This page is picture-heavy. Be patient.

This is how the Ritsuki started off looking--a flying, lizardy humanoid. This image served me well for a while, but when it finally came time for full-blood Ritsuki to appear in the comic, I found this representation to be unsatisfactory. They looked too much like formulaic human/demon combinations, so I started designing a new form for them.

Though the feet are not shown in the first picture, it was assumed that they were human feet. The new Ritsuki have feet and legs like dogs' or cats', except with bigger toes. I tried to rough out the bone structure here, using a human foot as a guide.

The proportions of a Ritsuki, compared to a human. You can see that the torso of a Ritsuki is a full head longer than that of a human. The calves are supposed to be about two-thirds as long as human calves, but I kind of messed it up in this picture because I was stretching out the legs. In reality, Ritsuki rarely extend their legs like this when they're just standing; they are about the same height as ordinary humans. You can see that the spine makes an arc and the chest is shaped in such a way as to curve out. Ritsuki ribcages, viewed from the side, are much wider than humans'. The torso tapers from the shoulders to the pelvis, and the pelvis is often smaller than a human's. (There is no concern about any of the bones not being strong enough to support the body, as they are not made of the same material as human bones, but something much stronger and more durable.) The tail, though used for balance, is a prehensile tail. It is usually about as long as the Ritsuki is tall (when standing normally, not with legs extended like this).

I toyed with the idea of short-fingered, paw-like hands, but decided in the end that the hands should be more dextrous than paws would allow. The fingers are a bit longer than human fingers, and they differ in length more drastically (meaning, the middle finger is a lot longer than the other fingers, rather than just a little).

This is the design for the face of a Ritsuki. (By the by, this is probably my favorite picture of the lot.) The general shape of the face is very smooth, with few acute angles. The nose juts out from the face far less than on a human. The sides of the face are essentially flat and vertical, with no evidence of cheekbones or tapering toward the jawline. The eyes are completely white. Above the ears are two antennaey-whiskery things, which are for transmitting information to and from other Ritsuki. As for the hair, I like it, so you better too. You can also see in this picture the first of the rough body sketches (done before the proportion ones). I wanted to give them two sets of arms, but I thought that might be a little over-the-top. Maybe I'll still slip it in somehow, though... ;)

I tried to do a more completed sketch of the new design, but the pose ended up really stiff and unbalanced because I didn't block it out first (I just started off outlining). After drawing this picture, I decided that it was a little too beefy in the chest and arms; I was going for a muscular but lean frame. I mostly put this picture up because I like the shading. Fun, eh? Hehe.

The sort-of-360-degree sketch. You can see that I was still having balance issues here... they all look like they're about to fall backwards, with the possible exception of the leftmost one. I decided I'd either have to tilt the shoulders forward or move the feet back.

After sketching it out both ways, I decided on the latter option, mostly because I wanted to keep the curved back and sort of puffed-out chest. This is the final form.

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