Apparently Kittelsen is also a little bit of a forgotten black hole, someone who died a broken man but whose artwork was still valued. A little. Enough to appear in Google image search and still have a book on Amazon, "Norwegian Troll Tales".
Anyway. I long steered clear of using charcoal (which I think is what Kittelsen used) because I felt the lush darks were too easy to love, too easy to fall into rather than the subject matter itself. Now I wonder why I was opposed to people falling in love with the material. Look at those darks sinking into the cottony paper. And yet his subject matter, that magic is everywhere, even in a dying tree or crashing wave, shines through his technique and materials.
I am mostly doing this post for myself, so that when I begin making art again, even if not for sale, I don't forget letting anyone fall in love with the materials and want to touch the plush velvetyness.
All images by Theodor Kittelsen, courtesy of the official website