IceKing.org is just a little personal webspace where I can start to develop an online portfolio while experimenting with the nuances of maintaining a site. I use the real estate to explore my creative side (yes, I know the home page needs more development), post up my school homework, and generally make a nuisance of myself. If somehow, you've found this place, forgive the decor - I'm in the midst of decorating and it will be an ongoing process. At any time, if you have useful ideas or suggestions, you can email me and let me know.
- I'm a Lord of the Rings fan from long before the movies were made. I even
managed to get through the Simarillion back in the day, and I participate
actively in an online play-by-email game of the genre. If you like wargames,
and the Tolkein universe as a backdrop, check them out at Middle
Earth Games. Anyway, one of the nine Nazgul is Hoarmurath, otherwise known
as the "Ice King". If you're interested in the character's biography,
Hoarmurath, the Ice King
Hoarműrath of Dír / The Ice King
Rank: 6th in ranking of the Nazguls
Story: History: "Hoarmurath was born in the forest of Dir in the land of Urd in SA 1954. His home, one of the northenmost settled domains in all of Endor, spawned a rugged race of hunters and trappers. His mother, Emurath of Uab, commanded the allegience of most of the Urd clans, and served as the matriarch of the Urdar until her death in the Umli wars (SA 1962/75).
Hoarmurath's sister Amurath replaced her according to the Urd matriline. As brother of the queen and uncle to her heir, he enjoyed the highest status accorded a male of the Urdar.HoarmûrathŽs close relations to the Avar Elves to the south, however, influenced his views and set him on a course of rebellion against his family and Urd traditions. The Avari taught him much about magic and power, and opened the young animist's eyes to the ways of the rest of Middle-earth. In time, Hoarmurath quarreled with his sister and preached war, hoping to extract valuable territories from the Myri and Angcla tribes. A struggle followed and Hoarmurath's henchmen slew his sister.
Rather than face the penalty of death, Hoarmurath proclaimed himself the first King of Urd. Supported by Avar warriors, he crushed the opposition and slaughtered the Urd Priestesses. In SA 1992 he became the Lord of the Urdar. Hoarmurath ruled much of the great wooded territory between the Northen seas. Avari groups retained their dominition and extended their influence with the Ice King's aid, but the union soon gave way to bitterness. Elven immortality and wealth haunted Hoarmurath, and the Urdar turned on their allies is SA 1999.
Two great battles followed, but both resulted in Avar victories. Desperate, the King of Urd invited help from Sauron of Mordor. The Lord of the Rings sent Khamul to the court of the Ice King in SA 2000. The Easterling - still fair-seeming and glowing with the power of his own Ring - approached his future compatriot with the gift of a Ring of Power and the prospect of eternal life. Enamored of the Evil OneŽs offering, Hoarmurath accepted the Ring and fell under the sway of the Shadow. He became the sixth King of Men to become an Ulair.
Hoarmurath's new price invigorated him. Two years after Khamul's visit, the Urdar were stronger than ever, and the Ice King led his army southward. The war in the Woods (SA 2002-2053) ended with an Avar retreat, leaving Hoarmurath with a vast kingdom. His long reign as Sauron's client established a new order in northeastern Endor. Once his kingdom and successor seemed sure, the Lord of the Rings called the Ringwraith to Mordor. The need to confront the growing might of Numenor outweight any considerations the Dark Lord reserved for the North. For the next one thousand and eleven years, Hoarmurath resided in Mordor beside the Evil One.
He oversaw the constructions of the defenses surrounding Udun, including the the Gates of Mordor. After the downfall of Numenor and the Dark Lord's return in SA 3319, Hoarmurath flew back to Mordor and participated in the campaigns waged by SauronŽs troops in Rhovanion. With Barad-dur's fall in SA 3431, Hoarmurath passed into the Shadows when the Lords of the Last Alliance entered the Dark Tower and overthrew Sauron at the end of the Second Age.
Hoarmurath retured to Middle-earth in Third Age 1050. Entering his ancient hold in the Forest of Dir, he slowly reassured his strength and refounded his lost kingdom. Sauron (who then resided at Dol Guldur in Rhovanion) sent eight of the Nazgul (those other than the Witch-King, who stayed in Angmar) into the Black Land. Hoarmurath joined the other Ulari in Mordor, where they quietly prepared the land for the return of the Lord of the Rings. All of the Nine gathered upon the return of the Witch-king to Mordor in TA 1975. Assembling for the surprise assault on Minas Ithil in TA 2000, they stormed the stronghold that served as the last bastion of Gondorian guardianship. Ithilien's capital became Minas Morgul, and served thereafter as the hold of the Ringwraiths. Its prized Palantír eventually went to Barad-dur.
The Lord of the Rings left his threatened fortress at Dol Guldur in TA 2941 and returned to Mordor. Ten years later, his minions began rebuilding the Dark Tower, and three of the Ringwraiths flew back to Dol Guldur to reopen the citadel. Hoarmurath stayed in Minas Morgul, but soon turned to the search for the One Ring. Hoarmurath rode with the other eight Black Riders up the Nan Anduin in hope of finding the Shire near the Gladden Fields. Failing to fing the Shire, they turned south , skirted Lorien, and rode through Rohan and past Isengard into Eriador.
Their search took them up the Greenway to Tharbard and beyond to the crossroads in old Cardolan that served as the junction with the road to the land of the Hobbits. There, Hoarmurath, Adunaphel and Khamul split from the others and rode toward the Stone Ford. As the three headed into the Shire's South Farthing and on to Sackville, the Witch-King and the other Riders went directly north toward Andrath and Bree.
Hoarmurath and his companions nearly captured the halflings as they travled through the Green Hill Country. Khamul's acute sense of smell almost uncovered Frodo's hiding place below the road, but the Hobbits escaped into Woody End in Tookland. Although Hoarmûrath and his companions tracked them through Buckland (where they entered the Bolger yard in Crickhollow), the three Black Riders did not see the lucky halflings again until the challage at the Bruinen Ford. Hoarmurath and the other two Nazgul met Uvatha on the Great East Road beyond Bree, and joined the other five Ringwraiths in Eriador. Running their pray down at the Bruinen Ford just west of Rivendell, the Ulari - including Hoarmurath - found themselvs engulfed in the magically summoned floodwaters that Elrond used to cover the Hobbits' flight.
Later in the war, the attack against the Gondorian capital stalled when the Witch-King died on the Pelennor fields and Aragon II led the army of the Dead in a charge that broke the Mordorean horde. A more climactic battle occurred less than two weeks later, as the army of the Free Peoples assembled on the arid slag-plain before Morannon. There, the eight Nazgul briefly engaged the Great Eagles above the chaotic conflagration, but at the height of the duel, Hoarmurath and the others turned away to follow the Dark LordŽs orders. Flying to stop Frodo and Sam from destroying the One Ring in the fires of Mount Doom, the Ringwraiths broke off the attack. Their LordŽs fear proved true, though, and their desperate journey ended before they reached their goal. With the Ruling RingŽs destuction, Hoarmurath and his bretheren passed out of Ea." -- MERP
What's the site about? Well, I began the pursuit of a career in digital animation. The latest news (depending on when you last heard from me) is that I've graduated the DAVE school with an occupational associates degree, and am back in the northeast working for Impact Studios TV. So I'll toss a couple links in here and then leave you to the misery of navigating a site with poor global navigation. Yes, I know what "good global navigation" is, I'm just too lazy to throw it up here yet. I'll get around to it... eventually.
Arright... on to those links...
DAVE School Projects - the most recent stuff I've been working on. -- updated 07/12/05
General (hand drawn) Artwork - I had to learn to draw a little, right? -- updated 04/29/05
Media School Assignments - the media projects and school assignments from Gibbs College
The Hey Baby Band - MP3s from the "good ole days" when I was a musician
News Log: Okay - time for me to try my hand at updating the news every now and again. Consider it a BLOG... or maybe just a journal... but I'll try to put some interesting tidbits in here from time to time.
04/09/06 - X-men: Darktide movie has been released! The toys and DvD movie are currently available through online purchase or from local comic book retailers (click to see image). By the end of April, it will be available in Target stores nationwide, and it hits the shelves of Toys-R-Us in early May, followed shortly by Borders book stores. There are some news articles available - an interview I did with cgfocus, and a credits writeup. The toy company has a website up, and there will soon be another writeup from a cooperative interview I did with a colleague, Ed McDonough. I'm very excited to see something I worked on available to the mass retail market, and I hope everyone enjoys what they see. At some point, the full movie will be available for webcasting, at which point I'll post a link up here.
In other news, I've been hired in the industry by Impact Studios TV in Norwalk, CT. My job there isn't as high-profile as the X-men project, but it certainly pays the bills and is challenging. Part of the job is learning a new 3D software package: SoftImage/XSI. I still use Lightwave to some extent, especially to model - but the rest of the 3D work is in XSI. I will soon have a couple of shots that I'm allowed to post, so there'll be another update to the site soon.
01/05/06 - Received word about the upcoming X-men: Darktide movie release. It's due to hit stores (and the web) some time in March of 2006. A couple of places have issued press releases, like Diamond Select Toys and the Previews comic shop catalog. I also did an interview with cgfocus regarding the X-men project, and will post here when it's in print.
12/20/05 - Updated Demo Reel (December 2005)
11/15/05 - Finished the Xmen movie poster for our upcoming project, and I've been working on the final changes to the actual movie-short. As soon as it gets approved by Marvel, I can show it in full. On the plus side, the school received the box-cover for the minimate toys that are coming out - and the package not only has shots from our movie on it, but it will also have a mini-DvD enclosed with the complete short. I understand the toys will be sold at Target stores, and I'll post a release date as soon as I have one.
09/26/05 - Final Project is finished - I can now reveal some information, but cannot post the completed project until approvals have been confirmed by Art Asylum and Marvel Comics. The project is called "Xmen: Darktide", and a few updates are now available in the form of screenshots and a short trailer. Just click here to view them. Later this Fall, I should be able to post either the full movie or at least a link to where it is being hosted.
07/12/05 - Did some pro-bono work for a Connecticut-based band called Dysthymia - check out their site for some nice music. Who knows... maybe one of these days I'll be able to do this for a living.
07/01/05 - Fairly large update - IK-Joe animation, lip-synching project, and demo reel updates. Lip synching and IK-Joe elements are also in the demo reel, for those who wish to save time downloading. Just finished term 3 (of 4), and looking forward to a quiet weekend.
06/08/05 - Updated DAVE School Projects with new "MGS-Heroine" walk cycle animations.
05/30/05 - Updated DAVE School Projects with new "MGS-Heroine" animations and some pics. Also saw the release of Star Wars - Episode 3. General consensus from y peers was that it was a great visual-effects movie, but that the script-writing was somewhat lacking. I've also discovered a third-party movie, sanctioned by Lucas and called Star Wars - Revelations, that tells a little more of the Star Wars story, and is available for download by clicking this link. And finally, to see some fancy cgi-art in progress, the SpinQuad message boards show the works of existing artists and some artists-to-be. The site is hosted by one of Lightwave's "evangelists", William "Proton" Vaughan - and even if you don't understand all the technical verbage, it can make for a couple of fun moments of picture-browsing.
05/09/05 - Updated DAVE School Projects with new "MGS-Heroine" animations and some pics.
04/29/05 - Updated DAVE School Projects and General Artwork with "MGS-Heroine" pictures. In other news, I went and saw a couple movies in the past two weeks - "Hitchiker's Guide to the Galaxy", and "Kung Fu Hustle". Both have lots of cgi effects shots, but by far, Kung Fu Hustle was the better, funnier movie. I believe that something about Hitchiker's gets lost in the translation between book and screen - and while the book was great, the movie is left wanting. And for those who haven't read the book first, I believe a great feeling of being "lost" will infect them as they watch the screen.
04/06/05 - Updated DAVE School Projects with new "Ninja Chick" pictures.
03/31/05 - Updated DAVE School Projects with Demo Reel ! Also, the Spoonman video is complete and available for viewing.
03/25/05 - Updated DAVE School Projects with new Apache Project videos. Big excitement this week - not only is the new DAVE School final exam coming out (almost), "Spoonman" - but the last class's project: Batman: New Times is finally finished and available for viewing at the link. I also discovered that one of the head instructors at the school discovered my little website by doing a Google search! - Hooray! I'm "public on the web"!
03/04/05 - Updated DAVE School Projects with new "Robots" "final" pictures.
02/22/05 - Updated Dave School Projects with "Robots" pictures (from the upcoming movie by Blue Sky Studios - due out on March 11, 2005). Also updated General (hand drawn) Artwork from the same project. The "Robots" project is my first attempt at character animation, from concept to completion - and it will be updated further as the project develops.
02/04/05 - Updated DAVE School Projects with new "GreenScreen Theater" animations.
01/25/05 - Final Animations done for the "Baycrash" animations. Added before and after shots, and final renders.
01/14/05 - Updated DAVE School Projects with new "BayCrash" animations.
01/11/05 - Added animated .gif and .avi to DAVE School Projects.
01/10/05 - Happy New Year! And welcome to my first journal entry. As this section grows (if?), I'll eventually have to blow stuff out of here. But we'll see how often I update it to determine whether information needs to be squashed.
DAVE school December graduates just finished their final project - Batman: New Times. It's about a 10-minute clip, and is still in the final editing stages, but there's a preview available at the link. It's quite impressive from both an animation standpoint, and from the cast - they actually got quite a few "name" actors to voice it, including Adam West, Mark Hamill, Courtney Thorne-Smith, and Dick Van Dyke. To read more about them, click the Batman link in this paragraph and then the "about the film" link there. The movie was modeled based on Lego-like toys, made by Art Asylum.
I also found (thanks to my wife) a number of pictures of the Hey Baby Bad from the Woodstock '94 show. There will be an update on that section of the site as soon as I get around to scanning a few and putting them up. I suppose I might have to be inventive on placement - or make a photo gallery section or something. Anyway - will post in the news section when those pics are up. Incidentally, the band has reformed with mostly new members, and is once again playing the Westchester County area of New York. When I get a link to their site, I'll put one on here.
Updated - DAVE School Projects