I know I use the word ‘refreshing’ a lot when contrasting some of the effective adventuring attire with some of the less believable stuff, but I think it is the most effective word to describe how I feel seeing characters like the lovely, crimson-haired mage in Leo’s painting. As well as being smartly outfitted, she has a competent, intelligent air that I find far more alluring than the sultriest look from the buxomest elf sorceress.
Scythian Gold and Turquoise Zoomorphic Handle, Southern Urals, c. 4th century BC
Scythian art combined Eastern elements with influences from the Hellenic states on the northern coast of the Black Sea. The principal feature of Scythian art is its use of a zoomorphic symbology.
The handle is formed of sheet gold, in two halves, hammered over a wooden mold and chased, in the form of a predator, perhaps a wolf, standing four-square, its head down, baring fangs, with clawed feet, the fur rendered as incised spirals, beading fringing the ears, with drop-shaped turquoise inlays on the shoulders and haunches, the interior of the ears also inlaid in turquoise, the bottoms of the feet and mouth once conforming to the curvature of a vessel wall, originally set vertically.
Like three little light globes, these strange blue mushrooms have ben found by the photograph in Booyong Reserve, Booyong, NSW, Australia. It is believed they may belong to the genus Leratiomyces (Strophariaceae), but their precise identification is still unknown.