I decided to whip up a simple design of a spade featuring my changeling incarnation. In the process of creating this artwork, I attempted to emphasize the parallels between the playing card's significance and my fan character's background and/or personality.
The spade from a French deck of playing cards is often colored black and shaped like an inverted heart symbol with a stem that narrows at the cusp. The spade can also be described as a heart symbol pierced at the end of a pike. With this concept of the spade in mind, I thought that the spade could symbolize the changelings and their parasitic way of feeding on love. Since love and Princess Cadence are associated with the heart symbol, the use of the spade seemed more appropriate.
The ace of spades is represented by a single spade; this singularity corresponds to my fan character's solitary and sometimes lonely life. The ace of spades also has dual nature due to its connotations as a playing card (i.e. a high-value card in certain card games) and symbol of death and misfortune (e.g. "The Black Spot"). Like the "death card", changelings' presence is presumably seen as a threat by the ponies. In my fan character's background story, the fact that he's a changeling causes him to become a social outcast following the events of the royal wedding in Canterlot. At the same time, however, my fan character endures through the hardships of fending for himself and assimilating into equine society while retaining his heritage. Doing so, he becomes ever stronger and better than he could once imagine. The ace seen as a high-value card represents the renewed and newfound strengths that my fan character gains.
This was primarily prompted by a t-shirt design by GBIllustrations. fav.me/d70xmz2 I was very impressed at his composition in this work. The artwork uses two different hues that contrast with a black backdrop. Furthermore, the hues are used to form lines, solid fills, and striped patterns that illustrate, color, and shade in a very effective way.