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About Deviant Artist Member Chris HowardMale/United States Recent Activity
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The Way Home - Sea or Stars by the0phrastus
The Way Home - Sea or Stars
"The way home—whether on the sea or in the space between the stars." Got up late, but still managed to paint, about 4 hours in Art Rage 4 and CS6.
Mermaid Comic - Chris Howard by the0phrastus
Mermaid Comic - Chris Howard
A while back I did some promotional comic pages for the intro to the book Mermaid--drawn in first person POV. I have the whole first chapter storyboarded out, but here's the finished set up to the point where Kassandra becomes a mermaid. One of the ideas I was playing with was developing colors and shapes to represent Kassandra's inner emotional state and degree of pain (yes, it's not that pleasant having your bones and muscles contorted and fused into a something like a dolphin's tail).

Enjoy. Love to hear what you think of this set--especially the first person view, where you're the mermaid.

Mermaid Amazon Link:…

Mermaid by Chris Howard Cover by the0phrastus
Mermaid by Chris Howard Cover
Saltwater Witch and Mermaid
A Tale of One Story...
...that ended up becoming two stories, one with a tail. (There’s also a screenplay involved, but I’m going to save that for another day). I wrote the original Saltwater Witch story in 2004, bringing in my daughter Chloe to help with some of the plot and character ideas I was exploring. At the time I was in the middle of another book—with plenty of scenes in and around the water, indulging my love of marine biology and the oceans, but Chloe was the one who said, “I want to read a book about mermaids”. And off we went—with one requirement from me: Kassandra doesn’t have a mermaid tail. Chloe wasn’t happy about that, but went along with it. The original title of the book was The Wreath of Poseidon. It was quite a bit longer, with a lot of detail that I cut when I rewrote it in 2007 as Saltwater Witch.  The original was also in third-person point of view, and my complete rewrite brought it all into first-person, from Kassandra’s POV.
In the meantime Seaborn, which takes place five years after the events in Saltwater Witch, had been picked up by Juno Books, and was released in the summer of 2008. I quickly followed that up with Seaborn’s sequel, Sea Throne. (My original intent had been a single much longer book that included everything from both stories. Maybe someday.)
There’s always trouble when three books become a “trilogy”.
The story and characters in Sea Throne are intricately joined to Seaborn. The two are essentially two parts of one long book.  Seaborn can be read on its own—it has a complete story arc.  Saltwater Witch can be read as a stand-alone novel, or the prequel to Seaborn and Sea Throne, or simply as Book One in the “Seaborn Trilogy”. This last was the obvious next step for Kassandra and her tale. The only problem was that it felt weird that the first book was in first-person POV and the other two were in third.
So, in the spring of 2012, between writing Salvage and Autonomous, I did another rewrite, and brought Saltwater Witch in line with the rest of the trilogy—third-person POV and the return of a few scenes (mostly around the science teacher, Michael Henderson).  Another motivating factor was the number of emails from readers who longed for the good old Wreath story, with its detail and depth, some of which was cut from the leaner first-person version of Saltwater Witch.
Roll things forward to the summer of 2014, and I can now add Mermaid to the list. The Saltwater Witch screenplay and comic are both based on the first-person version of the story, and so I have brought it back, with some changes and additions. A big one is Kassandra begins her underwater story in Red Bear Lake with a tail—yes, with flukes.  Mermaid just came out of editing, and will be released in print and ebook (it’s already available on the Kindle).


the0phrastus's Profile Picture
Chris Howard
United States
I'm a fairly creative guy with a pen and a paint brush, author of Seaborn (Juno Books), Salvage (Masque, 2013), Nanowhere, and a shelf-full of other books. My short stories have appeared in a bunch of magazines and anthologies, including “Lost Dogs and Fireplace Archeology” in Fantasy Magazine, and ‘Tear Apart Worlds” in Pen-Ultimate. My story “Hammers and Snails” was a Robert A. Heinlein Centennial Short Fiction Contest winner. I write and illustrate the comic, Saltwater Witch. My ink work and digital illos have appeared in Shimmer, BuzzyMag, various RPGs, and on the pages and covers of books, blogs, and other interesting places. Last year I painted a 9 x 12 foot Steampunk Map of New York for a cafe in Brooklyn.

Find out everything at


Current Residence: North Hampton
Favourite genre of music: alt,rock,punk, electronic
Operating System: OSX on my MacBook where I do a lot of my digital work, but I also Windows (XP, 7), Linux (Fedora, Ubuntu)
MP3 player of choice: iPad, iPhone
Two new pages up for SaltwaterWitch Comic 16!

This set features the start of an intense discussion between Kassandra and her grandmother--Kallixene. Even with Ephoros at her back, Kassandra's on thin ice, not certain about which direction to go with her new-found family.

Here's the latest Saltwater Witch Newsletter:…

Or go direct!
  • Mood: Content
  • Listening to: Agent Ribbons
  • Reading: The Raven Boys by Maggie Stiefvater
  • Watching: Cosmos
  • Drinking: Coffee

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MensjeDeZeemeermin Featured By Owner Sep 2, 2014
A very joyous year's ride 'round the sun on Carousel Earth starting today, with the ups and downs so exciting and fun that you only laugh and hang on the harder! May a year from today find you wiser, more skilled, happier, and successful, and reaching out for the brass ring with a big smile, eager for another ride! May beauty and laughter be your constant companions. May your friends smile to see you, and strangers look at you with interested respect. HAPPY BIRTHDAY!
the0phrastus Featured By Owner Sep 2, 2014
Beautiful! Thank you so much!
MensjeDeZeemeermin Featured By Owner Sep 2, 2014
Thank you for creating and sharing beauty.
NestorPriest Featured By Owner Aug 2, 2014  Student General Artist
thank you for the watch!
GreenVoice Featured By Owner Jun 11, 2014  Hobbyist Digital Artist
YAY!!! Thank you so much for the Watch!! Cheerleader
TheGhostSiren Featured By Owner Jun 10, 2014  Hobbyist General Artist
Thank you for favoring my work :blackrose:
TiredOrangeCat Featured By Owner Jun 9, 2014  Professional General Artist
Thanks for the fave the0phrastus.  Diggin your use of color.
the0phrastus Featured By Owner Jun 9, 2014
Dragonrose36 Featured By Owner May 3, 2014  Hobbyist Artisan Crafter
yakkingyetis Featured By Owner Mar 25, 2014
amazing stuff !! but my page keeps crashing evertime i go to your page
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