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August 21, 2007
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WIP:Lords of Noldor: Finwe by aautio WIP:Lords of Noldor: Finwe by aautio
WORK IN PROGRESS: Finwë, King of the Ñoldor


”In those days [Indis] had looked upon the Lord of the Noldor, and he seemed to her fairest and noblest of the Eldar, dark-haired and white of brow, eager of face but with eyes full of thought; and his voice and mastery of words delighted her.”

-- J. R. R. Tolkien: The Later Quenta Silmarillion (II): Of the Silmarils and the Darkening of Valinor, §24 (HoME X: Morgoth's Ring)



Character Background

Finwë was one of the four original envoys of the Elven peoples who visited Valinor with the Vala Oromë and then persuaded the Eldar to leave their original homes at Kúivienen. He led the Ñoldor during the Great March and eventually became their king in Tirion. He was undoubtedly among the oldest Elves in Aman and was renowned for his wisdom. But later he, like most of his people, seems to have become more proud, vainglorious and often let emotion overrule his famed wisdom. He favoured his eldest son, named all his sons after himself, and pursued his own happiness over that of his people..

Design Concept

I picture Finwë as very tall (although not as tall as most of his descendants at 6'5" /196 cm) and thin, with a narrow face, sharp features and very long and straight raven-black hair. He would wear incredibly ornate and luxurious raiment wrought of the most exquisite materials, embroidered with gold and jewels. His colours would be gold, ruby and sapphire. He would be fond of intricate jewellery and carry many tokens of his exalted position, like the crown, the sceptre, the necklace, the belt, the signet ring..

The heraldic design is my interpretation of Tolkien’s original design for Finwë. The smaller design below his name is my idea for a more simplified emblem of the House of Finwë - a silver/gold.. star (I’ll avoid calling it “sun” since the mythology is confusing and contradictory..). I might still simplify it by removing the circle, but let’s see..

---

This is a WIP character sketch for my “Lords of the Ñoldor” project. It combines the scanned, not-yet-cleaned-up pencil lineart without shading or highlights, the current idea for the heraldic device(s) and the Tengwar inscription (I haven't decided yet whether I want to use the regular script or the cursive style, so I included both) to be used in the triptych. At some point I might finish it up as an individual character portrait but for now it’s just a WIP component.

Character drawn on regular copy paper, no references used. The originals are quite small; each character is under 15 cm tall (that’s a bit under 6” for the measurement-impaired). I draw them with a regular HB pencil that I try not to sharpen too much.. gives the line a nice thickness and more lively(=uneven) character. The size also keeps me from adding too many details, which would be lost anyway in the finished piece where the characters are fairly small.

The heraldic designs were drawn in AutoCAD, I looked at Tolkien’s design for reference. Assembled in Photoshop. (--Hard to say what category this should go into, but let’s say traditional, since the pencil drawing is the main thing..)

It’s still WIP, so comments, ideas, suggestions, etc. are more than welcome! :)


WIP:Lords of Noldor: Triptych Layout

WIP:Lords of Noldor: Character Portraits
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:iconvisanastasis:
VisAnastasis Featured By Owner Oct 15, 2011  Hobbyist General Artist
Finwe! Must fav! How to resist ? :heart:
Reply
:iconiavas:
Iavas Featured By Owner Jan 28, 2008  Hobbyist Photographer
I love this picture, even though I have always had a tough time deciding between envisioning the high-ranking Noldor wearing elegant, royal but utterly uncomfortable finery (as you have depicted) and seeing them as wearing equally elegant and ornate but practical clothing that would allow them to partake in more physical activities regardless of status. Perhaps it depended on their mood and plans for the day. One question I must ask, though, is why you considered Finwe to be so egotistical. The naming convention was, as far as I am aware, a custom of the Noldor, and his only failure to his people was the decision to accompany Feanor to exile (which was based more on love for his firstborn than any lack of wisdom). I'm just saying I never got that impression when I was reading the Silmarillion and am wondering if I perhaps missed something.

Anyway, great picture. I'm going to go explore some more of your gallery now.
Reply
:iconzephyr-zucchini:
Zephyr-Zucchini Featured By Owner Sep 6, 2007
Its very good! Quite the elfy king :)
But his robes...a bit much...
Reply
:iconaautio:
aautio Featured By Owner Sep 7, 2007
Thanks! :) Yeah, bot Finwë and Fëanor turned out quite dandy.. but I just figured they liked showing off! ;)
Reply
:iconzephyr-zucchini:
Zephyr-Zucchini Featured By Owner Sep 8, 2007
elf lords showing off? SCANDELOUS! whats next? Tall dwarves?
Reply
:iconaautio:
aautio Featured By Owner Sep 11, 2007
:lol: Possibly..

I've just always pictured the Noldor as quite vainglorious.
Reply
:iconzephyr-zucchini:
Zephyr-Zucchini Featured By Owner Sep 12, 2007
oh yes, naturally....but they cover it up with arrogance.....does that sound stupid to you? as i re-read it i find myself blushing...
Reply
:iconaautio:
aautio Featured By Owner Sep 13, 2007
Umm.. no, I wouldn't say stupid, but it doesn't make much sense.. since I see all that as pretty much one and the same (but being a non-native speaker, I might miss a nuance there..:roll:)
Reply
:iconzephyr-zucchini:
Zephyr-Zucchini Featured By Owner Sep 13, 2007
nope, not at all . Maybe theres a difference like the one between car and automobile..I do that alot :P
Reply
:iconsirielle:
Sirielle Featured By Owner Aug 28, 2007   Digital Artist
Fantastic, finally my poor Finwë will have a decent avatar (though all details will be gone, but I'll link back here). I'm between travelling, but will take a closer look later and tell of any suggestions if I have them :) Keep doing great job! :D

Finwë is missing so much, there are almost no portraits of him! (And I've never finished mine, eh.)
Reply
:iconaautio:
aautio Featured By Owner Aug 29, 2007
True, not many Finwës out there.. I'm glad you like mine. :)
Reply
:iconidril-celebrindal:
Idril-Celebrindal Featured By Owner Aug 23, 2007
Wonderful work. I can't wait to see the whole project.
Reply
:iconaautio:
aautio Featured By Owner Aug 24, 2007
Thanks! Me neither! ;)
Reply
:iconidril-celebrindal:
Idril-Celebrindal Featured By Owner Aug 24, 2007
:D I bet!
Reply
:iconlilies3:
Lilies3 Featured By Owner Aug 22, 2007
Wow, that looks absolutely amazing :D
the detail and proportion (<-- did I spell it right? :S)
is perfect ;P
wonderful job:love:
Reply
:iconaautio:
aautio Featured By Owner Aug 23, 2007
Thanks a lot! :hug: (and yes, the spelling is correct.. although to be precise, it's almost exclusively used in plural in this context -- hence "proportions" would be better.. :))
Reply
:iconlilies3:
Lilies3 Featured By Owner Aug 23, 2007
yur welcome:D
and thank yu! I will keep in lesson in mind :hug:
Reply
:iconunreal-abstract:
Unreal-Abstract Featured By Owner Aug 22, 2007
The outfit is amazing. His face even more. The expression somehow highlits his noble birth I may say...
Reply
:iconaautio:
aautio Featured By Owner Aug 22, 2007
Thank you! :) That's what I was going for.. noble and gracious, but perhaps slightly patronizing..
Reply
:iconunreal-abstract:
Unreal-Abstract Featured By Owner Aug 22, 2007
:) Then you succeeded!

And sorry i didn't reply to the first message. You were talking about how nice it is when you meet the real Tolkien fans. Alas, today everybody calls themselves real Tolkien fans, and in the end you realize they've only watched movies and played the game which is very bad. Speaking of games, I remember the LOTR game I played on my old pc. I think it was 286 or something. Maybe even older. But anyway, it is a game made by Interplay which no one remembers anymore. It helped me to learn to read. :) So I grew up on Tolkien's stories!

*whispers* and the first book I ever read was The Hobbit. ;)
Reply
:iconaautio:
aautio Featured By Owner Aug 23, 2007
Thanks! Hhmm.. I don't think I've ever played any Tolkien-themed computer game, so I don't remember that either.. too bad, I'm sure I would've loved it if I had had it back then!

Good choice for the first book to read! :D
Reply
:icontoradh:
Toradh Featured By Owner Aug 22, 2007  Hobbyist Traditional Artist
That's a very special clothing design this time. The fur and the jewelly look so… unused! I'd call it "unusual" in a totally positive way of meaning. It's different from many other interpretations of Tolkien's elves and yet fits very well.
Great job on that!
Reply
:iconaautio:
aautio Featured By Owner Aug 22, 2007
Thank you! :) I made a small sketch for his outfit an those clothes just.. happened. :D
Reply
:iconatsouza:
atsouza Featured By Owner Aug 22, 2007
Oh my, if this is any indication, this completed piece is going to be fabulous. Again, I'd just like to state how remarkable your Tolkien characterizations are.
Reply
:iconaautio:
aautio Featured By Owner Aug 22, 2007
Thanks a lot :thanks:
Reply
:iconseekhim:
SeekHim Featured By Owner Aug 21, 2007
I like it! One actually sees very few pictures of Finwe around.
I'm looking forward to seeing your other Elven lords.
Reply
:iconaautio:
aautio Featured By Owner Aug 22, 2007
Thank you! :) True, I haven't seen almost any pictures of him either..
Reply
:iconseekhim:
SeekHim Featured By Owner Aug 22, 2007
You also should consider doing some pictures of Ingwe, Olwe and Dior.
They're practically non-existant. And there's not many of Thingol out
their either.
Reply
:iconaautio:
aautio Featured By Owner Aug 22, 2007
True.. It'd be fun to draw them at some point. I'm certainly in no shortage of ideas for Tolkien-themed drawings.. :D
Reply
:iconc-ungol:
C-Ungol Featured By Owner Aug 21, 2007  Hobbyist Traditional Artist
the outfit design is simply amazing, my only thing is when the robe curves out behind him it looks a little akward, maybe if you made it more symmetrical, brought the curve on the left in more.

you obviously have a good hold on interpreting tolkien's descriptions, can't wait to see the finished product. :D
Reply
:iconaautio:
aautio Featured By Owner Aug 22, 2007
Oooo.. yes, you're right.. it does look wrong. I think I'll have to get rid of that part behind him on his left hand side. that'll probably fix it.

Thanks! :)
Reply
:iconyoodi:
yoodi Featured By Owner Aug 21, 2007  Hobbyist General Artist
His design seems a bit overcrowded to me, but that will look different once it's coloured and everything I know and from your comment I guess that was intentional. I agree with the other character points you mentioned about him (hair and face etc), also with the colours gold, ruby and sapphire.
For the Tengwar inscription, I always prefer the regular style and if it's possible a hand-written (calligraphy pen) version, not a computer font.
Since you know the HoME and I don't, I think you know best which name to chose for the inscription. All the characters have several names and the name in the inscription should be consistant with the time/setting/environment, I'm certain you know what I mean. ;)
Reply
:iconaautio:
aautio Featured By Owner Aug 22, 2007
You mean the whole picture is crowded? That's true, but it's just a compilation of different elements that will end up

I'm also leaning towards the regular style for the Tengwar inscription. You are right about the importance of choosing the right names - I will use only their original father-names (and mother-names when given) in Quenya (and Telerin for the Sons of Finarfin) as given in the Shibboleth of Fëanor.

I will finalize the design for the frame in AutoCad, but then I might print it and trace the final lineart and write the Tengwar by hand.. it would probably look better. :nod:

Thanks for the comment! :hug:
Reply
:iconyoodi:
yoodi Featured By Owner Aug 22, 2007  Hobbyist General Artist
No, I mean the clothing and jewellery, lots of different patterns and juingly stuff. ;)

Very good with the names and hand-written Tengwar. :D
You're very welcome. :)
Reply
:iconaautio:
aautio Featured By Owner Aug 23, 2007
(my comment above was supposed to be "..that will end up in different places in the final triptych design" -- I don't know where I lost the end of that sentence. :roll:)

Ok, got it.. And I was aware of the amount of bling-bling =P as i drew it.. but then again I thought he'd like to leave no doubt as to who was the king around here.. ;)
Reply
:iconwerelyan:
Werelyan Featured By Owner Aug 21, 2007
He looks perfect. You did such a great job on designing his clothes. I look forward to see the rest of the lords.
Reply
:iconaautio:
aautio Featured By Owner Aug 22, 2007
Thank you! :) I'll keep them coming.. but I have no idea of the schedule. :D
Reply
:iconfrostnight:
Frostnight Featured By Owner Aug 21, 2007  Professional General Artist
Nize I love his clotes.. I hope I can get this good at drawing elves :)
Reply
:iconaautio:
aautio Featured By Owner Aug 22, 2007
Thank you! :) The more you draw the better you get.. :D
Reply
:iconbaalam:
Baalam Featured By Owner Aug 21, 2007  Student
lovely, very interesting :) I like your take on the character
Reply
:iconaautio:
aautio Featured By Owner Aug 21, 2007
Thank you! :)
Reply
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