Tag Archives: Middle Earth

Unique castle details leave nothing wanting

Move over, 1980’s LEGO yellow castle. There’s a new fortress in town: Jako of Nerogue has become my new favorite castle constructor.

Fractured Kingdoms: Reassignment

At first glance, the thing that jumps out at me most is the curvature of the gate. That’s not something you usually see on medieval fortifications. It’s almost like a Moorish-Spain look. From the gate, my eyes are drawn to the teeny-tiny details of the walls and windows, with LEGO bricks having the exact appearance of stone. I really like the style Jako chose to use on the gate columns and the main keep windows.

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Does anyone know how he did that? Just incredible! This is how I want all my castles to look like.

On the shores of the sea comes the end of our fellowship in Middle-Earth

The bittersweet ending of The Lord of the Rings is a scene that impacted many readers and viewers such as myself. It is the last we see of our beloved heroes after so many trials and tribulations in their story. In this scene, our heroes join the elves on a boat departing Middle-Earth to “a far green country under a swift sunrise.” Many see this as an allegory for death and the journey beyond, whether it be heaven or something else. Like Bilbo, I like to think of this in a more optimistic way: a new adventure in an unfamiliar land. JNJ Bricks captured the moment in the Grey Havens right before their departure in a striking, immersive LEGO scene.

Grey Havens

The minifigures of Frodo, Gandalf, and the hobbits stand in the foreground, out of focus and facing away. The elves wait by the boat, ready to take them on their journey out of the completely brick-built harbour. LEGO parts make up everything in this scene, from the water to the sunset sky between the cliffs. My favourite detail, the arches, and towers across the water look just like the movie, despite being so small. The boat, being grey, is distinct enough to not blend into the background. The accuracy of this scene invokes the same emotion in me as I experience while reading the book or watching the movie. Now I am in the mood for some of Tolkien’s poetry…

Landscape and trees tell a story

While not depicting any particular scene I can remember,  Mountain Hobbit’s Fishing Docks is clearly set in Middle Earth. The colour palette is consistent with the official sets, and Gollum lurking behind one of the trees on the hill is a dead giveaway. Let’s talk about those trees and hill though. The shaping of both is superb. Everything is basically sculpted using slopes and wedges. I really like the heavy use of pieces that are one brick wide on the hillside, giving it the appearance of being quite weathered. The curve on the rightmost tree is particularly well done, as it tells a story about how that tree grew: when it started growing, it wasn’t so close to the edge, but over time, its trunk grew thicker and the hillside eroded. Because of geotropism, the tree grew to point upward though, giving it the curved trunk we see today.

Timothy Shortell

The elusive wingless Balrog recently sighted

If this hellish looking monster built by Marcin Otreba reminds you of the fire demon who faced off against everyone’s favorite wizard Gandalf in J.R.R. Tolkien’s Lord of the Rings, that would be for good reason. Featured in the video game Middle Earth: Shadow of War, Tar Goroth is one of the minions of darkness in Middle Earth. Unlike its better-known cousin, this Balrog has to walk. Maybe that explains why he looks so mad.

Tar Goroth

The use of several transparent orange elements peeking out between the cracks in its ebony skin makes this monstrosity instantly recognizable, along with those downward-pointing horns. Also, it strikes me as very fitting that so many of these 1×4 wing with pin hole elements from the official Lord of the Rings theme were used throughout the model.

Lond Daer, the Númenorean shipyard in Middle Earth

There have been many great LEGO creations from The Lord of the Rings and The Hobbit franchise over the years, including a recent epic collaboration which we were proud to feature here on TBB. The other ages mentioned in the book, however, tend to be overlooked. Well, there is a new collaborative project underway and Barthezz Brick has built an amazing model of the Númenórean ship-building port of Lond Daer.

Lond Daer - by Barthezz Brick

This model has so many details worth mentioning, including some very nicely built arrow slits in the tall tower in the back, which starts with a fairly common technique using cheese slopes but repeats the pattern in an interesting way. The buildings on the right also show a neat architectural design for the arched windows made from loosely connected plates, and this minifig neck bracket to attach tiles on top. Click to see more of Lond Daer