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Battle of Five Armies: Elves of Mirkwood by Tulikoura Battle of Five Armies: Elves of Mirkwood by Tulikoura
"A few brave men of Esgaroth were strung before goblins to make a feint of resistance, and many there fell before the rest drew back and fled to either side. As Gandalf had hoped, the goblin army had gathered behind the resisted vanguard, and poured now in rage into the valley, driving wildly up between the arms of the Mountain, seeking for the foe. Their banners were countless, black and red, and they came on like a tide in fury and disorder.

The elves were the first to charge. Their hatred for the goblins is cold and bitter. Their spears and swords shone in the gloom with a gleam of chill flame, so deadly was the wrath of the hands that held them. As soon as the host of their enemies was dense in the valley, they sent against it a shower of arrows, and each flickered as it fled as if with stinging fire. Behind the arrows a thousand of their spearmen leapt down and charged. The yells were deafening. The rocks were stained black with goblin blood. Just as the goblins were recovering from the onslaught and the elf-charge was halted, there rose from across the valley a deep-throated roar. With cries of "Moria!" and "Dain, Dain!" the dwarves of the Iron Hills plunged in, wielding their mattocks, upon the other side; and beside them came the men of the Lake with long swords. Panic came upon the Goblins; and even as they turned to meet this new attack, the elves charged again with renewed numbers. Already many of the goblins were flying back down the river to escape from the trap: and many of their own wolves were turning upon them and rending the dead and the wounded. Victory seemed at hand, when a cry rang out on the heights above.

Goblins had scaled the Mountain from the other side and already many were on the slopes above the Gate, and others were streaming down recklessly, heedless of those that fell screaming from cliff and precipice, to attack the spurs from above. Each of these could be reached by paths that ran down from the main mass of the Mountain in the centre; and the defenders had too few to bar the way for long. Victory now vanished from hope. They had only stemmed the first onslaught of the black tide."

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Pen & drawing ink work. Previous work: "Battle of Five Armies: Men of Esgaroth" [link]. Probably going to be followed by: Dain's warriors and/or Thorin's company and Iron Hill dwarves/ Bolg's warriors. "Beorn Finds Thorin" has been made earlier [link]. Final work, "Thorin's Farewell", is also planned.
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:iconvaleriejoylauria:
ValerieJoyLauria Featured By Owner Jan 17, 2015  Hobbyist General Artist
Wow!
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:icontulikoura:
Tulikoura Featured By Owner Jan 18, 2015  Hobbyist Traditional Artist
Thanks :)
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:icondelacroixhcm:
Delacroixhcm Featured By Owner Dec 22, 2014
 This is the first time I see a picture of Elves that doesn't look like Elves. Brilliant work though by the way.
If not for the tittle, I would not realize that these are Mirkwood Elves. I'm just a little curious as to why there's no pointy ears, aside from the not Elvis helmet.
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:icontulikoura:
Tulikoura Featured By Owner Dec 23, 2014  Hobbyist Traditional Artist
Hehe, well someone has to be the "odd" one ;) thank you. I had a few problems when I inked this, as their faces looked better in the pencil version...

Well, I'm a fan of Victor Ambrus' (pospovic.sweb.cz/Feanor.jpg) and Ian Miller's style (heirsofdurin.files.wordpress.c… when it comes to depicting elves and dwarves. I would like to give elves more "norman viking" kind of look, with tall shields, metal helms and mail hauberks - even for Mirkwood elves with some modifications. I decided to give them open-faced bascinets, mail shirts and round shields.

What do you mean with "elvish helmet"?
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:icondelacroixhcm:
Delacroixhcm Featured By Owner Dec 23, 2014
Well! The common stereotype of Elvish helmet would be tall and of elegant design. Basically they look like the helmets the Elves wear in your other picture " The Battle of Unnumbered Tears". Now that I think about it, there are many groups of Elves in Tolkien works and each of them has different culture. Funny enough, there's no Dark Elves.
 
Your depiction of Elves and Dwarves is a pleasant surprise to me:) (Smile) . Before coming upon your series of Tolkien works, the idea of Dwarves using pikes has never occurred to me, yet it made more sense the more I think about it.

Is it wrong that I happen to enjoy your illustrations of Elves and Dwarves more than of Men of Middle-earth? Wink/Razz 
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:icontulikoura:
Tulikoura Featured By Owner Dec 30, 2014  Hobbyist Traditional Artist
I see. There might have been a small influence from Warhammer High Elves there :) but tall helmet fits the description I think. Yep, according to the lore silvan elves that live in the Mirkwood are more like rangers and guerilla warfare experts and have lightly armed, fast moving border patrols when compared to noldor elves. But if they send a host outside their border it's well armed, no doubt. Mmm, I do recall a smith Eöl in Silmarillion, "Pimentohaltia" in Finnish which means Dark Elf (which might be the term used in English as well).

Heh, nice to hear. I'm somewhat against the idea that dwarves only use axes and such. The fact that I like polearms and such might have something to do with it, though... XD but in the Silmarillion elves use clubs and slings, axes and such so it's weird do assume some weapons are not used. Not to mention swords dwarves use in the Hobbit book...

I guess I have found my niche then ;)
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:icondragonbaba:
dragonbaba Featured By Owner Jun 20, 2014  Hobbyist Artisan Crafter
Brilliant work
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:iconjoryrferrell:
JoryRFerrell Featured By Owner Apr 30, 2014  Professional Artist
Hey...how much would an image like this cost? How long would it take to complete?
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:iconscathatheworm:
scathatheworm Featured By Owner Jan 19, 2014
brilliant again
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:icongiuseppeschillaci:
GiuseppeSchillaci Featured By Owner Jan 16, 2014  Hobbyist General Artist
very good interpretations! your works on Tolkien saga are really well interpreted.
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:iconeduardoleon:
EduardoLeon Featured By Owner Oct 16, 2013  Hobbyist Traditional Artist
EXCELENT!
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:iconjdr-illustrator:
JDR-Illustrator Featured By Owner Jun 1, 2013  Professional Digital Artist
My friend, I look forward to seeing your images in complete black and white ink; but keep in mind there is a certain charm in the mixing of the graphite and ink, as well.
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:iconrazielus91:
Razielus91 Featured By Owner May 4, 2013  Hobbyist General Artist
Amazing work

There are so many fine details and each of them look perfect
Keep up the good work :)
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:iconjailgurdnegative:
jailgurdnegative Featured By Owner Mar 13, 2013  Hobbyist
Whoop de-doo! Your fight scenes keep getting bigger.
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:iconbagasuit091:
bagasuit091 Featured By Owner Mar 1, 2013  Hobbyist General Artist
Wonderful!
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:icontulikoura:
Tulikoura Featured By Owner Mar 5, 2013  Hobbyist Traditional Artist
Thank you very much!
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:iconwoutart:
woutart Featured By Owner Feb 28, 2013
You're improving mate! Why? You ask? Because I think the individual characters in this piece are more recognasible as such. They are a whole, but you can pick them apart. I really like the design of your Elves. You have an original take, not 'tainted' by movies so to speak. I would love to see yor view on Dain's Dwarves, being the most heavily armed and armoured fighters of their era. Very well rendered once again. You make me want to draw/paint battles. :D

Have you ever considered using ink wash instead of graphite? Somehow I think it would suit your work even more. Especially the skies. Why? Well, you are very good at texturing with ink lines, so somehow the use of praphite seems redundant to me. You could texture the rock with ink lines and lightly ink-wash the skies.

Man I adore your style!
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:icontulikoura:
Tulikoura Featured By Owner Mar 5, 2013  Hobbyist Traditional Artist
Thanks W! I agree with "more clear lines" and such, and whole-heartely with this graphite pencil issue. I have found that I'm starting to dislike using it, it doesnt look too good despite having certain aspects that make drawing easier, and recently I have used it a lot for backrounds and such. Too much, maybe. In a way I liked when I used drawing ink for everything. Ink wash would bring this to a new level, it's a very nice suggestion. When should I have courage to try that I wonder XD...

Some attempts to draw Iron Mountain dwarves was made in that serie where the battle of Nanduhirion was involved. Your depiction of a Iron Hill dwarf with heavy ringmail armour was very spot on in my opinion.

I can't draw faces too well, especially when it comes to elven faces... Lack of beard is all I can manage :lol:
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:iconwoutart:
woutart Featured By Owner Mar 5, 2013
True, you already drew some of those dwarves, I remember. And faces without beards... how horrid ;) Your faces aren't bad J. They are hard, as I experience every time when I try to draw one. Especially so when drawn small in mass scenes, as you are wont to do. The way you draw them is very effective.

Anyway, learning to work with inkwash can be a bit daunting I suppose. It's been ages for me, I must admit. Make a few small sketches based on some outlined characters and surround them with light wash. Just to get (re?)acquainted with the technique. Oh yes, and UPLOAD(!) them, because I am already curious as to the result :D :lol:
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:iconwoutart:
woutart Featured By Owner Feb 28, 2013
*your
*graphite

pffffff, thick fingers... ;)
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:iconscathatheworm:
scathatheworm Featured By Owner Feb 27, 2013
another brilliant drawing, theirs a reddit sub called r/tolkienart they would love your stuff, also r/tolkienfans would love this!
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:icontulikoura:
Tulikoura Featured By Owner Mar 5, 2013  Hobbyist Traditional Artist
Thank you, I'm glad you like this.

I'm unfamiliar to reddit I'm afraid, and I like to keep things here as I'm a bit lazy to "spread out" so to speak. Thank you for informing about this, though! I 'll take a look if I can spot some art I haven't seen before...
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:iconoikeus:
Oikeus Featured By Owner Feb 25, 2013   Traditional Artist
Hienoa jälkeä taas kerran, tuo yksityiskohtien määrä on kyllä todella ihailtavaa :clap:

Ihan mielenkiinosta kysyn, kuinka isoja nämä työsi oikein ovat? Piperrätkö nää ihan tavalliselle A4 vai teetkö ne isommalle paperille?
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:icontulikoura:
Tulikoura Featured By Owner Feb 25, 2013  Hobbyist Traditional Artist
Kiitoksia kommentista! Kyllä tätä sai hiukan näperrelläkin, ei ole tullut aikoihin piirrettyä niin oli melkoisen hidasta. A4 kokoa nämä yleensä ovat, yhtään tuota isompi ei skanneriin mahtuisi ja menisi varmasti hermot piirtäessä kun nykyiselläänkin menee jo useita päiviä tussaamisessa luonnostelun jälkeen XD
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:iconskyvalr:
skyvalr Featured By Owner Feb 24, 2013  Student Traditional Artist
This is sick!
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:icontulikoura:
Tulikoura Featured By Owner Mar 5, 2013  Hobbyist Traditional Artist
Hehe, sick in a good way I hope ;)
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:iconskyvalr:
skyvalr Featured By Owner Mar 5, 2013  Student Traditional Artist
In the radical sort of way
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:iconbroadshore:
Broadshore Featured By Owner Feb 24, 2013  Hobbyist Digital Artist
One of the most Brutal battles of Middle Earth's history. Great depiction of the battle.
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:icontulikoura:
Tulikoura Featured By Owner Mar 5, 2013  Hobbyist Traditional Artist
Thank you. Brutal and interesting, so many things to draw. It's just a bit tricky to keep focus on directions - who were on the eastern slope and who on the southern? Where's the gate and how large the valley should be? Was there a river?

Loveable challenges.
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:iconbroadshore:
Broadshore Featured By Owner Mar 5, 2013  Hobbyist Digital Artist
A Challenge you Accepted man. Keep them coming. :D
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:iconvictorelessar:
VictorElessar Featured By Owner Feb 24, 2013
wonderful piece!
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:icontulikoura:
Tulikoura Featured By Owner Feb 28, 2013  Hobbyist Traditional Artist
Thank you!
Reply
:iconcolgatetotal97:
colgatetotal97 Featured By Owner Feb 24, 2013  Student Digital Artist
the details..mother of god. i dont even want to attempt doing a battle scene. this is amazing.
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:icontulikoura:
Tulikoura Featured By Owner Feb 28, 2013  Hobbyist Traditional Artist
Thank you, I'm glad you like this.

:D there are easier ways for doing battle scenes than relying on "tedious detailing" with drawing ink like done here while adding colours would bump up the difficulty immidiately, at least in my case, heh.
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:icongiubian:
giubian Featured By Owner Feb 24, 2013  Hobbyist Traditional Artist
Stunning details!
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:icontulikoura:
Tulikoura Featured By Owner Feb 28, 2013  Hobbyist Traditional Artist
Thank you very much!
Reply
:iconmuttmix:
MuttMix Featured By Owner Feb 24, 2013  Hobbyist Writer
Sweet!
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:icontulikoura:
Tulikoura Featured By Owner Feb 28, 2013  Hobbyist Traditional Artist
Thank you!
Reply
:iconjackthelateriser:
JackTheLateRiser Featured By Owner Feb 24, 2013
Yeah, new stuff of this series! That makes me feel happy to see, you work on new amazing pictures!
Your style is incredible, in my opinion the best style for Tolkien's world!
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:icontulikoura:
Tulikoura Featured By Owner Feb 25, 2013  Hobbyist Traditional Artist
Thank you very much, I appreciate what you said. I have been quite lazy recently when it comes to drawing and it "only" took about, what, half a year to continue this serie... hopefully the rest will be finished quicker ;)
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:iconjackthelateriser:
JackTheLateRiser Featured By Owner Feb 27, 2013
Take your time. It's done when it's done! ;)
I'm definitely curious about what comes next!
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:iconcisp:
CISP Featured By Owner Feb 24, 2013
I like the picture. However, I personally don't see any Elves. I see goblins and dalish warriors. But no elves. I'm a bit confused, to be honest. :-)
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:icontulikoura:
Tulikoura Featured By Owner Feb 25, 2013  Hobbyist Traditional Artist
...no beards and pointy ears can't be seen under helms... XD

Might be because I really can't draw "elven" like faces (human faces in general are tricky to draw), that's pretty much my part to that. When it comes to armour and gear in general I usually tend to give each race certain "unique" characteristics, but in a low fantasy manner. Compared for example to Esgaroth militia with many variants of gear all elves have good helmets and ringmail. Dwarves and orcs on the other hand have sturdy and heavy armours, sharing similarities (both races are good smiths and small sized compared to men).
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:iconannie-stuart:
Annie-Stuart Featured By Owner Feb 24, 2013  Professional General Artist
I agree... there's no question that this is gorgeously done, but it's not readily apparent where the Elves are. To me it looks like a brilliant drawing of two non-specific armies fighting. Perhaps there could be something more about their armor or tabards that is specifically elvish, or boreal-looking?
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:icontulikoura:
Tulikoura Featured By Owner Feb 25, 2013  Hobbyist Traditional Artist
Hehe... Like I answered to ~CISP, aside poorly drawn faces (notice the lack of beards, :lol:) I try to give "subtle" features to each races when it comes to armours and such. I imagine elves to be norman-like when compared for example to the look they have in Jackson's movies. I have used coat of arms in elven shields previously but now I thought "basic" version suits these guys better.
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:iconegilsterkr:
EgilSterkr Featured By Owner Feb 24, 2013
Great!
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:icontulikoura:
Tulikoura Featured By Owner Feb 25, 2013  Hobbyist Traditional Artist
Thank you!
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:iconwytherwing:
wytherwing Featured By Owner Feb 24, 2013
very fine work! :thumbsup:
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:icontulikoura:
Tulikoura Featured By Owner Feb 25, 2013  Hobbyist Traditional Artist
:bow: I'm glad you like this, thank you.

Btw, late congrats for the November's DD!
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:iconwytherwing:
wytherwing Featured By Owner Feb 25, 2013
:) you're very welcome, and thank you for the DD congrats :ahoy:
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