The Love of Starlight
Today I had the luxury of time to spend reading and painting, so I got caught up on Week 3 of the Silmarillion Read-Along here on Tumblr. We’re reading about the Awakening of the Elves (the Quendi). I’ve read The Lord of the Rings many times over, so I knew that the Elves loved the stars and honored Elbereth (Varda), the Valar who created them. Yet I had no idea why the Elves loved stars, aside from the fact that stars are mysterious and beautiful.
In the mythology of Middle-Earth, the world did not start out with the Sun and Moon and Stars— sources of light constantly changed. First, the Valar made great lamps (then the evil dude destroyed them). Then, they created two magical light-making trees on their isle of Valinor, leaving Middle-Earth dark (again it is dark because of Melkor). But when the Valar realized that the Children of Iluvatar (Elves, and Men) were coming, Varda created innumerable bright stars.
At the awakening of the Elves (the Firstborn), there was no light in Middle-Earth but the light of the stars.
The Valar wanted to bring the Elves to Valinor (to keep them safe from Melkor), and many of the Elves did go, and were amazed at the light of the two Trees. (The light from the Trees became the Sun and Moon later). Yet their love for the stars did not wane, even among the light of the Trees.
This painting contains four quotes pulled from this week’s chapters:
"It is doom at the Firstborn shall come in darkness… Great light is for their waning."
"Varda took the silver dews from the vats of Telperion [one of the Trees] and therewith she made new stars."
"The eyes of the Quendi beheld first of all the stars of heaven. Therefore they have ever loved the starlight…"
"Even among the radiant flowers of the Tree-lit gardens they longed still at times to see the stars."
My downfall with drawing is color, lol! I originally wanted this to be very pale and mysterious in shades of purples and blues, but once I decided to incorporate the Trees (based on the watercolor I shared last week) it all started to get very colorful very fast. I did scan in the ink drawing before painting it; maybe if I have time I’ll mess with other color schemes (or let people download the inked drawing if they by chance want to mess with it for fun?). I like the finished look, it’s just 0% like what it was inside my head.
I think I’ve given up on actually doing the read-along bingo (sorry teamedain!) because the inspiration I’m getting from the chapters doesn’t exactly align with the prompts. Also this might be one of my last evenings to spend on art before school starts. So crazy.
Oh yeah, I also found sparkle paint in my mom’s old scrapbook supplies! It didn’t show in the scan but I’ve included two photographs that hopefully show how ridiculously shiny and star-like the sparkle paint is on the paper. :)