Happy New Year, guys.
I've always wanted to draw a Siberian shaman in a Bilibin-esque style, and I finally did it before the end of 2012 (in my time zone, at least). This is the fourth picture in the Moleskine Mythology series, and the first of the series to be coloured digitally. I think that all the pictures I'm going to do in this series from now on will have to be coloured digitally, as my copics are starting to dry out and pencil crayons do not look as good in Moleskine as copic markers do.
The Evenki are a Tungusic people who live in Siberia. Formerly known as the Tungus, they are traditionally hunter-gatherers and pastoralists who herd reindeer and live in cone-shaped teepee like structures. Red and blue characterize most ritual items in Evenk shamanism. The shaman, with his buckskin coat and antlers, resembles the elk or the reindeer, which is the primary game animal of the region. See more here: [link]
He is holding a drum in front of him. The statue behind him leaning on the tree is a spirit-companion or saven (as they are known in Udege--I'm not sure what the term is in Evenk). I should note the patterns on the front of his shirt are actually not part of his shirt, but part of a breastplate (made of buckskin, again). Reference for the breastplate from: [link]
Patterns on the shaman's outfit and drum were referenced from pictures on this anthropology site: [link]
His headdress is from here: [link]
What is happening in this picture: (from link: [link]
)Shaman steps on the stage again. Hichupkan idol is brought after him (he usually was made out of young larch). The top of the larch is made in the way that reminds human face. The lower part is split as if legs. A bit lower than face small cross stick is settled, representing arms. Hunters in full armour crawl between idol's legs, cleaning themselves and armour from evil spirits. After the last hunter, shaman squeezes idol's legs. He straps it with a mild tree root.
All participants make sacrifices - put fur -bearing animal hide, scraps of different colors on idol's arms. They grease his face. The ritual is over. Shaman says to the spectators:
"Now we will have the quarry. We caught luck!"
Used texture from here: [link]Media: