Monthly Archives: August 2012

3. My Favorite Characters, Part 2: Royalty

by C.S. Lois

I must apologize to you all for the tardiness of this article. It kind of slipped my mind! But here it is and here you are and we’re all happy, I hope.:D

The children (see My Favorite Characters, Part 1: The Children) play the most important role in the entire Chronicles after Aslan. But there are other characters (including some of the children!) who are famous kings and queens in Narnia. I will leave out any references to evil rulers in this article, as I will be saving that for another subject (Hint, hint!).

There are, of course, the Pevensie children who become King Peter the Magnificent, Susan the Gentle, Edmund the Just, and Lucy the Valiant. There is Caspian, Rilian and Tirian. There is king Lune, his sons Cor and Corin, and Cor’s wife, Aravis. There is Queen Swanwhite. There are other kings mentioned, such as king Gale. But did any of you seriously consider which Narnian ruler is your favorite? I don’t think that me mentioning any of the Pevensies would be fair, because my last article was about them, and as Lucy is my favorite Pevensie, that goes for when she was a Queen, too.

So I will be choosing from Caspian, Rilian, Tirian, Lune, Cor and Corin, Aravis and Swanwhite. Swanwhite, beautiful and famous as she is, doesn’t really count as she isn’t a main character. Cor doesn’t either because I think of him as the same with Shasta, and if I picked him then I would be contradicting my previous statement that Lucy was my favorite child.:) Though Corin has an irresistible personality (Who wouldn’t admit that the best boxer for miles around is their favorite person? So I’ll say that because I don’t want to get beat up. And???) and Aravis is one of my favorite people in the whole series, I’m more fond of Aravis before she becomes a Queen, and I don’t see enough of Corin to like him that much. The same goes for Lune. Thought I can’t help loving this wonderful character for his warm heart and jolly manner, he’s not seen enough, in my opinion. That leaves us with Caspian, Rilian and Tirian.

Caspian is the King that is most seen, other than Peter and Edmund. He journeys to the world’s end to find out about the seven lords (and to avenge them, if necessary, as Reepicheep insisted.) He is the one whom the Pevensies help get back his rightful throne. But he isn’t my favorite, actually. Hard to believe, huh?

Rilian is rescued from his enchantment by Jill and Eustace. We don’t get to see him very much in his true and unenchanted form, though, so I know almost nothing about his character other than the fact that he has a hard time facing temptation. (He is tempted by the Lady of the Green Kirtle, and accepts her “invitation” to rule with her, and he is sorely tempted to explore Bism when he is underground.) So this leaves my with my very favorite ruler in all of Narnian history.

King Tirian. Yes, he is my very favorite. He has incredible strength of character, he is very morally upright, defends and honors ladies, and believes in the true Aslan with all his heart. He could turn back, but doesn’t. Dispite his anger and rash decisions, I still like him best. (And I almost feel that I would do the same thing, were I in his place.) He is most definitely my favorite Narnian ruler.

Art of Dawn Doughty Davidson

A Word from the Artist

The Chronicles of Narnia have always been some of my favorite books, ever since my childhood. Like a lot of little girls, I was in love with things like unicorns and centaurs, and I was also something of an escapist, so the idea of opening a door into a magical otherworld was very appealing. And of course, there was Aslan. I was aware of the symbolism in Narnia already, and a character who combined Divine power and fearsomeness with compassion and approachability definitely helped me, at a young age, to comprehend the nature of God. Not surprisingly, Aslan is my favorite character to depict in my artwork!

My preferred creative method is to sketch out an entire composition by hand, scan it, and then do the color work in Adobe Photoshop. I may or may not take a few pictures to reference for expressions, angles, and lighting (although my work usually comes out much better when I do!) Nothing can take the place of a pencil in the hand and a tactile sheet of drawing paper, and I love drawing for hours.

However, with much of my Narnia art, I have had to work under a very tight deadline, and needed to streamline the process. Often I wind up pulling my reference photos straight into the computer, and then using photoshop layers to paint directly on top of them, picking up colors from the original photo. Since I most often use my own face, the end result typically looks nothing like the beginning! But if I’m lucky enough to find models who fit my mental image of certain characters, I will stick pretty close to the photos. It sounds simple, but it is still a challenge to harmonize a composition using this technique, and there’s no guarantee that it’ll come out better than those that start with a sketch.

My goal is to hone my painting skills until the viewer can’t tell the difference between which artworks started with a sketch and which with a photo. Judging by several reactions, I’m beginning to get there!

– Dawn Doughty Davidson

Sculptures of Swanwhite

“For years I’ve enjoyed making things out of plasticine. I make strange creatures and little people till I had a little country on the table in my room. Eventually I got good enough at it to make characters from Narnia and have had lots of fun making characters and objects from my imagination into something I could hold in my hand. I use toothpicks for shaping their faces and as supports where needed. Mostly I’ve made characters from The Horse and His Boy because it is my favourite book and because I was working on some clay animation of that story. ┬áMore recently I have switched to using sculpey which bakes solid in the oven.”

5. PC Film: Looking Forward

by C.S. Lois

Spoiler Warning: Spoilers Below!

With the upcoming movie Prince Caspian on its way, we fans have been into all the updates: from reasonable things, such as watching all trailers and TV spots that come our way, to downright obsessive things such as magnifying screencaps to 500% in hopes of catching something we missed, or trying to memorize This is Home by Switchfoot. (I’m certainly guilty of the latter.) Some of us are implicitly innocent – having avoided every spoiler out there and trusting Adamson completely, and some of us have hunted down every piece of media we could find, and as a consequence, are more skeptical. But whatever the level of obsession, and no matter how much or how little we want to leave to Adamson to decide, I think we can all relate to one thing – that we’re looking forward to this movie more than any other, except maybe The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe.

I remember when The Lion’s Call had the Y2C celebration – and it seemed like mere months ago. Amazing! I remember when I said to the family (rather loudly, I might add) that it was only one month to Prince Caspian! And now it’s only two weeks away. As the tension and excitement builds, I realize I’ve made a (rather nerdy) list of things to do beforehand. I must read the book again, I should watch the BBC version again, and I’ll try to listen to the Focus on the Family Radio theater production again. I have to memorize This is Home (so I can sing along in the theater). I’ve written my monthly review on the book Prince Caspian for May’s edition of our homeschool newsletter, and I’ve seen The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe about six times in the last few months. (Think it’s enough?) So I think I’m ready.

And with visions of a romance between Susan and Caspian (including the now-confirmed kiss – GAH!), a bit of sorcery that may go too far, and Caspian’s age, accent and – maybe most disturbing of all – hair, I feel that it won’t be as true to Lewis as we hope. But on the other hand, I think it’ll be more fulfilling than our inner Puddleglum wants us to believe. We must, (I quote) “Keep the optimism” and just hope that it’ll turn out fine.
If worse comes to worst, it’ll just be another super-duper adventure movie. *wink*