wallace_trust: Me and my plum tree (Default)
Hello and Welcome! to this journal, devoted to my ongoing artistic relationship with the inspirational characters from "The Lord of the Rings."

I first read Tolkien's masterpiece when I was very young and in need of it without knowing, and it transported me into a world of love and grief and hope and beauty that I have never left behind. Even now that I am well into middle age, with thousands of books under my belt, the only other works I have read with which I am willing to compare it are sections of the Mahabharata and certain stories from the Puranas-- stately and ancient Sanskrit works of extreme beauty and power.

Since I first read the book I have been working on LOtR fan art, made only for my personal satisfaction, because I simply cannot help myself. There's just too much beauty in the story; I had to start painting or burst! While I have appreciated all of the various movie and television versions, my art has always been based solidly on the original book and my personal extrapolations from it, and most of it features Frodo and Sam, the dear companions of my youth, as I have envisioned and re-envisioned them over the years. Now, at this stage of my life, it's finally time to share the results of that long and wonderful journey. I hope you like it. 

Why Frodo and Sam? Why not the dashing Aragorn, or the ever-popular Legolas? Because the hobbits are the heart of the matter! Frodo and his gallant gardener are not the biggest, or the strongest, or the smartest, or the most handsome characters in the "Lord of the Rings." But they are by far the most courageous, and in some unexpected ways. Indeed, as Elrond informs them, the difficult task they face together, that we all face every day we live in this Middle-Earth, may be attempted by the weak as well as by the strong. The ultimate human conflict cannot be won by force of arms, but by the heart alone.

Empathy, compassion, unconditional love and selfless service-- the ability to recognize others as part of one's self, the ability to support our friends to the last breath and have mercy on those who betray us-- these defeat the evil of the human ego when it has grown too big. In Tolkien's world the planet Venus, our Star of Love, is Eärendil's Star, the Star of High Hope!

I hope you enjoy your visit to my little corner of Middle-Earth, however brief it may be. 'The Rules' are simple and commonsense. Everyone is welcome here, no exceptions. Diverse opinions are encouraged. Everyone has their own version of what Tolkien means to them and these versions can be very different. This is the mark of a great, enduring book which can withstand the test of time and apply itself to whatever human circumstance.  So be courteous.  Flaming and hate posts will be removed. And please don't hotlink to my fanart, but rather to the home page.

DISCLAIMER:  This website is my personal, non-commercial, artistic journal and NOT an official "Lord of the Rings" site, and it is NOT affiliated in any way with any official LOtR rights-holders.  I do not own any of these characters; they were created by J.R.R. Tolkien. The artworks and commentary posted here are a labor of love, not for profit, and intended to express my admiration for Tolkien's books and to encourage others to read and study the Professor's original works. 

Below:  "Imaginary Friends." 

     When I was a kid I would camp out under the stars with my invisible hobbit friends.

[sticky entry] Sticky: The Eagles Have Come!

Dec. 4th, 2015 08:42 pm
wallace_trust: Me and my plum tree (Default)

wallace_trust: Me and my plum tree (Default)
As Frodo sleeps in Ithilien, Sam contemplates his beloved friend.

Frodo sleeping in Ithilien

[sticky entry] Sticky: "And Then I Said..."

Dec. 14th, 2037 07:08 am
wallace_trust: Me and my plum tree (Default)
Frodo captivated by Sam's heartfelt description of him in Ithilien. 

[sticky entry] Sticky: And... "Arrival"

Jul. 23rd, 2017 11:27 am
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Frodo and Sam reunited at last in the Blessed Realm.  :)  

The little empty rowboat symbolizes Sam's life in Middle-Earth, which he has now left.  The glowing orbs represent various Valar, Maiar, and maybe even some Ainur, appearing out of the void to witness this extraordinary event.  


I'd like to acknowledge here the incredible artistry of Meshbox, who crafted the geometry of the elven sailing ship.  

Frodo and Sam reunited in the Blessed Realm
wallace_trust: Me and my plum tree (Default)
This is not an attempt at 'illustrating the story' but rather a depiction of Frodo's departure as my heart sees it.  Frodo departs the world as Sam looks on.  Sam's skimpy clothing reflects the nakedness of the emotions he is feeling, as well as his absolute loss.  


Frodo departs this world as Sam looks on
wallace_trust: Me and my plum tree (Default)
It's been a very stressful week for us here on the Fruit Fly Farm, with more to come, so I set aside my movie work and took a few hours yesterday to relax with our hobbit friends back in the Shire  :)  All my tension just melted away as I attempted to capture some of the sweetness and innocence of our beloved Sam!  

Making this was very interesting.  I wanted to explore how some of the newer CG technology might apply to my hobbit pictures, so I took my previous version of Sam and gave him an anime-style makeover.  His eyes and surfaces were all replaced with updated materials, including a highly detailed skin which is derived from photographs of a real person, and his hair (while never really being curly enough) is now dynamic, so it can blow with the wind! 

This render is unretouched-- no hand painting was needed.  

Sam in the garden looking wistfully on
wallace_trust: Me and my plum tree (Default)
 Maybe I can post the last two pages at the same time...  ^_^;

See more... )
wallace_trust: Me and my plum tree (Default)
 ...And of course, the cut tag actually worked on my first entry, after I was convinced it hadn't!  Let's see if it will work on page 2:

EDIT:  It did!  The last two pages are much the best-- I'll post them tonight  ^_^  

See more... )
wallace_trust: Me and my plum tree (Default)
So I was sitting here this morning, aching and still exhausted from laying floor tiles yesterday in Mom's bedroom (I get to do more today, yay!)  My graphics software is mostly tied up doing some digital props for my cousin's new movie, and the majority of my analog fanworks are stuck in the back of a bookcase which is currently buried behind another bookcase to make room for me to lay the new floor.  I was about to despair of having anything to cough up for this journal when I saw an old peechee sitting on yet another bookcase in the closet.  I picked it up and found this inside!  :D  

I made this about 20 years ago, when word processing was still a new and wondrous world, so my main focus here really wasn't the content, but the sheer joy of moving whole blocks of text around the page.  It mixes fandoms, and the first two pages aren't that funny, but I kind of find my stride by page 3.   Favorite idea:  Gandalf as a Time Lord, attending kindergarten with Tom Baker  :D  

The cut tags aren't working for me at all this morning, so making more than one post.  Sorry, I'll try to spread them out...

See more... )
wallace_trust: Me and my plum tree (Default)
 Well, it's that time of summer when we're all scrambling (no matter how slowly) to prepare for the rest of the year.  I am currently hip-deep in too many projects-- putting new floor tiles in the master bedroom at the farm and setting up to clean and paint (with help from friends) my mother's darling "Crickhollow" cabin-- when I haven't been just laying around under the AC trying to survive the heat and smoke that's been plaguing our neck of the woods for a week now.  So I haven't been spending much time looking through my fanworks for stuff to post.  
That will change as fall progresses, but for now, I'll make do with posting a photo of the Wonderful hobbit set I was recently given by my dear Mother as a special birthday gift!  
Being based in the bookverse, and so often oblivious to what's going on in the wider world, I realize I'm just a little late to the party when it comes to reviewing some of these movie-based LOTR toys; but maybe it can still be useful.  
"There and Back Again" is carefully crafted to appeal to fans of both the books and the films.  The five hobbit "action figures" are adorable-- first Frodo in a lovely grey brocade with his hair neatly combed back, then Sam in his very best homespun.  Bilbo is nestled in the center of the group with a bright grin on his face, dressed finely but plainly; and lastly, Merry and Pippin, both dressed in their best.  All five hobbits are ready for a night out on the town!  A little journal is included which is designed to look like the Red Book.  
The background of the display box is a lovely photographic panorama of the Shire.  And I like the arrangement of the hobbits in their display; particularly I like the idea of Sam being tucked cosily among the Bagginses, where he belongs.  The star on the cover of the Red Book journal is just behind them and over their heads, and I find this a very thoughtful touch.  
On the back of the box is a map of the travels of all five hobbits, with a detailed legend.  I actually learned a couple of small things as I examined this  map.  The packaging is very sturdy and makes its own display case.
In conclusion, this play set is beautifully thought out and deserves an AAA rating.  It would work very well as a grand prize in fannish contests.  As for what I'll do with mine, well, I'll put it on the shelf and be careful to dust it off once in awhile, and even unopened it will be a source of enjoyment for years to come!  :)  

There and Back Again hobbit figure set


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