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NF-Lee's Gildor and Frodo

Featuring fan art by Taerie, also plugging Whiteling, Maewyn and Ariel

Posted on 2005.12.12 at 09:28
Tags: , ,
While I am on this procrastination roll, I thought I would post a Frodo illustration I came across that I really, really admired....

I don’t usually take the time to browse any of the Tolkien fanart galleries, but occasionally a fellow-poster will display a new work -- her own, or someone else’s. That is how I have come across drawings of Frodo that I have really liked. The illustration I am linking below, however, I “discovered” in a more intentional way.

A month or so ago, an LJ user whom I did not know, taerie posted a comment. Immediately I was struck by her icon. It looked like a detail from a larger Frodo art work.

Here is a facsimile of her icon (hers has text added):

Image hosted by Photobucket.com

That sliver of image intrigued me so much I went to her User Page, found out she was an artist, followed her link to a gallery where her pieces were being hosted, and saw what must be the full image,in the midst of a string of thumbnails.

I clicked it open, and fell in love....

This is Taerie’s Frodo of the Shire:

Image hosted by Photobucket.com

At Elfwood, the gallery hosting her work, she wrote of the piece:

Frodo Baggins of Lord Of The Rings Opaque Watercolour. Here is Frodo in his Shire woods in the sweet days of his hobbit youth and innocence... before he ever heard of..well, you know. The plant behind him is Yarrow. This grows wild in the English countryside and I learned that it's Irish Gaelic name is Athair thalun. This is so similar to Athalus, (Also known as Kingsfoil and the plant Aragorn used to heal Frodo.) that I wonder if it is the inspiration for it. On top of that it has not only been used to treat wounds but also exactly as Aragorn used it broken in hot water for it's aroma. Just a theory…

I thought this picture was exquisite. I loved the rendering of Frodo, of course, but also the entire composition: the saturated pastel colours, the fine detail. I loved how it was at once rich yet spare. It reminded me very much of old Chinese painting. Below is a print of a painting on silk that shows what I mean.

~ Mother and Kittens in a Garden, attributed to Mao 1, Chinese, 12th century:

Image hosted by Photobucket.com

Taerie posted only one other Frodo image at Elfwood, a more traditional pencil drawing. Very enticingly, she said in the text that went with it….

Some artist go through a blue period.. I am going through a Frodo period. That's all I have been drawing lately.. All Frodo All The Time.

All right, Taerie, where are all these other Frodo drawings, hmmm? I think it’s time for you to start an album on your photobucket.

Link to Taerie’s Frodo of the Nine Fingers:


While I am talking about art done by fellow-Frodo fans, I want to put in a plug to any of you who might not have seen their Frodo work, or not all of it....

Whiteling’s excellent draftsmanship is known by many. Here is small copy of her own favourite Frodo drawing, What Will I See:

Image hosted by Photobucket.com

My personal favourite is, This Ring is Mine. Here is a small copy:

Image hosted by Photobucket.com

If you don’t hang out at K-D, you probably don’t know that Whiteling has been doing Frodo manips, too. Most of them have been humorous but some are of the swoony sort. My favourite so far has been this very charming and cleverly-done transposition of Frodo’s rosy-cheeked face into a page of medieval illumination. Here is a detail from it:

Image hosted by Photobucket.com

Whiteling’s full-size drawings are hosted at tgshaw’s excellent Elijah Wood-focussed site, Frodo Lives Within Us Now. Here is a link to the page with her drawings:


To see Whiteling’s manips, use this link to browse her growing album:


Two other Frodo fan friends of mine have done drawings that I would like to remind you of.

maewyn_2 has done two drawings, which are posted at the “Haremite Art” site. If only Maewyn had fewer real life demands on her time! I would love her to do more. (She has had another drawing in the works for as long as I’ve been working on my next chapter!)

Below is a small copy of Maewyn’s, Reflections. I love its soft, inward mood:

Image hosted by Photobucket.com

A larger version of this and Maewyn’s other Frodo drawing can be viewed using this link to the Harem website:


If you opened that link, you would have seen a few drawings by another woman who doesn’t have enough time to draw the way she would like. Ariel is not only a writer but an artist ( elasg ).

Here is a head of Frodo she drew that I liked immediately. If you have read any of Ariel’s fic, you will know she emphasises Frodo’s strong will. Determined to face what he must, by strength of will, he is able to endure. He grows in stature but also in sadness). Here is a small copy of her drawing, After the Quest. I think it reveals a sense of the maturity, wisdom, and stoic, contemplative sadness that I associate with Ariel's post-Quest Frodo.

Image hosted by Photobucket.com

More of Ariel’s drawings can be viewed on the art page at her web site, Bag End West:


Ariel has also done a lot of Frodo manips, too, funny and swoony. She says she is going to collect them in one place, perhaps at the Harem art page, at her own site, or both. When she does, I will edit that link in here so that I can have them at my fingertips.

~ Mechtild


aquila0212 at 2005-12-12 18:55 (UTC) (Link)
That first one almost looks like embroidery. And the info about athelas was very interesting.
mechtild at 2005-12-12 19:28 (UTC) (Link)
I would love to be able to see Taerie's "Frodo of the Shire" in person. If she didn't live so far away, I'd make a pilgrimage to see it.

I would buy a copy of it and mount it. (stop smirking)
ms_banazira at 2005-12-12 19:20 (UTC) (Link)
Love Taerie's picture. "All Frodo All the Time" sounds good. :D
mechtild at 2005-12-12 19:28 (UTC) (Link)
Yes, honey, that is a good motto in my book, too!
maeglian at 2005-12-12 19:21 (UTC) (Link)
I'd never seen the first one by Taerie. It's beautiful - the flowers and plants as lovely and as lovingly portrayed as young master Baggins himself. :-)

Ariel and Whiteling know how much I admire their talent and their drawings - but a good thing bears repeating I suppose!
mechtild at 2005-12-12 19:31 (UTC) (Link)
Thanks for commenting, Maeglian. Yes, the plants are wonderful, and composed and presented as beautifully as the hobbit portrayed.

I posted Ariel, Whiteling's and Maewyn's, too, because not only K-D people browse this. I like to think that even more folks who would enjoy their stuff might have a chance to see it this way.
elasg at 2005-12-12 22:25 (UTC) (Link)
I'd seen that sliver of a piece by Taerie but the whole drawing is exquisite! Thank you so much for sharing it! I also like her Spock! I've never been much of a fan of the character, but the technique and skill she has are undeniable! Yes! More Frodo! (though the same could probably be said of me - *cough*)
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mechtild at 2005-12-13 00:02 (UTC) (Link)
Iorhael, in her description of the piece at its hosting site (Elfwood Gallery), Taerie says the medium is "opaque watercolour." Since her work posted there looks as though it is done in pencils, pastels or paints, I am assuming all her work is original, not manips.

Here's a link to the Elfwood gallery for her, showing her non-LotR stuff, too:


I suggest you just ask her. She has an LJ. I am sure that, as any excited artist would, she would be happy to talk to you about her techniques. I would just post a message to her latest LJ entry and see what happens.
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Estë   (or ST for short)
este_tangletoes at 2005-12-13 14:32 (UTC) (Link)
Taerie’s painting is beautiful, it has such detail – I noticed the bite taken out of the apple as an added treat (no pun intended).

I would love to play ‘This Little Piggy Went to Market’ on Frodo’s toes. I could always change the lyrics a little *wicked grin *

Ariel, Maewyn and whiteling’s lovely drawings, of Frodo, are each done with their own brand of love and tenderness.

mechtild at 2005-12-13 14:43 (UTC) (Link)
Yes, the apple. How do we know Frodo took that bite? Perhaps that bite was taken by the artist, and that was how she became lost to her subject. *grin*
taerie at 2005-12-13 16:36 (UTC) (Link)
Jeepers! I have been so busy feeding baby bird with one hand and puppy with the other that I haven't had time to log on at all.. *blinks at the screen stupefied.* My goodness, Mechtild! You are going to make me think I am some kind of.. well, ARTIST or something! Especially putting me on the same page with actual people who draw good! That one of Whiteling's.. What will I see? His eyes just blow you away.. you could fall into them and keep falling forever. Maewyn KNOWS how I enjoy her pencil work and both her and Ariel should know that I hate people who can both draw and write.:-)
( Ariel, Frodo determined and strong melts my butter!!!)

I don't actually have Photo-shop. (I want it.. I just never had the bucks together in one place for it.) But I have had Corel photo-paint for a long time and you can draw with it in a more limited way. I had a look at my elfwood stuff to refresh my memory and I drew Spock with it. The flying horse is the only photomanip in there. Elfwood allows those if you took the photos and there are no celebrities in it. Elfwood has lots of rules and is very strict. They would boot me to the moon if I tried to put up a photomanip of E.W. as Frodo. I forgot once and tried to put up a sexy photomanip of Sarek of Vulcan (Spocks Father) in his youth and I got yelled at big time! I can put a painting of an original concept of Frodo in the Fantasy section.. but if I do one that looks like E.W. no matter how I did it.. (Oil painting or drawing or etch-a-sketch) it has to go into the Fan Art section.
The rest of the stuff was done with regular art supplies and scanned. LATELY though I have just started playing with really cool program called Corel Painter. It simulates art supplies and media and even different surfaces.. (So well that I often find myself checking my hands to see if I have paint on them!).. but like all of these things, it has a huge learning curve. I have yet to do anything good with it. Corel will let you download a trial copy. http://www.download.com/Corel-Painter/3000-2192_4-10322226.html
It is very fun to play with.
I painted the Frodo pic though with traditional gouache watercolours on clayboard.. but I had a great bunch of photo references for it. I also had an article on wild English plants from a National Geographic magazine (And Yarrow I have grown myself.)

Well NOW I am all inspired!!! Nothing gets me back to work like a little glory!:-D With Mechtild's great caps and Frodo for a model The Muse is all over me. (Now if the puppy will only stay asleep for ten minutes...)
mechtild at 2005-12-13 23:05 (UTC) (Link)
With Mechtild's great caps and Frodo for a model The Muse is all over me.

And that's the best place for Muse Frodo to be.

Thanks for the details on how you produced the work, also, for the tips to other artists about a cool new program, should they not have heard of it.

I hope bird-rearing is coming along famously!

So, you still didn't answer: where are all these other Frodo drawings/pics you've done? I think it's time for you to visit or buy a scanner and assemble an album in your Photobucket.

Woo hoo!
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lembas_junkie at 2005-12-13 19:41 (UTC) (Link)
Wow, I love seeing so many wonderful drawings! :) I don't have time to look through them all now (Histology exam tomorrow, bright and early!) but I will...definately!

mechtild at 2005-12-15 21:16 (UTC) (Link)
Lembas, have a look at some more interesting art another emailer sent me a link for. My new email correspondent is friends with the woman who did the art I'm going to link.

This fan, called Primmy in her Photobucket album, is a professional animation artist who has worked for Disney, even Bakshi, and more, and, as a fan, has made Frodo stuff. I believe, from her photo album, she's been to ORC events.

When you look at her Frodo drawings, you can tell she must be good, especially at animation art because her figures are so good. A lot of fans do great portraits from screencaps, but can't do an equally good body. This artist's figure drawings are very natural and fluid. (Although, obviously, she poured most of her detail work into her faces of Frodo.)

Here's a link to her page of Frodo drawings:

Primmy's drawings

Our ACDSee is out of commission right now, but I am going to try to post a link to the picture I find really stunning, called "Mithril...old Snaga remembers":

Snaga and Frodo

In case the image doesn't work, here's an attempt at a link:


Here's a link to her photoshopped images of Frodo. I think the two black and white "portraits" came out exceptionally well:

Primmy's photoshops
breelee10 at 2005-12-15 06:50 (UTC) (Link)
Oh wow! Such inspiration!! I used to draw... but somewhere along the way lost touch. All of this really makes me want to grab my pencils and dust off my sketchbook. of course, anything I did would be put to shame by this beautiful work. A lot of it I've seen and commented on before, like Maewyn and Whiteling's amazing drawings, but never have I seen taerie's before. awesome work. You ladies deserve a gallery. A gallery of Frodo... a live one... yes, that would be great. And then we could ALL make pilgrimages!!

However, mech, since this is YOUR journal... I feel I must poke and prod you. I miss Threshold. I really do think about it a lot; there's a little hole where the story sits uncompleted. Not trying to make you feel guilty or anything of course, take your time and all, but just wanted you to know your story is still very much alive in this reader, and this reader is eagerly anticipating whatever you come up with! (whenever you come up with it of course!)
mechtild at 2005-12-15 21:33 (UTC) (Link)
Oh, Bree, your remarks made me weepy. I do feel terribly guilty about being such a sluggard. I keep thinking its readers have given up on it by now and are used to the idea that there never will be an end to it. Your remarks have been a prod and poke most lovingly given.

I am thinking of putting Threshold on LJ. I really have loved reading Igraine and Mariole's stories on LJ. You can talk to the author at every installment, and read the remarks of others. It's been a lot of fun. By the end of Mariole's Devoted, which has over 100 short little chapters, I felt as though I sort of "knew" some of the commenters. It was a lot of fun.

The main thing is to write the thing, of course. I don't know why I'm being so resistent. I hope to work on it tonight after choir.

I hope your Mom is still doing better, Bree. P.S. When you read this, scroll up to my comment about the work of another Frodo artist, "Primmy." I think you might want to check out her album on line.
maewyn_2 at 2005-12-15 14:10 (UTC) (Link)
I have to agree that Taerie's Frodo is one of a kind. Those eyes are so compelling. They draw you in, hook, line and sinker.

What a surprise I got when I saw my Reflection up there among Whiteling's and Ariel's drawings too! It makes me feel a bit guilty - I must get out my drawing board again and get back to the half-completed work thereon.
mechtild at 2005-12-15 21:18 (UTC) (Link)
Why shouldn't your "Reflection" be up there? It's lovely. Yes, the eyes in Taerie's Frodo of the Shire are almost piercing. He reminds me of a woodland creature sitting there so stilly in the ferns and flowers. Like the animals in the Chinese print only far, far lovelier, of course.

Maewyn, I wanted to draw your attention to another artist whose work was just linked to me. There is some very good stuff. I hope you find it a goad!
frodosweetstuff at 2005-12-16 11:52 (UTC) (Link)
Hi there! Was just going to reply to your excellent comment regarding men and measurements but I found it was deleted which is a shame because I thought it would have been interesting for the others to see. Anyway, thank you for replying to that post! :)
mechtild at 2005-12-16 16:23 (UTC) (Link)
Sorry, frodosweetstuff, I sort of got cold feet. A few hours after I had posted it, I thought, "What was I doing? -- barging in there and making jokes as if I knew everybody in that LJ, which I did not." So I deleted it. Thanks for coming over.

Sometimes I think I am too assuming, or presuming, in my online behaviour. The anonymity makes me overconfident. I say things to people I have never met, thinking they can "see me" - see how I am intending what I say - when they cannot. I have deleted more than that one comment in a fit of "second thoughts."

Again, thanks for coming over and speaking. I will be more confident next time.
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mechtild at 2006-07-21 22:15 (UTC) (Link)
I'm so glad you came in and had a look, Mews. Taerie's "Frodo of the Shire" was how I first knew she did art. Her icon at that time was that little snip of it. I think it is one of the best and more original pieces of film-Frodo-inspired art out there.

I checked Taerie's links to her Elfwood gallery, and all of it seems to be down. I am assuming it is the site having problems, unless they folded up shop all together. (I hope not - it's a huge fanart site.)
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