Thursday, March 17, 2016

The Guardians of Lothlorien

Lord and Lady of the Golden Wood

Finally! I finally put brush to paint to complete the model of one of my favorite characters in the Tolkien legendarium. Most people know Galadriel as the nice lady who helped the Fellowship following their misadventures in Khazad-Dum (claiming that as a band name fyi). However as a character, she is much more significant than just that.

One who has seen the light of the Trees

I'm not going to talk too much about Galadriel's history, as doing so would essentially require me to make an entirely new blog to start covering it. So as usual I suggest checking out The One Wiki to Rule Them All article about her. But I will discuss it in brief. I'm not going to speak much about Celeborn as he's kind of a shallow character, and while cool, doesn't provoke much of a reaction from me.

At the time of the War of the Ring, Galadriel is the second oldest, and bar none, the most powerful elf living on the continent of Middle Earth. She is surpassed in age only by Cirdan the Shipwright (by about 200 years or so) and in power only by Sauron himself. Perhaps other members of the White Council would be a near match, especially Elrond and Gandalf, both ringbearer's themselves.

She was born in Valinor in the Years of the Trees, before the First Age had started. Meaning she was alive essentially before recorded history, and walked Arda before the Sun and the Moon were put in the sky. In her earlier days she consorted with legends such as FĂ«anor (he was her uncle) Fingolfin (fought Morgoth) and Finrod Felagund (helped Beren fight Sauron, died to save him). So she's a pretty big deal.

I don't want to ramble on about Tolkien lore for the entire post so I'll stop here. But if you are interested, skip the wiki articles and grab a book. I highly recommend Unfinished Tales as it has an entire section dedicated to Galadriel. Also of course, the Silmarillion, as it will provide the basis and backstory of the entire Tolkien legendarium. Now on to painting!


I was apprehensive as I approached painting this model, as white is a difficult color to do correctly, and I don't have a great record when it comes to getting a decent look. So I took my time, and went very slowly, using very thin coats of white as the final layer. I started with a codex grey basecoat for the robes as and initially thought it was too dark. In the past I've started with fortress grey instead and moved up from there. However it actually ended up looking ok, and gave the robes some depth, as well as created strong contrast between the areas of the model, which looks great at arms length.

The rest of the scheme is as follows, and pretty much matches how I usually paint elves:
- Robes: Codex grey base, fortress grey mid-tone, p3 white (can't recall the name) in thin coats (3-4)
- Face: Bestial Brown, Dwarf Flesh, Elf Flesh
-Hair: Vermin Brown, Ushabti Bone Highlight (as described in this post)
-Diadem and Ring (Vilya by the way): Chainmail, with a tiny touch of mithril silver


Celeborn was really straightforward, and fun to paint. I didn't have a scheme "recipe" for him (nor Galadriel for that matter) so I mostly decided his colors by going for something close to what the Heavy Metal guys had done here. I think I did a pretty good job of getting close. For his outermost robe, I decided to re-use the elven grey color I devised when painting Haldir & Company, and thought it appropriate here as well. Plus it comes out really nicely. I have decided this is how I will paint any Elven cloaks for future renditions of the Fellowship as well. Since I'm due to paint at least 2-3 more of EACH of them, that should be just fine. Scheme to follow pictures.

Inner Robes: Ice Blue Base (Lothern Blue), IceBlue/White mix for the highlight.
Sash: Shadow Grey, followed by codex grey
Sash Ropes: Codex Grey, followed by Fortress Grey (the one part of this piece I don't like)
Outer Robes: Catachan Green/Codex Grey, adding in more grey progressively.
Skin: Bestial Brown, Dwarf Flesh, Elf Flesh
Metal parts: Chainmail, touch of Mithril
Hair: Same as Haldir & Co. (Vermin, Bone, wash)

Community Spotlight

I want to start taking time at the end of some of my posts from now on and share various cool resources or blogs relevant to the hobby. I'll try to just do one each post so as to not run out of ideas!

I wanted to share the r/MiddleEarthMiniatures Reddit page. Its a subreddit like any other, but it has woefully little traffic. I get a few views a day from there (or imgur where I host images) but I think it could do with some more life. So if you are a Redditor, head on over to and subscribe to the sub, post comments, upvote, whatever.


Finally, alongside the Community Spotlight. I want to start cross promoting other awesome LoTR/The Hobbit SBG blogs. I recently posted a comment to a post over on The Fellowship of the Miniatures and the owner, Werner Kellens, responded right away telling me he would add me to his blog list (I need to ask him how to set one of my own up!) His is a great blog with lots of neat stuff, including more gaming posts than I'll likely ever have, as well as extraordinary painting articles. This hobby isn't as popular as it used to be, and its struggled for many years, but it is by no means gone or close to dead. In fact, people like Werner, and some of the other great bloggers I'll be featuring here are the reason that's true!

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