06 July 2015

Welsh Trilogy - Drawing One {Dog} - "Arawn, Lord of the Underworld"

I've decided to blog about these three pieces of the Welsh series in three stages, or chunks.

I've concluded the conceptual, reference, and drawing processes of this first piece, and am eager to share the final, full entry version at length; if you've been following along on my process feed on Instagram or FB, you'll recognize some of these, but the series warrants a bit more in depth development of conceptual origin and the ultimate goal.

I'll be sharing the collective process of each of the other two works of this series separately, in their own posts, once they are likewise completed.

So, to start, 'Welsh Trilogy'...

My roots in inspiration for illustration come from my infatuation with mythology. I'm prone to the celtic stories, myself. The Welsh mythos, detailing similarly naturalistic iconography to that of the Irish and Scottish cultures, is well encapsulated, for the most part, in the Mabinogion.

I've mentioned the Mabinogion in my recent post about "What I'm (Re)Reading", which you can catch up on HERE.

But in short, the Mabinogion is a collection of stories expressing various branches of Welsh mythology, describing the deeds and events around key ancient heroes, heroines, and villains. The noble protagonists and antagonists of the stories are generally the archaic gods of Wales, if not legendary humans, roaming the land.

One of these classic characters is Arawn, Lord of the Underworld, a removed realm known as Annwn. Arawn of Annwn is a kind of king figure, who presides with wisdom over his land, and interacts with the human, living world as if it were a neighboring country. In early British myth, the symbols of the Underworld, or the Otherworld, and of healing, ushering, or death archetypes, are large white hounds with red ears.

As with the other two works for this trilogy series, I am making a totemic connection between mythological figures and their corresponding animals, because, in these Celtic origins, Nature is married irrevocably with human experience.

For Arawn, Lord of the Underworld, his animal is the white and red-eared dog, and he'll be portrayed in shadow, with the white and red-tipped ears, holding a precious golden apple, key to his realm.

Here is the drawing for the piece:

Arawn, Lord of Annwn, Dog of the Underworld, 2015.

There will be three final drawings on soft deckled 100% cotton Rives BFK, 10x13", and then there will be three final paintings, full color, of the same size.

Here are break down snap shots of the behind the scenes process for this drawing:

Preliminary Sketch, graphite on paper, 2 1/2x3 1/2"
Early Stages, Final Graphite Drawing, 8x10" Live Area
Laying in the values of the negative space, Graphite, Studio Shot, 2015.
Final Drawing, Detail, "Arawn of Annwn" - Back and Apple, 2015

In the meantime, I'll give you a clue to the remaining two pieces in the trilogy: horse, and owl.

This is a fun and intriguing project to work on, and I am eager to see them all to the painting stage!

If you would like to see more, or have any comments to contribute to the project, please share below in the comments section! I'm always interested in feedback.

Find more process information and current work on my Instagram page - I post a lot of imagery about my work and my travel there - Find me at Mairin-Taj Caya - In Medias Res


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