Eärendil Searches Tirion

Media: Gouache on illustration board

First appeared in the 2000 Tolkien Calendar, published by HarperCollins. (It was the centerfold painting.)

Used on the cover of some editions of The Silmarillion.

Permanent link to this article: http://www.tednasmith.com/tolkien/earendil-searches-tirion/

1 Comment

  1. This architectural scheme was primarily influenced by Tolkien’s own art, I have to say. As with my landscapes leaning to realism as compared to Tolkien’s sketchy or stylized ones, my M-e (or Valinorean) architecture tends to reflect that Tolkien aesthetic in a more realistic vein. The romantic architecture of say, old Cairo or Kartoum or any other school of architecture which favours slender, feminine lines, does offer rich ideas, if an ‘Elven look’ is wanted. But as with my Minas Tirith architecture–a non-historic pastiche of ideas aiming vaguely for an imagined Numenorean style (characterized as medieval-meets-Atlantean, say)–Elven grand architecture ought [to me] be portrayed as exotic, fairly non-Oxidental; unfamiliar but familiar. Thus a vaguely middle-eastern pastiche which includes ancient Dynastic Egyptian, Russian Orthodox (golden domes), and pure invention. Teardrop windows and ‘Art Nouveau-esque’ balustrades, scalloped parapets, or teardrop domes depart from anything otherwise Arabesque, because taken together they are what satisfies my sense of what Tolkien is suggesting, as well as what readers generally expect, I believe.

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