'Smaller Worlds' contest.
Patupaiarehe are the New Zealand equivalent of elves or faeries. They are known for their pale, almost albino, skin, diminutive stature and their skill with weaving. They are said to be the earliest inhabitants of New Zealand. It is said that they are fond of music, particularly pipe music. I first came across them in a book of legends from the Rotarua district. The gist of the tale is as follows:
The local hero encounters a group of Patupaiarehe on the shore weaving fishing nets. Now, at that time the Maori didn't know how to fish with nets so the hero went up to the weavers and 'requested' the knowledge of net weaving. Naturally the Patupaiarehe refused to give up their knowledge. So as a plucky young hero is want to do in such a situation he hid and secretly watched the weavers do their work. And so the Maori gained the ability to weave.
Today the Patupaiarehe have been pushed up into the high country, if indeed they have not been pushed into extinction. Now I come to the bird in the foreground. It's a Takahe, the largest member of the rail family. It is also flightless and so has also been pushed to near extinction. Indeed it was actually believed to be extinct for a time but was rediscovered South Island mountains.
Ink, watercolour and watercolour pencils.