Aug 2, 2:24am
Yes, thanks Otaku! I do have Fonstad's Atlas (who doesn't on here? ), but, with all due respect to our dear professor, his cavern drawings were abysmally sparse, and resemble more of a very basic anthill, not so much a thriving elven palace
PJ&Co did SUCH an amazing job with making his underground caverns well-lit through ventilation holes, and beautifully elven, with "trees" carved out of stone, paths on "tree roots", and the underground river and waterfalls, complete with mossy rocks (an absolute must underground. I've been in an old gold mine in the area on a tour (converted for tourism) in the area that is located right next to a mountain river, and it was indeed quite mossy and humid under there).
It looked like how LothLorien would, if LL were underground, instead of above ground And, instead of ladders, there's stairs, instead of rope bridges, stone ramps between "trees", but very similar...and yet, different. Definitely subterranean, but so different from the dwarves' Erebor, far more well-lit, but still enclosed enough that poor Bilbo had a whale of a time finding an escape door that wasn't the main gate, just like in the books.
I'm actually undertaking a very ambitious project. I'm not a gamer by any means (though I can kill it at Pipe Dream LOL...I'm so dating myself here ), but I've watched my kiddos play Minecraft (very much parental controls applied) over their shoulders as they sat in my lap for a while now, and, while I still barely understand the game, it reminded me of old Facebook games like Farm Town, Frontierville, Farmville, etc, and I enjoyed those immensely. Definitely sticking to creative mode, though- I do NOT need to be constantly watching out for "orcs" (zombies) and giant spiders!
So my first creative build in Minecraft? Wait for it...
Yup, Thranduil's caverns. Yeah, I know...I'm crazy. ROFL
I'm doing it as I imagined the elves did- starting with the path in the forest (partway, not all 200 miles of it...yet), the bridge, and the main gate, the entrance hall, and working my way in from there. One area where PJ&co failed, IMHO, was not showing more shots of Bilbo wandering the halls, and not showing more shots of the Woodland Realm elves during their daily lives within those halls. We got those shots in Rivendell, which was lovely, but...I think it would've made more sense for them to do them in Thranduil's Halls, where he actually DID wander, in a desperate effort to find a way to help the dwarves escape.
All we got in the films was Thranduil's private bath chamber, the cellars, the dungeons, the entrance hall (briefly), and the audience throne (I imagine there's an actual throne room somewhere with an actual floor for state events that involve a lot of people, and this one is just for foreigners, and individual audiences with the king. And interrogations, of course. It's well-suited to that, with the narrow bridge and the steep drops on all sides- very defensible. Not well suited for state events).
It was a missed opportunity, I think, to really showcase an elven realm we haven't seen before, and a unique subterranean one at that! We've already seen Rivendell...though it was nice, it was superfluous. We haven't seen the Woodland Realm, and what we saw in the films made it seem as though the only people in the entire realm are a) the patrols, b) the guards, c) Thranduil, d) Legolas, his son, e) Tauriel, the drunk butler and keeper of the keys, and a few wandering elves who look very lost and aimless in the background. And Frerin, the king's herald and messenger, and the army. We HEAR them, during the feast, but we do not SEE them.
There are so many cute little mentions in TH...Bilbo stealing food and wine, Bilbo sleeping in a hall and nearly getting stepped on for his trouble, Bilbo barely dodging elves as they nearly plow him over, not realizing he's there, and the only time we see the elves completely baffled because THEY SWEAR THEY HEARD SOMETHING BUT NOTHING WAS THERE WHAT THE HECK IS GOING ON?! Was when Thranduil heard him in the bath chamber. I suppose our dear hobbit should be grateful he wasn't in there twenty minutes earlier, when the elvenking was actually IN the bath!
The point is, I feel that there was so much to that kingdom that wasn't shown, and it looks ornate and beautiful, and I decided to take it upon myself, since I could not find a movie map of his halls, to create his halls in Minecraft so I can explore them. REALLY explore them. I'm an artist, but a limited one when it comes to 2D art (sketching and painting I'm definitely a beginner. Other forms of art, mostly 3D forms, I'm very good at).
But I was still curious if anyone had done a map of his halls. We hear (though do not see) in the films that the ENTIRE POPULATION of the Woodland Realm was currently dwelling in these halls, making it a very large, subterranean elven city (not quite to the books, but one could feasibly argue that, because the spider problem was so bad, he temporarily removed the civilians into his fortress for safety, until the borders could be better secured). And we're only shown a couple of areas within it, and even fewer citizens that aren't armed. I was quite saddened by this, because I think it would've been fascinating to see more of it! To see a thriving elven city, and underground at that!
So that's why I'm looking. I'm also writing The Hobbit fan fiction (well, it's a series, and I've been working on it for the past 9 years, and have a long way to go still), and being able to navigate his halls will be very helpful in some upcoming descriptions I have in my story.
Plus, I'm just plain curious!
Anyway, hopefully I can either find a map of his halls that's much more comprehensive than Tolkien's, or create it myself, or both. It'll be fun :)
And it will give me something to do while my grandma recovers from a major cancer surgery, as I'll have nothing to do in between taking care of her (basically, I help her, then we sit in her living room for a while, until she needs help again, and this is going to go on for six weeks or so (mastectomy for BC)). I can't work on my farmer's market vendor business products (I'm slamming them out prior to surgery, as my husband is covering my market stand for me during recovery), and we're taking a homeschooling break and resuming in October, and we can't work on our house build, so that leaves whatever I can do while chilling in her living room, which is pretty much read, watch tv, putter on the laptop, write, or play Minecraft on my phone. I have to be available to provide assistance 24/7, and to be able to put down whatever I'm working on (so no soap, which has to be finished once started, same with candles and bath bombs) to help her with personal care and daily living tasks.
But if you can find anything in your movie guides, I'm all ears!
My writing and novels:
My Hobbit Fanfiction
My historical novel print and kindle version
My historical novels ebook version compatible with all ereaders
You can also find my novel at most major book retailers online (and for those outside the US who prefer a print book, you can find the print version at Book Depository). Search "Amazing Grace Amanda Longpre'" to find it.
Happy reading everyone!