Friday, 10 December 2010

The Waves are spreading!

The end of another working week and one side of the waves is mostly done!  This detail is turning out to be much more time consuming than I had imagined - and the maximum time I seem to be able to do at this level of concentration at the moment is about 2 and a half hours.  But progress is being made, and lots of the guests at the Miramar seem to be very interested in the lion - which is great for general publicity as they are mostly local people.

I've been hearing lots of little snippets of conversations while working on the lion - people's children living abroad, friends who couldn't make it due to illness, talk of holidays past and future - all of life seems to go on around me as I paint - it's quite amazing really - like some installation all by itself - the actual process.  It does leave me quite tired - but happy, because this is really, really good fun :D

Wednesday, 8 December 2010

Wavy patterns

Happy Wednesday!  Today I gave Si his iris's and pupils!  That makes him look much more real (well, for a fiberglass lion anyway!).  I also started experimenting with the wave pattern taken from a Tolkien painting.  Not Sure I've quite got it, but there is plenty of room for the waves to meander more across the rest of the mane.

I had lots of conversations about the project today - all good for spreading the word - a couple of people actually seemed interested in bidding for a lion when they are auctioned off next summer.

Am going to try and get in earlier tomorrow - might even catch some of the breakfast crowd!

Monday, 6 December 2010

The Mane base colour goes on!

It was great to get back to the Miramar today and continue with the painting.  I spent some time tidying up the face and painting the ears, then putting whites in the eyes - not typical lion eyes I might add - they will be more human when finished.  My daughter asked if they could be blue like hers and mine, so blue they will be - this will reflect the wavy theme of the mane nicely I hope, which has now had it's base colour added.

Quite a few people came up to say hello today, including the managers mother.  It's so lovely that people are taking an interest in the project - hopefully the word will be spreading and the project will grow - it would be great to have the town over-run by the lions next summer.

Anyway - here is the result of today's efforts - progress - but so much more to do.  Roll on the next painting day :)

Friday, 3 December 2010

The Painting Begins

Hurray - Silmiramarillion now has the beginnings of a face :D

I braved the icy roads of Bournemouth this afternoon and spent a couple of hours at the Miramar making a start on the face.  We shared the space with a Bridge afternoon, but I don't think we distracted each other too much.  In fact I enjoyed the babble of conversation going on around me and explaining what the lion was for.

It felt brilliant to spend a couple of hours painting, then stand back to see a face and character emerging from the fiberglass.  I went off at one point for clean water and the sight of a proper face on the lion as I returned made a large beam spread across my face.  I can't wait to get back there and continue.

I hope every day or few hours I spend there go so well.

Thursday, 2 December 2010


Oh no!  My first day of painting has been snowed off - in Bournemouth - how bizarre.

And not sure tomorrow will be better - especially as my daughter's school will be closed :(

I guess the lion has been patient for a while, a couple more days wont hurt.  I'm itching to get started though and might make it along for a bit tomorrow.  It's all so frustrating, but then the snow is very pretty.  And at least the kids are enjoying it.

Wednesday, 1 December 2010

Calm before the painting

Well here he is folks!  A proud and eager Silmiramarillion.  Yes I know it's a mouthful - but you get used to it ;)

I popped into the Miramar this morning (in the snow, well, Bournemouth's version of snow) to see where he would be whilst painting and to get some pics.  He is (rather scarily) in the public lounge by the grand piano - and painting is due to begin tomorrow morning!

The picture doesn't really show the scale - look out for more soon - but this is a life-sized adult male lion.  Quite a challenge for a lowly cartographer/come painter. 

This lion is going to be a tribute to J R R Tolkien who used to holiday at the Miramar many moons ago with his wife.  I am told some of the family still visit regularly.

And me?  I am Elanor - named from Lord of the Rings (a small golden star-shaped flower from the woods of Lothlorien) and a fan of the great man and his fantasy world.  I've lived in Bournemouth over 4 years and work as a self-employed cartographer/graphic designer/artist.  I run creative networking group Bournemouth Creatives and am a mum to Sophie.  No doubt you'll find out more as we go along.

Blogging is new to me, as is painting lions - but I am going to have a lot of fun and it's all for a good cause as next year Bournemouth's Pride will be auctioned off in aid of the Born Free Foundation and Julia's House.

Hope you will enjoy following the progress  :D