Many aspects of the C&S and daily life along the line will be faithfully recreated. However, there is one addition to the world in this series that allows it to occasionally wander from the historically fictitious into the truly fantastical:
I've long held the idea that dragons and steam locomotives ought to have a setting in which they coexisted, due to the vast number of parallels between them: grand and fearsome breeds, oceans churning in their bellies, infernos raging in their hearts, their laborious breath thick with embers and soot, their large golden eyes beaming brightly as they fly across prairies wide and mountains tall. Yet a modern world has left both on the wayside, a sense of adventure and whimsy lost to time.
Above are various in-progress scenes that I am working on for the comic. Since only two known photos exist of the roundhouse's interior during operations--and both are very rough and dark with limited perspective--I have instead opted to use Don Pacetti's fantastic HOn3 modeling of the roundhouse interior as a guide for placing machinery and other details, since the interior is shown with good lighting, high resolution, and multiple angles.
Beyond just a simple webcomic format, a multi-media aspect comes into play in the form of a musical score--which will be written and performed myself--for each uploaded set of panels, as well as occasional small bits of animation to enhance certain scenes, like this gif of Brooks mogul No. 17, "Alma," which was written off the actual C&S books around 1902 but remains under the care of the comic's main characters, Lloyd & Luz O'Leary, pictured below. This engine was chosen to avoid writing over the stories of other C&S engineers and firemen, whom were very closely tied to specific engines from the active fleet.
I'll continue to post updates to my main page, wings-and-strings.tumblr.com, and the comic's first chapter will be uploaded to wings-and-strings-comic.tumblr.com once it is ready. Often, I'll stream a live video feed of my art progress at https://picarto.tv/WingsAndStrings so that others can watch the comic's creation in real time. Anyone's welcome to join the stream when it's up, and you can follow either the main site or the Picarto channel to get notifications for when I'll be streaming. There's also a thread for this comic in the C&Sng Discussion Forum.
Thanks again to Darel and everyone else who has shown interest in this project,