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Submitted on
July 28, 2007
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The Oath of Felagund by aautio The Oath of Felagund by aautio
The Oath of Felagund

“The sons of Finarfin bore most heavily the brunt of the assault, and Angrod and Aegnor were slain; beside them fell Bregolas lord of the house of Bëor, and a great part of the warriors of that people. But Barahir the brother of Bregolas was in the fighting further westward, near to the Pass of Sirion. There King Finrod Felagund, hastening from the south, was cut off from his people and surrounded with small company in the Fen of Serech; and he would have been slain or taken, but Barahir came up with the bravest of his men and rescued him, and made a wall of spears about him; and they cut their way out of the battle with great loss. Thus Felagund escaped, and returned to his deep fortress of Nargothrond; but he swore an oath of abiding friendship and aid in every need to Barahir and all his kin, and in token of his vow he gave to Barahir his ring. ”

-- J. R. R. Tolkien: The Silmarillion, chapter 18: Of the Ruin of Beleriand and the Fall of Fingolfin

Here's a scene I’ve wanted to draw for quite a while. ( And no, it’s not a gay wedding, even if they’re holding hands and there’s a ring involved.. :evileye: ). It also took quite a while to draw, seeing as I started it sometime around Christmas.. I had more or less finished it by May but I didn’t have the time to do the Photoshop work before now..

So here King Finrod Felagund swears his oath of friendship to Barahir after the Men of the house of Bëor saved his life during the onslaught of Dagor Bragollach. That fateful oath would ultimately prove his undoing but eleven years later when he was honour-bound to accompany Beren on his quest for the Silmaril. However, without Barahir, Beren and the others Finrod would have almost certainly fallen that day at the Fen of Serech.

The drawing is partially an excuse for drawing armoured people for a change; Finrod and the Nargothrond captain in the background wear what I’d call traditional Ñoldorin scale mail and Barahir wears a complex suit of intricate leather armour. The all wear coifs of Dwarf-mail. The decorative heraldic themes are based on Tolkien’s designs for Bëor, Finarfin and Felagund as well as =elegaer’s ideas for Finrod.

The slightly wacky anatomy aside, I like how this turned out. I put a lot of blood and mud and grime and cuts here and there as an attempt to show how they’ve just hacked their way out of a battle against all odds. The wisps of mist drifting in the wind are there for some extra atmosphere and depth effect and also to illustrate the fact that the skirmish took place in a swampy location. I will probably do a coloured version at some point if I'll have time.. not likely anytime soon.

HB pencil and Photoshop.

detail closeup
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Tyranowulf Featured By Owner Jun 10, 2012  Hobbyist General Artist
Have you seen or hung out with many people who wear full steel armour? (as opposed to aluminium or other lighter materials) Felagund especially has the perfect hunch that men in armour tend to adopt, and the angle of the sword he's holding, all these little things really strike me that you paid that much attention to detail and pose :) Awesome picture.
Aquin7777 Featured By Owner Jul 22, 2010
Good work on the scale mail. Any tips you could give me on how to draw it?
Linnath Featured By Owner Apr 19, 2008
This is so beautiful it almost breaks my heart.

I haven't looked through all your Art yet, but what I have seen is amazing.
Hathien603 Featured By Owner Feb 14, 2008
Golly, you know SO much about the Silmarillion! I admire you greatly for that! I've just started to read through it for the second time but I tend to forget things easily :XD: This is fantastic, you have a very unique and beautiful style :)
AinuLaire Featured By Owner Nov 12, 2007
BARAHIR! *happy* Now where is Beren? Have you drawn him yet?

Love this picture.
Quietstorms Featured By Owner Aug 28, 2007   Photographer
Baraghir is one of the coolest men in the tolkien world. :D
aautio Featured By Owner Aug 28, 2007
Oh yes, he's a tough one! :nod: He was the Che Guevara of Middle-earth! ;)
elegaer Featured By Owner Aug 13, 2007
Barahir looks remarkably well groomed for having been in battle D

The clothing and armour here is soooo good. Its functional, practical, yet beautiful and ornate where it can be. And the flag is brilliant ;)
aautio Featured By Owner Aug 20, 2007
:lol: Yeah, doesn't he? That's because he's wearing hurricane-proof hairspray! :nod: Didn't you know they named Middle-Earth's first range of hair products after him? You know.. Lúthien would have never become renowned for her later hairstyle experiments if it wasn't for Beren, the Barber of Barahir.. no, wait.. how did it go again..? =P

Why, thank you! ;)
Lorna36 Featured By Owner Aug 1, 2007  Hobbyist General Artist
Very awesome piece, the details are amazing, well, details in your work usually are but this has got to be one of the best!
I especially like Barahir's face and expression.
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