Concept Art: Temple of the Elements

It’s been an uneventful couple of weeks – I got sick and my wife soon followed with an unrelated sick I’m hoping not to also catch. So I was eager to get back into the studio and build something. Here’s a location from my Ghost Division writings brought to brick form!

This temple is one of hundreds closed down across the galaxy by order of the Emperor. Unlike those dedicated to celestial beings, ancient deities, or the Force, a Temple of the Elements is dedicated to a more generalized mission of giving peace of mind to nearby communities. Few of them offer any denominational or faith-based guidance. Instead they focus on commonalities between peoples and planets, namely the elements that compose the stars and planets themselves.

Such temples are banned and shut down by Imperial occupying forces, namely for their tendencies to harbor and aid groups that rebel against Imperial rule. Entrances are barred and any resources inside are seized and destroyed when necessary. On the planet Kufra, few still visit these temples and citizens are no longer able to volunteer their time to the upkeep of the temple. Imperial patrols and posted notifications make it clear that entry is forbidden. Despite this, the temple grounds still see some use as waystations and landmarks for travellers.

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So here’s an overall shot of the temple’s initial build, which took me about two hours. A large tree has grown from within the temple’s walls, bursting out of the ceiling. A lot of forest vegitation has actually run rampant, overgrown and unchecked without anyone tending to the plants for years. My original plan included a lot of plant life, the large fire put in the front, and also a water feature (might have to upgrade to a bigger baseplate to get the water in there, and I’d like more of a path leading up to the temple as well.) However, I had fun with this initial build – let’s go through some more details.

At the center of the grounds/walkway is what I’ve been calling an ‘eternal flame,’ basically a light at the temple that this kept lit by the stars. Something would need to be built into that flat part on top that would focus star/sunlight through a series of crystals (seen or not, it’s really just lore) that would keep heat focused on the flame at all times throughout days and years. Without kindling, there might be a backup gas line or something.

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Here we see an Imperial patrol trooper on guard. I realized after I took pictures these signs are quite small, but I wanted something there to show that this place was under strict monitoring by the local garrison.

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Another trooper here has his nightstick drawn and is showing a local away from the gateway,

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Despite the Imperial presence, a local custom still goes on. It’s commonplace for people to leave food and other goods for other travellers who may need them. Here we see a female Sephi and an offworld Jawa looking over the goods, some breads and drinks. Behind them, the grass is growing like weeds and vines crawl across the ground, unchecked.

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The temple used to have a second story, which has since collapsed. Womp rats crawl among the debris as nature continues to retake the building. This tree grows from a hole in the roof. Another idea I had was a tree actually lifting a chunk of the building up into the sky with it, breaking it off from the rest of the building. Part of the water feature I had planned did the same thing with another tree lifting a fountain out of the ground. I’d still love to see these things realized once I figure out how to build them. Admittedly I cheated, the tree is just attached to the roof, not growing up through it. But the build (at least in this stage) isn’t meant to be seen from the back so it kind of works.

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One last shot for now, a reverse angle that better shows the spire opposite the tree. Dead center there’s a green flag that represents a local group of rebels on Kufra who have, unsuccessfully thus far, decided to stand against the Empire. That’s it for this build so far! I need to order more parts and keep working at this one, I think it’ll be pretty impressive once I can better nail down some details and get the scope of it just right.

Thanks for reading!

-SLD

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