Shop Mobile More Submit  Join Login

Talks with Tolkien artists: Venlian

Journal Entry: Wed Jul 29, 2015, 2:54 AM


The Elves are beautiful, there is no doubt about that. But :iconvenlian: - Venlian gives this beauty a new dimension - one that can only be described as "hot" or "sexy". And this is just one of the interesting topics we talked about in this interview ;)
(note: please keep in mind that English is not Venlian's first language and this interview had to be translated. I hope all is understandable despite of this, though.)

Idril Light by Venlian Feanaro by Venlian
Morning Punishment by Venlian Beren by Venlian
Celegorm son of Feanor by Venlian Eowyn by Venlian
 

1. Hello! For the beginning, could you tell us something about yourself?

Hi! I’m an artist from Ukraine, I’m fond of drawing, music and literature. I love animals. I have 3 aquariums and a german shepherd dog, I called him Anor.

2. How extensive is your knowledge of Middle-earth? Do you consider yourself Tolkien expert?

I read and looked through enough material about Tolkien's world to say that I understand it. But as the actor V. Livanov who ingeniously played Sherlock Holmes told in his interview – he specially didn't re-read the book before filming to keep freshness of sensing and admiration of Holmes he got since early youth and convey this first impression to the audience. I think he succeeded in it:). I don't re-read Tolkien for hundred times too before drawing, I don't look for any little details through Internet, I draw on first impression of scene or character, I try to keep my delight of some character :). That’s why I wouldn't put my name among experts and tolkienologists.

3. When did you read Tolkien's books for the first time, and what impression did they leave in you? What was first for you - book or movie? When the movies came out, many of the inner pictures of characters and scenes in the mind of the readers have been replaced by actors and settings from the movie. Did it happen to you as well? Did you try to prevent it?

When the first part of LOTR trilogy came out, I wasn't fond of Tolkien yet and I didn't know who is he, that’s why I didn't go to the cinema. And only when there were already all 3 parts, I decided to watch this movie from the disk, but didn't understand the plot and didn’t like it. When I told my acquaintance about it, she said that it is necessary to read the book first; all is much more cool and clear there. She gave me to read "The Two Towers", - my passion for Tolkien also began with it. I was immensely in love with the book, I terribly wanted to read the others. After time I was lucky to buy all 3 volumes on sale, it was translated by Nemirova A. I think that it is the best translation of LOTR, exactly I must thank this translation that my love for Tolkien became so deep. I hesitated much to read the "Silmarillion" though there were its fans among my acquaintances. The text seemed very confusing and unclear to me. Only much later, also incidentally, I had to study this book and some episodes made great impression on me. As for the movie, I re-watched it after reading the book, and it is a beautiful scenery to the book, but no more than that. The most apt in my opinion is Gandalf, approximately such as I also imagine him. Sam, Eowyn and Theoden and all Rohirrim are good :) I don’t like Frodo at all, in my opinion he doesn't agree with the book and that uncommon hobbit about whom Tolkien wrote. Aragorn also lacs, with all my love to Vigo :) Images from Jackson’s LOTR are inevitably imposed on us, but Tolkien’s world is much more deep and more natural and orсs are not so simple as the herd of bisons  :)

4. Now, could you tell us something about you and art? Are you a professional artist, or is art just your hobby? When did you start doing it, and who or what influenced your style?

I am a professional artist. I studied in an art school, then in the nursery of artists in a painting class, then I graduated from the art and graphic institute. I started drawing in childhood. At the beginning I drew only animals, I started with people already studying in an art school. In my childhood I was inspired by cartoons – the russian animated cartoon "Maugli", "Beauty and the Beast", "The Lion King", etc. I wanted very much to become an animated cartoon artist.

5. How do you choose which scenes and characters to illustrate?

I would tell that my applies to Tolkien share on two parts: these are portraits of characters and a scenes from their life. Most of all I’m interested in several characters from "Silm", first of all it is Feanor and his family. Creating his portrait, or members of his family, I want to convey a certain emotional state, identity, feature. I don't want them to be ordinary cute faces, without relation to Tolkien's world. It is difficult and such task attracts me. On my portraits they are shown as just people, often sexy, and often first of all as soldiers. This combination of sublime beauty of mind and body with necessity to struggle, win and create new cities  -  is really wonderful. Inexhaustible subject. As for the scenes from life – there are some plans, and I hope that I would be able to get around to them :).

6. What art technique is your favourite? Do you rather keep to the art techniques and styles you are familiar with, or do you experiment with new ones as well?

I like to draw digital and traditional, however the spirit of Middle Ages in Tolkien's works as if hints that his world goes best of all with traditional, and I will agree with such opinion. As for the techniques I tried to draw Tolkien's world with watercolor, and pastel, and ink and graphite. Quite perhaps, I will risk also with oil :) It would be epic :)

7. Probably the best word to describe your character paintings is "hot". As a modest and religious man, Tolkien avoided this topic, but some of your illustrations are more revealing. Is it your intention to present them as "eye-candy" for the viewers? What is your opinion on sexuality in Middle-earth?

You know, I think that there was sex in Middle-Earth :). Feanor had 7 sons, and this already gives us a hint that he had sex with his wife not only on hollidays :) I don't see elves of "Silm" as just cute handsome men and shirkers, they had to work hard, building the new cities of Middle-Earth – after all they had no slaves, all they did, they did themselves. They had to be at war, sow and plow, build and fight – that’s why in my opinion they are flesh and blood. Thus they are beautiful and strong – and it is really sexy!

8. Do you have some tips and tricks you would like to share with the other artists?

In my art I try to avoid stereotypes. I can advise all artists, to do the same :)

9. Could you give us a link or thumbnail from your gallery of
- a Tolkien illustration you are most proud of?


Glorfindel. Before The Storm. by Venlian
I like how it came out to show his expression and mood.

- a picture from other fandom or original picture you are most proud of?

Celtic girl by Venlian

- a picture that fits your current mood?

Fingon Before the Battle by Venlian

- a picture that was hardest to paint?

Feanor Noldor King by Venlian
I was drawing him with breaks, started and began again. This interview helped me to finish and also my friend's persuasions.

- any other picture you would like to share with us and why?

Beast by Venlian
I love the technique here.

10. What key people in your life, (on or off of dA) have been inspirations to you, or has supported you, as an artist? You can also tell us why, if you want.

I had to communicate with many artists and it is possible to learn something from everyone. But the most important person for me is my teacher in art school and also some fellow students with whom I studied in the nursery of artists. From DA I can call :icongold-seven: - the first traditional Tolkien artist I saw on DA, and a thought rushed in my head: hey! And why not to do the same! :) There are many drawings which inspire on something also from other DA artists.  If it concerns my favourite classical artists, they are Vrubel, Kramskoy, Shishkin, Levitan, Serov and many other Russian artists. Also I like impressionists – for fine vivid colours and plus  classic like Michelangelo, Rodin, etc.

11. Is there some artist(s) at dA you know, who doesn't have as much attention as they would deserve? If yes, could you give us some thumbnails from their gallery?

:iconrighon:
young archer by RighonGoldberry and unfamiliar sinda by Righon

:icontoradh:
Last Breath of Fire by ToradhNirnaeth Arnoediad by Toradh

:iconmeneldil-elda:
Leithian by meneldil-elda

12. Is there something else you would like to tell to the fans of Tolkien and your art?

Tolkien's world is fascinating and boundless, it inspires me, and I am glad that my drawings and my vision of this world can inspire and be pleasant to you.

Thank you very much for your time and answers!

Coding by Felizias Drawings by ebe-kastein Borders by PhoenixWildfire

Talks with Tolkien artists: AngelaRizza

Journal Entry: Tue Jul 21, 2015, 9:50 AM


The gallery of :iconangelarizza: - AngelaRizza is full of beautiful detailed pictures of many topics, and if you browse through them, you also will discover many wonderful Tolkien illustrations, like these:

The Great Eagle Rescue by AngelaRizza Beorn's Hall by AngelaRizza
Mirkwood by AngelaRizza Azog Outside of Moria by AngelaRizza
The Prancing Pony by AngelaRizza Smaug by AngelaRizza

1. Hello! For the beginning, could you tell us something about yourself?


Hey, My name is Angela, I’m 25 and I got my BFA from the Fashion Institute in NYC for Illustration. In college I focused a lot on fantasy illustration and children’s books and since then I’ve been freelancing in upstate New York.

2. When did you read Tolkien's books for the first time, and what impression did they leave in you?


I first read The Lord of the Ring series in elementary school, I remember buying the trilogy at a book fair because I loved the cover art. When I first read it, I think I was too young to really get the story and I remember just loving the characters and the whole fantasy world they lived in. That and the Harry Potter and Dragonlance books influenced a lot of my elementary school/middle school artwork and most of my subjects were dragons and weird monsters based on the creatures from these series.

3. How extensive is your knowledge of Middle-earth? Do you consider yourself Tolkien expert?

I wouldn’t consider myself an expert, I’m always learning something new about the series every week and I like how when I rewatch the movies or reread the books I always notice or realize something new which keeps the series interesting and fresh for me.

4. Did you read the books, or see the movies first? When the movies came out, many of the inner pictures of characters and scenes in the mind of the readers have been replaced by actors and settings from the movie. Did it happen to you as well? Did you try to prevent it?

I read the trilogy first, but I saw the Hobbit movie before I read the Hobbit.

I found the movies helped me appreciate the book more. I had my idea of what characters and creatures looked like in my head but I think Peter Jackson in his crew helped fill in the gaps in my head and made it feel so solid and complete. But, I liked my vision of their outfits and the environment a bit more, I always imagined them more flamboyant and not as close to our world.

5. Now, could you tell us something about you and art? Are you a professional artist, or is art just your hobby? When did you start doing it, and who or what influenced your style?

I work as an illustrator and teach art to elementary and middle school aged kids part time. My grandfather was an artist and influenced me into becoming one from a young age, so I’ve been drawing since I was a kid with the idea that I’d be doing this for the rest of my life. A lot of my style is inspired by classical storybook illustrators like Arthur Rackham, along with some contemporary artists who work in mixed traditional/digital media like Yuko Shimizu.

6. How do you choose which scenes and characters to illustrate?

I like to create an image that can present the main characters in their best light, and in a recognizable or iconic setting. Sometimes I like to do a montage of different scenes in one image to tell a chunk of the story.

7. What other book or movies (or anything else) inspire you to create fanart, and why?

I did a Harry Potter and Game of Thrones series last year, and I want to add more to that. I also want to do a piece inspired by season 1 of True Detective when I have time. I do a lot of fanart because I was told by a few successful illustrators that if I draw the things I love and fill my portfolio with them, I will get jobs involving those things. So far I’ve found that to be true, I had some of my pieces used for the Middle Earth Envisioned book, and I was invited by HBO to stand on the red carpet in ny at last year’s Game of Thrones season premier party.

8. What art technique is your favourite? Do you rather keep to the art techniques and styles you are familiar with, or do you experiment with new ones as well?

I like working in a combo of traditional and digital media. I ink everything traditionally and add some value with black watercolor, then I scan it and add the color in Photoshop along with some details and texture to get my look. It’s a process I’m very quick with and I’m always tweaking and playing around with to improve.

9. Do you have some tips and tricks you would like to share with the other artists?

Definitely draw everyday, keeping a sketchbook is a great habit and this is how you improve your artwork and keep track of ideas.

10. Could you give us a link or thumbnail from your gallery of
- a Tolkien illustration you are most proud of?


Eowyn vs Nazgul by AngelaRizza

- a picture from other fandom or original picture you are most proud of?

The King Who Lost The North by AngelaRizza

- a picture that fits your current mood?

Jack by AngelaRizza

- a picture that was hardest to paint?

The Wandering Hoarder by AngelaRizza

- any other picture you would like to share with us and why?


Near Death by AngelaRizza

I just love this one, the whole Garden Wall series feels like someone went into my brain, took out my mind and made it into a cartoon.

11. What key people in your life, (on or off of dA) have been inspirations to you, or has supported you, as an artist? You can also tell us why, if you want.

Arthur Rackham, Teagan White, Audubon, Charles Vess, Corey Godbey, Nicolas Delort, Ida Outhwaite, Jillian Tamaki and Richey Beckett have all been artists who I admire and look up to.

12. Is there some artist(s) at dA you know, who doesn't have as much attention as they would deserve? If yes, could you give us some thumbnails from their gallery?


Outward by JMFenner91#290 The head of a Sailor by Picolo-kunThe Secret Door by yanadhyana
PF 2015 by s-u-w-iThe Loss by POISON-FREEBuffy the Vampire Slayer season 10 issue 13 by StevenJamesMorris

Thank you for your time and answers!

Coding by Felizias Drawings by ebe-kastein Borders by PhoenixWildfire

Hobbit in tengwar

Journal Entry: Wed Jul 8, 2015, 9:42 AM


:iconsirielle: reports:

You need to check it - Tsvetelina Krumova 'Elmenel' is creating the first book in tengwar - The Hobbit:
  


Handmade calligraphy, maps and illustrations. I saw the original drawings at Oxonmoot 2014, amazing!
(In the corner you can see fantastic Elrond Love)

Detailed information regarding the creation process and possible publication at Patreon:
www.patreon.com/Elmenel?ty=h  

Here is also homepage of the project www.parmaeldalieva.com/
& it's fanpage at Facebook  www.facebook.com/ParmaEldaliev…
Though Tsvetelina will be most active at Patreon and the best contact her there.
#1 If you want to see it happening forward the information, let the world hear about it! Thumbs Up
The more people talk about it, the better for the project & the publication! 
 Share it at Tumblr Tumblr Icon sirielle.tumblr.com/post/12244… (the best use this link) and other sites Thumbs Up

#jrrt #hobbit #tolkien #calligraphy #book #bookillustration #tengwar #lotr #lordoftherings 

Coding by Felizias Drawings by ebe-kastein Borders by PhoenixWildfire

Talks with Tolkien artists: breathing2004

Journal Entry: Mon Jul 6, 2015, 9:37 AM


This is another interview that was rather hard to accomplish. :iconbreathing2004: - breathing2004 is a well known Chinese artist with a clearly recognizeable style, but he does not speak English well, so at first he declined the interview, but then we found a way through translators. My thanks for the translation belongs to Norloth who translated the questions to Chinese, and to fish-in-fridge who translated the answers back to English.


Gondolin by breathing2004
glory and fallen of Numenor by breathing2004 Tolkien:Lord of the middle earth by breathing2004
long adventure with hobbit version by breathing2004
Battle of Five Armies by breathing2004 I am no man by breathing2004


1. Hello! For the beginning, could you tell us something about yourself? 


I am an architect and subway building designer. I am also a freelance part-time artist; I usually do cover art for books and journals during my spare time.

2. When did you read Tolkien's books for the first time, and what impression did they leave in you? 


It felt like falling into a novel yet familiar world. I loved the idyllic peace of the Shire; I was amazed by the epic battle between the kind men led by Aragorn, and the evil and its accomplices. And most importantly, the broadness and depth of Middle-earth never fails to fascinate me.

3. How extensive is your knowledge of Middle-earth? Do you consider yourself Tolkien expert?

What I presently know about Middle-earth, I learnt from Tolkien’s writing and Jackson’s movies. I base my art on both verbal descriptions from the books, and the movies and other images about Middle-earth that I have seen. I am deeply awed by the extensive and detailed settings Tolkien devised for his created world, as well as the sheer beauty of his literature, but I am definitely not Tolkien expert.

4. When the movies came out, many of the inner pictures of characters and scenes in the mind of the readers have been replaced by actors and settings from the movie. Did it happen to you as well? Did you try to prevent it?


Yes, it did. As I said, I keep using both words and images as reference for my Middle-earth art. Actually I relied quite much on The Lord of the Rings and The Hobbit movie trilogies for my earlier artwork. The Silmarillion, on the other hand, is an unending inspiration that permits me to work out characters and scenes without being influenced by known movie images and designs.

5. Now, could you tell us something about you and art? Are you a professional artist, or is art just your hobby? When did you start doing it, and who or what influenced your style?


I am professional architect, and freelance artist and illustrator. Maybe I can consider myself a bit more professional than hobbyists. For me, art is one part of my life that I can never give up; I have been very passionate and insistent with my art as a student and later as a semi-professional. I started taking commissions in 2007, when gamespot, a Chinese game journal, invited me to draw six posters on World of Warcraft. I am a big fan of this mmo game, and back then I had already made quite a lot of WoW fanart. Working with gamespot won me many other commission opportunities, and with that I set my first step as freelance illustrator.

There have been many great influences throughout my path, in the shapes of both men and events. Thanks to the tutorials made by Noah (a Chinese illustrator), I came into knowledge and practice of cg art. His tutorials are tailored for painter (a software) users, and to this date painter remains my favourite software. I also have Cgtalk award gallery and a number of Blizzard Games events to thank. Every invitation and every prize instills me with further motivation for art, and some have been influential enough to bring changes to my style.
 
6. Your illustrations often tell a whole story in one picture. How much effort goes into planning and composition of such a picture? Do you see it as a whole in your mind before you start painting, or only uncover it with the painting process?


Usually it takes a week or two to plan everything in my mind, and a few nights in front to my computer to work them out. A lot of trials and revisions are necessary when it comes to details.

7. What art technique is your favourite? Do you rather keep to the art techniques and styles you are familiar with, or do you experiment with new ones as well?

I don’t have a particular technique or style. When I get very used to one style, I would try to break free from it and embrace something brand new. I also combine different styles I have been familiar with, and sometimes a new style is born in this way.

8. How did you develop your unique mosaic style of illustrations? 

Firstly I am an architect; I am sensitive to geometric patterns and their visual effects. Ancient frescoes on religious themes are also a great influence. This form of art is capable of telling a full story, and vividly displaying all people and events involved, on a two-dimensional platform. I have always wanted my art to tell a story rather than exhibit a portrait or a still moment; therefore, I keep learning from narrative forms of art, such as religious frescoes, and prize narration as core of my own creative art. Another great influence is stained glass art. I love stained glass art for its play of light and shadow, which gifts a sense of mystery to the subject it portrays. It also demonstrates an in-depth talent in colouring. Lastly, I am a big fan for medieval monastery art, such as Biblical illustration. It never fails to amaze me that medieval monks were able to capture the most exquisite sense of beauty while living a simple and disciplined religious life.

9. You also designed the covers for the Chinese translation of LOTR. Did these get published?

cover design for LOTR by breathing2004

I did. It was an activity hosted by the publisher which I was interested in, and I designed a few covers. No, they didn’t get published. Yet I still can use them to adorn my own LotR copies.

10. Do you have some tips and tricks you would like to share with the other artists? 

I believe the artist should base his/her art on his/her own thoughts and style, and find beauty in them. Whereas commissions and verbal descriptions set limit to the artist’s freedom of creativity, they do not affect or restrain the artist’s style, which belongs solely to the artist. No matter what you draw or paint, stay true to your style; your art is unique because your style is.

11. What key people in your life, (on or off of dA) have been inspirations to you, or has supported you, as an artist? You can also tell us why, if you want.

There are really a lot of them, and giving a full list would probably take up too much answer space here. Therefore I am going to name but a few.

My primary school sketch tutor. He made the effort to explain my art talent to my mother, and encouraged her to take me to more extensive art training.

Ediart, co-founder of the NGA website. His website was both a stage to exhibit my art, and a place to hone my skills.

Noirrs, former chief editor of gamespot. I received my first poster commission from him.

Cross (十字), architect and part-time admin of NGA visual art section. He endeavours to bring more and more cooperation between Chinese artists and Blizzard Games. He is also most encouraging and helpful with young artists.

12. Is there something else you would like to tell to the fans of Tolkien and your art? 


There is one Middle-earth, created by Tolkien, but there are millions of ways to portray Middle-earth, in such forms as words, images, and other various media. You can always remember the Middle-earth as you see it and understand it, and depict it accordingly yet freely. This is the way  Middle-earth will never fade from our memory.

Thank you very much for your time and answers!

And here I will
give you some more art from his gallery, as he did not have access to his dA gallery at the time of the interview, and couldn't answer my questions about it.

the birth of two trees by breathing2004

the wizards by breathing2004

Feanor and Silmarils by breathing2004

Paths of the Dead by breathing2004

forest king by breathing2004


Coding by Felizias Drawings by ebe-kastein Borders by PhoenixWildfire

Talks with Tolkien artists: fish-in-fridge

Journal Entry: Mon Jun 29, 2015, 3:07 AM


:iconfish-in-fridge: - fish-in-fridge is not only an artist creating an interesting blend of anime and Tolkien in her illustrations (if you read the interview, you will also find out why anime), but also a fanfiction writer, translator and illustrator. You can read her stories at her AO3 account, and her art you can see in her gallery, including some lesser known scenes from Tolkien and illustrations to several fanfiction stories:

Finrod and Amaire by fish-in-fridge Elrond's Request by fish-in-fridge
Elvish Smith and Dwarvish Smith by fish-in-fridge Elessar the farewell gift by fish-in-fridge
Of Narya by fish-in-fridge Lord and Lady of Imladris by fish-in-fridge


1.Hello! For the beginning, could you tell us something about yourself?

Hi, I’m fish-in-fridge. I am from China. I am studying education as graduate student in U.S. and currently working part-time in China at an education agency. I have fallen in love with drawing since kindergarten and now I sketch and draw in my free time.

2.It is interesting to find out the stories behind people's usernames. What is yours?

Fish-in-fridge is a simplified translation from my username on Chinese BBS, (whose literal translation should be “little white fish in fridge”.) It dates back to my high school days, when my friends and I enjoyed a sort of word game where we should make up phrases and sentences with (nonsensically) comical meanings. I was quite proud of “little white fish in fridge” and started using it for my BBS id, and later for other sites and archives.

3. When did you read Tolkien's books for the first time, and what impression did they leave in you?

I started reading The Hobbit after watching the first Hobbit movie. And The Lord of the Rings and the Silmarillion followed soon enough. I took The Hobbit as light reading at first and it was mostly “what next?” that pushed me on, and then the quarrels over Lonely-Mountain gold and the ensuing Battle of Five Armies made me start marvelling at this story whole-heartedly. The Lord of the Rings is both fascinating and though-provoking in both depth and details. Each time I read The Lord of the Rings I come to see something I didn’t notice at my last reading. The Silmarillion is really beyond my meagre vocabulary when I want to praise it (, which I always want). In short, Arda is really a world you can lose yourself in.

4. How extensive is your knowledge of Middle-earth? Do you consider yourself Tolkien expert?

I am definitely no Tolkien expert. Middle-earth is broad and I’m only a beginner when it comes to its exploration.

5. Did you read the books, or see the movies first? When the movies came out, many of the inner pictures of characters and scenes in the mind of the readers have been replaced by actors and settings from the movie. Did it happen to you as well? Did you try to prevent it?

My booking reading and movie watching sequence is like: The Hobbit 1 (movie) -> The Hobbit (book) -> The Lord of the Rings (books) -> The Silmarillion -> The Lord of the Rings (movies) -> The Children of Hurin and a few other pieces of Tolkien writing -> The Hobbit 2 (movie) -> The Hobbit 3 (movie). With this order, I am indeed heavily influenced by the movies, especially when it comes to landscapes, architecture and costume design. I do have a lot to say about (and probably against) a few character designs and story writing in the movies, yet I really admire their effort in giving enchanting visual images to the wondrous world in Tolkien’s books. I gladly take movie character designs for reference when they agree with my interpretation of the characters (like Sir Ian McKellen’s Gandalf, Bernard Hill’s Theoden, etc.), and disregard the movie interpretation/alteration of the characters when they don’t agree with mine (like Elijah Wood’s Frodo, Lee Pace’s Thranduil, etc. I mean no disrespect to the actors and their effort in playing them, but I just love their book counterparts better.)

6. Now, could you tell us something about you and art (meaning both visual and writing)? Are you a professional artist, or is art just your hobby? When did you start doing it, and who or what influenced your style?

Drawing is a hobby to me, mostly just to please myself; if any piece of my drawings bring pleasure to others, I take it as bonus effect. I am not drawing to make money and probably will never live on drawing. Besides, I never received systematic art training. I started drawing when I was 4 or 5, I guess, for there’s no way to remember it precisely now. I modeled my style after different genres and artists. Anime has been a heavy influence (and the sole influence in my early teens), yet I am also a big fan for realism, impressionism and art nouveau. I wish I could learn to draw all these styles in near future.

7.A bit more about your style - why anime, and how well do you think it fits with Tolkien?

It is really not like I chose anime for Tolkien, but anime has been the only style I’m confident with and the urge of drawing Tolkien art was so strong that I could not resist. That’s why anime and Tolkien came together. I won’t say my style fits with Tolkien perfectly: it fails in conveying the nuances Tolkien gave to his characters more often than not. I am still making small shifts and changes in my style to fix that problem as best as I can.

8.Most of your art are uncolored pen drawing, which gives them a sketchy look. Are you one of those artists who take a sketchbook wherever they go to quickly capture their ideas?

Well, no. But I doodle a lot in the margins of my textbooks when I’m bored with classes. Not that I’m proud of it. But to be honest, sometimes I would base my more formal sketches on those classroom doodles.

9.You often illustrate rarely seen themes or even fanfiction. How do you choose which scenes and characters to illustrate?


I don’t even consider them rarely seen themes ;) (Wink) I think I have seen all the themes I’ve touched on in dA, and many are quite popular in fact. Mostly I start drawing when I come across a line, paragraph or scene and feel like “Aw!!! So many feels! I need to draw them out!” It goes the same with canon and fanfiction.

10. Can you tell us more about Tolkien fanfiction from the point of both reader and writer? What do you expect from a well-written story, and what makes you want to illustrate a fanfic?

I read fanfic mostly because I want to know more about some characters and their back-stories that are not described in detail in canon. Therefore characterization is the key issue for me. I believe a well-written story must consist of characters that are actually in character, and both the proceeding of the general plot and the arc of each character should be consistent with the setting of Middle-earth during different Ages, and the inner personality and belief of the characters. In-depth and well balanced character study is essential to fanfic, and a good story does not sacrifice minor characters to highlight the main ones. And the story has to be convincing, whether it’s pre-canon, canon-period, future fic or AU.

Most of the fanfics I illustrate are the ones I translated/am translating into Chinese. Sometimes a short sentence can inspire an illustration, and translation ensures that I run into such sentences often enough.

11. As a writer, how do you feel about the position of fanfiction in current literature?

From my experience, I find fanfiction somewhat misunderstood by non-fanfiction readers. In their eyes it is too often associated with slash pairings, Mary Sue and erotic writing. Not that fanfiction is free from these things, but they are not the purpose why fanfiction is created. Many of the fanfics I love, especially the shorter ones, are canon gap-fillers with sincerest respect to Tolkien’s world and characters. There are also canon-divergent stories that respect Tolkien’s beliefs and motives in very creative ways. I don’t think fanfiction, as a whole, should be looked down upon because some fanfics are poorly written and consist of immature characterization and cheap story-telling devices.

12. What other book or movies (or anything else) inspire you to create fanart, and why?


I started reading A Song of Ice and Fire early this year and now I’m totally into it. Actually I’ve been drawing more ASOIAF than Middle-earth these couple of months. I also draw fanart for some of my favourite anime and short stories.

13. Do you have some tips and tricks you would like to share with the other artists?

Keep reading and keep drawing/painting. Take tips about proportions, perspective drawings, etc. but stay faithful to your own understanding of characters and your own styles.

14. Could you give us a link or thumbnail from your gallery of
- a Tolkien illustration you are most proud of?


The Ring of Barahir by fish-in-fridge

- a picture from other fandom or original picture you are most proud of?


Before and After Robert's Rebellion by fish-in-fridge

- a fanfiction you are most proud of?



The only fic I’ve written that I think is worth reading.

- a picture that fits your current mood?


Out for A Walking Party by fish-in-fridge
I want to have some hobbitish fun!

- a picture that was hardest to paint?

Fingolfin and Finarfin by fish-in-fridge
Because of the map.

- any other picture you would like to share with us and why?

Elros, Elrond and Maglor by fish-in-fridge
I am fan of Maglor and his two wards, and for me there is never enough art portraying these three. This is the best one among all my attempts at this theme.

15.What key people in your life, (on or off of dA) have been inspirations to you, or has supported you, as an artist? You can also tell us why, if you want.

My grandmother enjoyed drawing in her youth and she left me all her artworks she did in her youth. She encouraged me to draw and dropped me pieces of advice as she aged and quit drawing. It is always a pity that we didn’t talk about drawing and art as often or intensively as we could have.

16.Is there some artist(s) at dA you know, who doesn't have as much attention as they would deserve?

Her ethnic costume designs are really stylish, and she blends them into her Tolkien art, with very good effects.

You really better not miss her stylish webcomic Thicker Than Blood.

17. Is there something else you would like to tell to the fans of Tolkien and your art?

For Tolkien fans: Glad to know you and/or look forward to knowing more of you!
For fans of my art: Thank you for your continuous support!

Thank you for your time and answers!


Coding by Felizias Drawings by ebe-kastein Borders by PhoenixWildfire

Talks with Tolkien artists: ivanalekseich

Journal Entry: Fri Jun 19, 2015, 4:38 AM


This interview was complicated. :iconivanalekseich: - ivanalekseich is a Russian artist whose art I discovered only recently, and when I did, I knew I wanted to do an interview with him. He answered it in Russian, as my father was so kind to translate it for me - from Russian to Slovak. I translated it from Slovak to English and here I'm posting it for you. We both tried to be as accurate as possible in the translations, so I hope not much was lost in them. Any mistakes in English you find are mine. Despite (or maybe even because) of the complications, I hope you will enjoy both the interview and a sample of his art:

Morgoth In Viniamar by ivanalekseich Namo ( Mandos ) by ivanalekseich

Ar-Pharazon the Golden and Sauron by ivanalekseich
Azog and Nain by ivanalekseich Nirnaeth Arnoediad.Turgon and Glorfindel by ivanalekseich
Ankalagon and Earendil by ivanalekseich


1. Hello! For the beginning, could you tell us something about yourself?

Greetings. My name is Ivan Markov. I'm 35, living in Kostroma, Russia. I word as 3D designer in fashion jewellery design.

2. When did you read Tolkien's books for the first time, and what impression did they leave in you?

3. How extensive is your knowledge of Middle-earth? Do you consider yourself Tolkien expert?

4. Did you read the books, or see the movies first? When the movies came out, many of the inner pictures of characters and scenes in the mind of the readers have been replaced by actors and settings from the movie. Did it happen to you as well? Did you try to prevent it?

I will answer the three questions at once: I read Tolkien for the first time when I was a child. It was the Hobbit, illustrated by David Wenzel. That's where I stopped, too. I switched to Robert E. Howard and Lyon Sprague de Camp and the Conan series. I became a devoted fan of fantasy. I tried to illustrate it, too, but I was young and inexperienced. These illustrations were based on movie stills.

I returned to Tolkien after the Lord of the Rings - Fellowship of the Ring was filmed. Then I understood that it's a great work of art, and decided to read it. The Lord of the Rings captivated me, and I started seeking other works from the Professor. I read the Silmarillion, The Book of Lost Tales, Unfinished Tales. The world interested me so much, that my hands reached for the pencils and colors on their own. I drew sketches, but also full-color illustrations and elaborated files. My studies, first employment and moving to different cities caused the loss of all my drawings. Now I consider myself Tolkien expert. I've read everything I could. I own a huge collection of Tolkien's books in different editions. I studied his pictures and read different notes and letters to discover even the slightest hints of what wasn't mentioned in the books.

I like the Hobbit and Lord of the Rings movies very much, and I became a great fan. But I try to not blend my illustrations with the movie concepts. You can say that both books are over-illustrated into great detail by many artists, but it's not true for the Silmarillion.

5. How do you choose which scenes and characters to illustrate?

I follow the work of other artists and Tolkien illustrators, and try to pick "untouched" scenes for my pictures, or my own interpretations of previously depicted scenes. But in any case I'm trying to depict the scenes as true to the text as possible.

6. What art technique is your favourite? Do you rather keep to the art techniques and styles you are familiar with, or do you experiment with new ones as well?

About my technique and style, they are highly diverse. I like to experiment from sketches to 3D graphics. I give much attention to light, as the play of light and shadow gives a lot of life and personality to the picture. I use different 3D softwares to achieve a good lightning, but the main work is done with a tablet pen.

7. Do you have some tips and tricks you would like to share with the other artists?

I have an advice for beginning artists: Most important is patience, diligence and persistence. You can't just choose your own style. Art needs the process of long creation, and then your individual style will form on its own. It is possible to mimic other artists, but don't get carried away by it. Just a little, for exercise and hand practice. Don't be afraid to fantasize.  

8. Could you give us a link or thumbnail from your gallery of
- a Tolkien illustration you are most proud of?

Húrin - my first serious CG project
Hurin by ivanalekseich

- a picture from other fandom or original picture you are most proud of?

Zmey by ivanalekseich


- a picture that was hardest to paint?

Alien Visitor, because half of the picture was drawn with a computer mouse.

Alien Visitor by ivanalekseich

9. What key people in your life, (on or off of dA) have been inspirations to you, or has supported you, as an artist? You can also tell us why, if you want.

I always admired the work of brothers Hildebrant and John Howe. I also liked the art of Justin Gerard a lot since I accidentaly discovered it - his pictures are very lively and have a pleasant style. 

10. Is there something else you would like to tell to the fans of Tolkien and your art?


I would like to tell to the fans of Tolkien: Take care! You control this direction of art! 

Thank you for your time and answers!


Coding by Felizias Drawings by ebe-kastein Borders by PhoenixWildfire

Talks with Tolkien artists: sassynails

Journal Entry: Thu Jun 4, 2015, 2:24 AM


Some artists have a great sense for combining materials. Today I talked with :iconsassynails: - sassynails whose collages prove that she is one of them:

Finrod Felagund by sassynails Celegorm the Fair by sassynails
Orome by sassynails Glorfindel by sassynails
The Wolfmaster by sassynails Maglor by sassynails


1. Hello! For the beginning, could you tell us something about yourself?


Hello and thank you for this wonderful opportunity! I live in Russia and I'm a professional interpreter/teacher of foreign languages, though I've been working in IT industry mostly.

2. It is interesting to find out the stories behind people's usernames. What is yours?


Ah, I've had this nickname on various websites for ages and, to be honest, I don't remember why I thought of it. I know there's a network of nail salons with the same name, but I always thought of the 'nails' part in my nickname as the nails you nail with a hammer )))

3. When did you read Tolkien's books for the first time, and what impression did they leave in you?

I first read The Hobbit and LOTR, along with Smith of Wootton Major and Farmer Giles of Ham and Leaf by Niggle when I was around twelve. My edition had an extensive introduction about Tolkien and his other writings, and I was absolutely desperate to read the Silmarillion and get to know more about the history behind LOTR. Unfortunately, a translated version of it was hard to come by in Russia at that time, but I was obsessed. When I was sixteen, I got my hands on the English version of the Silm and three more volumes of HoME. My knowledge of English was seriously lacking at that time, and I was basically unable to read it. But read I did. Numerous times, piled up under dictionaries and grammar books, crying in frustration and trying to dissect every sentence to understand it. Eventually, it gave in. In a year or so, I knew English well enough to get a scholarship at a university for linguistics effortlessly. I owe my knowledge of English, my choice of education and my love for linguistics to Tolkien (and to Tolkien fanfics, to be honest). Still remember lots of quotes and passages by heart from that time.
So, I guess you can tell, the impression was very, very profound.

4. How extensive is your knowledge of Middle-earth? Do you consider yourself Tolkien expert?

Closer to a nerd, I think. I'm that dude my fandom friends go to when they need a Sindarin or Quenya name made for their character. But I'm by no means a canon purist, nor would I call myself an expert. Just a person who loves Middle-earth dearly.

5. Did you read the books, or see the movies first? When the movies came out, many of the inner pictures of characters and scenes in the mind of the readers have been replaced by actors and settings from the movie. Did it happen to you as well? Did you try to prevent it?

Books first. I'm one of those people who always separates books and their adaptations, and I enjoy both the books and PJ's rendition of them. Not all of PJ's views coincide with how I see Tolkien's characters, but I love them all the more for it. One of the most important things in fandom for me is diversity of creative views. I love, love, love to see the many ways people imagine, enact and embody the Professor's characters and world. Though I do believe PJ's treatment of canon was as careful, loving, thorough and respectful, as the rules of movie-making allowed him. I was also squeeing with delight when I learned (prior to LOTR movies) that he had invited John Howe and Alan Lee to work on production design.

6. Now, could you tell us something about you and art? Are you a professional artist, or is art just your hobby? When did you start doing it, and who or what influenced your style?

I'm not a professional and I never went to school for it. I've always wanted to draw and craft things, but when I tried to enter an art school for kids – most of the time, it's required for further college education in the sphere of art and design in Russia – I wasn't accepted. That was very discouraging, but I did draw all the same. Now I really feel the lack of formal education and try to self-learn a lot. Since I have a full-time job, my progress is much slower than I'd like it to be. I also often feel very insecure about what I do and blunder a lot. Many of my works go 'inside the table drawer' as we say here, because one moment I like it and then it seems like it's just a tasteless, kitschy orgy of colours and textures. As for the influences, they are very many. I like so many things and swing between styles all the time.

7. How do you choose which scenes and characters to illustrate?


It's always a random impulse. Suddely a picture pops into my head and I just have to do it.

8. What other book or movies (or anything else) inspire you to create fanart, and why?


It used to be Harry Potter. And I also really admire folk fairy tales, mythology of various cultures, especialy Slavic and Norse mythology.

9. What art technique is your favourite? Do you rather keep to the art techniques and styles you are familiar with, or do you experiment with new ones as well?


I wouldn't call it experimenting, but rather random swinging. I easily get carried away by something I instantly like and I just have to try it. But anything that involves a lot of texture and colour is my preference. Mixed media, I guess, it is.

10. How do you find materials for your collages, and how difficult is it to put everything together?

Sometimes it's embarrassing to tell how much into my 'magpie' mode I get ))) I look for things everywhere. Pretty flowers, wrappers, beads, cloth, pieces of paper. I go around looking out for these things constantly. My friends who know of my passion supply little things – cat's whiskers, pretty stones, seashells, pet parrot feathers, antic lace from grandmas' chests and so on.
Picking the materials and putting the collage together usually comes naturally somehow. Doing the initial composition and anatomy sketch is the toughest part.

10. Do you have some tips and tricks you would like to share with the other artists?

I really don't think I'm in position to offer tips or tricks, since most of what I do myself is done by trial and error. 'Don't give up, whatever happens' would also be a trite thing to say, considering how many times I've given up and succumbed to bouts of depression about how I would never be a professional illustrator/artist. So, one thing I can say is probably this: if the process of making art makes you happy – keep doing it, no matter the outcome. Your fun and happiness – that's what counts most at the end of the day. If it gets you frustrated – there's nothing wrong with stepping away for a bit.

11. Could you give us a link or thumbnail from your gallery of
- a Tolkien illustration you are most proud of?

Curufin by sassynails
- I think it’s this one. I really like how the sails played out. You can tell I aspire for stylized art, heh. Getting there very slowly.

- a picture from other fandom or original picture you are most proud of?

Not really proud of my other stuff featured on DA. I’d remove it, but I’m always so sad when artists I like remove their things. Someone did like them, even if I find them faulty now. And there’s also the need to see that I progress.

- a picture that was hardest to create?

The dance by sassynails
 this one. Mostly because of the poses.

- any other picture you would like to share with us and why?

Glorfindel by sassynails
chronologically, it was the first ever paper collage I made.

12. What key people in your life, (on or off of dA) have been inspirations to you, or has supported you, as an artist? You can also tell us why, if you want.


My fandom friends have been extremely supportive. I don't know if I would ever have got the courage to post what I do. I'm also very much inspired by papercraft of Brittney Lee and Morgana Wallace. I hope one day to come remotely close to their level of elegantly deceptive simplicity, the clear cuts of their lines and awesome use of colour.

13. Is there some artist(s) at dA you know, who doesn't have as much attention as they would deserve? If yes, could you give us some thumbnails from their gallery?

I really adore the art of :iconjohn-n-mary:
She has a unique style and vibrancy. And that adorable 'hairy' paper! Look at it!

Hit the applemark by john-n-maryApples grown ripe by john-n-maryManwe Air Force by john-n-mary

And I also think that :icongranks: has some highly interesting, well-drawn and unconventional concepts of Valar.

Aule by GranksOrome by GranksMelkor by Granks

14. Is there something else you would like to tell to the fans of Tolkien and your art?

I would really like to use this awesome opportunity to thank every single one of those wonderful people who took their time to like/leave a comment on my work. It will never fail to amaze me that there are people who actually like what I do. It is immensely satisfying, as a fledgling artist, to see your feedback.

Thank you for your time and answers!

Coding by Felizias Drawings by ebe-kastein Borders by PhoenixWildfire

Talks with Tolkien artists: dejan-delic

Journal Entry: Thu May 28, 2015, 11:33 AM




If you like Tolkien and horses, the gallery of
:icondejan-delic: - dejan-delic is the right place for you to look! The beautiful horses of Middle-earth come to life in his unique pictures (with Legolas as a bonus ;)):

Roheryn by dejan-delic The Black Riders horses by dejan-delic
Asfaloth by dejan-delic Legolas by dejan-delic
 Windfola by dejan-delic Shadowfax by dejan-delic

1. Hello! For the beginning, could you tell us something about yourself?

Hello! First of all, I would like to thank you very much for inviting me to do this interview. It is a great honour for me as an illustrator to be a part of this, especially when it is about something like “The Lord of the Rings” series.
My name is Dejan Delic, and I live in Serbia. I have a college degree in industrial design, and illustration has been the primary form of my artistic orientation for many years now. Since I am a great fan of epic fantasy, the most common themes in my art are concerned with this genre, as it can be seen in my deviantArt gallery.

2. It is interesting to find out the stories behind people's usernames. What is yours?

Actually, there is no story behind my username. The one I wanted to use in the beginning was already taken, so I decided to use my first and last names. It is short and easy to remember and today, after five years at deviantArt, I think it was a good idea.

3. When did you read Tolkien's books for the first time, and what impression did they leave in you?

It was a long time ago, I think I was about 14 or 15 years old when I first encountered “The Lord of the Rings” series. It was my first contact with the epic fantasy genre and it left a considerable impression upon me. The impression was strong in the sense that it inspired me to explore other JRR Tolkien's books, but it also lead me to other authors and books of the genre.

4. How extensive is your knowledge of Middle-earth? Do you consider yourself a Tolkien expert?

I must admit that my knowledge of Middle-earth is not too extensive, and I do not consider myself a proficient expert on Tolkien's world. I am certainly familiar with the basics of the whole story and some important details,  but I am far from being a thorough LOTR expert.

5. Did you read the books, or see the movies first? When the movies came out, many of the inner pictures of characters and scenes in the mind of the readers have been replaced by actors and settings from the movie. Did it happen to you as well? Did you try to prevent it?

Frankly, I first saw the Ralph Bakshi's animated film from 1978, and it left a very strong impression on me and lead me to read the book series the film was based on. I have to say that the animated characters did not have an influence on me when I was reading the books, and that, in my head, I created a completely different picture of everything  - starting from the characters, creatures and events, to natural surroundings, lands and territories where the entire story takes place.

In my opinion, Peter Jackson's LOTR film trilogy was faithful to the books and it was quite well done. Of course, I have many objections regarding some visual solutions, the absence of some characters that appear in the books, and the choice of actors for certain characters, but overall, I think that the trilogy was successfully turned into the films. Unfortunately, I don't think that they managed to achieve the same with “The Hobbit” film trilogy.

As far as the LOTR book characters being replaced by actors in the films go, I didn't have any problems with that. The descriptions from the books have always been the most important for me, and I regard film adaptations an addition to the written work, and a few hours' worth of easy entertainment.

6. Now, could you tell us something about you and art? Are you a professional artist, or is art just your hobby? When did you start doing it, and who or what influenced your style?

It is in fact difficult to define the concept of a professional artist. Is it someone who became popular because of their commissions and their well built style, or is it someone others consider worthy of this title, regardless of their popularity? It is certainly something that can be discussed. As far as I am concerned, I think I have managed to build my own style over many years, and that's not easy to do in art at all. I also believe I have managed to elevate my style to a professional level, and the time will show whether I am right. Until then, numerous rewards, commissions and of course, artwork, can speak for themselves.

I have been drawing for quite a long time, since I was little. After graduating from the design college, I have dedicated myself to graphic design, comics and illustration, with illustration having come to the fore in the last five to six years.
There are really many artists who have influenced my drawing style, but the main ones are Walt Disney, Ralph Bakshi, John Buscema, Alberto and Enrique Breccia, and Mike Mignola. Their work attracted me to drawing when I was a child, and it is still present in my style today. Some of these artists haven't influenced me with regards to style, but they have taught me that one should be original and different in one's approach to drawing in order to develop as an artist and reach the audience that will be able to appreciate it.

7. Your style is rather unique, so I would like to ask a bit more about it. What is the evolution behind it? Did you experiment and decide that "this is it", or did it evolve gradually?

Thanks a lot, I am glad you see it that way.
The illustrations I do today are drawn in vector graphics using CorelDRAW software. Naturally, it all started with pen and paper, in the traditional way, but over the years I switched to creating in digital form, which suits me better and completely realises my imagined style in a desired way.

Everything developed gradually of course. In the beginning, I did realistic drawings but after a few attempts at cartoon style drawings, I chose to work in that style. I tried working in it in one short graphic novel and after that I knew that was it. Now it has been five years already since I have been working in this style and I believe it will still go though some drawing evolutions over time.

8. Your main LotR fanart is a series of Middle-earth horses. Why horses, and what is your relation to these magnificent animals?


Yes, I mainly draw fanart based on Middle-earth horses. I think this segment has been unfairly neglected by artists who do LOTR illustrations, since these books are full of horses that simply deserve to be drawn for their descriptions, roles and actions. In other words, I am a big fan of The Rohirrim and the Kingdom of Rohan. Other illustrators mainly draw the main characters, warriors, wizards, creatures and battles, but I found it especially interesting to get into something certainly connected with the LOTR series but not so exploited in the visual sense.

Truth be told, none of this would have happened have I not been a huge fan of horses. I have loved horses since I was little and my first drawing ever was a drawing of a horse. Horses are certainly my eternal inspiration, they enchant with their beauty, gracefulness and strength and don’t leave anyone indifferent.

9. What other book or movies (or anything else) inspire you to create fanart, and why?

Many other books and series inspire me to create fanart, and the ones most dear to me are: “Malazan Book of the Fallen“ by Steven Erikson, “The First Law“ by Joe Abercrombie, “Sword Of Shadows“ by J. V. Jones, “The Gentleman Bastard“ by Scott Lynch, “ASOIAF“ by George R. R. Martin, “The Kingkiller Chronicle“ by Patrick Rothfuss, “Mistborn“ by Brandon Sanderson and many others.
Simply, the epic fantasy genre itself is very inspirational for me in the sense that I have complete freedom in the drawing approach, without the boundaries that are imposed by reality and the world we are used to, in terms of the interior, exterior, costume, anatomy and so on. Naturally, the books have to be really excellent to influence me with their quality so that I can illustrate them. The above mentioned book series and writers are the very top in the genre, in my opinion, and it is a great pleasure to draw illustrations based on these magnificent books.

10. What art technique is your favourite? Do you rather keep to the art techniques and styles you are familiar with, or do you experiment with new ones as well?

My favourite technique is vector graphics from the CorelDRAW software. It is the best for the style that I practice and for now, I would not change anything in that regard. My drawing style itself might still undergo a modification or two, but the technique is staying the same for now.

11. Do you have some tips and tricks you would like to share with the other artists?

In my opinion, every artist should stick to their own style and the goal that they have set, regardless of what is going on around them and the conditions they create under. Then the results will come. One should be very persistent and practice their drawing skills daily, accept sensible comments, since that is the only way to progress. So – I would recommend they work tirelessly.

12. Could you give us a link or thumbnail from your gallery of
- a Tolkien illustration you are most proud of?

The Flood Of Bruinen by dejan-delic
This scene completely captures my fascination with horses and it is still the first thing that comes to my mind when I think of the LOTR series.

- a picture from other fandom or original picture you are most proud of?

Locke Lamora by dejan-delic
Locke Lamore, the main character of the “The Gentleman Bastard“ series by Scott Lynch. A while ago, the author himself posted this illustration on his Twitter, and I think that says enough about how much this illustration is dear to me.

- a picture that fits your current mood?

At The Eolian by dejan-delic
Music is always around. Just like Pat’s books and Kvothe.

- a picture that was the hardest to paint?

Brukhalian by dejan-delic
Starting with the composition and the number of elements to the details and colouring, this illustration really took a long time to do. This is a scene from the great Malazan saga.

- any other picture you would like to share with us and why?

Hasufel by dejan-delic
It was a real pleasure drawing Hasufel based on Tolkien’s rich description, as well as the flag of Rohan. This is one of my favourites.

13. What key people in your life, (on or off of dA) have been inspirations to you, or have supported you, as an artist? You can also tell us why, if you want.

First and foremost my family, without whose support and tolerance there would not be any artwork to show. Then of course, there are my friends, fellow artists, without whose support and suggestions I would not have improved significantly. They know who they are, I don’t want to mention names and accidentally forget someone.
There are of course people who like my work here on deviantArt, whose support and comments are really priceless.
And of course, there is Lilliana Letic, a translator who edits and translates all my interviews and texts at the professional level.

14. Is there some artist(s) at dA you know, who doesn't have as much attention as they would deserve? If yes, could you give us some thumbnails from their gallery?

Certainly. The gallery at :iconcanuslilium: is full of great photos and really unjustifiably neglected by deviantArt audience. I think it deserves more attention and many more viewers due to its immense quality and originality. It is pure magic in the form of photography.

Scent of Evil Flowers I by CanusLilium
You Brought the Light by CanusLiliumQuiet Tales II by CanusLilium
Umorne sanje by CanusLilium

15. Is there something else you would like to tell the fans of Tolkien and you
r art?

Hmm, now you’ve got me, I must admit. Let’s say that the fans of Tolkien and of my art can expect new work and new LOTR horses in the near future.

Thank you for your time and answers!




Coding by Felizias Drawings by ebe-kastein Borders by PhoenixWildfire

Talks with Tolkien artists: Breogan

Journal Entry: Thu Apr 30, 2015, 7:22 AM


:iconbreogan: - Breogan is a concept artist who took part in creating the Born of Hope fan movie, and is currently working on another one, The Fall of Fingolfin. We talked about what it takes to create concept art, and about her own views of art and Middle-earth.

Fall of Fingolfin - Fingolfin colour concept by Breogan Emboss WIP - Elven Warrior by Breogan The Spirit of Fire - Revisited by Breogan
Film Project-Concept Art1 by Breogan Fingon the Valiant - Turnaround (Detail) by Breogan
Fingolfin Bust v.2 by Breogan


1. When did you read Tolkien's books for the first time, and what impression did they leave in you?


I first read Lord of the Rings when I was 11 and although I was already an avid reader, I couldn’t get past the first chapter - I found it so boring I put it down. Some months later, my mother, who had got me the book as a present, encouraged me to try again so I did, and when I got to chapter 2 – “The Shadow of the Past” something clicked and from that moment on I couldn’t stop reading! When I finished the book for the first time I wiped away my tears and I started it again. I had discovered a world full of wonders I couldn’t part with. To this day, I still read it once a year.

2. How extensive is your knowledge of Middle-earth? Do you consider yourself Tolkien expert?

No, I don’t consider myself an expert but my knowledge of the myth is quite extensive, especially since my interest in Tolkien’s work also includes the linguistic aspect.

3. Did you read the books, or see the movies first? When the movies came out, many of the inner pictures of characters and scenes in the mind of the readers have been replaced by actors and settings from the movie. Did it happen to you as well? Did you try to prevent it?

Books first. I think the film trilogy has mainly affected my mental image of the landscapes of Middle-earth. In my opinion, the settings are one of the very few things that Peter Jackson got 100% right, so for me the landscapes of New Zealand are those of Middle-earth. Apart from that, I basically stay true to how I’ve always imagined what the characters would look like.

4. Now, could you tell us something about you and art? Are you a professional artist, or is art just your hobby? When did you start doing it, and who or what influenced your style?

I have always loved art. I started doodling as soon as I could hold a pencil and art was always one of my favourite subjects in school. I guess I could say I’m a professional artist since I’m a graphic designer and I sometimes do illustration work for some of my clients.
I am interested in many different styles and I’m also an avid comic fan so I’ve received many influences, although my skills fail to reflect them: Mucha, Bilibin, Rackham, Robinson, Jim Lee, Adam Hughes... just to name a few.

5. Much of your latest art are concepts for a stop-motion short film "The Fall of Fingolfin". Could you tell us more about this project?


“The Fall of Fingolfin” is fan-based project, along the lines of “Born of Hope” or “The Hunt of Gollum”, aimed to recreate one of the most epic and moving stories from The Silmarillion. We aim to stay as true to the original material as possible, keeping other influences to a minimum. The screenplay is finished, and the project is in its initial production stages. Given the small number of people involved, things are moving slowly but surely.

6. Is there any other film you did concept art for, and what are the specifics of such art, compared to regular illustration?


I did some concept art for “Born of Hope”, another fan-based film released a few years ago. Although I joined the team to help with translating the dialogue into Sindarin, I also did some concept art and costume design.
Concept art is more precise, more specific. There are no “distractions” such as background or composition, just the design itself of the character, weapon, costume, etc. It’s great fun to do, and being simpler than a full illustration, I sometimes find it more challenging.

7. What other book or movies (or anything else) inspire you to create fanart, and why?

For me, creating fanart comes from the need to recreate or develop an idea from a fantasy world where I can get lost in. If this “world” does not have the necessary depth or detail, then it fails to inspire me. Middle-earth, Song of Ice and Fire and Harry Potter... those are my favourite fandoms.

8. What art technique is your favourite? Do you rather keep to the art techniques and styles you are familiar with, or do you experiment with new ones as well?

I love digital painting, how versatile it is. I use a few basic techniques, but I am always willing to learn new things. I like trying and experimenting and see where that takes me, although I seldom bother submitting those painting exercises to dA.

9. Could you give us a link or thumbnail from your gallery of
- a Tolkien illustration you are most proud of?
I couldn’t say which Tolkien-inspired illustration I’m most proud of; I’m always finding flaws and mistakes in every single one of my works, but having said that, I’m very fond of this one

In Safe Arms by Breogan
- a picture from other fandom or original picture you are most proud of?
Draco Malfoy - Seeker by Breogan

- a picture that fits your current mood?
Adventurous and epic.
TFoF - Ered Wethrin and Hithlum Pass by Breogan

- a picture that was hardest to paint?

The Last Look by Breogan

- any other picture you would like to share with us and why?
I like the comic cover look of this one:
Dragon A. Commission - Cats on the Prowl Cover by Breogan

10. Is there some artist(s) at dA you know, who doesn't have as much attention as they would deserve? If yes, could you give us some thumbnails from their gallery?

This guy has great illustrating skills, a sleek and dynamic style and a fantastic sense of humor: :iconzarzo:

Supertipos y sus cosas by zarzo
BatRelax by zarzoEl nombre de la rosa by zarzozombie love by zarzo

Thank you for your time and answers!

P.S. The new journal skin was created by Felizias with the pictures of ebe-kastein. If you would like to use it, you can install it here: PC: LotR skin for Mirach Version 2 (I'm giving you permission ;))


Coding by Felizias Drawings by ebe-kastein Borders by PhoenixWildfire

NEVER SEEN BEFORE contest - WINNERS

Journal Entry: Wed Apr 15, 2015, 5:30 AM


page divider by lithiumharddrive

We are proud to announce the winners of our joint contest, held by the groups


:iconthelotrclub::iconelves-of-tolkien::iconarda-inspired::iconthranduilfans::iconthehobbitfans::iconshadowsofmiddleearth::iconlord-of-the-rings-fc:



The judges considered bot the artistic quality of the work and uniqueness of the theme when voting.

The judges were the admins of the participating groups:
:iconmirachravaia::iconvisanastasis::iconmorellagrysis::iconkatkinn::iconindiliel::iconschreibertooth:


:iconspotlightplz:1st place:iconspotlightplz:

 The Old Forest by Sieskja
The Old Forest
by
:iconsieskja:

"They picked a way among the trees, and their ponies plodded along, carefully avoiding the many writhing and interlacing roots. There was no undergrowth. The ground was rising steadily, and as they went forward it seemed that the trees became taller, darker, and thicker. There was no sound, except an occasional drip of moisture falling through the still leaves. For the moment there was no whispering or movement among the branches; but they all got an uncomfortable feeling that they were being watched with disapproval, deepening to dislike and even enmity. The feeling steadily grew, until they found themselves looking up quickly, or glancing back over their shoulders, as if they expected a sudden blow."

J.R.R. Tolkien,The Fellowship of the Ring, Book I, Chapter 6 "The Old Forest"

More by Sieskja
Saruman, come forth ! by SieskjaAredhel in the forest of Nan Elmoth by Sieskja
'The mystery of death before us' by SieskjaNimheare and Silas by SieskjaThe Legend of Sauveboeuf by Sieskja

page divider by lithiumharddrive

:iconspotlightplz:2nd place:iconspotlightplz:

Errand-riders in the Night by peet
Errand-riders in the Night
by
:iconpeet:

'There was a silence again for a while. Then, 'What is that?' cried Pippin suddenly, clutching at Gandalf's cloak. 'Look! Fire, red fire! Are there dragons in this land? Look, there is another!'
For answer Gandalf cried aloud to his horse. 'On, Shadowfax! We must hasten. Time is short. See! The beacons of Gondor are alight, calling for aid. War is kindled. See, there is the fire on Amon Don, and flame on Eilenach; and there they go speeding west: Nardol, Erelas, Min-Rimmon, Calenhad, and the Halifirien on the borders of Rohan.'
But Shadowfax paused in his stride, slowing to a walk, and then he lifted up his head and neighed. And out of the darkness the answering neigh of other horses came; and presently the thudding of hoofs was heard, and three riders swept up and passed like flying ghosts in the moon and vanished into the West.'

JRR Tolkien: The Lord of the Rings: The Return of the King: Book V, Chapter 1: Minas Tirith


More  by peet
Midsummer's Eve by peetBeren the Solitary Outlaw by peet
 Beorn In Battle by peetFingolfin challenges Morgoth by peetA Vision of Gondolin by peet

page divider by lithiumharddrive

:iconspotlightplz:3rd place:iconspotlightplz:

Nibs Cotton by TolmanCotton
Nibs Cotton
by
:icontolmancotton:

Nibs Cotton defending Rosie and his mother... from Sam. Not that he recognized him immediately, with his finery, chain-mail and all. Rosie did, actually. But then, she had been waiting for him since Spring.


More by TolmanCotton
Lady of the Golden Wood by TolmanCottonRose Cotton by TolmanCotton
The Scouring of the Shire by TolmanCottonThe Crowning of Elessar by TolmanCottonHomeward Bound by TolmanCotton

page divider by lithiumharddrive


:spotlight-left:HONORABLE MENTIONS:spotlight-right:


Atanatar II Alcarin of Gondor by neral85
Atanatar II Alcarin of Gondor
by
:iconneral85:

Atanatar II was the sixteenth king of Gondor. His father Hyarmendacil I had been one of Gondor's greatest Kings, so Atanatar II inherited a powerful empire stretching from the Greyflood to the Sea of Rhûn, and to which even the Men of Umbar and Harad paid homage. The King loved luxury and it was during his reign that the original Crown of Gondor was replaced by a jeweled helm. "Men said precious stones were pebbles in Gondor for children to play with." The wealth and splendour of Atanatar's realm earned him the title Alcarin ('Glorious') but he did little to maintain its strength, and nothing to expand its influence. Thus already during Atanatar's reign, Gondor began to stagnate. Atanatar II ruled Gondor for seventy-seven years, during which the wealth and power created by his father slowly began to wane. He was succeeded by his eldest son Narmacil I.
page divider by lithiumharddrive

Travelling south by RobleskaZeppelin
Travelling south
by
:iconrobleskazeppelin:

Elven princess Idril, mortal man Tuor and their half-elven son Eärendil travelling from ruined Gondolin, through Nan-Tathren and south, along the river to the sea. The scene can be found in Silmarillion, chapter "Of Tuor and the fall of Gondolin"

page divider by lithiumharddrive
Nienor's Fall at Cabed-en-Aras by Nim-lock

Nienor's Fall at Cabed-en-Aras
by
:iconnim-lock:

"Looking down upon Turin she cried: 'Farewell, O twice beloved! A Turin Turambar turun ambartanen: master of doom by doom mastered! O happy to be dead!' Then Brandir who had heard all, standing stricken upon the edge of ruin, hastened towards her; but she ran from him distraught with horror and anguish, and coming to the brink of Cabed-en-Aras she cast herself over, and was lost in the wild water" (Silmarillion, 223). 

page divider by lithiumharddrive

OTHER ENTRIES:


 Tinfang Warble's song of the stars by SmilingOfTheHealerHow far we've come. by nadinmadeamessBrego, King of Rohan by LJ-Todd
An Elven Wedding - Elrond and Celebrian by Faerietopiadiscovering pipe weed by dieroteirisThe dark plague hits Gondor by AncaXBre
Glorfindels prophecy to Earnur by Eleween

Mature Content

Regret by The-Misfit
Melkor and Varda by MorellAgrysis
Frodo and his friends in the Old Forest by MeinFragezeichenCotton's Stand by BenMaynardOfManyArtsSnowmane's Grave by Alektra007

Elwing by HemhetSauron's Arrival to Numenor by YayeniaCalming Thorin by NekoHimeAnny
Thingol received them kindly... by Row93Melian by Castile418Almost Forgotten by Teiglin14Goldberry's Feast by MoonlightPrincess
LotR Never Seen Before: Estel's True Heritage by SaphariThe Last Stand of Dain I and Fror by AreusBookwormAll the Tale of His Wrongs by FISHnibWana

page divider by lithiumharddrive

PRIZES:


1st place:

- a hand-painted t-shirt by MirachRavaia mirachravaia.deviantart.com/ga…
- a print of a map of Beleriand by Sirielle
- bust of a single character from Grim-Grinning
- a traditional drawing commission from SkyKly
- "deviation of the week" feature in TheHobbitFans

2nd place:

- a Middle-earth themed spoon by MirachRavaia Middle-earth spoons

3rd place:

- a Middle-eartth themed art request by MirachRavaia

All places:

- The Lord of the Rings audiobook
- The Complete Songs & Poems collection by Tolkien Ensamble
- points distributed from the donation pool in Dreams-of-Arda's profile (2585 points in total)  in a 4:3:2 pattern
- Thranduil papercraft sword from MorellAgrysis
- an art request from Reikiwie
- a feature by the participating groups and:
:iconvisanastasis::iconmirachravaia::icongrim-grinning:
- llamas



Rohirrim journal skin.

Horse head © 2009 - Grinmir-stock
Texture by kizistock
Knotwork by gbrgraphix

COMMISSIONS OPEN

Tue Apr 14, 2015, 10:25 AM


HAND-PAINTED T-SHIRTS

Send me the specific of the commission in a note:
- t-shirt size
- men's / women's shirt
- color
- neck shape (U or V)
- what should I paint for you (you can get some inspiration in my gallery, but I don't usualy paint the exact same pattern twice, so the design will be changed slightly - each of my shirts is unique, and you will never meet anyone wearing the same!)
- if your desired size/color is not avaliable, I will inform you

Small painting, 1 color:
trilobite-shirt by MirachRavaia Trilobites by MirachRavaiaWolf for Janka by MirachRavaia

20€/21$

Big painting, 1 color:
Tree Stag t-shirt by MirachRavaiaDragonrider's t-shirt by MirachRavaia

25€/27$

Big painting, 2+ colors:
Aure Entuluva by MirachRavaiaCerin Amroth by MirachRavaiaGaladriel t-shirt by MirachRavaia

30€/32$


Painted socks or other clothing item:
Practical present by MirachRavaia
- per agreement

- All t-shirt commissions will be pooled until the end of the month, when I'll be ordering the blank shirts to reduce the shipping cost. Let me know if the commission is urgent and can't wait.

The blank shirts I use are usually from the site www.hypermoda.sk

POLYMER CLAY:

simple figures:
Noldorin Clay Family by MirachRavaiaLiron, Svarik and Conrad by MirachRavaia

7€/7,5$

spoons:
Middle-earth spoons by MirachRavaia

10€/11$

If you would like to commission anything else you see in my gallery, contact me through a note

SHIPPING:
- Europe 6€
- USA 8$
- free shipping for orders above 50€/53$

PAYMENT:
- through paypal before the shipping of the commission

wastelands: resurgere | wroth| ba1969,
brushes: redheadstock & MouritsaDA-Stock; coding and graphics by kuschelirmel-stock and heavily modified by VisAnastasis

March 25 - Tolkien Reading Day

Journal Entry: Wed Mar 25, 2015, 3:39 AM


But in Gondor the New Year will always now begin upon the twenty-fifth of March when Sauron fell, and when you were brought out of the fire to the King.
- Gandalf in the Return of the King

March 25 is the date of the defeat of Sauron and fall of Barad-dûr
and gondorian New Year. To celebrate this (fictional) event and the (real) literary genius of J.R.R.Tolkien, this date has been declared as Tolkien Reading Day since 2003.

You can take part anywhere in the world - just open any Tolkien's book and reread your favourite passage. Or you can start reading it all over again - whether you read the whole trilogy or just a few lines, you will be a part of the worldwide community of Tolkien fans doing the same to honour the Professor.

You can also share your thoughts with us - what is your favourite passage, and what are you going to read today?


Tolkien by DandyHerulokion

And this started as a short feature... (but I couldn't stop because there is so much wonderful art inspired by Tolkien)

Luthien Tinuviel by jankolas Gondolin by faQy Tarot: The Lovers by SceithAilm
Music from the deepest forest by Candra The Great Adventure by greensap Alqualonde by tuuliky
I am not my uncle. by SaigaTokihito Feanor.. estasi e tormento by icy-maiden Eorlingas by s-u-w-i
Glorfindel. Before The Storm. by Venlian welcome from Lothlorien,new version by breathing2004 Aredhel in the forest of Nan Elmoth by Sieskja
Arwen and Celebrian by steamey Dior Eluchil(Cover Illustration) by daLomacchi Fiery rhythm. by Righon
Legolas by CG-Warrior Horns of Elfland by Hbruton Fingolfin vs Morgoth by mattleese87
Sauron by Gerwell Recap: Queens of Numenor by shyangell
[Hobbit]King of Dale by Wavesheep Ossiriand by Gold-Seven
The Years of Youth by ekukanova Eowyn of Rohan by Filat
Elvish Feast in Mirkwood by ullakko Aqualonde by marisoly
Thorin and Thranduil by evankart Beren Meets Luthien by RobleskaZeppelin
Huor and Hurin Approaching Gondolin by DonatoArts To Minas Tirith by rysowAnia
elrond council by NachoCastro Ramparts by daRoz
Smaug by Yoann-Lossel Huan's Promise by ebe-kastein
Eowyn and Faramir palace by adrilida1411 Ride to Edoras by Canis-Lupess
Glaurung and Turin by Atriedes Argonath sketch by kimberly80
Lord of the rings by KnyazevSergey
The Lord of the Rings by Raiddo Lords of the Rings by AbePapakhian
Midsummer's Eve by peet Brothers by Brunild



Rohirrim journal skin.

Horse head © 2009 - Grinmir-stock
Texture by kizistock
Knotwork by gbrgraphix

Talks with Tolkien artists: AlasseaEarello

Journal Entry: Wed Mar 11, 2015, 4:08 AM


All talks:

The Fight of Huan and Carcharoth by rysowAnia To Minas Tirith by rysowAnia
Beren in Dungortheb by rysowAnia Two Trees Of Valinor by rysowAnia
The making of the Silmarils by rysowAnia Elrond and Estel by rysowAnia


1. Hello! For the beginning, could you tell us something about yourself?


Hi! I'm a student of Architecture, currently living in Krakow (which everyone should visit!). I'm 23. Apart from reading and drawing, I like foreign languages, horses and singing. That about covers it.

2. It is intersting to find out the stories behind people's usernames. What is yours?

Oh wow, this is a nice question. Because I hate my username :D (Big Grin) I found the name Alassëa somewhere (it's Quenya for ''merry'', apparently, but I just like the sound of it) and I used it in a couple of other places, but on dA all the possible versions had been taken so I figured I'd add something to it. It was a bad idea. I guess when somebody sees it they can't be bothered to read past the first five letters or so, what with all those A's and E's;) (Wink) When I started this account, I had no idea that changing your username is impossible unless you're a premium member. But I have no need for premium membership other than changing my name so I'm not going to spend my money on this.

3. When did you read Tolkien's books for the first time, and what impression did they leave in you?

I was about 15. I remember struggling through some parts and being impressed and dissapointed at the same time. Impressed with the extensiveness of the world Tolkien created (the languages!) and a bit dissapointed with his style of writing, which at that age wasn't very appealing to me (I loved books with lots of dialouge, deeply explored characters and fast moving action). Even though, I read everything of Tolkien's I could lay my hands on because I was in love his world. Then I bought the English versions and discovered it all over again, because there just no comparison between reading the translation (however good it may be) and the original work. Now I read them always when I want something peaceful, because all this meticulousness and the formal language have a calming effect. Even all the battles and heartbreak;) (Wink)

4. How extensive is your knowledge of Middle-earth? Do you consider yourself Tolkien expert?


Hardly. I mean, if confronted with a random person on the street, I would probably come across as a hardcore fan, but there are so many more knowledgable people in the fandom that I would never consider myself an expert.

5. Did you read the books, or see the movies first?

The movies were first. I didn't see them right after they came out though, because for a long time I was adamant that I hated fantasy, both in films and literature :D (Big Grin) I watched them around 2006 because my younger brother had finally talked me into it and then it all started.

6. When the movies came out, many of the inner pictures of characters and scenes in the mind of the readers have been replaced by actors and settings from the movie. Did it happen to you as well? Did you try to prevent it?


I saw the movies first, so when I read the books I started out with the actors and settings. But while reading, things changed. I saw most of the characters very differently, even though I like most of the movie portrayals. The books just add so much more background that the perception had to change. But the sights and costumes are so meticulously depicted in the movie (and so true to the book) that they really get ingrained in your mind. I would find it hard to picture a different Edoras, for instance.

7. Now, could you tell us something about you and art? Are you a professional artist, or is art just your hobby? When did you start doing it, and who or what influenced your style?


It's just a hobby, although I do cherish secret hopes that one day I'll have a chance to illustrate a book;) (Wink) But at the moment I'm too busy with my studies and work to think about it seriously. As for when did I start - well, I've been drawing since I remember, much like probably everyone else around here. And my favourite things to draw were always characters from books or just people I made up.

8. How do you choose which scenes and characters to illustrate?

There's no rule. Sometimes I'm just reading and think ''this would be nice to draw'', other times I feel the need to illustrate something, and if I don't have anything specific in mind I browse the books till I find something that fits my mood. And there are also times when I see a photo, a piece of art or a situation which inspires me to translate it into a Tolkien-themed illustration.

9. What other book or movies (or anything else) inspire you to create fanart, and why?

The Witcher saga by Andrzej Sapkowski, because it's wonderfully written and the characters and settings are given a detailed description. Then there's the BBC Sherlock series which is I think the only fandom where I don't go back to the books (which I always do, if there are any), but that's because I love the way the characters have been written. And they're very different from the book. There are also a few other fandoms I sometimes illustrate but these drawings aren't in my dA gallery and aren't going to be so I won't talk about them (don't look for anything creepy here:P (Lick) they're just too personal to be publicised, in fact every time I submit a picture to dA I have to fight with myself)

10. What art technique is your favourite? Do you rather keep to the art techniques and styles you are familiar with, or do you experiment with new ones as well?


Oh there are lots of techniques I love but if I had to choose one, it would be graphite pencil. It's the one that has been with me for the longest time. Recently I've been using colored penciles more and more and I find they offer a lot of possibilities. Then there are oil and acrylic colours (with a preference towards the former because they dry slower, give deeper hues and can be made into semi-transparent layers. But they stink :P (Lick) And the brushes are difficult to clean). Watercolour is a wonderful technique once you get the hang of it. I still haven't, but there are some artists here on dA who just take my breath away. I'm trying it out though. I like using random pieces of paper for my drawings, sometimes I paint them over with random colours. If you don't have an impeccable white sheet staring at you, suddenly you get a bunch of new ideas. I also like dry and oil pastels, both work best for me if I paint something with acrylic colours before. There are some unfortunate cases too, like one picture I wanted to scrape on double painted paper, but it didn't really work :P (Lick)

11. Do you have some tips and tricks you would like to share with the other artists?


I don't know. Just don't ever stop. It's a great thing to have a passion, don't get discouraged by difficulties which everyone is bound to encounter along the way. I'd also recommend trying different techniques, it really helps you grow.

12. Could you give us a link or thumbnail from your gallery of
- a Tolkien illustration you are most proud of?

Midgewater Marshes by rysowAnia

- a picture from other fandom or original picture you are most proud of?

DI Lestrade by rysowAnia

- a picture that fits your current mood?
The White Rider by rysowAnia

- a picture that was hardest to paint?
Tolkien Reading Days by rysowAnia

12. What key people in your life, (on or off of dA) have been inspirations to you, or has supported you, as an artist? You can also tell us why, if you want.

My parents have always been supportive. My mother is very easy to please (we sometimes have fun and tell her to draw something herself and then we get chickens with ears or horses which look like giraffes, not that she minds), so she would gush over anything I cared to show her, but the praise of my dad has always mattered a bit more I guess, since he can actually draw and paint very well. But most of my pieces (the fandom-ish ones) haven't really been seen by anyone, just because they're too personal for me. And yeah, I'm talking about the ones you can see in my gallery, so how personal is that;) (Wink) I guess it has something to do with being anonymous on the Internet (haha). As for the support on dA, it has been wonderful and I cherish every appreciation that people offer. And the most inspirational artist I can think of, in terms of illustration, is James Gurney (not so much the hyper realistic panoramas as his oil sketches). I also like Kasiopea, a Polish illustrator with great Tolkienish stuff, Rien Poortvliet, and from the old masters - Vermeer van Delft, Stanisław Wyspiański, Władysław Podkowiński, Jan Stanisławski and all impressionists.

13. Is there some artist(s) at dA you know, who doesn't have as much attention as they would deserve? If yes, could you give us some thumbnails from their gallery?

Those I like most already have loads of attention but they're absolutely amazing, so here goes:
:iconmicorl: :iconalrasyid: :iconivecus:
Oh this one doesn't have so much: :iconshanti1971:

14. Is there something else you would like to tell to the fans of Tolkien and your art?

Thank you all! When I joined dA several years ago I never thought I would get so much appreciation and even be asked for an interview ;) (Wink)

Thank you as well for your time and answers!

Rohirrim journal skin.

Horse head © 2009 - Grinmir-stock
Texture by kizistock
Knotwork by gbrgraphix

Talks with Tolkien artists: s-u-w-i

Journal Entry: Mon Mar 2, 2015, 6:17 AM


All talks:

Today I talked with a Czech artists :icons-u-w-i: - s-u-w-i about her lovely fairy-tale-ish art. I hope you enjoy it as well!

strider by s-u-w-i Eorlingas by s-u-w-i
kral sluji pod horami by s-u-w-i the march of Fingolfin by s-u-w-i
cestou by s-u-w-i the hobbit by s-u-w-i


1. Hello! For the beginning, could you tell us something about yourself?


Hi :3
well, I'm afraid I'm not very interesting. Most of the time I just sit at home next to the radiator, dressed in too many sweaters, sip cocoa and read or draw (but when I have more free time I greatly enjoy cooking/baking and sewing) I'm nineteen and currently study animation on university so I totally don't have as much time to draw my own things as I would like. I live in tiny, unknow village under Beskydy mountains with my mum, dad, sister and our dog Asta. I love it here very much.

2. When did you read Tolkien's books for the first time, and what impression did they leave in you?

Oh, hmmmm... I think I was 9 or 10 when I tried to read Lotr for the first time, I don't think I understood it too much but I guess I did not really care. I was so in love with the Lotr movies that I was just overjoyed from anything associated with it.

3. How extensive is your knowledge of Middle-earth? Do you consider yourself Tolkien expert?
 
Haha, if only. I'm not expert at all. Though I hope my Middle-earth knowledge isn't too bad. I really love to read the books and draw pictures for it but I'm not too good in rememembering details. I think I'm always too captured in the story to notice all the conections and so. Sweating a little... Only sometimes when I decide to draw someone I do more detail observation of the character or surroundings.

4. What was first for you - book or movie? When the movies came out, many of the inner pictures of characters and scenes in the mind of the readers have been replaced by actors and settings from the movie. Did it happen to you as well? Did you try to prevent it?

Actually I think it was exactly the other way around with me. I saw the movies first (when we should go on Lotr-themed camp and our crazy camp leaders though it was good idea for us to watch all the Lotr movies at once (in English with Czech subtitles) I was 7 that time :D (Big Grin) ). So I think I always imagined the characters the way they look in the movies but then when I got older I read the book and my view of them began to be much more bookish. My imagination of the characters now is probably mixure of the movies, books and various original illustrations.

5. Now, could you tell us something about you and art? Are you a professional artist, or is art just your hobby? When did you start doing it, and who or what influenced your style?

Me and my art, well I certainly don't feel like a professional, no way. I started to draw as a small kid (as probably everyone). My older sister always drew a lot and I tried to keep up with her as much as possible. But I started to draw somehow for real when I went to high shool (I studied graphics and animation so avoiding drawing wasn't really an opinion) and when I joined DA, that's like 3 years ago.
My influence.... it's lot of things. I love comics very much (mangas, superheros or the Europian ones (like Blacksad♥)), so that is one. Then there are all the classic artists (I love Art History and galleries) so from all the eras something I guess, there is too much of them to name. And of course probably the biggest one right now are animators and illustrators. I love watching animated movies and going through old fairy-tale books very much. My favorite forgein movies are Fantastic Mr. Fox, Brother bear, Monsters Inc., The prince of Egypt, all the Ghibli movies and much much more. From the Czech I adore works of Karel Zeman, Břetislav Pojar, Zdeněk Smetana and of course Jiří Trnka, he is one of my most favorite illustrators as well, together with Tove Jansson or Zdeněk Müller.

6. How do you choose which scenes and characters to illustrate?


Hmmmm... I do not have a clue... I just read the book and then there is always someone/some scene that I just have to draw? :D (Big Grin)

7. What art technique is your favourite? Do you rather keep to the art techniques and styles you are familiar with, or do you experiment with new ones as well?


I like watercolors and colored pencils very much (though colored pencils only for lines or sketch I can not color with them at all ><) I would love to experiment more but I am usually too scared that it will go wrong so I just stick to the familiar techniques ^^

8. Fairy tales are an important topic in your illustrations. What is your relationship with childrens' stories?


Oh I adore fairy tales, my sister collects old fairy-tale books so there is lot of them in our room. I love to observe the old illustrations, it is usually done with some incredible techniques I just can not define, I could stare at it for hours ♥

9. Do you think that looking at Tolkien's stories through childrens' eyes can bring new perspectives for their illustrators?

Well sure it can I guess, but I have to say I do not fancy realism in illustrations too much at least for Tolkiens fairy tales or The Hobbit I find the more stylizated/childlike works more fitting (but realism fits very well for more serious books like Lotr or Silmarillion) but that is just my own opinion and it is not always true of course, it is just that my favorite Hobbit illustrations are quite childish. I like the original Latvian ( pblancho.free.fr/la1/images/la… , pblancho.free.fr/la1/images/la… , pblancho.free.fr/la1/images/co… ), Romanian ( pblancho.free.fr/ro1/images/ro… , pblancho.free.fr/ro1/images/ro… ) or Swedish ( pblancho.free.fr/sw1/images/sw… , pblancho.free.fr/sw1/images/sw… , pblancho.free.fr/sw1/images/sw… , pblancho.free.fr/sw1/images/sw…) illustrations very very much ♥♥♥

10. You are from the Czech republic just like faQy, and your style is visually quite similar. Do you know and influence each other?


hahaha :D (Big Grin) oh yes, I am not sure if I infuence her but she infuences me for sure ^^ She is my older sister (the very one I mentioned here few times already :) (Smile) ) I am the terrible younger sister who can not do anything by herself and so always relies on her :D (Big Grin)

(P.S. An interview with faQy is here: Talks with tolkien artists: faQy )

11. Do you have some tips and tricks you would like to share with the other artists?

mmmm... I do not know.. Only that drawing is all about endurance and not giving up (talent is just nice word for it) if you really try long enough everyone can do it, is the same as learning any other craft :) (Smile)


12. Could you give us a link or thumbnail from your gallery of
- a Tolkien illustration you are most proud of?
Bag End by s-u-w-i
- can be this? It's not an illustration but It's my favorite Tolkien themed work :) (Smile)

- a picture from other fandom or original picture you are most proud of?
v zahrade by s-u-w-i

- a picture that fits your current mood?
eagles by s-u-w-i

- a picture that was hardest to paint?
gold sickness by s-u-w-i

- Digital coloring is always so problematic for me, there is tooooo many colors, I can never choose the right one ><

- any other picture you would like to share with us and why?

maybe this -
Samwise by s-u-w-i
It's totally terrible but it's my first Tolkien picture I submitted here :D (Big Grin)


13. What key people in your life, (on or off of dA) have been inspirations to you, or has supported you, as an artist? You can also tell us why, if you want.


Oh there is lot of these as well... My mum, dad, sister, grandmas, grandpas, great-grandma, uncles, aunties, cousins :D (Big Grin). Then my childhood friends and friends from camp (we go every summer on a camp, there are people with the most interesting personalities) and my high school classmates Janička, Naďa, Lenka, Terka, Martinka (my dear current roomate :3 ) and my best friend Kamilka. And of course there is very big amount of people on DA or tumblr who are great inspiration to me.

14. Is there some artist(s) at dA you know, who doesn't have as much attention as they would deserve? If yes, could you give us some thumbnails from their gallery?


Little anteaters victory by Dryas-juasSkjaldborg Althing 2012 by HellanimI came to reclaim something of mine by onone-chan
mummers by AokiAvsenComics by HannaKNPicking up Shrooms by Diabolo-menthe
Market by kinixukiThe Lady of the Dragon by SrdceV pasti by Kaminek

15. Is there something else you would like to tell to the fans of Tolkien and your art?

I just want to thank everyone who likes my works, it means a lot to me and I'm really glad there is such a big amount of Tolkien fans, that's just so great :) (Smile)

Rohirrim journal skin.

Horse head © 2009 - Grinmir-stock
Texture by kizistock
Knotwork by gbrgraphix

B2MeM 2015 - Tharbad's Greenway Spring Faire

Journal Entry: Tue Feb 24, 2015, 5:07 AM




The Back to Middle-earth month is happening again at the b2mem livejournal -  b2mem.livejournal.com/ !
The group :iconarda-inspired: is an active participant. You will still need to refer to the main livejournal page of the event, but we offer you a place to post all your creations in the B2MeM folder arda-inspired.deviantart.com/g… , and will feature them in a journal at the end of the event.


You don't have to be a member of this group to take part in the even, and you don't need a livejournal account either.  This year, we are opening a big marketplace with prompts and fanworks for all! Here is how the event will work:

The stalls are posted here: b2mem.livejournal.com/tag/2015… and listed by the location here: b2mem.livejournal.com/284442.h…

:new: You can now claim the prompts and post your creations for them!


Marketplace Rules and Guidelines b2mem.livejournal.com/278368.h…


At Back to Middle-earth Month 2015: Tharbad’s Greenway Spring Faire (the Middle-earth Marketplace for all you need), writers, artists, and other creators of fanworks are invited to challenge each other to create fanworks during the month of March! Because this is a spring faire, you will spend and earn farthings as you participate throughout the month by posting challenge prompts, claiming challenge prompts, and leaving reviews for other participants.

Rules



1. Prompts are available for anyone to purchase. More than one person can purchase a prompt.

2. There are no restrictions on content, either in the prompts or fanworks created in response. If you do not like a character, pairing, interpretation, prompt, etc., ignore it.

3. Fanworks using these prompts will be posted either in the community or another archive. You are allowed to crosspost to whatever site you wish to post on. No fanworks are allowed in the prompt posts.

4. Fanworks posted in the community must follow the B2MeM posting guidelines found on the community's profile regarding headers, warnings, cuts, etc. Posts can link to a work posted on another archive if you do not wish to post the work here, but they must still include the provided header.

5. Remember that prompt fills are not gifts; they are jumping-off points for fanworks. They may or may not conform to your personal likes and dislikes. Please also keep in mind that not all prompts may be filled.

Faire Farthings



The only coin accepted at the Tharbad's Greenway Spring Faire is the faire farthing. Each person attending the Faire will receive 15 farthings to begin their faire-going experience.

~ Offering a prompt at one of the market stalls costs 1 farthing.
~ Purchasing a prompt costs 1 farthing.
~ Each comment you leave on a B2MeM 2015 fanwork will earn you 1 farthing.
~ You may earn farthings by offering services to the faire, such as creating icons/banners for the use of other faire-goers. Giving services earns 2 farthings for each service rendered.
~ Posting a fanwork does not cost or earn farthings, as you have already bought the prompt(s) the fanwork is based on.

If you need assistance in keeping track of what you have spent and earned, the Faire's official bookkeeper zopyrus will be glad to help you, free of charge. Please visit the bookkeeping post the bookkeeping post for help.


How to post your prompts:



Leave a comment on the appropriate stall  with the subject line identifying the main characters, gen/het/slash/femslash/poly (if it’s not obvious), a brief description of the prompt, and possible warnings if needed (MPTT MPTTor SWG  SWG’s). The comment itself should be the prompt.

The stalls can be found here: b2mem.livejournal.com/tag/2015… and listed by the location here: b2mem.livejournal.com/284442.h…

If for some reason you cannot make a subject line appear, please write and bold the relevant information as the first line of your prompt.

The subject lines and/or bold text will allow participants to easily scan for prompts they're interested in.

For example:

Subject line-- Frodo and Aragorn, gen, hurt/comfort at the Field of Cormallen
Comment-- While Frodo is unconscious after being rescued from Mount Doom, Aragorn cares for him.

OR

Comment-- Fëanor/Nerdanel, wedding night, sexual content

On their wedding night, Fëanor and Nerdanel end up not sleeping at all, as they are too busy enjoying each other.

General Guidelines and FAQ



1. Who can participate?

Anyone! It doesn’t matter if this will be your first Tolkien fanwork or your hundredth; everyone is welcome to participate in B2MeM.

2. What if I don't have a LiveJournal account?

You don’t need one to participate. We welcome ‘anonymous’ comments, which don’t require a Livejournal login, from participants who don’t have a Livejournal account. However, unlike formats such as kink memes which allow truly anonymous comments, we require ‘anonymous’ comments to be signed. (For example, if your username on AO3 is FrodoFan1, then sign your comment with FrodoFan1.) Anonymous comments are automatically screened before they appear in the community, and unsigned comments will not be unscreened. If you want a LJ account, you can sign up for one here: sign up for one here.

3. What sort of fanwork can I create with a prompt?

Anything you want-- fic, art, gif set, meta, craft, vid, etc.. If you think of it, and think it’s a fanwork, then it’s a fanwork.

4. Can I create a fanwork using a prompt I left?

Of course!

5. Can I combine prompts? What about using them in WIPs? What about crossovers and AUs?

Yes, you can combine prompts. You can also use them in WIPs. Crossovers and AUs are welcome as long as they have a significant basis in Tolkien’s works.

6. What if my prompt fits in more than one stall? For example, it takes place in both Mordor and Gondor.

Put it in the stall you think it fits best in; we trust your judgement. But please do not put identical prompts in more than one stall.

7. What if I don’t feel comfortable posting my work immediately or am using the prompt in a WIP or want to take time on my fanwork and don’t think I’ll complete it before March is over?

That’s perfectly fine! If you say you’re going to use the prompt, then we trust that you will. B2MeM has no deadlines; you do not have to post your work before March ends. The community is open year-round. (Nor do you have to post it at all if you do not wish to.)

8. What if I’m inspired by a prompt, but I didn’t find it until after B2MeM ends?

Create something for it! The prompts never expire.

Other Things



The prompt posts will be up in the middle of the week.

The B2MeM community is on moderated status until March 1 GMT. This way, if you complete a fanwork early, you may post it without it showing up before the event begins.



Rohirrim journal skin.

Horse head © 2009 - Grinmir-stock
Texture by kizistock
Knotwork by gbrgraphix

Talks with Tolkien artists: SaigaTokihito

Journal Entry: Fri Feb 20, 2015, 6:54 AM



1. Hello! For the beginning, could you tell us something about yourself?


My name is Saiga Tokihito. I'm Japanese artist / freelance illustrator.

2. When did you read Tolkien's books for the first time, and what impression did they leave in you?

I've only read the Hobbit. (The Lord of the Rings series and The Silmarillion not yet.) This story is filled with beautiful "words". I love this world.

3. How extensive is your knowledge of Middle-earth? Do you consider yourself Tolkien expert?

I think... No. But I study many words of Middle-earth.

4. Did you read the books, or see the movies first?

I saw the PJ's movies first. These experience was so wonderful! I will never forget the gratitude for the staff of The Hobbit and The Lord of the Rings movies. If they didn't make these movies, I would have never met Tolkien's world.

5. Now, could you tell us something about you and art? Are you a professional artist, or is art just your hobby? When did you start doing it, and who or what influenced your style?

I'm professional artist since seven years ago. But Tolkien's fan art is my life work rather than hobby, I think. A lot of artists (of course, including John Howe and Alan Lee) influence my style.

6. How do you choose which scenes and characters to illustrate?


A moving sight, or attractive characters makes me draw them.

7. What art technique is your favourite? Do you rather keep to the art techniques and styles you are familiar with, or do you experiment with new ones as well?

I enjoy studying new or classic techniques everyday. I think both is important.

8. Do you have some tips and tricks you would like to share with the other artists?

I have. I'll share someday.

9. Could you give us a link or thumbnail from your gallery of

- a Tolkien illustration you are most proud of?

Let me think...It is hard to choose but, maybe this one:

EREBOR by SaigaTokihito
This art is my first Tolkien fanart.


- a picture from other fandom or original picture you are most proud of?


The story needs the story by SaigaTokihito
Cherry blossom is one of my favorite flower.


- a picture that fits your current mood?


Sea of Shadow / Twelve Kingdoms by SaigaTokihito
This coloring fits my current mood.


- a picture that was hardest to paint?
The Chamber of the Old Lady by SaigaTokihito
I took 2 weeks.


- any other picture you would like to share with us and why?

Azel by SaigaTokihito
From Japanese Comic "Young Bride's Story / Otoyomegatari"
That's why I love and recommend this comic. Stories and characters are so amazing.


10. What key people in your life, (on or off of dA) have been inspirations to you, or has supported you, as an artist? You can also tell us why, if you want.

Nick Keller, who is WETA's artist. His work is cool and stylish, especially dwarf's armor design. My favorite art is concept art for Bard.

11. Is there some artist(s) at dA you know, who doesn't have as much attention as they would deserve? If yes, could you give us some thumbnails from their gallery?

I introduce U.S. artist : :iconnewihsus: - newihsus . She has beautiful style, I love her arts.

Happy Chinese New Year of Goat! by newihsus sesshoumaru vs rin1 by newihsus less cold by newihsus

12. Is there something else you would like to tell to the fans of Tolkien and your art?


I'm deeply grateful to fans! I want to draw more scenes and characters of Middle-earth in the future.

Saiga Tokihito

Thank you for your time and answers!


Rohirrim journal skin.

Horse head © 2009 - Grinmir-stock
Texture by kizistock
Knotwork by gbrgraphix

Talks with Tolkien artists: shyangell

Journal Entry: Fri Feb 13, 2015, 1:36 AM


Art nouveau and women of Arda - that's what comes to mind when describing the gallery of :iconshyangell: - shyangell. Take a look at it yourself to see how well these two concepts fit together, and then you can read our talk about it, and other topics as well.  

Recap: Queens of Numenor by shyangell
Elwing the Fair by shyangell Lady Haleth by shyangell
Earwen of Alqualonde by shyangell Lady Galadriel by shyangell
Aredhel Ar-Feiniel by shyangell Celebrian of Lorien by shyangell

1. Hello! For the beginning, could you tell us something about yourself?


Hi everybody! What to say... I am homebody that draws things for a hobby, and doesn't have nearly enough time to do so as much as she'd like. I am a student (though not for long) and like to let my mind wander with Tolkien (and others) when number crunching gets to be too much. I'm Catalan, female and study chemistry and engineering.

2. When did you read Tolkien's books for the first time, and what impression did they leave in you?

I was 11 years old, and read both the Lord of the rings and the Hobbit in less than a month. I read the Silmarillion over Christmas. At the time I adored LotR, I thought it was the best thing since sliced bread. I kept reading and rereading it, and being fascinated by each of its characters in turn. I thought the Hobbit was a funny little thing, cute, it did not help that I read it after LotR (although the story itself is cool enough). When I read the Silmarillion first I thought it was dry as dust. I changed my mind a few years later after a reread. I think it is possibly the best Tolkien ever wrote, and I am endlessly fascinated by the stories therein.

3. How extensive is your knowledge of Middle-earth? Do you consider yourself Tolkien expert?

I am by no means an expert, but I have read the books a good number of times. I have been told that the amount of Tolkien trivia that I keep in my head is extensive (and annoying). I once made a stab at learning quenya, and failed. I mostly like geeking out over family trees and obscure characters. I am nowhere as knowledgeable about anything else Tolkien (be it geography, calendars or languages).

4. When the movies came out, many of the inner pictures of characters and scenes in the mind of the readers have been replaced by actors and settings from the movie. Did it happen to you as well? Did you try to prevent it?

I had just read the books when the movies came out. I admit that my mental image of many characters corresponds with the movie. I did not try very hard to stop myself from adopting those portrayals that were good enough for what I had imagined. I have a great difficulty imagining concrete faces when I read, so if the general description fit I was happy enough. I think it is just that I was young, and not yet prone to bellyaching over random characters hair color. I may be lynched, but mostly the entire fellowship was OK to me. On the other hand, there are characters I just cannot see as in the movies, though admittedly they are few (cough: Elrond). As for scenes and plot changes... I have kept them separate in my mind, the book is the book and the movie is the movie. Of course in my head things are closer to book than movie canon (imagination has no budget).

5. Now, could you tell us something about you and art? Are you a professional artist, or is art just your hobby? When did you start doing it, and who or what influenced your style?


I started drawing as a serious hobby at the turn of 12 years old. At the time I started making graphite copies of classical pictures by great painters. Needless to say they were quite awful. As I said in the introduction drawing for me is a hobby. I have never done anything professionally, and I wouldn't like to. As soon as it became an obligation with a deadline it would kill all the fun. I have been inspired by all and sundry at one time or another. I adore Alphonse Mucha, and have a great appreciation for art nouveau. My style is far from consistent, and not nearly as polished as I'd like.

6. What art technique is your favourite? Do you rather keep to the art techniques and styles you are familiar with, or do you experiment with new ones as well?

I rarely have time for experimenting anymore! And when I draw I do it for comfort, so I rarely stray out of my comfort zone. I tend to draw and ink by hand, and later add color with Photoshop. I have tried drawing directly in the PC, but the result is mostly crap. I rarely color traditionally, I do not have any sort of technique (though I'd like to learn watercolors one day) and dislike the permanence of it. If you screw up in Photoshop you can always fix it!

7. Your Tolkien fanart is focused on the women from his books. What do you think about Middle-earth's women? Are they overlooked, or is their place as important as that one of the men?

I think the role of Middle Earth's women is understated, but important. Their subtle presence in Tolkien's opus is thoroughly coherent with the world he is trying to portray. In a way I have gotten the impression that although Tolkien did not create "action girls" that take action as a man would, women when they appear are generally well-respected and generally powerful in their own right. To me it would ring false a proliferation of fighting females in a world that was inspired by the early middle ages (all mention of Eowyn aside). But then again to me, being powerful does not have anything to do with the capacity to run someone through with a sword. It is true that most women are mothers and wives, sisters and daughters, but in Tolkien's world men are also rarely anything but fathers and husbands, brothers and sons. In a way there are always undertones of family in the way Tolkien sees the world.

8. Your portraits of the queens of Númenor are highly symbolic, telling about the personality and story of the queen in the picture. Can you tell us more about this symbolism?

Well, that's a loaded question. The idea was that by looking side by side you could tell a progression. Their attitudes are meant to show different approaches to power. And that in the end she who does not covet it reaps the fruits (or her descendants do). Silmarien does not covet it and won't fight for it. Tar-Ancalime is not desperate for it but will make herself unhappy just to spite those who want it to much from having it. Tar-Telperien has it and wants it, guards it zealously and will not share it with anyone and thus is alone. Tar-Vanimelde is unsuited to it but will not give it up because she wants the power to do whatever she wants, regardless of what others need. Míriel had it and gave it to the wrong person. Otherwise the symbolism I used was mostly intuitive for me, I did not think it overmuch while I was painting this.

9. Your art-noveau style goes very well with these portraits. How did you get the idea to use it for Tolkien illustrations?


I have always pictured Númenor as a pre-medieval world, but it did not strike me precisely roman. Instead I tended to think of it as Byzantine. I have always found that Art Nouveau meshes well with both roman and byzantine styles. On top of that I wanted to do a series of panels like you might find in a decorated gallery in a palace, and art nouveau lends itself to the making of series of panels. To top it all off I had just been to Prague. That just might be it.

10. Do you have some tips and tricks you would like to share with the other artists?


Hardly. I rarely have tricks or tips to share even with myself! I do not think what I do is in any way mysterious. Although if you insist... kids, when you don't know how to do something there are thousands of useful tutorials floating around. SOMEBODY certainly knows and has already lost time making this tutorial you just found. Try it that way before despairing. Use references. I think that's all.

11. Could you give us a link or thumbnail from your gallery of
- a Tolkien illustration you are most proud of?

Recap: Queens of Numenor by shyangell

- a picture from other fandom or original picture you are most proud of?
At the Chapel's door by shyangell

- a picture that fits your current mood?

Mother Earth Yavanna by shyangell

- a picture that was hardest to paint?
MoA The Circle of Camelot by shyangell

- any other picture you would like to share with us and why?
Morsmordre by shyangell
It isn't very original. But look your fill because I was this close to losing it FOREVER. And I was so proud of the green light. PC did a thing lost the original PSD document and the high-res copy got lost forever. Deviantart saved it for me because I had already uploaded and I downladed it from my own gallery. Sobs.

12. What key people in your life, (on or off of dA) have been inspirations to you, or has supported you, as an artist? You can also tell us why, if you want.


Well, obviously and embarrassingly my mother first and foremost. She was the one that kept buying me things for me to use back in the day and encouraged me. Even if she keeps telling me that I draw my women too fat. I have hardly maintained any relationship with other Devianart artists, even if I like to gawp to many pretty art pieces as much as any other.

13. Is there some artist(s) at dA you know, who doesn't have as much attention as they would deserve? If yes, could you give us some thumbnails from their gallery?

Yes, several actually. I'll leave you with some thumbnails so you can get right at getting a look at their gallery:
You will be the youngest in the squad by steamey Turgon, Aredhel(gon), Fingon by ancalinar
ha ha ha...fuck you legolas... by Kibbitzer What Are All These Dwarves Doing In My House?! by ramida-r

14. Is there something else you would like to tell to the fans of Tolkien and your art?

Well... Just hang in there! It right awful to be ensnared in a fandom nobody gives a crap about. So we have to keep being great together, and keep ourselves interested so everybody can come up with their things and be very happily overwhelmed when somebody else likes them. I certainly am.

Thank you for your time and answers!

All talks:



Rohirrim journal skin.

Horse head © 2009 - Grinmir-stock
Texture by kizistock
Knotwork by gbrgraphix

Talks with Tolkien artists: RivkaZ

Journal Entry: Mon Feb 2, 2015, 6:58 AM


:iconrivkaz: - RivkaZ is the author of the ongoing comic "Forging Arda", focusing on Sauron at the beginning of the world. dealing with some very interesting and even controverse topics. I had the pleasure to talk with her about her art and her views of the dark lords of Middle-earth.

Forging Arda- page 2 by RivkaZ Forging Arda- page 6 by RivkaZ
Giver of Freedom by RivkaZ Twilight of Anadune by RivkaZ
Irmo Master of Dreams (commission) by RivkaZ Color Palette Challenge: Queen Beruthiel by RivkaZ

1. Hello! For the beginning, could you tell us something about yourself?


Hi! I’ve used the artist handle "RivkaZ" for years now, but you can call me Wesley. I fell into the Tolkien fandom a few years ago and haven’t found the bottom of the rabbit hole yet. I live in the moldy northwest corner of the United States and I love bunnies.

2. When did you read Tolkien's books for the first time, and what impression did they leave in you?

Well, my very first introduction to Tolkien was when I was very little and my dad read The Hobbit and the trilogy aloud to me. I reread The Hobbit for myself sometime in grade-school, but I still haven’t re-read the trilogy for myself. I picked up the Silmarillion in the early 2000’s, but didn’t read it all the way through from cover to cover until 2013. It sort of changed my life and from then on I went on to dig through all the accompanying texts— basically anything I could get my hands on that was Tolkien related.

3. How extensive is your knowledge of Middle-earth? Do you consider yourself Tolkien expert?

My knowledge of Tolkien canon is very selective actually! Haha… I’ll be the first to admit that I cherry-pick which parts of lore I study in depth. ^_^; I seem to have wound up with an encyclopedic memory for all things Angband, but I still have to look up elves now and then like "wait, who was this guy and what did he do again?" That said, I have a good memory for -where- all the bits of lore are located, so I can pick out whatever volume I need and flip to the relevant chapters in a jiffy.

4. When the movies came out, many of the inner pictures of characters and scenes in the mind of the readers have been replaced by actors and settings from the movie. Did it happen to you as well? Did you try to prevent it?

My first memories of The Hobbit and the trilogy are honestly soooo old at this point that the mental images I had of the settings and characters were very surreal and blurry to begin with, so I didn’t loose TOO many precious childhood memories to Peter Jackson! My own mental picture of Middle Earth these days is pretty vibrant and different from the movies in most respects, but I don’t mind scavenging some of the faces and performances from them. I find that the greater my understanding of the body of Tolkien’s works is, the stronger my mental pictures become, and the less I have to work to try and keep the images distinct from the movies. (Granted, I spend most of my time dealing with the Silmarillion, which Jackson hasn’t gotten his hands on).

5. Now, could you tell us something about you and art? Are you a professional artist, or is art just your hobby? When did you start doing it, and who or what influenced your style?

I’m currently floating in the grey area between hobbyist and professional. I take commissions and I’m constantly trying to improve my art and get it up to professional standards. I work on it just about every day— it’s the same with my writing too. I’ve been doing both since I was pretty young; I got my degree in Creative Writing, but I haven’t had much academic training for my art. (I hope to change that soon!)
I have a RIDICULOUS number of influences, haha! Artists from around the turn of the previous century really inspire me, as well as the work of traditional animators. One of my big influences currently is James Gurney, author and artist of Dinotopia. He’s put out some incredible resources for painters (digital and traditional) that have really helped me improve my use of color.

6. Your designs for the Ainur are very unique. Where do you find inspiration for them?

(Aw, thanks! <3)
Dreams! :D (Big Grin) Well, a few of them came from dreams anyway. The others are a mixture of my 'gut feelings' about a character as well as a conscious effort on my part to draw together natural and symbolic references into unique and diverse silhouettes.

7. Your comic "Forging Arda" focuses on Sauron, not depicting him as "one-dimensional evil" that we often see in the books and movies, but as a very complex character. Can you tell us more about your views of Sauron and evil in Middle-earth in general?

*EXCITED SCREAMING* OOOOH GOSH OH MAN THIS IS MY FAVORITE TOPIC
I have too much to say about this to fit in one survey, but basically I just think that treating Sauron and Melkor like nebulous forces of indiscriminate evil is doing them a huge disservice. I actually think that the two dark lords get some of the most development in the whole of Tolkien’s work— they show up in almost every timeline and interact with a huge number of characters, directly or indirectly. Tolkien NEVER stops talking about them! If you do a bit of reading between the lines, both dark lords display very consistent motivations and even character development. Sometimes I find that I disagree with the actual narrator of the texts because what the narrator SAYS you should think about Sauron and Melkor is oven in direct opposition to what Sauron and Melkor consistently DO. Unearthing Sauron’s storyline that’s hidden between the lines of the Silmarillion and the trilogy is just so fun and fascinating to me, and I always like seeing how many different ways the fandom can put together the same pieces into a completely different picture of the same character.

8. There is a recent trend in Tolkien fanart to depict the villains in beautiful forms, which Tolkien himself probably didn't intend. What do you think about this trend?

Well, I think people’s natural inclination is to depict characters they relate to (villains or otherwise!) in in ways that are aesthetically pleasing. People like sexy characters! Myself included! But what I get a little tired of seeing is carbon copies of the same design over and over again, or indistinguishably pretty elves with the same face and slightly different hair, or just character designs that emphasize superficial "prettiness" rather than recognizability. I also REALLY dislike it when "fairness" is interpreted exclusively as "whiteness" and "thinness", or when the standard of beauty being depicted is frustratingly narrow.

9. What art technique is your favourite? Do you rather keep to the art techniques and styles you are familiar with, or do you experiment with new ones as well?

Right now I do mostly digital art (with some acrylics, inks, and paper crafting on the side) but I am always trying to expand my style and make it more painterly. I’d love to do more traditional media, but I need to actually clear off a suitable work area first! XD

10. Do you have some tips and tricks you would like to share with the other artists?

Use lots of reference! I have a huge amount of reference pictures that I organize meticulously…. and then forget about. DON’T DO THAT. XD
Avoid using the same face and body type for multiple characters! If you’re feeling stuck and can’t get a concrete idea for a certain character, think about how they would interact with their environment and how that would shape their appearance/attitude/dress, etc.! Remember that not everything has to be Enya and John Howe! Mix it up! :) (Smile)
Also, don’t be afraid of change, progressive styles, or broadening cultural horizons encroaching on Tolkien’s work— he built something very beautiful and timeless, and the texts themselves aren’t going anywhere. People reinterpreting, rearranging, changing, and expanding the universe he built isn’t going to ruin anything.

11. Could you give us a link or thumbnail from your gallery of:

- a Tolkien illustration you are most proud of?
Forging Arda- page 3 by RivkaZ
- a picture from other fandom or original picture you are most proud of?
Portrait of Winter's Eve by RivkaZ
- a picture that fits your current mood?
Whisper of Stars by RivkaZ
- a picture that was hardest to paint?
House of the Mole by RivkaZ
- any other picture you would like to share with us and why?
Mushrooms and Acorns by RivkaZ
Gosh I love fungi! And I miss doing mixed media pieces!

12. What key people in your life, (on or off of dA) have been inspirations to you, or has supported you, as an artist? You can also tell us why, if you want.

I HAVE to mention Zlukaka :iconzlukaka: and Luffik :iconflyingcarpets: of AngbandStyle! When I was first getting into the Silm fandom and trying to solidify my character designs, I found their fanfic "Loyalty Unyielding" and it CHAAANGED MEEEEE. CHOIRS OF AINUR SANG! We started chatting and sharing ideas seriously and discovered that we shared a lot of the same impressions of the characters. Their art and writing is INCREDIBLE and distinctive and I just adore everything they do. Their support has meant a lot to me.

In the writing vein of things, Pandë/Professor-Thû/Lucifers-Cuvette :iconpandemonium-213: gave me my first real confidence boost about my Tolkien fanfic and comic writing. She is incredibly wise and brilliant and her critiques and kudos mean a lot to me. Her ongoing fanfiction 'verse can be found over on the Silmarillion Writer’s Guild www.silmarillionwritersguild.o… — it will change how you think about Sauron and elves and Ainur and magic; I can actually feel my brain expanding whenever I read her work. (Her vision of Eregion is so solid and believably populated in my mind that I feel like I spent a summer there.)

13. Is there some artist(s) at dA you know, who doesn't have as much attention as they would deserve? If yes, could you give us some thumbnails from their gallery?

Jubah! <3 :iconjubah:I LOVE her work and her organic figures! She has such a playful, expressive style and she always opens my eyes to characters that I would have overlooked otherwise, and I’m extremely grateful to have gotten to know her.

Also Helena Markos :iconhelena-markos:, whose orcs I love (even if they're not all strictly Tolkien orcs). <3

14. Is there something else you would like to tell to the fans of Tolkien and your art?

Just… thanks for being there! The Tolkien fandom has been my rock for the last few years, and it’s gotten me through some very tough spots in my life. Be patient with me, I’m still learning and I’m sorry for being so slow with updates! Stay awesome!
(And thank you for including me in these interviews! I am incredibly honored!)

Thank you for your time and answers!

All talks:



Rohirrim journal skin.

Horse head © 2009 - Grinmir-stock
Texture by kizistock
Knotwork by gbrgraphix

Talks with Tolkien artists: erynlasgalenphotoart

Journal Entry: Mon Jan 26, 2015, 3:06 AM


Photography is not an art-form usually associated with fanart, but Tolkien's Middle-earth is inspiring to many forms of art. :iconerynlasgalenphotoart: - erynlasgalenphotoart is a photographer who finds Middle-earth in real locations, and a founder of a group dedicated to the same goal - :iconfinding-middle-earth:. Today I bring you a talk with her.

Shades by erynlasgalenphotoart A place to grow old by erynlasgalenphotoart
Autumn light by erynlasgalenphotoart Approaching Mordor by erynlasgalenphotoart
Home of the Wood Elves by erynlasgalenphotoart Merrivale by erynlasgalenphotoart


1. Hello! For the beginning, could you tell us something about yourself?


My name is Alex and I'm an amateur photographer from Germany.

2. When did you read Tolkien's books for the first time, and what impression did they leave in you?

I started reading the Lord of the Rings after seeing the first movie in the cinema. I loved fantasy books and fairy tales as a child, but lost track of it in my teens. LOTR was my introduction back into this genre in literature and it opened the door to many other wonderful ideas for a practising escapist.

3. How extensive is your knowledge of Middle-earth? Do you consider yourself Tolkien expert?


I've got decent background knowledge, but I'm not an expert. I don't speak Sindarin ;) (Wink)

4. When the movies came out, many of the inner pictures of characters and landscapes in the mind of the readers have been replaced by actors and settings from the movie. Did it happen to you as well? Did you try to prevent it?

To a degree. Not at all. I welcome any kind of addition to Tolkien's world in my mind, be it through movies, games, drawings, stories or whatever. It's an ever growing melting pot of ideas and images that serves as a great source of inspiration for me.

5. Now, could you tell us something about you and art? Are you a professional photographer, or is it just a hobby? When did you start doing it, and who or what influenced your style?

Photography has been a hobby for the last 15 years. At first it's been mainly concert photography and sometimes photos on holidays and of my sighthounds. I've only taken a serious interest in digital landscape photography and processing during the last 3-4 years. For a large part this was due to the numerous amazing photos on DA. I have always loved nature and sceneries, especially forests and mountains and I love to experience the magic moments created by light and weather. Landscape photography was the perfect way for me to prolong these moments, take them home and share them. With my sometimes surreal processing I try to emphasize that magic feeling which drew me to a scene or motive.

6. You are the founder of Finding-Middle-Earth. What inspired you to create a group for finding Middle-earth in photography of real places?


Middle Earth is wherever we want it to be. Tolkien himself was inspired by the nature and landscapes he saw on his walks and travels. Rolling hills and green meadows, dark forests with twisted trees, golden woodlands, misty mountains and firespitting vulcanos... they are all out there for each of us to explore. I wanted to create a place to gather all those different visions of Middle Earth locations. I find it really interesting how alike and also how different they can be sometimes.

7. Do you think capturing real sceneries and comparing them to Tolkien's world makes that world more "real"?


To me it's a way of visualising ideas just like drawing or painting and I'm sure that creating a sketch can be just as immersive as creating the photo in the 'real' world.

8. Are you specifically looking for sceneries reminding you on Middle-earth, or just happen to go to such beautiful places?

Both. I've travelled to places that are said to have inspired Tolkien like Lauterbrunnen valley in Switzerland or Wistman's wood in England. I simply love old forests and mountain ranges. So did Tolkien... therefore many of the places I travel to might as well be locations in Middle Earth. I also walk the local woods every day with my hounds... so very often I simply stumble upon inspiring places and moments. Most of the time it's not the location alone, but the light and weather that give a place a magical touch and thereby qualify it for being a 'Middle Earth location'.

9. How much of a role does the post-processing of a photo have in creating the final atmosphere, and do you do it specifically with a certain Middle-earth location in mind?

Sometimes more sometimes less depending on how magical the atmosphere was to begin with. Sometimes the photo is almost finished straight from the camera and sometimes I have to put a lot of work into it to make something that looks special to me. Many photographers wouldn't use the last kind of photograph at all, but I sometimes enjoy trying to create a magical mood with a picture that didn't look like much at first. For me Middle Earth locations always have a certain kind of mood in addition to a geographical perception. It's inseparable.

10. What about your equipment? What camera and accessories do you use, and do you think it's important for the final result?

Sony Alpha 6000, Zeiss 16-70mm, tripod, polarisation filter, grey filter. To a degree it's important, because if the photo had a good quality (high dynamic range, clarity, sharpness, no noise, no blurring, no halos) from the beginning, it's easier to do the kind of post processing I do without producing ugly artefacts that will reduce the immersion into the place and mood.

11. Do you have some tips and tricks you would like to share with the other photographers?

Do what you like. Don't worry if what you want to do, should be done at all in photography. If you like the result, someone else will like it too.
Also take the time to learn to use your equipment and software. There are countless tutorials by amazing photographers on the internet. It's fun and worth it.

12. Photography is not the only thing in your gallery. You also draw, but avoid Tolkien themes there. Are they your inspiration only for photography?

The drawings and paintings in my gallery are more than 15 years old for the most part. These days I make one digital painting a year at most. I'd love to get back to drawing and painting more, but I simply lack the time. I also used to play and write music, but rarely do so now. I need to do something creative in my life and photography is the art that I can integrate into my every day life the easiest at the moment.

13. Could you give us a link or thumbnail from your gallery of
- a Middle-earth themed photo you are most proud of?


Enter Mirkwood by erynlasgalenphotoart

- another photo you are most proud of?

Leaves dancing with the mist by erynlasgalenphotoart

- a drawing you are most proud of?

Exit the Grey by erynlasgalenphotoart

- a photo that fits your current mood?

Follow the tracks by erynlasgalenphotoart

- any other photo you would like to share with us and why?

Sundown serenade by erynlasgalenphotoart

Because it's cold outside.


14. What key people in your life, (on or off of dA) have been inspirations to you, or has supported you, as an artist? You can also tell us why, if you want.


My family for believing in me. David Bowie for never doing the same thing twice. Tolkien for creating the perfect imagination playground.
Painters: John Atkinson Grimshaw, William Turner, Vincent van Gogh, Rembrandt
Photographers: Ansel Adams, Alexandre Deschaumes, Annabelle Chabert, Beth Moon, Rebecca Cusworth, Oer-Wout, Lars van de Goor, Nelleke Pieters and many more...


15. Is there some artist(s) at dA you know, who doesn't have as much attention as they would deserve? If yes, could you give us some thumbnails from their gallery?

There are many... here's a small selection:


:iconoprust:

Signs to Follow by oprustThis Road Chose a Walker by oprustSeyandela by oprust


:iconrpowroznik:

Autumn Trees by rpowroznikTree by rpowroznikForest by rpowroznik


:iconkriskeleris:

Golden days by kriskelerisMysterious forest by kriskelerisScarlet fall among the trees by kriskeleris


:icondybcio:

Mystery of forest II by DybcioMorning Forest by DybcioFractal of death by Dybcio


:iconulivonboedefeld:

Forest Of Equilibrium by ulivonboedefeldPiece (1 Von 1) by ulivonboedefeldA Walk In The Fog... by ulivonboedefeld


:icononodrim-photography:

T A A K E by Onodrim-PhotographyLong Lost To Where No Pathways Goes by Onodrim-PhotographyLe Portail des Fees. by Onodrim-Photography



16. Is there something else you would like to tell to the fans of Tolkien and your photography?

Ollo vae!

Thank you for your time and answers!

All talks:



Rohirrim journal skin.

Horse head © 2009 - Grinmir-stock
Texture by kizistock
Knotwork by gbrgraphix

NEVER SEEN BEFORE - contest

Journal Entry: Sat Jan 24, 2015, 4:04 AM


"NEVER SEEN BEFORE" - big Tolkien themed contest


:new: The contest has ended! The judges will vote for the best entries until April 15th, and soon after this date, the winners will be announced. Thank you for participation! :new:


I recently got a comment on my art which made me realize that there are many scenes and characters in Tolkien's book which almost never get illustrated, while you can find hundreds of illustrations for others. Just a few examples would be
- the events during the Scouring of the Shire
- the Ringbearers arriving and living in Valinor
- Galadriel living in Eregion or passing through the mountains to Lórien
- Pippin exploring Minas Tirith with Bergil
- the "lesser known" kings of Gondor and Númenor and Chieftains of Dúnedain
- Túrin attacking Glaurung in front of Nargothrond's gates BEFORE the dragon's look paralyzed him
...
For this contest, you need to find one that you have NEVER seen illustrated before. I won't give you more examples so you can think of your own, but feel free to use these as well. You do not need to have a thorough knowledge of the books, you can just open them at any page and see if you can find a scene you haven't seen depicted before. There is a big chance you will find one soon. Think also of the fact that even the often painted scenes have "before" and "after" that get almost never depicted.

CONTEST RULES:


- Illustrate a scene or character from any of the books written by Tolkien that has, to your knowledge, never been illustrated before. Do a google search for it to assure about that. Maybe somewhere there is some picture of it, but if you tried and did not find it, it is "never seen before" to you, and that's what counts. If you would like to paint a rarely seen character, but already saw that character painted, you just need to pick another scene with him.


- Unlike in our past contest "Between the lines", the scene HAS to be depicted in the books, or character mentioned by name. It's best if you provide the quote from the books you used.You can base the scene on any short mention you find, like, for example "1463 - Faramir Took marries Goldilocks, daughter of Samwise" in the appendices.

- DEADLINE: March 31st


- 1 entry per participant


- Only entries submitted AFTER the contest announcement will be accepted (as others have already been seen before, logically... ;))

- The "never seen before" does not apply to pictures posted after the contest announcement. If you already started working on your entry, and someone posts an illustration of the same scene on deviantart or in some other corner of internet after that, or you suddenly find one you could not find before, it's alright. If something like that happens, you can mention it in the comments, but certainly won't be disqualified for it.

- It you are not sure about a scene you would like to pick, you can comment here: NEVER SEEN BEFORE - contest and ask about it. You can also comment and "claim" a particular scene, in case you want to prevent others from painting the same, as slim as that chance is. 

Submit your entry to the contest folder in any of the participating groups:


:iconthelotrclub: - One of the biggest Tolkien themed groups, hosting a regular interview series "Talks with Tolkien artists"
:iconelves-of-tolkien: - All of Tolkien's Elves and everything related to them in one place, but we accept other Middle-earth related art as well.
:iconarda-inspired: - If you like reading, writing and illustrating fanfiction, as well as interesting monthly challenges, this is a group for you!
:iconthranduilfans: - Group dedicated to the great elvenking Thranduil to honor this beautifull being with all kinds of art.
:iconthehobbitfans: - Hello! We're a Hobbit themed dA group, collecting beautiful art based on the book and films.
:iconshadowsofmiddleearth: - A  group dedicated to the darker side of Tolkien's world.
:iconlord-of-the-rings-fc: - A group focused on celebrating the world of Middle Earth as envisioned by J.R.R. Tolkien.

Submitting to more groups is alright, as well as submitting to the contest folder of just one group, and to regular folders in others. All pictures in all contest folders will be gathered together for judging at the end of the contest.
Note that some of the groups might have restrictions about the pictures they accept. Refer to the general group rules to see if your picture is acceptable in a particular group (e.g. not submitting a Hobbit themed picture to a Silmarillion themed group and vice versa).

If you are not a member of any of the participating groups, you can still submit your art to the contest folder of TheLotRClub, which will be open for all contest entries from all deviantart members.
Do you know / are you an admin of a group that would like to participate and I didn't ask you? Send a note tp MirachRavaia and your group will be included!

PRIZES:


1st place:

- a hand-painted t-shirt by MirachRavaia mirachravaia.deviantart.com/ga…
- a print of a map of Beleriand by Sirielle
- bust of a single character from Grim-Grinning
- a traditional drawing commission from SkyKly
- "deviation of the week" feature in TheHobbitFans

2nd place:

- a Middle-earth themed spoon by MirachRavaia Middle-earth spoons

3rd place:

- a Middle-eartth themed art request by MirachRavaia

All places:

- The Lord of the Rings audiobook
- The Complete Songs & Poems collection by Tolkien Ensamble
- points distributed from the donation pool in Dreams-of-Arda's profile in a 4:3:2 pattern
- Thranduil papercraft sword from MorellAgrysis
- an art request from Reikiwie
- a feature by the participating groups and:
:iconvisanastasis::iconmirachravaia::icongrim-grinning:
- llamas

JUDGING

- by a jury consisting of the admins of participating groups
(Judges can take part in the contest, but not vote for their own entry)
Judges:
:iconmirachravaia::iconvisanastasis::iconmorellagrysis::iconkatkinn::iconindiliel::iconschreibertooth:

Supporting groups (not participating in the contest):
:iconthorinoakenshield-fc::iconmiddleearthmadness::iconfinding-middle-earth::iconsilmarillion-club::iconmiddleearthlovers:

CLAIMED TOPICS:

:bulletgreen: = done
- Frodo putting the Ring on before Tom Bombadil - Ainwen27
- Idril's prophetic dream - NOLANOS
- Sauron's arrival to Númenor - Yayenia :bulletgreen:
- Melkor in love with Varda - MorellAgrysis :bulletgreen:
- Thingol accepting Túrin as a fosterling - Row93 :bulletgreen:
- Tinfang Warble - VisAnastasis :bulletgreen:
- Elwing's escape from Doriath - Hemhet :bulletgreen:
- Glorfindel's prophecy to Eärnur - Eleween :bulletgreen:
- Gandalf and Pippin on Shadowfax passing Hirgon - peet :bulletgreen:
- dwarves playing and singing to calm Thorin in Erebor - NekoHimeAnny :bulletgreen:
- Tuor, Idril and Earendil leaving Nan Tathren - RobleskaZeppelin :bulletgreen:
- Sam planting the mallorn from Galadriel - nadinmadeamess :bulletgreen:
- Yule-tide in Beorn's house - MirachRavaia
- 3rd age plague - AncaXBre :bulletgreen:
- Elrond reveals to Aragorn his name and ancestry - Saphari :bulletgreen:
- Snowmane's funeral - Alektra007 :bulletgreen:
- king Brego of Rohan - LJ-Todd :bulletgreen:
- Cotton's stand during the Scouring of the Shire - BenMaynardOfManyArts :bulletgreen:
- Hobbits in the Old Forest (specific scene) - MeinFragezeichen :bulletgreen:
- the last time Melian sees Lúthien - Castile418 :bulletgreen:

Rohirrim journal skin.

Horse head © 2009 - Grinmir-stock
Texture by kizistock
Knotwork by gbrgraphix