I know you just posted, so im sorry for bumping you down like this :c
anyway! here are my preliminary sketches for the new story i am illustrating:
Title: Flowers of Illusion
"A Taoist priest becomes popular after doing a series of tricks and incantations he performs in public. The high ranking local mandarins take notice of him, and invite him to his home. to return the favor, he invites them out to a lake for tea. In the story, it is in the middle of winter and one commissioner says out loud how he wished to enjoy the lake when it is in full bloom. no sooner does he say it than the priest fills the lake with flowers. The commissioner then orders his men to take boats out onto the lake to collect the flowers. Do their dismay, the flowers continually disappear whenever they get too close, thus they come back empty handed. Later on, after the tea party is over, a commissioner invites him to his home. One day, while the commissioner is serving guests, they ask for wine. the commissioner lies and tells them he has nothing, when the priest steps in and offers to make some for them. they drink to their hearts content. The commissioner, being weary of the priest, checks his own wine supply later that day, and finds the barrels completely empty. He becomes angry at the priest, and orders him to be arrested and beaten. he is, but he transfers the pain to the commissioner who at once orders it to stop, after realizing what happened. After that, the priest left, and people rarely heard of him again."
For these im focusing on the relationship between the priest, and the commissioners greed towards his wine and the flowers. I wanted to give it a sense of mystery, as the priest looks down onto the illusionistic flowers and smiles. my plan is to have a misty/fog-ish background, with the flower glowing as the light source. i'm also planning on tinting the water purple, to represent the wine. (he is in the lake, by the way.)
the one with the hand is taking a more literal approach. It illustrates the people on the boats as they attempt to grasp the lotus's in the water.