Tag Archives: Zoe Hart

Character Art – Zoe Hart

Howdy folks!  I always feel like it takes forever before we have the opportunity to put up a new piece by Red Pear, but I’m always so happy when those opportunities arrive.  With the exception of Leo and Hozure, there’s no artist we’ve worked with who has been more prolific, and she gives us a really good look at the characters we’ve created.

Today, we’re looking at a character we’ve seen before.  A couple different artists have tried their hand at Zoe Hart, but this is the first time, believe it or not, that Red Pear has tried her hand at the second generation hero.

Zoe was a quick one for us.  Pear gave us two sketches to work with, and this one was the one that we passed on.

The original pose looked a little too much like Lyla, so we opted for this second piece.  Both highlighted her weapon of choice, the sai.

The detail layer shows off a bunch of cool little details, like her neck piece, and the braid in her hair.  It also highlights her youth.  She’s definitely on the younger side of the characters—maybe younger than Adelia is by the time all our heroes converge—but she’s still a force to be reckoned with!

And here’s our final version of the character with a splash of color.

Here’s a fun fact: If you’ve ever played that game whisper down the lane, this is kind of what it’s like when art is involved.  In the books, Zoe isn’t quite as…bountiful.  But our first artist to tackle her, John Becaro, has a very specific style.  His women all have large assets, and every artist to take on the character since then has kept those womanly curves in place!

That’s it for this take.  It won’t be long before our next Red Pear feature though.  Stay tuned!

Character Art – Zoe Hart

Hey folks.

We’ve got an awesome treat for you today.  Barnswallow, who we’ve worked with before, has done up some awesome new characters for us.  And I do mean new.  These characters have either barely been shown in our art gallery, or this is their big debut.

We start with Zoe Hart, our second generation hero.

Zoe dark sketch 1

In our sketch, you can see Zoe is taking what is probably a much deserved break in the city of Atalatha.  We never really talk about what happens between books, but we consider Zoe a “street level” hero, in that she probably helps to keep people safe even when she’s not involved in cataclysm level events.

Zoe Complete

here you can see a little better our heroine’s attire and weapon choices.  She’s got a very playful style, and even when she’s in trouble beyond her beliefs, she’s willing to give it her all and be optomistic.


Don’t forget to check back every Thursday for more art from the world of Tellest!

Art – Zoe Hart Figurine

Well folks, it’s that time again.  As Darkness Falls is certainly getting some love lately, and we’re here to bring you another interpretation of someone you’ve seen once or twice before.

We last saw Zoe Hart in the style of John Becaro.  She had a distinctive look when compared to June Jenssen’s version of the character, but of course we’re always interested in other people’s take on the characters we create.

And so, today we give you Skence’s version, where you might see our second generation hero as a figurine.

Zoe Desaturated

This is the first time that we’ve seen Zoe with both of her sais. She still has her playful demeanor, but there’s something a little more threatening about the way she handles herself with twin weapons.

Zoe Colored

That smirk is definitely one of confidence.  Zoe comes from a family of heroes, so she has reason to believe she has what it takes.  First and foremost, her father is none other than the knight of virtue, Randall Hart.  Her adoptive uncle, Grant Scott, is another one of the fabled heroes.  And to round it all out, we also have her brother Garrett, who has his own courageous qualities.

Zoe Background

Zoe featured prominently in As Darkness Falls, but we only saw her a little bit in The Enemy Within.  There’s word around the water cooler, however, that it certainly wasn’t the last time we’ve seen her!

Stay tuned for more work from Skence, and more heroes from the world of Tellest.

Character Art – Zoe Hart

We’ve been lucky enough to work with a lot of different artists of different styles over the past two years.  Luck also had a lot to do with getting some of our later story characters some time in the spotlight.

One of those characters is Zoe Hart, a second generation hero who features in As Darkness Falls along with her brother (an awesome character, who as of yet has still not graced us with his presence) and her niece.  Zoe is such an integral character because, despite being someone for David Garus to ogle, she’s strong and dependable in her own right.

Of course, John Becaro’s distinctive style mostly focuses on the ogling.

ZOE Sketch Visibility

John started us off with a rough sketch so that we could see the idea of where he was going with the character.  Clearly he used June Jenssen’s artwork as his starting point.  Zoe’s outfit is very much in line with what it was in June’s work.  Of course, John’s piece utilizes more curves and provocative posing.

ZOE color flats

Some flat colors after that gave the second generation hero a little more character and presence.  She uses twin sais, but thus far we’ve only seen her wielding one.  Of course, this might have a lot to do with her chipper attitude!

ZOE byjohnbecaro

After that, John finished up with the detail, and put Zoe in a nice lush background.  She’s definitely a little more top-heavy than we would have expected, but it’s still a very well done piece.

We’ve got one more piece due from John Becaro.  Stay tuned for that!

Art: Zoe by June Jenssen, Part Two

A couple weeks ago, we brought you one of our first art two-parters in a long time.  There was a lot of work that went into making Zoe Hart awesome, and we wanted to make sure June Jenssen was properly represented for her fine work.

Here’s where we left off:



Of course, a lot changed after that image.  June did an awesome job with the rest of the piece.  Let’s get to it!




We had some need to change certain colors on the character.  We conceptualized Zoe with a more turquoise or teal kind of hue – it made her a little more feminine, yet bold.




The second to last big change was heavy on shading.  June made Zoe look vibrant and energetic, and she really pops now.




Still, as many changes as we went through, nothing could have prepared us for how awesome Zoe looked in her final iteration. June gave us this last piece, and we were floored.  It’s so good!

We’re excited to work with June again.  Cross your fingers that it’s sooner rather than later!

Art: Zoe by June Jenssen, part one

Man do we have a good one for you today.  This is going to be one of your favorite pieces of art, for sure.  We were recently able to begin courting a new artist for Tellest.  In this particular case, the ever talented June Jenssen.  She also started with a character that hadn’t been drawn up for us before: Zoe Hart, the daughter of Randall Hart.

Zoe is important to the overall Tellest saga for a few different reasons.  First and foremost, yes, she’s the daughter of a legendary hero.  That hero’s blood means that she’s got a lot of spunk and moxie, but the talent to back it up as well.  She’s also the love interest of a fan favorite, the bulletproof gladiator, David Garus.

Leading into the next big series, she’s going to be playing a much bigger role.  With that in mind, we knew that we needed to get some interpretations of her, and June delivered in a big way.

As always, we were prepared with a sketch of the character.


This particular sketch shows the outfit and the weapon of choice, Zoe’s sai (she has two, but this portrait only shows the one).

After that, June slapped a little bit of color onto the canvas.


The material is starting to come together by this point, and you can see a lot more of the features clearly.



This was the last phase of the work before a big change.  She’s beautifully colored at this point, but we wanted to change from the tint that we had from our reference picture.  At about halfway done, though, June had already made her mark in a big way.

Stay tuned over the next couple weeks for the follow up to this post. 3She did an even more amazing job with the completed image!

Dream No More – Part Two

Hello there folks!  It’s just a short one today, but we’ve got the final portion of Dream No More for you.  It’s definitely a darker, sadder turn than you’ve seen from a lot of my work, but I hope its still entertaining nonetheless.  In a way, it’s bittersweet.  We’re getting back… eh, let’s not narrate it.  Read on to see what’s happened to one of Tellest’s legends!



Dream No More
-Part Two-

“Garrett!” a feminine voice cried.  “Garrett!  I think it’s working.  I think he’s finally coming to.”

A golden aura seemed to fill the small cottage, not least of all when his vision settled upon the blonde young lady before him.

“Zoe,” he whispered.

She brought her hands to her face, covering her mouth and her nose.  Even in his stupor, he could see the tears rushing to her eyes.

Several urgent steps pounded against the wooden floor.

“Did he just speak?” his son asked.  “Conrad, you’ve done the impossible.”

Randall turned his head then, seeing the beaming smile of his boy.  Garrett reached over and grabbed his hand.

“Son,” he muttered, giving a gentle squeeze.

With wide eyes and a beaming smile, Garrett looked to his sister.  She rested her head against his shoulder and wept.

Beside them, the cleric finally leaned back.  His hand still resonated with a golden tincture, but as he drew away, that glow seemed to fade.

Looking at his surroundings, Randall couldn’t suppress a sigh.  He struggled to sit up, but his son’s hand kept him stationary.

“Take it slow, Father,” Garrett insisted.  “You’re in no rush.  Let us take care of you.”  He turned to his sister, nodding.  “Will you be alright?”

“Of course,” she said, dragging her thumb across her eye.

Garrett patted his father’s chest, standing up beside the bed.  “I’m going to find Uncle Grant and Rhianne, Father.  If we wait, we’ll never hear the end of it.”  He turned around, his steps resounding against the floor again.  “Come and speak with me, Conrad.  Keep my mind at ease.”

Both men withdrew from the house, the door – so distant from Randall, it seemed – slamming shut.

At his side, Zoe slid her chair across the floor.  She had never let go of his hand, sharing in that gentle touch.  As she drew closer to him, she saw the moisture on the rims of his eyes.  His brow furled, and he couldn’t abstain from looking out the window on the wall to his side.

Though he had found the strength to stroke her hand with his thumb, he found himself drawn to the bright blue sky outside.  The clouds rolled over the cottage, obscuring the sun for several moments at a time.

A tear dropped from his eye, rolling down his cheek.

“Father?” she said.  “Father, what’s wrong?”

He croaked out a sob, and in that moment, he seemed to shrink in the bed.  Randall looked at his daughter, his lip trembling.

“Zoe, you have to let me go.”  He struggled to sit up, but his daughter cast her miniscule weight upon him.  Even had she not, he realized his muscles had atrophied while he was confined to the bed.

He turned his head to the side, yearning for the sky outside.

“Let me go,” he begged.  “Let me fly.”

Dream No More – Part One

Hello everyone!  While we’re still putting together our final full length Tale of Tellest, we’re going to continue to bring you great shorts from the world.  Today, we’re beginning the story of a man who had a tragic end after As Darkness Falls.  This is the first short story that happens directly after the original trilogy, so I hope it manages to really interest people who have read it!  Without any further adieu, here is Dream No More:



Dream No More
-Part One-


His ears caught the sound of the nearby brook, and his eyes fluttered open.  Tall trees towered above him, the canopy hanging overhead.  It did little to stifle the bright blue sky.

The man sat up, a subtle throb upon the back of his head eliciting a wince.  The verdant surroundings distracted him from that slight pain.

All around him, the world seemed refreshed.  Green hills rolled toward him on the opposite side of the brook.  Far in the distance, great mountains went exposed by the opening curtain of trees.

“Beautiful, isn’t it?” a serene voice behind him cooed.

With haste he stood, shifting about to see who had spoken.  When he focused on her, his legs wobbled and nearly toppled him to the ground once more.

“Hello, Randall,” the woman said through grinning lips.

“Ivy,” he whispered.

The woman smiled at the mention of her name.  “You seem surprised to see me,” she offered, approaching him seductively.

“Shouldn’t I?” he wondered.  She looked just as he remembered.  Her long brown hair hung just past her shoulders, only a little less voluminous than on those hot summer days.  Her eyes and skin were clear, nary a blemish or wrinkle upon her.  “You died in my arms all those years ago.”

Ivy stopped just inches from him, arching her eyebrows.  “We knew then we’d meet again.”

“What’s going on here?” Randall demanded.  “Is this some kind of trick?”

The woman he once knew reached forward, touching his face with her smooth skin.  “This is real, my love.”

His eyes grew wide, and he looked up, past his wife.  He swallowed hard, shaking his head.  “Back in Atalatha,” he muttered.  “Blacklehn attacked.  I fought their war chief and I… Am I dead?”

“What is the last thing you remember?” Ivy asked, slipping behind her husband.

Randall closed his eyes, focusing on those final moments on that ill-fated night.  He winced again, for the throbbing pain in his head returned.  “I fell,” he said.  “I fell and then everything went dark.”

“You traveled through the Nexus, my dear,” she cooed.  “It is a world between worlds.  And then you arrived here, in our own private paradise.”

“But I’ve seen this place before,” he said.  He turned around and opened his mouth to speak but was surprised by the sight before him.  Ivy stood upon the water of the brook as though it had more substance.  “What is this?”

His wife offered her hand.  “Come and see.”

With his brow furled, he accepted that touch once more.  His fingers wrapped around hers, and his concern seemed to melt away.

Randall stepped forward and splashed into the brook.  He looked down at his boots, fully submerged by then.  Ivy couldn’t suppress a giggle.

“You don’t have to adhere to the rules of the old world,” she said.  “Here, anything is possible if you just believe.”

He sighed.  “Walking on water isn’t believable.”

“Always clinging to the truth,” she replied, the smile never leaving her face.  “Think of it this way.  Whatever we’ve experienced in our old lives is just there to give us context.  You know what stepping into a puddle is like, but you also know what firm ground feels like beneath your feet.  Cast your preconceptions aside and give new meaning to whatever you see.”

“So, what?” Randall asked, lifting his foot from the water.  “I’m just supposed to believe that when I put my foot down…”  His words ceased to leave his mouth when the surface of the water refused to allow his foot past.

“That’s… I expected this lesson to take longer,” Ivy said.  For the first time, her expression seemed more bewildered than amused.  “When I first arrived here, it took me days to do something like that.”

“I had a very good teacher,” Randall insisted.  “I’ve always trusted you.  Who am I to think you’d tell me a lie?”

She crossed her arms over her chest.  “Let’s try something a little more challenging.  You’ve still got one boot in the water.  Let’s see if you can lift it out.”

“Of course I can lift it out.  It’s just –” His foot fell through the surface of the water, nearly spilling him forward.

Ivy failed to suppress a chortle then, covering her lips with her hand.  “Maybe you should try stepping completely out of the brook.  It’s not the easiest thing to force your mind into believing our lifelong convictions are false.”

Shaking his head, Randall focused on his feet.  “If you say it’s possible, who am I to argue?”

Again, he brought one foot up through the water and placed it back down upon it as if covered by a clear layer of ice.  Breathing out, he began lifting his opposite leg.  His limb slipped through the surface then, and when he landed fully upon it, he appeared as vibrant as ever.

“Remarkable,” she said.

Randall grinned at her praise, but when he looked up, the sunlight shining down upon the place obscured her features.  He saw another familiar face there for a moment – one he had left behind.

“What of our children, Ivy?” he asked.  “Zoe and Garrett, I’ve left them alone now.  What will happen to them now that I’m not there?”

For the first time since their reconciliation, her exuberance seemed to diminish.  A slight sigh dropped her shoulders, and she reached out to her husband.  As their fingers intertwined, she led him down the river.  They walked atop it like a glass road toward where the trees framed the distant mountains.

“What happened to you when I was gone?” she inquired.

He looked away, toward the hills to the west.  His gaze followed them up toward the trees there.

“For a long while, it was as though you had just left.  You were just off visiting some distant relative.  I couldn’t understand why our babies were always crying.  And then, months later, when our son and daughter had finally grown to accept the loss, I knew I didn’t have to be strong anymore.

“I don’t even remember where I was,” he continued.  “I know I was alone.  It was cold and quiet, and I…”  He looked down their path, aware then of how close they were to the small waterfall at the end of the brook.  “It was here,” he exclaimed.  “I had come back here, to our favorite place, as if I might find you here.

“That was when I knew you were truly gone,” he lamented.  “I howled like the wolves of Grey Isle… so alone, so lost.  I remember digging into the dirt upon those hills.”  Randall shook his head.  “I don’t know why.  I know you wouldn’t be there, but I was so desperate.  I needed you to be there.

“By the time I had finally accepted the truth, my fingernails had bent and tore.  My hands were bloodier than you could imagine.  I came down here, to the water, and I put my fingers in, and it all just washed away.”

They stood on the edge of the brook, where the water rolled down the rocks beneath.  Ivy squeezed her husband’s hand and looked at him.

“Do you remember all the times you told me you wished we could travel to those mountains?” she asked.

“Every time we went there, they never looked the same,” he conceded.  “No, I wanted to fly there like the elves of Cefenediel.”

Ivy took a single step forward, her gaze never leaving her husband.  It took several moments for Randall to notice she was floating on the air.

“Now is your chance, my love.”  She let her fingers slip from his.  Ivy drifted back and into the open air, as if a strong wind had carried her like a kite.

“How?” Randall asked.  “It’s not like standing on water.”

As those words left his mouth, she shook her head and snickered.  “Consider your words,” she teased.  “Before today, nothing was like standing on water.  You must give yourself the means to reach the sky.  You can rise up like the airships of Argos, or you can imagine wings like the elves you grew up with summoned.”

He stared at her for several moments before nodding.  He breathed out a quiet sigh and closed his eyes.  “Do you remember that summer we traveled to Adengard, before we had Zoe?  Garrett was just a pup then, and we thought he’d sink like a stone if we put him in the pond.

“I remember how he hung onto the rocks on the outset, clinging for dear life.  And then, when he knew you were there to catch him…” he continued, bending his knees.  “He took a leap.”  Randall sprang off of the surface of the water, bursting into the air.

Randall waved his arms and kicked his legs like he was swimming.  Above him, Ivy rose higher and higher, until she passed the canopy of the trees.

“See if you can keep up,” she pressed.  “Maybe you shouldn’t be changing the rules of your surroundings.  Perhaps you should be changing yourself!”

His momentum slowed as he considered her advice.  At once, he shot forth, crossing the sky like a comet.  A jubilant cry left his lips as he chased his wife, and laughter filled the air high above the river, the trees, and the mountains.

After a series of flips and rolls, Ivy came to a stationary position halfway between the ground and the clouds.  Randall sped toward her and almost passed her.  She gripped him firmly, pulling him close.

“Is something wrong?” he asked.

“Tell me of our children,” Ivy pleaded.  “What has become of them?”

He tilted his head at that notion.  “Surely you know what we’ve done.  You knew everything that transpired before I arrived.”

“Only just,” she whispered.  The woman averted her gaze, and her eyebrows drooped as the depth of her plight became apparent.  “I dare not spend my days here looking at you or them.  This place may be paradise, but every moment without you here has been my personal hell.

“You can’t change time here,” she went on, her voice breaking at the crescendo of her promise.  “I’ve tried.  Somehow it always rights itself.  I spend most of my days looking backward at those memories we’ve made.”

The sight of tears fighting toward the surface of her eyes wounded him.  He grabbed her close, wrapping her in a tight embrace.  He cradled the back of her head and kissed her temple.

They were there for a long while, floating in the sky, spinning in slow circles.  He nodded as the dance continued.

“Zoe is growing up a fine young lady,” he whispered.  “She’s never told a malicious lie and wouldn’t hurt a bug if she could help it.  I think… I think she’s found someone who makes her feel the way you made me feel.  And before all this happened, I…”

A subtle shrug lifted his shoulders.  His eyebrows rose as he considered the same distance from his children that his wife had endured.  A resigned sigh forced its way from his lips as he stroked Ivy’s hair.

“Garrett may be a little worse for wear,” he continued.  “He’s loved and lost and grown cynical of the whole thing.  Says it’s the curse of the broken Hart – a cruel twist on the family name.”

“And what do you think?” she wondered.

“Oh, my heart truly broke when you were gone,” he said, pressing her away to arm’s length.  “But I’d never risk trading that pain away if it meant losing the time we had together.  Our son may have been unlucky in love, but he didn’t leave empty-handed.  You have a granddaughter, Rhianne.”

Her lips curled upward as she bowed her head.  She worked at stifling a sniffle, but she had been found.

Randall grabbed her wrist to pull her close once more.  His fingers slipped from her, though, and he dropped several dozen feet.  A pronounced cry echoed out, stopping abruptly as he found himself firmly in place again.  “What just happened?” he demanded.

Swallowing hard, Ivy lowered herself until she was before him again.  She closed her eyes and bowed her head.  “This isn’t your place yet.”  She slowly looked up, meeting his gaze.  “You’re only visiting.”


His wife slid around in the air until she halted beside him.  Reaching out, she extended her index finger and traced a large circle in the air.  Once the circuit had been made, an image began taking shape.

“When you fell in your encounter with the war chief, you still fought on,” Ivy said.  “Your consciousness… your soul, it transcended to this place, and it lingers.  But it is not yet your time.”

Within the circle, Randall could see the land of the living.  His daughter sat beside his body, holding his hand.  A cleric placed his fingers to his chest, a faint glow resonating outward.  He watched as he blinked his eyes.

He tumbled another dozen feet, stopping even more abruptly than before.

“Please, Ivy.  Please!” he cried.  “Don’t let me go.  Don’t let me lose you again.”

A tear dropped from her eye, but she drew no closer to him.

“I know you’ll find this place again, my dear,” she sobbed.  “But you have to go back.  Give our children something to believe in.  Help them find their way here.  Make our family whole again.”

“Ivy!” he bellowed.

Randall was falling before he called out to her.  His voice never faltered until the moment he struck the ground below.