He’s dead, Jim. Or: Groping towards an image

I suppose you could say this latest picture came into this world in 1995.

I was in my second semester of English at the University of Cologne,  drew more than I studied, was completely engrossed in the Silmarillion, already liked twisted trees and crows, but had not yet developed my aversion to green.

I was already delving deep into those “missing moments” of which the Silmarillion has so many.
This miniseries depicts Maglor and Celegorm trying to find out what happened to their brother Maedhros after he had ridden to meet Morgoth’s embassy.

They find a lot of bodies (which, apparently, I didn’t dare draw up close) as well as Maedhros’ blackened and broken gear.

I have no idea why I thought Huan was a Deutscher Schäferhund.

I’d always liked the idea of this scene – the brothers realising that war against Morgoth does not mean either to win or be slain, but there being a lot of messy in-betweens.

So this year, I found myself doodling a scene like this into my sketchbook.

And chickened out with the bodies again.

I really liked the outset and decided to do more with it… after term and commissions.

So after commissions, I started scribbling some to capture this scene, moving around Maglor’s and Celegorm’s positions. And this time, I googled for “pile of bodies”. Not recommended, by the way. I left the images zoomed out and just took over some general ideas.

Incidentally, other Silmarillion art-related image searches that I do not recommend are “severed hand” and “arm stump”, as well as anything that has Fingon and Maedhros together.

In the scribble, Celegorm looked quite the mean bastard that he is, but I figured he might show some concern here. Otherwise, someone not familiar with the story might have thought he was about to attack Maglor.

I went for the soft pencil look I’d already used in “Fingon’s Decision” and which is really fun. I already knew then that any colouring job on this one would have to be really light, hardly any colouring at all. So I went with just two light watercolour washes and some spatters of paint.

5 thoughts on “He’s dead, Jim. Or: Groping towards an image

  1. boah, krasse entwicklung!das ist klasse, das so nebeneinander zu sehen. an das zweite bild mag ich mich dunkel erinnern, dass du das mal gezeigt hast. ähm, ja, da hat sich EINIGES getan! respekt! :)

  2. WOW! I have followed your art through DeviantArt for many years and It lead me here. I must say that your blog is awesome, full of tips and great advices for beginning artists. It is great to see how you work and the way you explain the process is so easy and straightforward. Not to mention the quality of your work, which I have always admired. Thanks for making a great blog like this!Irene

  3. Ah yes, the trials of googling. I had to learn the hard way not to google Elladan and Elrohir, separately or together.

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