The City of Ladida

About the drawing:

I drew the City of Ladida while I was writing an early version of a fantasy novel about a musically-obsessed inventor who gets pulled into a universe where music is more real than it is in ours.

Instead of roads, people ride around in melody-mobiles on giant music staves that float like ribbons in and out and around the city.

Musical boats float in the river, and many of the buildings are shaped like instruments: there’s an apartment complex shaped like the keys of a giant piano, a huge bent trumpet, a guitar-shaped bank, and a lot of other magical strangeness to be found if you look closely enough.

The City of Ladida is a musical city, but it’s definitely got a bit too much music for its own good.


In a world where music has more of a physical effect, noise pollution is a serious problem. Drivers get ticketed if they don’t wear protective “ear helmets” on the main thoroughfares, the politicians are currently trying to legislate for more pockets of silence, car-alarm-fallout-umbrellas are a popular accessory, and it’s against the law to sing for your supper.

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Detail 2 (Click to Enlarge)

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