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NF-Lee's 3/4 Frodo sketch

Tolkien's Landscapes 5: 'The Misty Mountains' ~ picture by Tolkien, poem by jan-u-wine.

Posted on 2013.07.20 at 08:50


primula_baggins at 2013-07-20 15:46 (UTC) (Link)
I can't help but think the Misty Mountains painting was inspired by the European Alps. They have that same spikiness to them.

mechtild at 2013-07-20 16:19 (UTC) (Link)
I'm sure you are right, Primula. In the book I've been working from, although it doesn't say Tolkien painted these mountains from life (as he did in many cases when the setting was local and English), the authors note that as a young man visiting the Alps Tolkien was deeply impressed by them and based his depiction of the snow-capped mountains of Middle-earth on them, including the Misty Mountains. Perhaps he worked from memory, or maybe he used a photograph, but he was surely thinking of the Alps.
primula_baggins at 2013-07-20 17:31 (UTC) (Link)
Interesting what you wrote about the author's note.

I doubt there are that many spiky mountains lined up that way in the Alps, but was assuming it was more impressionistic than anything. :)

I just love water color paintings.
mechtild at 2013-07-20 17:53 (UTC) (Link)
I just love water color paintings.

Me, too, though this one, however lovely, does not evoke the book's mountains to me. It's not because of the unrealistic line of spikes (instead of the peaks being piled up and clustered together) but because of the lack of the sense of brooding/looming/foreboding, which I associate with the tales of the Misty Mountains.

Maybe I will find that section about Tolkien's visit to the Alps to include in the next post, which also has mountains, though very stylized, in its far ground.

Edited at 2013-07-20 05:55 pm (UTC)
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