Tuesday, June 29, 2010

Creature Feature: Theow

This was the last of the creatures I drew for the my first semester thesis, and one of my personal favorites. A Theow is a wolf-like creature with cloven hooves and a mane of many colors. I chose to use feathers to build up the mane, for visual interest and because of the great variety of naturally occurring colors available. It's often used traditionally as a substitute for a normal wolf, which was uncommon and undesirable in coats of arms. Wolves were (wrongly) thought of as craven, cowardly scavengers, but the theow was a brave, partly-tame version a wolf, usually shown with a collar around its maned neck. I chose to interpret them as playful animals, more like tame dogs. They're fairly rare in traditional heraldry, and that's a real shame because they're fun creatures.

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