Character Contest 59: Pisces

Your character design challenge for this week is to come up with an image with HeroMachine based on the idea of the Zodiac sign "Pisces". To help you out, here's a bit on the history of the name from Wikipedia:

[Pisces] is also considered a water sign and one of the four mutable signs. (Mutable signs have a longing for movement and are extremely restless. Pisces is the most watery sign. It is constantly trying to adapt itself to its ever-changing feelings and to the moods and whims of others, allbeit a little obnoxious sometimes.) ... Individuals born when the Sun was in this sign are considered Pisceans.

According to one Greek myth, Pisces represents the fish into which Aphrodite and her son Eros transformed in order to escape the monster Typhon; they are tied together with a cord on their tails, to make sure they do not lose one another. Alternatively, the twin fish were placed in the heavens in honor of their heroic deed of saving Aphrodite and Eros from Typhon on the river Euphrates.

As always, you should definitely let your imagination loose on this. The concept of the Zodiac sign is just a starting point, but almost anything having to do with fish, or water, or even a play on the name itself would work. You don't have to literally make an illustration of the constellation.

The contest rules are the same as usual:

  1. Use only a HeroMachine applet (no PhotoShopping except for basic cropping) to create a PNG or JPG of your entry, named as [your name]-[character name].[file extension]. So DiCicatriz, for instance, would save his "Bayou Belle" character image as DiCicatriz-BayouBelle.png.
  2. Post the image to a publicly accessible website (ImageShack, PhotoBucket, the UGO Forums, etc.).
  3. Enter the name of your entry and a link directly to the image in a comment to this post. The image cannot have been used in any previous HeroMachine character design contest.
  4. The link to your image should go directly to the image (like this) and not to a hosting jump page (like this). If you see "preview" or "rotate" somewhere in the link you're probably doing it wrong.
  5. I'll choose a winner next Monday, who will receive his or her choice of any item or a portrait to be included in the final HeroMachine 3 program, or a "Sketch of the Week" style black and white illustration (you pick the subject and I draw it up however I like).

No limit on entries this week, so knock yourselves out. Good luck everyone!

168 Responses to Character Contest 59: Pisces

  1. unknownblackpaper says:

    Gypsy (full version)

    It all started with this strange vision in my head of this image of mystery and mermaids, so I rolled with it.

    Within her hands she holds
    The glob in which the two do hold
    Hands and ties which may never part
    Those with a watery soul.

  2. Nick Hentschel says:

    UBP (1):
    Interesting picture: the emblem in the back, made from the symmetrically-arranged fishtails, is particularly inventive. Good use of transparency, too.

  3. Dionne Jinn says:

    unknownblackpaper (1)
    I like your picture. Only thing that naggs me is the left hand with thumb facing the wrong way, but I know that it is not your fault. There is no hand that has a thumb facing out in HM3, currently. Very nice work!

  4. unknownblackpaper says:

    @ Nick and Dionne: Thank you!

  5. DiCicatriz says:

    Actually there’s always this hand:

    It’s more of a relaxed grip than the mysterious shape-casting effect you have, but at least the thumb placement is right 🙂

  6. Myro says:

    I’m going to go with an obvious (in my mind, at least) joke here about a fishy escape of a different nature.

    I may come up with something else if I can think of a better idea.

  7. Dionne Jinn says:

    Wow, Myro (7)! That was brialliant! You just gave me the first genuine laughter of a dull day of studying. Thanks a million for that!

  8. pyrodude760 says:

    ryaxi number six you have your image posted wrong right click on the image and choose view image and then post that link

  9. zaheelee says:

    I can’t wait to see the “Zodiac Commando” for this one!

  10. McKnight57 says:
    This is my version. A mutated Cottonmouth otherwise known as a Water Moccasin.

  11. Nicholas/GtaMythMaster43 says:

    I’m sort of confused. Don’t know why but these get me. I got nothin’. Can’t wait to see what the others throw up though! The ones so far are pretty good!

  12. MScat says:

    Pisces is a fish…so i went with a mermaid. Seems logical 😉

  13. Superfan1 says:

    this is the hero of the zodiac. A well known ballerina who is constantly praised for her fluid movements which she does while simultaneously maintaning a sense of control, much like water.

  14. Catseye is sometimes considered a Pisces Gemstone:

  15. McKnight57 says:

    Atomic Punk: I like the Cheshire Cat look you gave this one. The crazed smile is an awesome piece for the mouth. Still looking for how to incorporate it into one of my characters. Well played my friend, well played.

  16. Lime says:

    “Come quick!” my assistant cried, but as I reached the broken wall at which he pointed, I found I was, alas, a moment too late. How much longer we might search before we encountered another of the mysterious denizens of Atlantis!

    The One That Got Away:

  17. joel says:

    The Carcharias Soldier, he is a guardian of the ruins of the lost city of Atlantis.

  18. LionStar says:

    This is Vivix Falia.
    She is one of the many Celestial beings who watch over the dimmensions and makes sure that dimmensional balance remains unharmed. She is the scholar, the activist, the adventurer, as well as the heart and soul of the Celestials all in one.
    She was never supposed to be born, but her father (also a Celestial who I’m saving for the right contest)fell in love with a human and mated with her. Because of this, Vivix tends to act less poised as the rest of the celestials due to her human nature. When her presence is made known, space iteslf appears to flow as a calm sea. Her touch opens people’s eyes to the surrounding world around them, and arouses their minds with questions about life and purpose.

  19. MScat says:

    I was inspired by the Greek mythology of pisces. I had troube coming up with a background. Oh well hope yall like it

  20. The Fish says:
    Here is my entry, The Piscinians:
    They come from a planet that orbits a star directly in the middle of the Pisces Constellation, thus man called them The Piscinians. They are a wholly aquatic species, who have never had to adapt to land. As such, they have no legs. They have massive underwater cities that dot the floor of their planet-wide ocean, built entirely from living coral. Their mastery over the coral on their planet has put them well into an equivalent for the turn of the century, with coral just beginning to mimic what we consider modern technology.

  21. RitoruBushi says:

    um… not trolling here…
    but does anyone else notice that the middle portion of the left “fish” is made up of… an “adult marital aide”?

  22. Tuldabar says:

    Now I know what you’re thinking; and while this guy is sort of a turtle, he’s no ninja.
    This is a warrior of the surface-dwelling Kappa tribes on the water covered world of Pisces. And as we know, there are two fish in THAT constellation . The Kappas are currently engaged in a civil war with the underwater cities of the “Mr’Sapiens” (Think merpeople).
    Spent two days working on this baby, and on a public Mac too. The canoe alone was a beast.

  23. unknownblackpaper says:


    I did some research on mermaids, and found that in most legends that are often depicted as beings whom lure men to a watery doom. This image represents the duel nature of the mermaid, above the water, peaceful and gentle even. Below the water’s surface revels the horror that is the true part of the mermaid’s world.

  24. Fishsticks says:

    Pieces, Fishsticks, shameless self promotion? Maybe a little. 😛
    With that said, Fishsticks isn’t an aquatic hero. I think she has elements of a dangerous allure; someone you wouldn’t expect with such a silly name.

  25. Watson Bradshaw says:

    Entry 1

    SeaMonkey worrier

    I was explaining to a friend not to long ago that as a kid I had a SeaMonkey aquarium and how exciting it was to watch the eggs to hatch and the disappointment when you realize that you had a bunch of ugly shrimp and not the cool family of shrimp people on the box. well for Pisces I figure I would show you what I thought I would be getting.

  26. Frevoli says:

    (I realised that last time I didn’t include any story details with Aquarius… let’s fix that)


    The fully aquatic zodiac.

    Fast in the waterr (obviously), he is armed with the Fish Nunchucks (relax, they’re not real fish… just fine crafted gold)

    He usually gets partnered up with Aquarius, a statistic he’s quite pleased about, and also has a special relationship with Ares and Capricorn.

    The joker of the pack, more often swimming in his own thoughts than the sea… Pisces

  27. Iflyte says:

    Alright, first entry this week is less of a character and more of a design.

  28. Joe says:

    This is probably not the best out there but here is my entry:

  29. Frevoli says:

    @Myro (7)


  30. Superfan1 says:

    The Forbidden Lovers Scandal

    The Story of the pisces…but a little different. Instead of mother and son, it was a Ruler and her lover who had to escape from the hands of her angry subjects. She did not escape death, however, and he only escaped by denouncing his love for her.

  31. Superfan1 says:

    Sorry didn’t save it with the right name

  32. Danny Beaty says:

    Hi gang! Here is my entry.


    Pisces has superhuman strength and can survive the trmendous pressure of the ocean depths. His helmet allows him to breathe underwater. His costume generates an energy field that can propel him through the water at speeds equivalent to 200 mph. His trident can be used in the traditional ways as wall as a blasting weapon.

  33. MLS says:

    Thanks zaheelee! And thanks to everyone else who gave props last time for my low-budget GI Joe rip-off, the Zodiac Commandos. Your encouragement was rewarding.

    So this month it’s Pisces–the fish. Would it be too obvious to make Pisces the team’s aquatic assault specialist? A little too cliche? A little too on-the-nose? Yeah. Probably. Am I gonna do it anyway?

    What can I say? Torpedo was one of my first favorite Joes. And because there was so much enthusiasm last time, here’s a group pic of the whole team. It’s a work in progress. I’ll add each new character each month.

  34. PapaKrok says:

    40…Jeff, why does this say “Your comment is awaiting moderation”? My hard drive crashed at work, does that have anything to do with it, a technical issue perhaps?

  35. Jeff Hebert says:

    PapaKrok, no clue why WordPress puts some comments into moderation and not others. Seriously, no clue. As far as I am concerned, the computers are already our overlords and I am but a humble biological agent acceding to their whims.

    Meaning, I’ll approve it in just a bit 😉

    Basically what happens when you see that message is, WordPress puts the comment into a moderated queue. I get an email saying there are pending messages, and I have to go approve them manually. No big whoop.

  36. PapaKrok says:

    Thanks Jeff. I agree. Computers ARE our overlords 🙂 Thanks for the clarification.

  37. unknownblackpaper says:

    PapaKrok I hate you. That face (40) is great and the image is so cool!

  38. PapaKrok says:

    unknownblackpaper ! Thanks! I was playing with placing the neck part of the torso in front of the head and it just kinda looked like a chin…then the face just appeared. Weird! Jeff’s work is damn great to create with.

    What about gypsy?? You have some serious cool experimentation going on there! You do great work and play outside of the box fer sure.

  39. unknownblackpaper says:

    PappKrok: *^-^* Thanks

  40. joel says:

    entry # 3

    the tales of the monk Museimaru:

    “… and then I remembered what my master had said, focus your spirit into your fist, and strike.”

  41. MScat says:

    Sunset on the water

    I wanted to go outside the box and do some experimentation with some techniques I havnt used before.

  42. unknownblackpaper says:

    Another Time

    Honestly I couldn’t think of a good title. I wanted to do something fish related that wasn’t pre-made or mermaid (again) SO I chose and hunted though the items which had a good flow an created this. Hope it is not to “Huh?”

  43. pyrodude760 says:

    51 unknownblackpaper thats awesome the way you made that

  44. dblade says:

    I’m throwing my entry into the ring…

    Aqueous is a powerful shapeshifter who rules over an underwater empire of waterbreathing humanoids with advanced alien technology. The humanoids are worshipers of Typhon and believe Aqueous is the creature’s son.

  45. unknownblackpaper says:

    pyrodude760: Thank you!

  46. Asder says:

    I´ve been really busy, but i got a few minutes off and i wasbored and here it is Pisces

  47. SeanDavidRoss says:

    Just wanted to take a moment to say how much I like PapaKrok’s entry. Simply beautiful. I also really like what Pesky and dblade have done. Great work.

  48. Nick Hentschel says:

    Having already done something water-themed last month, I fairly racked my brain over this. But then, I remembered a silly, animated commercial from when I was a a kid, and i one stroke, I figured out how to take the idea of fish, the Pisces sign’s natural attributes of spirituality and intuition, and my guiding principle: a good, solid pun! So, I now offer you a drawing that I call….

    …”FILET OF SOUL”!!!

    What?! You never heard of a Monkfish before? 😉

  49. Nakiato says:

    entry 1
    I was mostly experimenting with differnt things and created these two sea creatures not much thought put into this one.

    entry 2

    decided to do some word play again. This is Aquation the guardian of the Pi seas. He protects the great waters useing the power of Pi (im not sure what that means eaither)

  50. Solander says:

    Jeff, what’s the status on the unclaimed contest prizes?

  51. Nick Hentschel says:

    Search me about the prizes, but since I’d like a little comment on my own entry, maybe I should speak up about what else has come so far:

    MScat (14): Good setting & scenery. I wish that I’d tried your concept for half-out-of-water on my Aquarius drawing; it might have made more sense.

    (50): It *is* fun to play with light & color to make simple images, isn’t it? That seems to be what I’ve done best so far, myself.
    It took me a moment to realize that the dolphin was leaping out of the water, instead of swimming through the air; I guess that fact that you can’t “pose” it was very frustrating to work with. Maybe a little “splash” in the water would solve the problem?

    Lime (18): VERY funny. Good use of a partial image to suggest “going away.”

    The Fish (24): An interesting use of taking a component (the cityscape) out of its usual setting to suggest something different.

    Tuldabar (27): I appreciate the effort on the canoe and the “rolling sea” setting, which really is the best part of the drawing.

    UBP (28): Now THAT’S the kind of elaborate scenery-making that i can’t seem to do. Thumbs up!

    (51): Very clever; bravo! Don’t worry, I think the design is *very* clear, and makes very inventive, if unorthodox, use of components drawn for other

    Frevoli (32): Just be advised that the constellation is spelled A-R-I-E-S, with an “I.” Otherwise, you’re getting him confused with Ares, the Greek god of war (although this pun might make a good lead-in to next month’s drawing….)

    Joe (34): Go easy on yourself! It may be more of an abstract design, but it’s relevant, pretty, and tastefully done.

    PapaKrok (40): It’s amazing what effects you can create by simply shifting stuff up and down, isn’t it? Congratulations on a great discovery!

  52. MScat says:

    @Nick: Thanks…I know what you mean about the comments. I would love to comment on different ppls entries but im SO STINKING BUSY all the time! If it wasnt for the splitting headache I have right now I wouldnt be home to type this comment. Its very hard for me to find the time. And no offense but Heromachine is not my #1 top priority of life…although it is in the top 5 😉 So im just going to send this out there to everyone. I have been looking at each of the entries as they come in and you guys are doing some amazing images (As always 🙂 )

  53. MScat says:

    I redid my Sunset on the Water image. If you want to consider both for the contest that’s cool with me if you want to only include one of them in the contest then I would prefer this one. Either way is fine by me

  54. Jeff Hebert says:

    Solander, most of them have now been claimed. I haven’t heard from Morzan, and Jenna has graciously donated her prize, so that’s two more off the list. Plus PapaKrok had already donated his, so that’ll be three.

  55. Zyp says:

    A survivor of a great flood that left most of the world underwater.

  56. Worf says:

    I know that this doesn’t exactly scream Pisces, but it IS a fish…. 😉 Once the idea got into my head I just couldn’t let it go… so without further ado….

  57. Nick Hentschel says:

    Zyp (65): Very well-aligned image: very organic, and not “Squarish,” as HM3 images frequently come out. Nice touch with the monster in back… although I do feel sorry for the poor girl.

    Worf (66):

  58. Kytana says:
    Inspired a little from Pirates of the Caribbean. The name of the lady in the prate ship is Rose. A very tough woman they defend her ship from the gigant thing.

  59. Me, Myself & I says:

    Kytana (68) That is a really neet image and shows an unusual perspective. Its really out of the box kind of thinking and I admit I was a little surprised when I first saw it.

  60. Worf says:

    @Nick Hentschel (67): Yes? Did you want to say something or do you just like saying my alias? 😉

  61. Nick Hentschel says:

    Hmmm… my comment seems to have been deleted, perhaps due to my using brackets of the wrong type. It was, “creepy music playing.”

  62. Nick Hentschel says:

    Meanwhile, Kytana (68): ” ‘Ello, beastie.” 😉

    P.S. I should have suggested that for the Hulk/Wolverine caption contest!

  63. Me, Myself & I says:

    Worf . . .

    Worf . . .

    Worf . . .

    Worf (70) Gotta admit, its fun to say 🙂

  64. Worf says:

    @MMI: I kinda like it. hehehehe 😀

  65. Vaadren says:

    “According to one Greek myth, Pisces represents the fish into which Aphrodite and her son Eros transformed in order to escape the monster Typhon; they are tied together with a cord on their tails, to make sure they do not lose one another.”

    I read that part, and one thought wouldn’t leave my mind: what if the cord broke?

    I couldn’t resist the little gag =)

  66. kyle says:

    The Smiths had brought Jr the sea-monkeys family for his birthday,weeks have gone by Jr has grown tired of the sea-monkeys,he realized they don’t do anything
    so he decided to flush them down the drain.years later the sea-monkeys mutated,the leader of the colony of the sea-monkeys washed away form rest of the group.
    he was found by a fishing vessel they yanked him out of the water, the crew couldn’t tell heads or tails of the thing,
    the captain named it the seamanking, the decided to sell it to the Chicago aquarium. There the seamanking woke up.
    he didn’t recognize his surroundings. the workers feed him when he puts on a show for the visitors. years have gone by.
    he got feed up with the visitors wanting to see something amazing.he just sits on his fake coral thorn pounding about
    the day he will escape his prison and take his anger out on the people that slave him.

    close up:

    full shot:

  67. ams says:

    Many great entries this week stretching the boundries of using the program. I’m going the superhero route with a female character with water-based powers.

  68. Jason22274 says:

    Ok, I think I just hit a personal best with this one.

    Calipso is a creature caught between the surface world and the ocean. To accomidate, she was able to switch between legs and tail. Below is one artist’s humble attempt to capture her diving in as that change occures.

  69. dblade says:

    A lot of great entries! Nice compositions.

  70. @McKnight57 (17): Thanks for the compliment. It’s a Chesire Cat rip-off, but I like it. It’s also what I wake up to when I don’t get up in time to feed Chloe her breakfast.

  71. Nicholas/GtaMythMaster43 says:

    wow….these are awesome!

  72. DiCicatriz says:

    First entry 🙂

    Twin sons of an ocean deity and a mortal woman, Tlaloa and Atlaco have a symbiotic relationship with each other. They must maintain a close proximity to each other in order to sustain their divinity. They live in the depths with their father, but Tlaloa has a fleeting and fickle personality. He desires new experiences and changing environments. He often surfaces, superheating the water around him and riding the steam currents high into the atmosphere. Atlaco, introverted and unwilling to leave their father’s realm, weaves the water around him into a tether, preventing his brother from straying too far and maintaining their bond. The struggle between the brothers provides the forces responsible for the ebb and flow of the tides.

    1) Tlaloa

    2) Atlaco

  73. Frevoli says:

    Usually I only do one entry per Zodiac contest.

    But for this one I had another idea (not related to my primary Zodiac story)

    Simon Lovett, notorious leader of the Dury boys.

  74. Tarkabarka says:

    My second entry.

    A man who speak a lot. – The Prisces band don’t forget to revenge.

    And i have a little problem. So when i rotate the char and i want to make jpg or png the rotations shows the opposite directions then what i give it.

  75. Sutter_Kaine says:

    Continuing the theme of the Zodiac villian group, here is the fish-man Pisces, shown here with two Zodiac agents. He was recruited for the group after a Zodiac strike team liberated him from a government research facility. Mutant, genetic experiment, or member of a non-human species, Pisces’s origin is unknown. He possesses an array of abilities found in a variety of undersea creatures, including regeneration, low-light vision, enhanced musculature, sonar, and the power to use bio-electricity as a weapon. Able to survive on oxygen for limited periods of time, Pisces wears a harness that supplies him with a continual supply of breathable water.

  76. Iflyte says:

    Second, and last, entry this week. Here’s a giant mechanized sea serpent.

  77. XionUnborn01 says:

    A high warrior of the Joktrian people of the underwater ruins.

  78. Nick Hentschel says:

    Iflyte (89): Very simple and elegant. It actually reminds me of something I saw in a book once, a famous “sea serpent skeleton” that got put on exhibit during the Victorian era. (

    Eerie, isn’t it?

  79. logosgal says:

    As long as I’ve been using Hero Machine, I didn’t know there was a version 3 or a whole blog for it until last week! I really like the entries so far (Vaadren’s (75) literally made me laugh out loud)!

    When I see the word “Pisces,” my brain wants to replace the first “S” with an “E” to make a word that I use more often. So I decided to put the two words together, and came up with an ad for the sensational new candy “Pisces Pieces”:

  80. XionUnborn01 says:

    This is a depiction of the most terrible crime of all, the Pie Seize

  81. Worf says:

    @Iflyte(89): I admire your patience and attention to detail for rotating, scaling and placing over 40 of those wings. Very nice.

  82. GamerMage says:

    The story of Aphrodite & Eros making their escape is a wonderful myth, no matter the telling of it.

    The symbolism of Pisces as two fish is, among some Astrolong circles, thought to represent a series of dualities, including feeling spiritual and practical mundane concerns we experience from time to time. Sometimes our hearts and heads struggle with one another, and my entry is a representation of that selfsame conflict.

    Comments welcome. Enjoy!

  83. Asder says:

    I am having a little problem saving the images, i dosen´t matter what i do the items that i used relocate and i can´t get the results that i want, here you can see what i am talking about. And by the way it´s a submit

  84. Jeff Hebert says:

    Asder, nothing you do using the “All” group setting will translate into the image export. Not sure that’s what you’re trying to do or get at, but there it is.

  85. Asder says:

    OK, thanks Jeff

  86. Worf says:

    @Jeff: I’m re-posting my entry as I’ve made a couple of alterations and also I’ve figured out how to get a direct link to the picture from this new version of picasa, so here goes:

    The other link won’t work anymore anyway….

  87. GamerMage says:


    I love the (mistaken) sense of solitude the character in the foreground has as she explores the deep-dark. With your careful attention, you manage to create the effects of illumination and shadow with great excellence! Well done my friend. I’m definitely going to steal some of your techniques in the future.


  88. dblade says:

    Aqueous Revised: Technically this version should be disqualified for the Character Creation contest because of some manipulation of Aqueous in Illustrator. Everything was created in Hero Machine though and I wanted to share.

  89. logosgal says:

    @The Atomic Punk: Danke schön!

  90. Kytana says:

    Ihr sprecht deutsch. Schön. Traut euch! Ich trau mich auch.
    @MMI: Thanks, i worked very long for that.
    But what you mean with the word neet? neet=nett or what? 🙂

    And btw: Nice nice picture here.

  91. B. Clouser says:

    I’m going to have to apologize in advance for my submission – she got into trouble on the way to this contest. Yup. They had to throw her in maximum security prison…again.

    This is Zula Vithan, the most wanted criminal of her oceanic planet, Pisces Prime. She is locked down in a maximum security prison for some of the galaxies most nasty creatures. There’s no way the prison budget can cover her a tank to swim around in – let alone paying guards to scrub it down monthly, so she’s fashioned with a device that keeps water and oxygen regulated over those gills of hers.

    I hope you all enjoy PRISON FISH.

  92. dblade says:

    @ B. Clouser (105):

    I am enjoying Prison Fish. Nice illustration.

  93. Me, Myself & I says:

    Kytana (104) Während ich kann nur sagen, dass eine Paardinge auf Deutsch ich verstanden habe, was Sie bedeutet haben.

    Vielleicht ein verschiedenes Wort als “neet” wäre hilfreich. Ich habe es, eine wirklich gute Illustration zu sein, gefunden und war Art von eifersüchtig, den ich die Idee nicht gehabt habe. 🙂

    Ich hoffe dieses übersetzte gut.

  94. abominal401 says:

    Sea Serpent…now..i don’t think this has anything to do with the contest but….hey..what the heck..why not?

  95. Kytana says:

    @MMI: Is the same translate as i do in english. 😉
    nice= nett
    not= nicht/net(in dialect)

    “Kytana (104) Ich kann nur sagen, dass ich ein paar Dinge auf Deutsch verstanden habe, was Sie bedeutet haben.

    Vielleicht gibt es ein anderes Wort als “neet”. Wenn ja wäre hilfreich. Ich halte es für eine wirklich gute Illustration und war auf eine Art eifersüchtig, weil ich die Idee nicht gehabt habe.

    Ich hoffe diese Übersetzung ist gut.”
    Thats correct. 🙂

  96. Rapthama says:

    Once, the god of water, Ilishidar gave the mortals to fill their farmlands with water in exchange of giving 1/4 of their produce to him. At first the farmers applied to this, but soon, after many generations the people became greedy. In fury, Ilishidar unleashed a massive storm upon the world which flooded over the whole Earth. Very few managed to survive this by climbing on top of the highest mountains. It took 5 years until the flood had dissapeared and the people were once again able to walk on earth. As the greed remained, shamanism started to influence people as religion. When Ilishidar discovered that the people were able to walk on ground again, he unleashed another devastating storm, but this time the people used their shamanic beliefs to fight back.
    After years of conflict, Ilishidar abandoned them.
    As the life went on, a family was choosen to protect people against wrathful gods.
    The current Shaman to keep watch against the gods is Malah.

  97. London 2012:

    Stuck on a sports theme. Sitting here watching the NCAA Wrestling Championship trying to rest my brain. Been struggling with designing a spreadsheet for a Dell Pocket PC (of all things). In turn, that headache is causing creator’s block for this CC… oy.

  98. Myro says:

    Atomic Punk (112): NCAA Wrestling? Really? Everyone in the bar here is interested in the NCAA basketball tournament. My guess is either: a) You used to wrestle competitively in high school and possibly college, b) You know someone competing in college wrestling, c) You’re from Iowa, or d) any combination of a, b, and c.

  99. i forget which name i use says:

    first thought: pie seize. not winning material, as i cannot compete with all yall.

    the eye patch is b/c hero machine crashed and took away the eye as i saved it. so i had to fix it or it only had 1 eye.

  100. Nick Hentschel says:

    Don’t you mean, the “Dell Pocket Pie-C”?

  101. Zarae says:

    thought i’d do a weapon.

    a gift given to a young mermaid’s first adventure:

    a blade major craft, the deatils of the ingravings having taken many many years. in its normal form, it looks (like the pix). but its power lies in its ability to tranform, but always keeping the detail artwork. being semi sentient, it can get moody if neglected and will leave small fish laying around, most annoying, or release water bubbles into the air.

  102. @Myro: a) I used to wrestle in grade school. My dad and brothers wrestled in high school, b) a co-worker and his wife have relatives who still wrestle, c) Nebraska, d) a combination of a, b, and c. ;9

    @Nick: Ha! That took some of the edge off. Thanks.

    @Zarae(115): That blade is awesome.

  103. Nick Hentschel says:

    Hmmm… a weapon! I’m surprised that none of us have tried that before. Nice design though: looks surprisingly fish-like.

  104. ThePerfectTense says:

    Jeff, help! Everytime I save a picture, go widescreen for a screenshot, or re-open it, every gets moved miles to the side! I cannot get a picture of it! What am I to do?

  105. Jeff Hebert says:

    ThePerfectTense: Don’t use the “All” grouping. Its results do not translate to the Image Export. If you want to do a manual screen capture, go to widescreen mode and use PRINTSCREEN or whatever other method of capturing a screen you like, import it into an image editor, and export it as a PNG or JPG that way instead of using the built-in one.

  106. ThePerfectTense says:

    That’s the trouble! If I click “widescreen”, the image moves far off to the right.

    I have had this problem before, last contest. But then I could still use screen capture, because the whole thing was still visible.

    Now, half the thing disappears of the side of the screen.

  107. Me, Myself & I says:

    ThePerfectTense (119) Ok, I have seen this problem as well and have been able to get around it. The solution is a bit of a pain in the rear though so you will have to be patient.

    The issue is tied to the “Move All” feature in that I’m sure you used that feature while making your image. That feature seems to move the entire image and in some cases (this one included obviously) the image moves off the viewing pain.

    In order to fix this, you have to move all of the items but they can NOT be moved with the “Move All” feature. What you can do is select a body part and use the “Body”. All of the Body Items will move. Then select another type of item like say a background item then of course select to move “Backgrounds”. All back grounds will move. You basically repeat this until all items are moved. It sounds like a real challenge but I’ve found at the end I usually only have to select a half dozen groups to move the majority of the image.

  108. ThePerfectTense says:

    Ok! I’ll give it a try.

  109. ThePerfectTense says:

    It worked! You are a genius! All three of you!

    I will post it up in a few minutes.

  110. Jeff Hebert says:

    Thanks for explaining my “Don’t use the All grouping” in more detail, MMI. I may cut and paste that for future use 🙂

  111. ThePerfectTense says:

    Prowling the shallow seas in the bahmy tropics, The Sons of Neptune kill for both their glory and that of their father and king.

  112. Apologies if this is a double-post (can you hear me now?):

    Ages of Pisces: Zu

    A special tip of the gas mask to long-time HM’er Legatus. While researching CC ideas, I found his Sumerian-influenced HM designs:

  113. Me, Myself & I says:

    ThePerfectTense (124)
    All three of me, he he he.

    Jeff (125)
    I still like the “Move All” feature but I can’t help but wonder if some tweaks may be possible to improve upon it. For example, if there were a way button to ‘re-set’ the image plain to center it over the viewing area again that would be handy(forgive my terminology if I’m out to lunch, I’ve never written anything in Flash).

  114. Jeff Hebert says:

    Yes, I’ve said a number of times since the new export options were released that this feature will be either going away or undergoing a major rewrite. I almost said it again in comment 125 but I figured (wrongly, apparently) that I didn’t need to belabor the point.

    To be clear:

    Do not use the “All” grouping as it will not export your image properly. This feature will be either eliminated or radically rewritten some time in the near future to make it work with the export and view options, but for now, do not use it if you plan on exporting your creation via the built-in Export feature.

  115. Cpt Brass says:

    Last minute entry, hope I’m not to late. I call this guy “the Pikeman”. He leads a mercenary company known as “The Vicious Fish”.

  116. ThePerfectTense says:

    … This is the last picture of Joe before the ‘incident’…

  117. Nakiato says:

    last entry.
    wasnt planing on any more entries, but as I was just experimenting with some posses I did the following desighn, I liked it so I figured I would enter it.
    I think it turned out okay considering It was kind of my accident.

  118. DiCicatriz says:

    Next entry 🙂

    Project Pisces: An experimental subject fused with unknown alien technology discovered evades ago by the clandestine Zodiac organization. The surgical alterations made to his brain allowing him to process the alien tech left him mentally and empotionally unstable. He suffered a complete mental collapse upon awakening, a surge from his alien powerbsource violently directing all water in his immediate vicinity to explode through the facility. Since that incident he had been calm and docile. They confined him to a windowless room, redirecting the plumbing system to circumvent his cell and

  119. DiCicatriz says:

    Man! That’s what I get for trying to post from my iPhone…

    anyway continuing Project Pisces’s backstory:

    … providing him with minimal water for hydration. Unknown to his handlers, Project Pisces had developed an alternate personality; a violent and sadistic sociopath completely unlike his docile identity. He waited for an opportune rainstorm, reaching out to the water pooling above the facility and breaking through his cell. Project Pisces killed seventeen security personel and a number of scientists on his way out and remains at large…

  120. ThePerfectTense says:

    I think I’d better write a story for “Last Moments”!

    This is the last image taken of Joe before the ‘incident’. Nobody knew there was a shark in Jackson Pond.
    Or that it had an affinity for worms.
    But, nevertheless, it was so.
    After the … ‘incident, all anyone could talk about was how the shark got there in the first place.

  121. ThePerfectTense says:

    Ok, on a more serious note, I bring you Drugor. This entry is focused on the mutation aspect of Pisces.

    The Story of Drugor is a sad and poignant one. Before he became the monster, he was William P. Jones, the amiable field biologist, who specialised in stream life.
    One fine day, with the sun shining above, William went to his favourite stream to great his aquatic friends good morning. As he was setting up his equipment, something awful was going on upstream. A nearby nuclear power station had been issued a severe warning by the government on their poor attempts at the disposal of their deadly wastes. An inspection was due that afternoon, so the owner had sent some men to dump the waste into the stream.
    In a surge, the pulsating green waste washed over the biologist, who had been waste-deep in the stream at the time.
    When he awoke, he found that he had been horrifically warped by the waste. Sadly, he his brain had been stunted, so he did not fully comprehend what had happened. He just moaned, and wept.
    Within a day, he was dead.
    The Power Station passed its inspection with flying colours.

  122. ThePerfectTense says:

    Ok, My final entry.

    And to end on a point that is , well not happier, but certainly not as sad….


    He is the sea.
    Storms are swept and Lightning arcs,
    And thunder cracks the sky.
    Waves grows tenfold, Black smoke writhes above
    the ships he looks upon.
    He is the sea.

    My first attempt at Poetry since… ever!
    Probably not very good… but hey-ho.

    As the poem so directly poets, he is the sea. The Flying Dutchman, the spirit of the waves and the water and the sharks and the whales, has risen once again.

  123. ThePerfectTense says:

    Jeff, I’ve made an adjustment to The Flying Dutchman. A minor adjustment, but an adjustment nonetheless (It is the lightning in the background).
    Please disregard my previous entry, and use this one instead (The bio still stands, of course!).

  124. Kytana says:
    My first second entry.
    I have a funny idea as i see Alice in Wonderland.

  125. Nick Hentschel says:

    I’ve tweaked my drawing, “Filet of Soul,” just a little, adding a new celestial object to the “rift” being opened by his consciousness, and repositioning the other, so that it’s not behind his head. I also made his legs look “fishier” and better-proportioned, ditched the “scales” pattern, and moved the moon in back, so that it’s more in line with the light being cast onto the water, and less with everything else. (More “organic,” wouldn’t you say?)

    And Kytana (137): cute image.

  126. logosgal says:

    @Kytana: Leider, mein Deutsch ist nicht so gut, so wie ich wünsche. Aber ich liebe die Sprache!

    @Jeff: If you get rid of the “all” grouping, can you add some sort of movable zoom? I rely pretty heavily on “move all” in the headshot view to get the smaller details in a lot of my pictures, and for this second entry I also used “rotate all” to do the face.

    My second entry is a more straightforward interpretation of the Pisces story:

    “Aphrodite’s Plunge”
    It isn’t common knowledge among gods or mortals, but the goddess of love and beauty is actually pretty clumsy. Thus it was as she and her son fled to the river from the monster Typhon, her descent into the water was less of the graceful dive she’d planned on, and more of a frantic tumble. Fortunately, the only person besides Eros (who was already well aware of his mother’s secret) who could have seen was Typhon, and people don’t normally bother to exchange gossip with him.

    Even though I won’t have time to change it for the contest, I’d really appreciate any comments anyone has on this one. The pose was really tricky and I’m still not entirely happy with how some parts of it turned out (the left foot was the worst). So any suggestions are welcome.

    Also, thanks to Kaldath for the “Female Wall Crawler” recipe, without which the pose would have been about 50 zillion times harder, and to MScat for the idea of doing it partially underwater. Hope you guys don’t mind me stealing your ideas.

    P.S. A couple of closeups of my first entry (92) I forgot to include before:

    The handful of candy was one of the hardest parts of the design:

    The Pisces fish were one of the easiest parts of the design, but I really like how they turned out:

  127. Nick Hentschel says:

    @ Logosgal (141):

    Aphrodite’s klutziness isn’t all that surprising; it sure explains her track record! 😉
    Very funny.

    @Asder (142): That’s like the Boomerang Fish Act… on steroids!

  128. Fishsticks says:

    A few remarks about Pisces that I found were that they like to be ‘lost’ and they dislike the obvious. So I attempted to include these ideas into my image.

    The Rain Maker.
    The coming of Spring marks the beginning of the Wet Season, returning life to a barren waste.

    Also, I have to say these are some of the best Zodiac entries I’ve seen to date. Everyone has really put their best work forward.

  129. Nick Hentschel says:

    I seem to have started a minor vogue for the lotus position!

  130. Fishsticks says:

    (145) 🙂 Those legs are a bugger to place! But they sure look nice once you figure it out.

  131. Nick Hentschel says:

    You gotta admit: those closed-ended legs that jeff added, sure pay off!

  132. logosgal says:

    @Fishsticks (144) I really like the pose you used! The composition with that frame makes me feel like this goes in an expandable card game of some sort.

    “Rain Maker:
    It’s about to rain on your parade.
    Once per game, Rain Maker may call the Monsoon for 80 water damage to both sides.
    Water attack 16; +6 health to player’s plant-based and water-based creatures.”

  133. unknownblackpaper says:

    Under de Sea

    I made another mermaid one. I actually had this idea for Aquarius but couldn’t get it work for what I had in mind. Pisces to me represents a duel nature, two forces at odd and, so again I playing with that idea a bit with the “mer-man” with the lady under the water. I went again the norm by reversing the genders of what people are used to.

    This is the close up, which would be cool if counts as it’s own entry.

  134. unknownblackpaper says:

    Note: 12 fish for Pisces being the 12th sign

  135. Me, Myself & I says:

    Hey Fishsticks (144). You’re the first person I’ve seen, other than myself of course, to use those knot work patterns I’d requested. Good for you. Apologies if anyone else has used them and I missed it.

  136. Nick Hentschel says:

    UBP (149): I think there are a LOT of girls who are going to get off on that image!

  137. Fishsticks says:

    (148)logosgal: Love it!
    (152)MMI: they are a great addition. Hope to see them used more often.

  138. logosgal says:

    @UBP (149): I especially like the closeup of that one. It really emphasizes the characters well, whereas I feel like the bigger one is more about the scenery (which is also great). FYI, I think there is a Greek myth about a merman-type creature falling in love with a human woman. I can’t remember the details offhand, but I think she ends up turning into some sort of horrible woman/sea-monster hybrid. I might be mixing up two different stories, though…

  139. Nick Hentschel says:

    @logosgal (155)
    Actually, you’re dead-on: the story that you’re thinking of is “Glaucus and Scylla.” And yes, she became a monster, who later caused problems for Odysseus and others. Well cited!

  140. pyrodude760 says:

    this is bob the drunk he gets so drunk he sees fishes swimming in circles and he gets advice from these fishes they are pises the wise ones

  141. pyrodude760 says:

    i just realized i didnt put in the write code name sorry

  142. DiCicatriz says:

    Ydra and Cassandra

    I liked the idea of the Pisces myth as one of a mother and her child so I made this with no particular backstory in mind. I see it as a tribe whose ruling family holds the myth of Pisces in reverence. Each generation they elect a champion to wield the forces of nature and when that champion grows old they teach a chosen relative their art. During the tenuous years of training the younger can only wield the power while in direct physical contact with the champion. Eventually the power is completely transferred to the new champion who fulfills the duty of their ancestors. This is Ydra and her grand-daughter Cassandra, in the middle stages of her training.

  143. logosgal says:

    @Nick (156): That’s the one! I thought it was one of those monsters that some other hero had to deal with at some point. And did Glaucus also start out as a human? Is that the same story, too? I need to go back and read up on my Greek mythology again; it’s been too long.

    @DiCicatriz (159): Nice job (as usual)! For some reason your backstory kind of reminds me of The Giver.

  144. Kytana says:

    @ Logosgal: Don´t worry. Your german is better than my english. And i like your pic. I don´t understood the full story but i like how to pose it.
    And i ihink the best entrys are the last(most of them not all).

  145. Kytana says:

    Viel Glück!

  146. Jeff Hebert says:

    OK folks, entries for this one are now closed. I’ll be going through them in a bit and posting the Finalists later in the day. Thanks to everyone for the great submissions!

  147. Nick Hentschel says:

    Entries may be closed, BUT I still need a word with logosgal (160): Good research! My info was from Edith hamilton’s “Mythology,” a classic reference, but she either she’d overlooked the tale of Glaucus having once been human, or I simply forgot. But yes, that’s the story!

    Side note for others: as a monster, Scylla shared her space in the ocean with Charybdis, a whirlpool that was even more dangerous, so that you had to sail *between* them. This is where we got the expression, “Between a rock and a hard place.”

  148. unknownblackpaper says:

    (165) Nick: I remember that! First thing my mind went was the Duck Tails version though!

  149. logosgal says:

    @Nick (165): Ooh, I think that might be the book I got most of my mythology from, too! I’m not 100% sure, because the book’s been lost somewhere since I was in middle school or early high school and I never learned the author’s name. The relevant parts of the Amazon book preview (I love how you can find anything so easily on the internet!) look like what I remember, though! If it is the same book, then the part about Glaucus being human should be in there.

  150. Nick Hentschel says:

    Hmmm… I’ve got the book right here, but it’s 2m and I’m too damn tired, I’ll check tomorrow.
    Edith’s book was actually my *second* mythology book, after a picture book that I read as a kid. But that one must have been out of print for 60 years by now…..