Wednesday, December 14, 2011

Tam Lin / Liege & Lief cover

Ahh. This is one of my favorite pieces I've made in possibly years. As you know, the ballad Tam Lin is a song I love and continue to revisit for inspiration. Recently I was assigned to illustrate an album cover, and chose Liege & Lief, the 1969 Fairport Convention album. They have a wonderful interpretation of Tam Lin, fabulously psychedelic and haunting and rocking.

Here are some relevant lyrics:
So first let pass the horses black and then let pass the brown
Quickly run to the white steed and pull the rider down
For I'll ride on the white steed, the nearest to the town
For I was an earthly knight, they give me that renown
Oh, they will turn me in your arms to a newt or a snake
But hold me tight and fear not, I am your baby's father
And they will turn me in your arms into a lion bold
But hold me tight and fear not and you will love your child
All the sections of this piece were done in watercolor with a bit of gouache, and the final is meant to be the size of a record album. There's no original because all of the figures, animals, shadows, and the background were done separately and put together in the computer. I'm getting a lot out of this way of working, it gives me a new flexibility and range to experiment in. (For one thing, I did four versions of the woman before she was right!) I like that I can switch out for different animals and shift the composition as needed.

Soon I'll make a post with all the separate animals I drew!

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