pictures for the ROTR

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Lúthien
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pictures for the ROTR

Post by Lúthien » Sun Apr 29, 2012 1:42 pm

I'm going to show some of the imaginal pictures I made in the past three years on the Return of the Ring event event this summer. Because some of theme are too sketchy to put on public display I want to rework them on a larger format.

Here are the first two I did. The first one is from a meditation where I visited Nienna. Near the end of the encounter she took me to the coast, where I saw what I thought was the Moon vessel passing through the Doors of Night - but it looked almost as an eclipse event, where the Moon passed in front of the Sun.
This is my original (small scale) drawing:

Image
Paper size ~ 9.5 x 12.5 inch - Click for large view

And this is the one I made this week:

Image
Paper size ~ 16 x 20 inch - Click for large view

The next one is a view of Alqualondë, as seen when you would approach it by ship. This one isn't based on any particular meditation; it is merely how I imagine what it looks like. Maybe it's interesting to go there in a proper meditation and see what comes up.

The small scale original one:

Image
Paper size ~ 9.5 x 12.5 inch - Click for large view

and the larger one I did last week - this one isn't finished yet:

Image
Paper size ~ 16 x 20 inch - Click for large view

They are all water-soluble pastel on paper. I like to work with that, it's very easy to set up and take with me. I figured that out when we went to the North Cape two years ago, but I am still working with it - though I noticed that I want to create bigger size drawings lately.

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Calantirniel
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Re: pictures for the ROTR

Post by Calantirniel » Sun Apr 29, 2012 6:25 pm

My GOD(s) (Valar?) Luthien!! These are just stunning! You have such a depth of vision for landscapes, and wondered if you have thought about a Deviant Art profile yet haha! They even have sub-groups with Tolkien's works, and I every now and again peruse the art there.

While I like the darker tones of your first renditions (makes it look more Van Gogh-ish), I very much like the "brightened-up" version of the more vivid, clear colors of the second renditions. I think color is so important in art (and all I have to think of is Josephine Wall to really bring that point home!) ;-)

Perhaps one day you shall be commissioned for book cover art (what do you think of that?) :-)

Really love these!
Calantirniel, Envinyanis Lotelenolë
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Re: pictures for the ROTR

Post by Lúthien » Mon Apr 30, 2012 4:37 am

Thank you!
I agree with you that especially the new version of Alqualondë isn't dark enough. It's not finished yet.
It should be dark because it depicts Alwualondë at the age of the Trees - the only source of light is the starry skies, and what seeps through the Calacirya of theTree's light. And of course their lamps.

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Re: pictures for the ROTR

Post by Calantirniel » Mon Apr 30, 2012 2:53 pm

After I wrote my response to you, I showed my hubby Ray your art - he loves your vision of Alqualondë and in fact liked the darker version better as well. I mentioned to him you were not entirely finished with the 2nd rendering and I can see how you would want to layer more color in that piece. The lines are different, and good in both though! Looking forward to your updates here Luthien!
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Re: pictures for the ROTR

Post by Lúthien » Mon Apr 30, 2012 5:20 pm

Actually, I joined DeviantArt today. I had looked at it many times before, but I never got around to joining it. Partly because I find it a bit large, which is not my natural habitat. I'm not sure how well it is moderated, but if there's a lot of rude / stupid people around I'm not sure how good it feels to show my pictures there. But I'll give it a try.

Re. the book cover art: well, what can I say: one can always hope! But I'm already glad if one other person likes what I make. I expect this sort of work has too small an audience to earn a living with it - except if it'd be chosen as the cover for a very widely printed book or something.
But we're also doing other things, such as video's, animations and graphic design - and that sells quite well until now.

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Re: pictures for the ROTR

Post by Calantirniel » Mon Apr 30, 2012 9:18 pm

It seems Alan Lee, John Howe and Ted Nasmith have earned pretty nice livings on Tolkien-related art! Yes, they are absolutely exceptional but I just want to mention that everything is possible! Thanks for sharing once again, I hope DeviantArt is a good experience for you!
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Re: pictures for the ROTR

Post by Niennildi Oarnen » Tue May 01, 2012 12:06 pm

I prefer the "immediacy" of the original sketches over the more completed, larger versions. Immediacy more importantly with the moon ship, because in adding more detail and light, it somehow isn't the edge of night anymore but earlier in sunset, not something you would only catch a glimpse of as light fades. The brighter light conditions and additional detail seem to detract from the mood for what I expect for that edge of night time. "Immediacy" may not be the right thing I am searching for in the image of Alqualondë, but I do agree that the darker version seems "more right".

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Re: pictures for the ROTR

Post by Meneldur Olvarion » Tue May 01, 2012 3:17 pm

Lúthien wrote:Actually, I joined DeviantArt today. I had looked at it many times before, but I never got around to joining it. Partly because I find it a bit large, which is not my natural habitat. I'm not sure how well it is moderated, but if there's a lot of rude / stupid people around I'm not sure how good it feels to show my pictures there. But I'll give it a try.
Hi. I've already sent you my impressions of your picture-choices via email, so this post will just address the quote above.

I'm familiar with it, but only as a user/picture-thief, as I have no artistic talent of my own, though I can modify the work of others digitally.

From what I've seen, it isn't that well moderated, but I believe you can set access limits on your account. How fine-grained they are (e.g., whether you could block a specific user or IP address or just disable all comments) I have no idea. The level of Jacassery is about on a par with any large forum, but is not at the level of Something Awful or 4chan or the SGU-ers.

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Re: pictures for the ROTR

Post by Galdrtru » Fri May 04, 2012 5:46 pm

Wonderful work. Really inspired and inspiring.
'A darkness lies behind us,' Beor said...'Westwards our hearts have been turned, and we believe that there we shall find the Light.'

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Re: pictures for the ROTR

Post by Eruannlass » Fri May 11, 2012 1:36 am

Suilad, Melleth ~

Forgive me for being the late one to reply, the first two weeks of any month are always rather busy for me. These are beautiful. I've seen the original Moon~ship painting before, but not the one of Alqualonde, or the newer versions of either painting. I like both the lighter and darker versions, but in the one of the Moon~ship, I like the original rendering of the ship, and the greater detail of the water and shoreline in the second version.

I like the original rendering of Alqualonde as well as the new one, but couldn't quite figure why I liked the original a bit better. After I read your intention to have it be dark to accurately portray the amount of light there in the Time of the Trees, Rowan commented that the original painting does indeed look more natural, because of the softened light.

He's quite aware of that in this day and age, especially since here in Traverse City everyone's pretty much afraid of the dark, as affirmed by the mass quantities of bright amber street lights all over the place. About a week ago, two of these in this apartment complex were taken out by speeding cars, and I was bummed that neither of them were the one that shines into my bedroom all night.

I like the lighter versions, because I feel that the heightened detail is beautiful, and relative to the amount of light present.

Quote from Luthien ~ Re. the book cover art: well, what can I say: one can always hope!

Nasmith, Howe, and Lee are three of my favorite artists, because of their renderings of Tolkien's written word. a more recent favorite is Jenny Dolfen, who has illustrated a series of pictures centering on Feanor, his family, and the events surrounding the creation of the Silmarils. She has a great technique, but doesn't shy away from the edgier parts of the story ~ Hopefully the link won't detract from Luthien's work, I just wanted to share the images...

http://katia-fantastik2009artgalerea.bl ... olfen.html" onclick="window.open(this.href);return false;
(Two rows below the blue painting of Legolas from the films, on the right, is her interpretation of Tulkas.)

Quote from Luthien ~ Re. the book cover art: well, what can I say: one can always hope!

Heh...Luthien, after looking over the typical computer-generated 'uncanny valley' images that are becoming common for book illustration, I've thought on several occasions of asking you if you'd like to paint up a cover for my novel, and a few illustrations to go inside it as well. I haven't said anything yet, because I wasn't sure how to word it. I certainly wouldn't expect you to work for free, but the 'going rate' for book illustration also makes me shudder. If you like the idea, I thought it could be an intuitive project, to just let you read the finished manuscript (when I have it finished, that is...), and to just see what imagery from the story you feel inspired to portray.

Most authors now only go with the cover art, but I like the idea of having artwork within the story as well, in the tradition of the original editions of Stephen King's Dark Tower books. Stylistically, Michael Whelan is my favorite, followed by Ned Dameron.

http://www.stephenking.com/darktower/the_artwork.html" onclick="window.open(this.href);return false;

Eruannlass
I Aear cân ven na mar ~ 'The Sea calls us Home.'

For whatever we lose (like a you or a me)
it's always ourselves we find in the sea
~ e e cummings

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Re: pictures for the ROTR

Post by Lúthien » Fri May 11, 2012 6:16 pm

Hey thanks all! I've done quite à bit more work on both these drawings: I'll post them here ASAP. I've been thinking as well that it may not be a good idea to put in half finished work in here and add to that "but I'll change this or that" - its easier to first do those changes and then show them (unless of course there's something specific I'd like to ask advice for).

Especially the Alqualondë one has turned a lot darker now. I suppose they'll be finished after the week-end.

(apart from the subject matter, I also find it fascinating to work on water renderings in general ... maybe that's why I favour these sort of scenes)

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Re: pictures for the ROTR

Post by Lúthien » Sat May 12, 2012 6:47 pm

I'm almost done with the Alqualondë one. I had been taking pictures of it every time I worked on it, in order to be able to compare previous versions.
I was quite surprised at the differences, so I want to show the last version here even though I'll do some more work on it (mainly on the sky):

first version (same as above)
ImageClick for large view

third or fourth version (last week)
ImageClick for large view

sixth version (today)
ImageClick for large view

it's literally the difference between day and night ...

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Re: pictures for the ROTR

Post by Calantirniel » Sun May 13, 2012 5:45 am

OMG OMG OMG the 6th Version - you were not kidding!! This is BEAUTIFUL!! It almost looks (hmm) photographic in a way, almost alive with movement!
Calantirniel, Envinyanis Lotelenolë
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Re: pictures for the ROTR

Post by Lúthien » Sun May 13, 2012 9:31 am

:) thanks :)

I also notice that these images tend to move towards almost photographic realism. Maybe that's because of how it works with gnosis & creativity, be it in images or writing or any other kind. It is a kind of self-amplifying process, just as it happened with Tolkien when the first words (Eärendel) brought with them ever more other words, images, stories until it became almost like an avalanche.
WIth these images I may not even have a very clear idea up front how it looks like .. sometimes, in a meditation, my impressions may only have been half-visual, half-some-other-sense. It usually produces a vague sketch, but when I start working on it, it's as if the image details itself; as if every brush stroke uncovers a half-hidden memory of what that part looks like.
I have experienced something similar when writing Sindarin poetry. And I think I remember Eruannlass mentioning something similar about her writing prose as well.

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Re: pictures for the ROTR

Post by Lúthien » Tue Jun 12, 2012 12:49 pm

Here's another couple of drawings, plus the final stage of the Moon-Vessel one

Image
Click for large view

I made it a bit darker, and also tried to make the Sea morph from normal water into that other medium of the Outer Sea, mostly by drawing this "rain curtain" across it at the sides (mostly at the left side). It's one of those things where it's hard to get a clear visual representation of an idea that may be very clear inside my head, but it's difficult to translate it to an image.

The next one is a physical remake of a picture that I created digitally last fall. It's an image of Yavanna in the shape of a great tree, as described in the Silmarillion:

Image
Click for large view

And this picture was one I also wanted to physically draw for quite some time. It was originally a rendered image from the Blender scene that I created three years ago, as one of a series to simulate a sunrise on Valinor.

Image
Click for large view

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