J. R. R. Tolkien: Artist and Illustrator

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J. R. R. Tolkien: Artist and Illustrator
JRRT Artist.jpg
Cover of first edition, featuring Tolkien's painting of Taniquetil
AuthorWayne G. Hammond and Christina Scull
IllustratorJ. R. R. Tolkien
CountryUnited Kingdom and United States
SubjectJ. R. R. Tolkien, illustration
PublisherHarperCollins (UK) and Houghton Mifflin (US)
Publication date
Media typeHardcover (HarperCollins paperback, UK, 1998; Houghton Mifflin paperback, US, 2000)

J. R. R. Tolkien: Artist and Illustrator is a collection of paintings (mostly watercolour) and drawings by J. R. R. Tolkien for his stories, published posthumously in 1995. The book was edited by Wayne G. Hammond and Christina Scull.

Tolkien was an artist in pictures as well as in words. Though he often remarked that he had no talent for drawing, his art has charmed readers and has been exhibited to large and appreciative audiences. In fact, his talent was far more than he admitted, and his sense of design was natural and keen. Portraits are conspicuously absent from his work.

The book explores Tolkien's art at length, from his childhood paintings and drawings to his final sketches. It reproduces 200 examples of his artwork. At its heart are his illustrations for his books, especially his tales of Middle-earth. Also examined are the pictures Tolkien made for his children (notably in his The Father Christmas Letters and Mr. Bliss), his expressive calligraphy, his love of decoration, and his contributions to the typography and design of his books.

The book won the 1996 Mythopoeic Scholarship Award for Inklings Studies.[1]


  • Foreword
  • Early Work
  • Visions, Myths and Legends
  • Art for Children
  • The Hobbit
  • The Lord of the Rings
  • Patterns and Devices
  • Appendix on Calligraphy
  • Selected Bibliography
  • Index


  1. ^ "Mythopoeic Awards – Scholarship". Mythopoeic Society. Retrieved 18 September 2020.

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