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The One Ring Forums: Tolkien Topics: Reading Room:
JRRT Author & Illustrator, ch. 5: LOTR: Pencil & Ink
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Daughter of Nienna
Grey Havens

Apr 4 2007, 12:31am

Post #26 of 26 (146 views)
Mr. Willow [In reply to] Can't Post

2. Do you (like me) wish you knew the scale of the original drawing? Why would he – as it seems here – be drawing in a size larger than would fit in a published novel?

A: With the Orthanc image, it seems very small to me. I thought I remember reading somewhere that many of his drawings were done on small pieces of paper. I have not read the discussion yet, (answering blind) to get through this quickly.

3. This drawing was made on “the blank verso of a leaf of examination script in 1942”. Does it change how you think of the drawing?

A: This seems to be a common thing for him…didn't he do something similar with his most famous words that started it all: "In a hole in the ground there lived a Hobbit." I think many artists of any media often use what ever is handy to jot down a thought whether written or visual. There are similar stories for other artists as well…like notes on restaurant napkins and such.

4. How does his use of his materials here compare with those in Orthanc (I)?

I think he used an ink wash to color in the brick.

5. How does Tolkien’s choice of where to apply which material show us something about his subject?

The ink wash on the brick gives this a very different affect. Almost like soot on the brick. Which seems to fit both the proximity to Mt Doom and the theme of evil industrialism (by ow black everything seemed to get in the height of that period of time.

6. Why might Tolkien have pushed the inkwell away for this one, if he did? How does he use the materials he does have at hand to show some level of menace?

The hard crisp line of ink suits buildings better than the organic shapes of a tree and nature. The Willow's menace shows (to me) in how the roots seems to be fluid, easy movable. The branches are kinked and bent that subtly suggests a menacing manner. Like they just might swing out and knock an unsuspecting hobbit into the water.

7. And now, it's time for a High School Essay Question:
Compare and contrast Tolkien’s Old Man Willow with the same artist’s illustrations of trees for The Hobbit.

Mr. Willow is large and fat, dominating the area, and is also shaped more organically with curvy lies, rounded knots winding roots and low bet branches…his other trees are like straight narrow stick comparatively.

Alan Lee Discussion week: starts March 25th in the Reading Room
Discussion Ideas, Alan Lee–Introduction, Scanned images for Alan Lee Discussion.

Art Gallery Revised, ORC pic of Hawaii friends, my drawings,
Aloha & Mahalo, Websites Directory
Nienna: “ those who hearken to her learn pity, and endurance in hope . . . All those who wait in Mandos cry to her, for she brings strength to the spirit and turns sorrow to wisdom." — Valaquenta

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