Saturday, January 23, 2010

Wizard and Dowager

I used to illustrate Marion Zimmer Bradley's stories for "Marion Zimmer Bradley's Fantasy Magazine." These were usually short, amusing, rather sarcastic tales of magic and trickery. Many of them involved Bradley's cross-dressing wizard, Lythande. Lythande had masqueraded as a man in order to study magic at an all-male wizards' school. When she was discovered to be female, instead of throwing her out or killing her, the deal was that she could continue as a wizard but she must never reveal her true gender. She had to pass as a man for the rest of her life. In the stories she didn't seem too broken up about this. Lythande wandered from town to town, making her pittance by playing lute and singing in bars, and doing magical workings when requested. In this illustration she meets up with a local matron, who flirts with her/him thinking that Lythande is a pretty young man.

Ink on illustration board, 6" x 8", April 1997.

1 comment:

Tristan Alexander said...

Interesting how you showed this. I think the jaw line is way to square for a female, but the body pose/position seems femanin.