Patterns from Stories

I have a secret vice… I like making repeating patterns out of images.  This time around I was inspired by my previous post,  illustrations by John Howe.


I have linked each pattern to the image they were generated from.  Click on a pattern to see the original image. More

John Howe’s World: Strange and Familiar

Sometimes I find an illustrator who captures on paper what I imagine as I read.  This is especially  rare for old favourites like The Hobbit and The Lord of the Rings that have been growing in my imagination since childhood.  But when I look at the drawings and paintings by John Howe, I recognise people and places I have known all my life.


I’ve been enjoying myself digging through his unusually thorough and entertaining site. and am sharing some of my favourites here.  More

Day Dream Homes

When I was a child, one of my favourite day dreams was building my own home.  It was usually underground, inside a tree or under water, and often featured wall-sized fish tanks.  I’ve gathered together a number of fictional homes and rooms that inspired my day-dreams then and now.


First off – the familiar classics, starting with Bilbo Baggins’s own Bag End: More

How the tale grew in the telling: The unexpected sprouting of The Lord of the Rings

Where do stories come from?  The process of story creation is fascinating.  I’ve been reading a lot about JRR Tolkien, and how he came to write The Hobbit and The Lord of the Rings.  Most of the following information was found in Humphrey Carpenter’s biography or Tolkien. You can also read about them here at Tolkien and here at

Tolkien was someone who immersed himself in stories.  He had been creating the language and history of Middle Earth for many years, and his stories seem to emerge out of this preoccupation.  Tolkien, as quoted in Carpenter’s book: More