In July of 2018, I decided I wanted to practice digital painting. I made a rough sketch, inked that sketch, and then decided I’d paint it with a couple of different palettes to see what I could do with it.
This was way back when I was still trying to figure out how to paint, and what particular style I wanted to use. I’d seen plenty of people paint underneath digital inks and produce great paintings, so I wanted to try that out for myself.
This was my first attempt. I don’t remember where I got the palette from. I might have picked random colors on my own. I don’t even remember which brushes I used, though since I did this in Clip Studio Paint, I’m going to assume that I used the dense watercolor brush for at least some of it.
I still like this one. The colors are too smooth in some places (the grass), but the colors ended up pretty good overall. Also, I think the yellow sky makes it look ominous.
This was my second attempt, which is kind of….bleh? I didn’t bother blending colors for this one or even trying to paint anything. Just blocked out the colors and left it like that.
I think the colors here are a bit too natural. Nothing actually sticks out.
Third attempt. I like this a lot better than the previous one. At this point, I’d decided I wasn’t going to worry about blending, and focused instead on blocking out colors to see if they would work well.
And this one does work well! Even though the colors are still “natural”, they’re a lot bolder than the previous attempt.
Fourth attempt. If I ignore the first actual painting, this is my favorite. It’s got all the colors I like the most! It’s also the most similar to the kind of digital paintings I do nowadays.
Perhaps…I should repaint this in my current painting style?
I created Qitiniasaaq in 2016, sometime after I’d created Kitlinar. It’s less complete than Kitlinar, since the first version of The Gate at the End of the World only had one Qitiniina character and the Qitiniasaaq language wasn’t spoken.
I never bothered creating any specific dialects for it like I did with Kitlinar, even though it’d likely have many more dialects. I guess what I’m describing here is the Kuulitaisaa dialect.
You may have assumed that this language has some phonological and orthographical influences from the Inuit languages, and you’d be correct. It also has some inspirations from Finnish – primarily in the number of cases it has.
[ɴ] is an allophone of /n/ and only occurs at the end of words.
Vowels are either long or short. Diphthongs are the same.
Syllable Structure and Stress
Syllable structure is CVC, where:
C = any consonant
V = any vowel or diphthong
The majority of syllables are CV, with CVC syllables mainly occurring word-finally.
Primary stress usually falls on syllables with long vowels.
Qitiniasaaq didn’t even have any pronouns until I started cleaning up all my notes a couple of months ago. That’s how little grammar I made for this language – it’s basically a glorified naming language!
As a result, the pronoun system is fairly standard and boring:
Nouns are marked for case & number. They can also take on a demonstrative determiner as an interfix. Adjectives are fused onto the end of the noun, and any noun can be used as an adjective without any modification – til can mean both “ice” and “icy”.
Short phrases formed with the genitive case tend to become one word, such as qitiniasaaq “tundra’s language”. This is broken down into qitin “tundra” + ia “genitive” + saaq “language”.
Qitiniasaaq is also ergative-absolutive instead of nominative-accusative like most of my languages – another major influence from the Inuit languages.
Verbs are declined for tense, mood, and voice. They aren’t declined for person, but pronouns can be stuck onto the end of the verb.
Tenses: far past, past, near past, present, present habitual, near future, future, far future
Moods: indicative, conditional, imperative
Voice: active, passive
I think Qitiniasaaq is the first language where I made a distinction between near & far past/future tenses. That’s something I’ve used in other conlangs I’ve created since 2016.
Not all conjugations in the table below exist – I haven’t yet figured out which ones don’t:
Here’s an example of the passive/active voice:
I speak Qitiniasaaq.
Qitiniasaaq is spoken by me.
Resemblance to the Greenlandic Inuit word “kalaallisut” is entirely coincidental. Seriously!
This is a painting that was done before I developed my current painting style. It was done entirely in the Dense Watercolor & Oil Paint brushes in Clip Studio Paint, and took about an hour. Also, I did everything (except maybe the sky in the background?) on one layer.
I haven’t done anything like this since. Perhaps I’ll try doing another painting in this style sometime this year.
Kitlinar is a language I created in 2016 when I was developing the first version of The Gate at the End of the World. While that version of the story never ended up working out, the conlangs and worldbuilding were something I decided to keep.
Kitlinar is a language spoken on the eastern parts and islands of the land of Kitlin (called Qitin by the Qitiniina). It has been spoken in Kitlin since before recorded history. It is a language isolate and its origins are unknown, though the language was likely brought to Kitlin by its speakers, who are unrelated to the indigenous Qitiniina. Kitlinar has many loanwords and some grammatical influence from Qitiniasaaq, the language spoken by the Qitiniina.
There are two main dialects: eastern and western. Eastern dialects use retroflex consonants in place of the /rC/ consonant clusters used in the western dialects; this is seen in the pronunciation of the capital city Tyrsä: [ˈtə.ʂæ] vs. [ˈtər.sa]. These retroflex consonants did not exist in Kitlinar before it split into the two dialects.
The phonology of Kitlinar was primarily inspired by the Swedish & Norwegian languages. Before I reformed the orthography, it used <å> instead of <ä> to represent /æ/. You can see this in the old map up above; I only have a png version and can’t change the text.
With the exception of /j/, the palatal consonants are allophones of /Cj/ clusters in the Western dialects. In the Eastern dialects, they are independent phonemes.
Retroflex consonants are allophones of /rC/ clusters in transition dialects, while they are independent phonemes in Eastern dialects.
/a/ is usually /æ/ in Eastern dialects.
Eastern Kitlinar has a couple of diphthongs, gained from /Vl/ & /Vj/ shifting to /Vu/ and /Vi/. Western Kitlinar has no diphthongs, and transition dialects vary.
Syllable Structure & Stress
Syllable structure is (C1)V(C2), where:
C1 = any consonant or initial consonant cluster
V = any vowel
C2 = any consonant or final consonant cluster
Initial consonant clusters are CA & CT, while final consonant clusters are AC & AT, where:
C = any consonant
A = any approxmant
T = /r/
Primary stress falls on the initial syllable. Monosyllables are unstressed.
Pronouns are marked for case and number. The third person distinguishes animacy.
The first person singular and plural are unique words, while the plurals of the 2nd and 3rd persons just take on the plural.
Nouns & Adjectives
Nouns are either animate or inanimate and are marked for case, number, and definiteness. Plants, animals, humans, and things like weather and volcanoes are animate, while things that do not or never move are inanimate. This is distinguished only through the definite suffix; case and number are marked in the same way on animate and inanimate nouns.
There are three cases: nominative, genitive, and object. The object case covers direct and indirect objects of verbs; in that manner, it’s essentially a combined dative/accusative case.
Adjectives precede nouns and take on the case, number, and definiteness of the noun.
Verbs are conjugated for mood and tense.
Moods: indicative, subjunctive, imperative
Tenses: past, present, future
The future tense is used exclusively with the subjunctive mood:
Alt hyrvekev mar jartitun girnekev.
Ey will change when the glaciers melt (stubborn people do not change their minds easily).
3SG.ANIM change.SBJ.FUT when glacier.PL.DEF.NOM melt.SBJ.FUT
The imperative mood is used for commands; the verb stem is preceded by word tal:
Tal bart lunäg!
IMP help we.OBJ
I know the past and present tenses look pretty similar to English’s (-d for past tense verbs and -ng for present tense) but I genuinely was not thinking of that when I was creating the tenses, and I don’t particularly feel like changing it, either.
Forming factual statements
Kitlinar has no copula; in places where English would use one for statements of of existence or fact, Kitlinar uses a “factual statement” particle, lirs:
Lirs fjevud häj.
It is special.
FS special 3SG.INAM
Jer herdekev loj parunäg.
I’ll travel to the sea.
1SG.NOM travel.SBJ.FUT toward sea.DEF.OBJ
Frujen frujeng ben rad.
The sun shines warmly.
Sun.NOM.DEF shine.IND.PRS with warm
Slenyt kjul altäg.
Blessings of the goddess on you (pleased to meet you).