Thorin's Map is an exquisite piece of art from the 3Foot7 Art Department.
Hand-made by calligrapher and artist Daniel Reeve, who made the original prop used in The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey, this is an absolutely authentic replica.
Daniel has scanned his original map and digitally printed it on high-quality watercolour paper as used in the films. Says Daniel: "The map is made on 190gsm Rough S&W watercolour paper. A lovely surface for painting, with a nicely random tooth. Care must be taken when doing calligraphy on this surface, as the texture can easily catch the nib, or guide it in unintended directions!"
Daniel then commences the process of 'breaking down' the map. Breaking down is the art of giving the prop believability. Adding a history to it and making it look real. Daniel painstakingly applies every crease and every wrinkle by hand, 'distressing' the paper to achieve an authentic looking prop replica.
The reverse of the map is coloured black, except for the outlines of the famous Moon Runes that play a part in the story. This allows you to see the runes when the map is held up against the light or framed with back lighting.
Each individual map is the work of one man and totally unique.
Creating these things for the films was such a pleasure - but after their fleeting moments in the movie, they’re gone. So it’s fantastic now to be able to faithfully reproduce them for fans, to own for themselves, and enjoy all the detail that went into them, the detail that can never be fully appreciated on screen.
Daniel Reeve's craft is indeed a rare one and this is a prop replica the likes of which are few and far between.
Available in strictly limited supply and always subject to the artist's availability, Thorin's Map will be shipped direct from Weta Workshop in New Zealand and includes a printed Certificate of Authenticity signed by hand by Daniel Reeve. It ships folded in a vinyl bag in a plain cardboard box for protection.
Lighting Thorin's Map
For the Weta Cave retail store we created a "shadowbox" frame to display the map with the Moon Runes illuminated.
We used a small strip of LED lights (about 6-7 individual lights that are about 3-4mm each in a strip that is about 10cm long.) The strip is mounted to the black matte board behind the print (there is space between the backing board and the map itself). The LED strip is wired to a small powerbox that holds 8 AA batteries and a toggle on/off switch. This whole unit tucks up nicely in the back of the shadowbox.
If you are not confident taking this on yourself, please discuss with your framer as this makes a really cool display. The parts are readily available from electronics retailers.