Friday, September 26, 2014

Eddings Horse Lord

David Eddings covered as many stock characters as he could in his "Belgariad." This one, "Hettar the Horse Lord," fills the plot slot of the "Noble Horse Clansman." These are faux-Mongols who spend most of their time on horseback and fight fiercely for the hero's cause. The late fantasy author Diana Wynne Jones, in her brilliant and hilarious encyclopedia of fantasy cliche's "The Tough Guide to Fantasyland," calls them "Anglo-Saxon Cossacks." The Horse Lords are also described in the online guide to fantasy cliche's, "TV Tropes." I am not really trying to make fun of fantasy literature here because it is impossible not to use cliche's in your fantasy writing. You just have to pick the ones which sound plausible and likable and avoid racial stereotyping, something which Eddings may not have entirely achieved. 

I drew as many of his characters as I could and then ran out of gas (or horse feed). There were plenty more I could have done but somehow I just didn't want to continue. Eddings (and his wife Leigh) wrote lots more books in the Belgariad series all of them full of illustratable stock characters. I'm not sure anyone remembers them. I took notes which sit gathering dust next to the lined-up series of tales. Dust is everywhere. Now I have digital dust as well. 

"Hettar the Horse Lord" is (was) colored pencil and markers on illustration (Bristol) board, 7" x 10", December 1992.

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