The Road Goes Ever On and On

May 07, 2012

I've done some Lord of the Rings artwork lately. Here's a "triptych" (actually, just three paintings in a series, I just want to use "triptych" because "triptych" is a cool word and I like cool words. Triptych is cool. *adjusts bow tie*), a triptych of Tolkien's brilliant "Roads go ever on and on" poem.

Each drawing is based off of different verses or versions found in The Hobbit and The Lord of the Rings. I'll send you off to my DeviantArt pages for more info ( "The Road from Bag End", "The Road Back Home",  and "The Road to Mordor").

There is one last version of this poem that I could find, spoken by the elderly Bilbo at the end of all the adventures:

"The Road goes ever on and on
Out from the door where it began.
Now far ahead the Road has gone,
Let others follow it who can!
Let them a journey new begin,
But I at last with weary feet
Will turn towards the lighted inn,
My evening-rest and sleep to meet."

I'm dearly tempted to paint that one, too. But then I wouldn't have a triptych.

The scanner wasn't kind to my paintings, so here's some photos for comparison.

While working on this, I listened to my favorite versions of this walking song:

I can't sing well, but this is an easy tune and I memorized it so I can sing it while walking the hiking trails... yes, a total geek here!

Not so fond of this one, but love the musical's version of "The Cat and the Moon."

Again, not as fond of this particular version, but love the band's other songs-- and their version of "Beren and Luthien" is incredibly haunting.

The movie version (Gandalf humming/singing it)

Which version do you like best? And which verse of the poem is your favorite?

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  1. I *love* these, especially the first one of Gandalf. Thank you for the triptych (which is just a great word) and for sharing!

  2. These are all beautiful! I love the Gandalf one!

  3. I love the paintings!!!

  4. I love these! The style of the paintings perfectly embody the feel of the lyrics.(:
    And yes, triptychs (and bow ties) are very cool.(:


  5. How lovely! That is one of my favorite LOTR poems (right up with the Bath Song), and you did it beautifully. For a second I didn't realize you had actually painted those. O.o

  6. Lovely! And much as I love a good triptych, the nerd in me that is OCD is crying out for you to do ALL the verses of ALL the versions. And I'm made so happy by the copying of Bilbo's handwriting and the redundancy of the tehtar over the vowels. Oh, and by the way, here is a link to a website which I am positive you will obsess over as much as I did when I found it--I've now read pretty much everything on the site. Anyway, it's an analysis of the LotR soundtrack, and there's some really cool stuff to be said about all the different versions of this poem: a surprising amount of the lyrics are used in other songs throughout the trilogy.

  7. Thank you!

    Victoria, the Bath Song has always been one of my favorites, too! *high five*

    Oooooooh, Kat, that website is epic. I can't wait till I have the time to read through all of it! Thanks for sharing.

  8. these are wonderful! Love your lettering too.

  9. Wow!! These are stunning. The depth and lines and lettering...I don't even know where to start. Stunning.

  10. Wow!! These are stunning. The depth and lines and lettering...I don't even know where to start. Stunning.

  11. I like them all but particularly like how you handled the foliage in the tree in the top one... perfectly suited to the subject...xx

  12. These are beautiful! Did you do the lettering by hand, too? It's very impressive.

  13. Yes, it's hand calligraphied!

  14. a storybook! love the idea and the colours!

  15. Love your art. Posted a link to you on my FB page. Awesome... especially love "the road goes ever on and on" painting.

  16. Thank you so much for sharing these! I am including the first one on a tutoring worksheet - the last one that I'll be making for a group of students. Its perfect!

    Also, I am quite tempted to make the fourth painting. I'll share if I am able to get to it.

    Keep painting!


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