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The Tea Merchant by Red-Clover The Tea Merchant by Red-Clover
I've had a scribble of this character in my sketchbook for a long time and finally got around to painting him. Pretty sure I was looking at Bridge-Troll's book around that time, so many thanks to him for the inspiration. If you haven't seen his work, go check it out - it's amazing:


This character is the Tea Merchant - he's a wanderer, kind of like a minstrel. Only instead of songs, he peddles tea. For a small fee, he'll pour you a cup of the blend of your choice.

I tried to paint a little quicker than usual on this one. Trying to keep the paint thinner all over, although this didn't work out too well on the bird character himself.

Watercolor sky, acrylic everything else on watercolor paper
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gibwalker Featured By Owner Jan 29, 2012
Wow nice! Very clear characterisation. Love the pic
DJFlat Featured By Owner May 23, 2011  Hobbyist Photographer
An awesome pic and story behind the characters it.... time for me to put the kettle on
Averant Featured By Owner Nov 22, 2010  Hobbyist Digital Artist
I very much enjoyed this. A wonderful story for a fascinating piece. +Fave.
LordAzkera Featured By Owner Aug 26, 2009
An amazing piece of art and an amazing character you've made there too!
myoo89 Featured By Owner May 1, 2009  Hobbyist Traditional Artist
WOW! Its like childern's story book! I LOVE IT!!
Rita-Ria Featured By Owner Feb 21, 2008  Professional Traditional Artist
beautiful artwork
DoctorLlama Featured By Owner Jan 18, 2008
I'm gonna be honest. I've created a roleplaying character inspired completely by this painting. Hope you don't mind.
Red-Clover Featured By Owner Jan 20, 2008  Professional
Ha ha - That's too cool! No, I don't mind. It's only when someone's making profit off it that it's a problem. Yeah, I guess he'd be a good character to have in your party... Thanks for telling me - I'm glad you like him that much! :XD:
tehuti Featured By Owner Nov 8, 2007  Hobbyist Writer
I would definitely buy tea from that venerable-looking fellow. :)
nerys Featured By Owner Oct 27, 2007
This is so unearthly. I adore it! :D
Dubhghall Featured By Owner Oct 15, 2007
I don't know what is exactly is so appealing about this painting - the atmosphere, the style, the character... but I can definitely say one thing: that Tea Merchant is the kind of person(?) I would enjoy having an afternoon cup with :D
Fraxa Featured By Owner Oct 14, 2007
Hi :wave:

I really like this deviation and have included it in my Fraxa's Favourites journal feature this week. [link]

I do hope you don't mind but if you would prefer me not to show your artwork please let me know and I'll remove it straight away.
Sehvrin Featured By Owner Oct 14, 2007
Wow, that's a really, really nice picture

Good work :clap:
TruemyTheWise Featured By Owner Oct 13, 2007
Inqy Featured By Owner Oct 13, 2007
Beautiful details on the feathers and the dishware. You really brought out the textures with your colors. =D
ryupower Featured By Owner Oct 13, 2007
That's pretty awesome. D:
I would've thought it was colored pencil, that's how detailed you got it. ._.
Lady-Diandra Featured By Owner Oct 13, 2007
I love it!!! Its reminds me of my favorite children's stories.
G-manluver Featured By Owner Oct 13, 2007
oh my, the style and coloring here is just amazing, excellent job on the Tea Merchant's plumage and outfit. the little girl is great aswell, I hope she enjoys her tea.
DragonSlaveII Featured By Owner Oct 13, 2007
I have the urge to place a Mad Hatter Hat on it. :P

Good job.
Kairu-Hakubi Featured By Owner Oct 13, 2007  Hobbyist Digital Artist
Freakin' excellent XD I suck at drawing not-eagly birds...
DthNtDty Featured By Owner Oct 13, 2007  Student Traditional Artist
Man that's cute! ^_^
ccampbell11 Featured By Owner Oct 13, 2007  Hobbyist General Artist
lol, very nice!
Simba83 Featured By Owner Oct 13, 2007
this remaind me to the movie "pan's labrhynt"

Great work!
Roaring-Flame-Cat Featured By Owner Oct 13, 2007  Hobbyist General Artist
Lol he's got skill holding the cup so perfect in his feathers. XD Wish I had skills like that. Very cute. I love all the details like in his wings. ^_^
babygomamon Featured By Owner Oct 13, 2007
This is a really beautiful illustration. :) I love the contrast between the big bird and the little girl. It has such a sweet atmosphere as well.
moonytash Featured By Owner Oct 13, 2007
this UA project is really amasing! This is such a lovely work!!!! :hug:
Mimafogeus Featured By Owner Oct 13, 2007
Wonderful work. The coloring's great, and I like the naive feeling it delivers.
Mimafogeus Featured By Owner Oct 13, 2007
Wonderful work. The coloring's great and I like the combination of a good fantastic creature and the naive mood the work delivers.
Ghostbusterlover Featured By Owner Oct 13, 2007  Hobbyist General Artist
This artwork is great! I find the Tea Merchant very interesting. I love his expression. I get a warm feeling inside just looking at the perfectly coloring artwork, it's like a childhood-feeling or something like that.

Very cute art with great details. :+favlove:
Calyptra Featured By Owner Oct 13, 2007  Hobbyist Writer
oh wow, this is fantastic! I disagree about the the bird character not looking real, he looks great! Looking at stuff like this I realise I should scour dA pretty thoroughly before actually hiring someone to work on my book. Congratulations on the feature in the unknown artists newsletter! (thats where I saw this piece) I was wondering....if you'd like to do a collaboration with this meagre little writer? ^^; You probably won't....
Red-Clover Featured By Owner Oct 13, 2007  Professional
Thanks very much! I'm sorry to say I don't do collabs - I am usually tied up with commercial work, so I generally don't have the time and when I do have the time, I have this long list of personal pieces that are waiting for my attention. Sorry!! I am honored that you think highly enough of my work to ask, though! Really - thank you and good luck with your writing! :)
Calyptra Featured By Owner Oct 14, 2007  Hobbyist Writer
oh wow, you actually replied o_o People with your talent don't usually reply to people like me who drop by to leave a comment. Thanks very much for even considering it, lol, I'M flattered because my writing isn't very awesome. Mind if I keep a watch? :D
Fraxa Featured By Owner Oct 13, 2007
If only he was real.........

I love the expression on his face.
P680 Featured By Owner Sep 17, 2007
I like his wings and beak. ^^ And I'd definately buy a cup of tea, apple and cinnamon flavoured, perhaps. : P
mevagh Featured By Owner Sep 4, 2007   Traditional Artist
Ooo great idea, I love tea! Very nice pic :)
FennecWolf Featured By Owner Sep 4, 2007
This is really nice - the colours are fantastic and I love the expressions - in the poses as well as the faces. You're very talented with paint ^_^
Ladywolfshrine Featured By Owner Sep 4, 2007
Why does this not get more views/faves? :O
Naturally1nsane Featured By Owner Aug 31, 2007
I like tea!!! I'll have green tea with ginsing and honey!!!
SquirrelOfChaos Featured By Owner Aug 11, 2007
He looks a little mischievous, with a grin on his beak. I like the tea cups on the staff and the pouches on his cloak.
A-WildDog Featured By Owner Jun 11, 2007
This is really lovely. I love the little tea cups on his staff! Such an enchanting character.
ELaiNeLight Featured By Owner May 8, 2007   Traditional Artist
I think this Tea Merchant character is really Cool! Like Him a lot :clap:
crazyxcloud Featured By Owner May 3, 2007
so much detail, its beautiful!! and I love the concept of the Tea Merchant, he is adorable!
Cieppu Featured By Owner May 3, 2007
Wonderful colors and details :) Wings look awesome
didokah Featured By Owner May 2, 2007  Hobbyist Photographer
woooooow its amazing!
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Submitted on
May 2, 2007
Image Size
101 KB


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