“There was silence in the library.
A wing of the Toy room was filled with books, lining heavy shelves and piled high as if in the memory of trees.
Faded children’s books lay between scarlet encyclopedia and almanacs filled with the treasures of the Empire.
Manuals of Manners and stranger books brought by the last Governess. The memory of light and those that
flew burned into her mind and overlaid all she saw, looped in ascension over the jagged landscape that lay
beneath her feet. The tip of one feather caught in a breeze and she shifted back from the edge of the tower,
her limb a crude and constant reminder of the cost of her failure.”
‘The End of Dreams, Napalim’ – ©Benamon Tame
The idea and story for Nephalim was one of my first for the series but after several attempts I decided to put her to one side and come back. Nephalim woke up dreaming of angels, perhaps a fragment from what ever power brought them all to life or maybe just a memory from a story she had heard or been part of. The desire to fly consumed her and eventually she went to Syster and asked for help. Syster agreed and in return for her arms she gave her wings. Nephalim was one of the first ‘operated’ on by Syster and was crudely done. Syster twisted her request and she would never fly. now she sits atop one of the piles of books in the library wing, the closest she can get to flight and reaching those she dreamt of.
The library is not a welcoming place in the Lost Toy Room, the toys remember Ariadne and her friends disappearing within it, still trapped within the walls they can sometimes be seen and felt close by. Babel considers the library his own domain and tolerates Nephalim as her tragedy amuses him and her dreams
intrigue him. The library was also the setting of another event from the time of Loki that has been hinted at elsewhere.
‘The Book of Babel. Nephalim’ – ©Benamon Tame
In creating Nephalim I wanted to give a her a cruder look that some of the others and a less formal portrait, as if she wouldn’t even come down to pose. The base image was of the doll on a pile of books which I opened in Juxtaposer to alter the spines of the books that were not old enough, sampling the original image to create new spines.
I then took a close up of the dolls head wrapped in folded tissue paper to create a bandaged effect and blended it into the base image. I then used more samples of the bandages to add on the main body.
To differentiate it from other Toys where I have used the same doll and add to the crude and bird themes I decided to give her a headdress. I settled on a birds skull from my store of stock shots ( taken at a wildlife sanctuary display) and used Juxtaposer to add it and then extend the bandages over it.
Her name comes from early Jewish and Christian Mythology. The Nephilim were an ancient race that according to some sources were the offspring of men and angels, but fell from grace and were largely destroyed. I liked the idea of Nephilim as a broken angel, aloof from the other toys but damaged and unable to realise her dream.
‘The End of Dreams. Typewriter Remix’ – ©Benamon Tame
As an interesting aside, there’re quite a few fringe websites trying to prove the existence of Nephilim and almost all of the, use a series of photography’s of the remains of Nephilim, all of which originated from a worth1000 photoshopping challenge.
Apps used: Juxtaposer, Iris Photo Suite, Snapseed, Pictureshow, Blender. Phonto, Lo-Mob, Labelbox and ScratchCam were also used for the Typewriter remix. Photo editor Fotolr, Deco Sketch, Ripped were also used in creating the page from the Book of Babel.