The Lord of the Rings is constantly present as a theme in LEGO fan creations, although less so in the past year or two. As an extension, other stories of Tolkien’s universe find their way into bricks, notably and in this example by Carter Witz, the Silmarillion. The build represents the gates of Menegroth, the thousand caverns, which is one of the most beautiful motives in the Silmarillion in my opinion.
As the obvious centerpiece of the diorama the stone door is beautifully crafted with carefully and effectively placed sand blue pieces to break up the gray, as well as some neat part uses, from the shields and a ribbed hose above the gates to the moustaches used as door rings. I should point out the landscaping, which has a good mixture of greens for a realistic grass effect and a neat tree with simple yet effective roots extending beyond the base.
The first word that comes to mind when describing this LEGO swamp scene is atmospheric. Markus Rollbühler has clearly been affected by the dark and damp Danish winter and channelled those dark thoughts when creating this scene The cinematic style is very well done, there are some really fantastic effects – rippling water surface, fog, huge depth of field and the soft lighting. The scene shows some intrepid explorers paddling towards an orc settlement consisting of houses set on high stilts, it makes for a very eerie setting.
Taking a closer, clearer look at the Orc’s stilt houses reveals some fantastic details. The side panels are made from tracks and the hose stilts look suitably risky as an engineering feat. I love the simplicity of using the curled minifigure whips as a way to hang the lanterns, it’s very effective.
Click here to see a closer view of the swamp monsters
Last month we featured Patrick B.‘s lovely version of Bag End, Bilbo’s house in the Hobbit and later Frodo’s in The Lord of the Rings. It turns out Patrick wasn’t done making cheery hobbit holes, though, as now he’s followed up with Samwise Gamgee’s home on Bagshot End, which is just as welcoming and snug.
It’s loaded with details, including lots of clever uses for unusual elements, such as the unusual Scala flower pot and vase paired together along with mini-doll Belle’s light yellow dress as large garden jars. Each section of this homely dwelling bears close scrutiny to tease out all the shrewd techniques. Continue reading
Dutch builder Vladimir van Hoek has created a fully functional pinball machine from LEGO, inspired by J.R.R. Tolkien’s The Lord of the Rings trilogy. The table includes scenes from all three books and movies, from Hobbiton above the ball shooter to Mount Doom in the opposite corner. Every element of the pinball machine is built from LEGO, including the targets, lanes, and flippers. Official minifigures from the Lord of the Rings sets add character to the scenes, but the microscale buildings and landscaping are excellent in their own right.
See more photos and the LEGO Lord of the Rings pinball machine in action
Saruman appears as Jacob Marley to warn Scrooge to change his miserly ways or face a dark future of unhappiness. I love the clock on the wall and the chair in the corner in the bedroom.
See the next four Tolkien’s A Christmas Carol scenes
It seems like only yesterday we featured Sanel Lukovic‘s post-apocalyptic ruins, but sometimes a builder keeps knocking it out of the park. He has done it again with the hill of Weathertop from The Lord of the Rings. If you aren’t familiar with your Middle Earth geography, Weathertop overlooks the Great East Road east of Bree, about midway between the Shire and Rivendell. (Although really it is on a large farm near Port Waikato, in the Waikato Region of New Zealand.) It was the location where Frodo gets stabbed in the shoulder by a Ringwraith in the first book. It took Sanellu about 4 months and around 30,000 LEGO elements to build this beautiful scene from The Fellowship of the Ring. Have a look and let your eyes feast on this sumptuous banquet of bricks.
Roanoke Handybuck has built Sandyman’s Old Mill from The Lord of the Rings, which you may briefly recall from The Fellowship of the Ring when Gandalf arrives in Hobbiton by crossing the bridge. The sculpted look of the bridge and landscape adds an organic, rustic feel to the scene.
You can see some work in progress shots on MOCPages.
Barad-dûr — or as most people will know it, that tall black scary thing that can see very far — has magical properties and scares hobbits. Created by Koen, this intricate reconstruction of the Dark Tower is about as tall as the LEGO Saturn V. The bright Eye of Sauron and glowing lava stand out instantly, but it’s not until you look close that you notice the amazingly fine details. I love how the builder has integrated the blacks and greys around the base of the tower and the hundreds of spires, ramparts and turrets adorning Lord Sauron’s base of operations.
“Then at last his gaze was held: wall upon wall, battlement upon battlement, black tower of adamant, he saw it: Barad-dûr, Fortress of Sauron. All hope left him.“
Orthanc, home of the corrupted white wizard Saruman, is an important part of the Lord of the Rings trilogy, and is even referenced in the title of the second book, The Two Towers. The film version of the tower may not be quite as iconic as Sauron’s Barad’dur, but it’s still managed to burn itself into the memories of fantasy lovers all over the world. This microscale LEGO recreation by Maelven isn’t the first LEGO Orthanc model we’ve featured, but the builder has added a lot of great style to it.
Although quite a departure from this builder’s comfort zone of highly accurate Star Wars vehicles, Maelven did not disappoint in this turn to fantasy. The intense details on the tower will keep your attention for more time than you would expect, but what I really like is the gradual but very fluent tapering of the tower’s shape towards the top — an effect achieved by slightly tilting many bars and plates on the surface of the creation.
Like this tiny Orthanc? Check out this diorama of the breaking of Isengard featuring a 7 ft tall Orthanc, or a detailed 8 ft tall Orthanc with a full interior.
Serbian builder Milan Sekiz‘s miniature Mordor is the perfect finish to the (accidental?) collaborative Lord of the Rings microscale triptych (see also microscale Hobbiton and a microscale Rivendell). Sekiz’s adorable LEGO creation features a tiny Mount Doom, a teeny tower of Barad-dur (where men fear to tread), and a wee Black Gate. Not to mention, the ashy base and background results in a general feeling of gloom that is wonderful.
Following quickly on the tiny heels of the excellent microscale Rivendell, Austrian LEGO builder Patrick B. has crafted the Hill from The Hobbit and The Lord of the Rings trilogy, also in microscale. Patrick’s tiny scene is complete with Bag End under a large tree and Bagshot Row beneath. Each of the round doors has a unique color, and the path leads across a bridge to the Green Dragon Inn, which Patrick also built in minifig-scale recently. I particularly love the fences, but don’t miss the tiny boat built from a paper minifig hat.
Isaac Snyder, the author of an excellent microscale Edoras build, returns to Middle-earth with his latest build, a miniature depiction of the Elven realm, Rivendell. Microscale creations usually bring out the most creative and innovative part usages, and this build is no exception as Isaac uses earth orange pikes as autumn colored fir trees and minifigure hair parts as deciduous trees. However, my favorite usage is the ribbed 1×2 light gray bricks as tiny stairs.
Parts aside, it’s quite the beautiful build all around with intricate column work on the buildings and excellent usage of some less common colors to give the build a very natural aesthetic.