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Twilight's Library by SpyroConspirator Twilight's Library by SpyroConspirator
This is the piece I've been working on pretty much exclusively for the last couple of weeks. I tried to put a lot of little hints at a story into this piece, and a lot of detail.

Feel free to criticize in the comments below!

Update: Wow, thank you all for the wonderful support! =D
~flameydramon has written a lovely short story inspired by my picture (and it's just been updated with a 2nd chapter =D)! You can read it here: [link]
~Woven-Word has also written a fanfic based off of this picture! [link]
Be sure to check them out. I think that they're both very interesting interpretations.
Add a Comment:
 
:iconlotuslender:
LotusLender Featured By Owner Nov 19, 2014

Let me give an attempt at exegesis:


The mill and the smoke stacks obviously imply a sort of industrial revolution. The rest of the picture implies that something was lost when technology progressed.


The tree house in the picture implies that the treehouse no longer exists (that was oddly prescient). The presence of pipe (a steam pipe?), square windows, and what looks like a river (I'm not sure) out the window give further evidence that this takes place in a different location than the library in the show.

The windows, pipes, and columns are covered in muck. I'm guessing spike is gone. The poster is decayed and old. Clearly this building has been around for a while, implying this is in the relatively distant future, and the mills did not spring up over night.

Rainbow Dash is holding goggles, so evidently she has a job that relates to flight, most probably as an airship pilot or some sort of profession related to the evident technological progress.

The words "Final Show" on the Wonderbolts poster is the most hauntingly tragic detail in a picture full of hauntingly tragic details. This just further emphasizes the running theme of "progress came and took its toll."

Rainbow Dash and Twilight are both sad, Rainbow Dash more so. This doesn't seem to be the sadness of a longstanding feeling of detachment and loss (which the other imagery in this picture invokes), but from a recent event or revelation. My guess is that Rainbow Dash has stopped by, wearing her work goggles, to see Twilight for the first time in years. They are both lamenting their lost friendship, a friendship lost because technological change has caused them to pursue vocation in different cities. Rainbow Dash's side glance indicates awkwardness, shame, or guilt, and Twilight's view over the railing indicates reminiscence.

Twilight's tiara is on the shelf. It's presence in the open (unlike in the show, where it was locked away) implies that it has recently been used or is expected to be used, but its location on the shelf indicates that Twilight doesn't have much love for it or what it represents any more.

Fluttershy's cutie mark is on a book. Did she write a book? I’m not sure what to make of this.

By far the most bizarre aspect of the whole picture is the fact that the ponies don't look a day older than they do in the show. Every detail, from the lighting to the dirt on windows works towards building a sense of loss. Why not invoke the image of lost youth as well? It looks like decades have past, but they are still young adults. Are they immortal? This is just a small oversight, I guess.

Not a thousand words, but definitely a respectable number. I guess a person could say a whole lot more about Rainbow Dash’s expression or that haunting poster, which alone is enough to put me into a miniature depression, but this was my attempt. I hope I did it justice.

Reply
:iconspyroconspirator:
SpyroConspirator Featured By Owner Nov 22, 2014  Hobbyist Digital Artist
Thanks for taking the time to look at this so thoroughly and to share your thoughts!  As far as why I didn't age them, that's probably a combination of simple oversight and my desire to make them clearly identifiable, though I don't remember my exact thought process so it's entirely possible I had a more thoughtful justification for it at the time.  You definitely did it justice.  It's comments like yours that make me want to go back and try to do more things in this vein even years later.
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:iconstorylover-vodhr:
Storylover-Vodhr Featured By Owner Sep 1, 2014   Writer
As they say, a picture is worth a thousand words. 

But this? This picture tells much, much more than that. 
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:iconraw666:
raw666 Featured By Owner Nov 13, 2013
This feels like Ponys lost to something evil, the question is it there own and someone else. Very good artistic work, keep it up.
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:iconkeissrandomkeissen:
KeissRandomKeissen Featured By Owner Oct 31, 2013
I can't even begin to say how much I love this, a dark industrial undertone, heavy expressions denote the weight of the world and framed pictures of what was home at one point. Change. I feel change, heavy heavy change. Very well done! 
Reply
:iconscooberk:
scooberk Featured By Owner Jul 7, 2013  Hobbyist Writer
That is amazing I can already think of a good story for it in my head, keep up the amazing work
Reply
:iconmichaelajunker:
michaelajunker Featured By Owner Feb 8, 2013  Student General Artist
The official ruling is in: You are too good at art. Please stop being so awesome.


Oh wait, that's totally wrong!

Keep on being awesome! Never give up on what you do well.
Reply
:iconspyroconspirator:
SpyroConspirator Featured By Owner Feb 10, 2013  Hobbyist Digital Artist
^^ Thanks, that means a lot to me!
Reply
:iconmichaelajunker:
michaelajunker Featured By Owner Feb 10, 2013  Student General Artist
Well I love your artwork. I encourage all that try art to continue, and I support those that make fantastic art.
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:iconbrutalityinc:
BrutalityInc Featured By Owner Dec 22, 2012
You can't stop progress.
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:iconl-master:
L-MASTER Featured By Owner Dec 18, 2012  Hobbyist Artist
the effects: cool and doom
the background: very very doom
the reality is dark
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:iconyooyfull:
Yooyfull Featured By Owner Nov 6, 2012  Hobbyist Digital Artist
So beautiful. And with the fics to acompany it, even more so.
Perfect example of "A picture is worth a thousand words".
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:icon11meister:
11meister Featured By Owner Nov 15, 2012  Hobbyist General Artist
I'm literally speechless...I can't think of a thing to add. o.o
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:icontzarwolf:
TzarWolf Featured By Owner Oct 28, 2012
What a deep feel to it with the background and the shading and facial expressions. Very awesome piece, great work!
Reply
:icon0uts1ght:
0uts1ght Featured By Owner Oct 17, 2012  Student Artist
Reminds me of London in the second half of Nineteenth Century.
Beautiful.
Reply
:icontwister45:
Twister45 Featured By Owner Oct 14, 2012  Hobbyist Writer
Feakin' amazing!
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:iconspyroconspirator:
SpyroConspirator Featured By Owner Oct 14, 2012  Hobbyist Digital Artist
^^ Thanks
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:iconmojaramask:
Mojaramask Featured By Owner Oct 9, 2012  Hobbyist Writer
I saw this on yet ANOTHER story today, Good job!
Reply
:iconsnoopy20111:
Snoopy20111 Featured By Owner Oct 8, 2012
Great work, man!

I know everybody else has their interpretations, but this picture reminds me of Fallout for some reason. Maybe it's the googles in the foreground, or the ancient looking Wonderbolts poster? Anyway, it's not really Fallout (they wouldn't have had smokestacks and stuff, they would've used nuclear power), but it just reminded me of it.
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:iconspyroconspirator:
SpyroConspirator Featured By Owner Oct 8, 2012  Hobbyist Digital Artist
Thanks! I didn't mean to make it Fallout-y, but I confess I was still kind of obsessed with Fallout: Equestria, and probably put about 20 hours into Fallout 3 between starting and finishing this piece, so there's probably something there if you think so.
Reply
:iconsercant:
Sercant Featured By Owner Oct 5, 2012
-Sigh- I turn my back for /two seconds/ and you post something amazing!
Reply
:iconjamesrye:
JamesRye Featured By Owner Oct 1, 2012
And you inspired a second story. This time the ponies and their world lost "magic" and thus the technology and industrial revolution came to be.
[link]
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:iconspyroconspirator:
SpyroConspirator Featured By Owner Oct 1, 2012  Hobbyist Digital Artist
Ah, thank you very much for linking this! The author had shown it to me a little bit ago, but I didn't know it had passed the submission-system-thingy already. I'll add it to the description! ^^
Reply
:iconmajorbrons:
MajorBrons Featured By Owner Sep 30, 2012  Hobbyist Digital Artist
awesome mood, you got skills kid!
Reply
:iconspyroconspirator:
SpyroConspirator Featured By Owner Sep 30, 2012  Hobbyist Digital Artist
Thank you. =)
Reply
:iconmasdragonflare:
Masdragonflare Featured By Owner Sep 24, 2012  Hobbyist General Artist
Cool :D
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:iconstickman00:
stickman00 Featured By Owner Sep 22, 2012
I like these drawings that gives off a story on its own. You could intemperate this picture anyway you like. It could just be the begining of the industrial revolution and and end of simpler times for Twilight. Now that there is more machines there is a not much of a need for magic. It would be bad for Fluttershy sense more trees would need to be cut down for buildings. There would be more work and less play for Ponyville and especially Pinkie Pie.
Listening to Rarity Is Industry [link] You could say this is a result of a friend being corrupted by capitalism and they have gained high amounts of power. This could be Rainbow Dash and Twilight disusing how to stop her
Reply
:icontomfraggle:
TomFraggle Featured By Owner Sep 21, 2012
Well drawn, the emotions can be seen and felt. Like the detail and "dark" feelings you put into the colors. :+fav:
Reply
:iconflameydramon:
flameydramon Featured By Owner Sep 20, 2012
I know we've traded a few messages in Notes, but I would like to comment here the story which you inspired has been published here:

[link]

Everyone who sees this picture needs to know how awesome it is and how inspirational it was for the construction of this story.
Reply
:iconkennyfaerion:
Kennyfaerion Featured By Owner Sep 20, 2012  Hobbyist General Artist
Wow. This is pretty good. I really like it.
I don't know why, but this drawing reminds me of a scene in Pearl Jam's "Do The Evolution" videoclip.
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:iconsaijeehiguchi:
SaijeeHiguchi Featured By Owner Sep 18, 2012  Hobbyist Digital Artist
realy love the lighting. why do they look so grim though?
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:icondeathisnear24:
Deathisnear24 Featured By Owner Sep 18, 2012
It just seems like the industrialization of Ponyville has the best of them. The Wonderbolts last show, probably due to a shift in concerns from the ponies, and Twilight is probably sad because of loosing the Library (but having a new one constructed) and most of the books with it. The harsh realities of Industrialism.
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:iconhectorrios:
HectorRios Featured By Owner Sep 17, 2012  Hobbyist General Artist
My new wallpepaer
Reply
:iconmaekern:
maekern Featured By Owner Sep 16, 2012  Hobbyist Traditional Artist
That is lovely. I like the style, and the lighting is masterful.
Reply
:iconkarkovice1:
karkovice1 Featured By Owner Sep 16, 2012
It's quite a different view of Ponyville, is it?
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:iconkillfangdeathmeld:
KillfangDeathmeld Featured By Owner Sep 16, 2012
Seems to me that this is Fallout Equestria: the precursor. A time of war, where industry becomes the primary focus (background factories), and the elite fliers of the Pegasi join the draft (Wonderbolts final show). The Mane Six gradually drift apart, as each of them are called upon to assist in the conflict in their own way.

Then again, I love Fallout Equestria so much I could find interpretations for it anywhere.
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:iconpootiet12345:
pootiet12345 Featured By Owner Sep 16, 2012  Hobbyist Writer
sure looks like ponyville has grown in the last couple seasons...
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:iconsokolas:
Sokolas Featured By Owner Sep 16, 2012  Hobbyist Digital Artist
Awesome!
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:iconiisme95:
iIsMe95 Featured By Owner Sep 15, 2012
Is that "Sands of Destruction"? It looks like it might be.
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:iconfreethinker5:
Freethinker5 Featured By Owner Sep 15, 2012
Well the library looks bigger I'll tell you that much. Twilight doens't look particularly happy though.
Reply
:iconcharlesdeleroy:
Charlesdeleroy Featured By Owner Sep 14, 2012
The dreary landscape made me think of "Eleanor Rigby" played near the beginning of "Yellow Submarine".

All the lonely ponies...

[link]
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:iconspyroconspirator:
SpyroConspirator Featured By Owner Sep 14, 2012  Hobbyist Digital Artist
By some strange coincidence, I actually listened to that song a bunch while drawing this.
Reply
:icondarthwill3:
DarthWill3 Featured By Owner Sep 14, 2012  Hobbyist Traditional Artist
Poor Twilight... It's as if the world she knew has changed forever. And it's making everypony feel miserable.

I take it Dashie's feeling a bit bored with all this lack of activity.
Reply
:iconduelist925:
Duelist925 Featured By Owner Sep 14, 2012
Oh, wow, this is awesome. I love searching it, trying to figure out the story--and theres so many interpretations....
Reply
:iconequilibrik:
equilibrik Featured By Owner Sep 14, 2012  Hobbyist Digital Artist
Wow, this is amazing. Love the use of lighting and shadow in this image, simply fantastic. Also like how you detailed the mane and tails, all in all fantastic.
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:iconendoriazel:
Endoriazel Featured By Owner Sep 14, 2012  Hobbyist Digital Artist
Wow. just wow.
Reply
:iconswanlullaby:
SwanLullaby Featured By Owner Sep 14, 2012  Hobbyist General Artist
Shading and lighting effects are great!
Reply
:iconiamswagg:
IAmSwagg Featured By Owner Sep 13, 2012
Wow this is so mind bending and stuff. Awesome!
Reply
:iconmrfulp:
MrFulp Featured By Owner Sep 13, 2012  Student Traditional Artist
Dammit...why did I have to be smart enough to begin industrialization?
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:iconookamithewolf1:
OokamiTheWolf1 Featured By Owner Sep 13, 2012  Professional Digital Artist
Amazing. I'm not sure why I instantly thought 'Gotham City'. I think the atmospher is reminisent of it. Has ponyville turned into a place that is no longer as safe an happy as it once was? Very good artwork, very good indeed.
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