage the budding gender feelings she’s having she might have an actual breakdown.

That’s kind of where I’m at with her design. Her story is more wrapped around reconciling old assumptions about the Patrons, her desire to take down each one of them, and the feelings of learning her Worstie is a Patron. It’s kinda complex.

Let me know what you think about Áine! Do you have any characters that are heavily inspired by other media properties? Tell me about them!