Fridays at the Mathom-House: Justin Gerard

The Mathom-house it was called; for anything that Hobbits had no immediate use for, but were unwilling to throw away, they called a ‘mathom’.
–The Fellowship of the Ring; Prologue 

After too long a break, it's Mathom-time again! Friday is here, freedom is near . . . and I've stumbled upon what might just be my favorite Tolkien artist of all time. Here for your enjoyment is the fantastic work of Justin Gerard. He maintains several great websites, all of which can be found through the previous link; but, his blog is a particular treat, since the artist goes into detail explaining the process behind his artwork. Enjoy:

So, why do I like Justin's work so much? Aside from the fact that its just plain good artwork, Justin has managed to capture the spirit of Middle-Earth in a way that the movies haven't. There is something down-right un-human about the dwarves he's drawn . . . their proportions are different, their fingers are thick and stubby, and their noses are humungous. They're definitely not just short men, like the dwarves in the movies. Same goes for Bilbo.

And there is something decidedly silly about the villains Justin draws, from the droopy-lipped trolls, to the ragged wargs and the spear-nosed goblins, yet they still have an air of menace and evil about them, which is exactly how Tolkien depicts them in the book.

In short, looking at Justin's artwork does two things: first, it really makes me wish I'd spent more time drawing as a kid; second, it takes me back to that lazy summer when I was eight and my friend had let me borrow a copy of The Hobbit and I would hide in my room (I was supposed to be doing chores) and read for hours.

This is good stuff.

A Map of the Mountain

Bilbo and the Trolls

The Great Goblin

Riddles in the Dark

Wolf Rider


The Battle of Five Armies

Now, these last three aren't from The Hobbit, technically, but they were so good I couldn't resist including them:

 The Forest Troll

The Blood of Numenor

Shade of Dunharrow


  1. Awesome illustrations. Thanks for sharing!

  2. Hey! Glad you liked 'em. This guy does a really good job.

  3. this guy, is Justin Gerard!