Hmm. The MOC. This was rather straightforward build, took one weekend and a bit during this educational period of civil service (Where I am right now, we just got some extra free time instead of lessons). The bottom part is just random mass of dark bley bricks and slopes and could be used as a rockwork; However, I had to extend it from the bottom as Gandalf was about to turn out to be too short at first. I measured his height to be correct compared to Thorin using the height cart that came with the second book of WETA's Hobbit Chronicles books. Thorin MOC was 22 centimetres tall as the character's height was 149 cm, so Gandalf being 180 cm ought to be 26.3 cm. The difference is surprisingly small on numbers, but on the real life it looks bigger, especially when Gandalf has his hat on.
Well, back to the process. Noldor king Turgon's old sword Glamdring with its dark blue scabbard was the first challenge. Thorin had his Orcrist, but not its scabbard, as it would have been hard to build around his coat and cloak. But with Gandalf simple clothes is was quite possible. It also stands out from the grey mass with the SNOTed brown main belt, and their overlapping creates a very nice effect in my opinion.
I always sort of knew I'd use inverted and normal 1x2x3 slopes on Gandalf's upper torso and light bley 1x1 round bricks as his beard. The upper torso was wider on one point with some wedges on the sides, but it looked way too muscular for this wiry old wizard so I ditched them and put there a couple of long tiles instead.The arms are very simply built using the very same technique that the half of the dwarves, for example Bifur, Bofur and Nori.
Gandalf has also his silvery scarf, which is actually (mostly) built using four 2x2 pearl silver plates I got from LEGOLAND Windsor's "big box" PaB in 2009. I heard those were manufactured for a set that never got released. Bricklink has 11 lots and they are not very expensive, but a little piece of trivia anyway; Gandalf's scarf is a little bit exclusive.
The beard is simple but effective, round bricks, sloped for shape and old good odd offset space part for, well, offset. The minifig arm moustache is similar to Dori's but inverted, and the face is a bit wider that those on dwarves (Except Bombur who's fat). Hair is simple, wedge plates like on Thorin and Kili, with slope-built back. No wonders but I'd call it recognizable.
Gandalf also has some of his important wizardy accessories: a pointy had, wooden staff and, of course, a pipe to smoke some Old Tobo. The hat felt quite challenging at first, and I was going to use sand blue, but on the end I went with medium blue for several reasons: Firstly, there were better pieces available in that color: Surprisingly wide array of slopes and wedges and even that X-pod lid which turned out to be a perfect rim. The another thing was that the lighter color stood out better and gave a nice contrast (using that word a lot, ain't I?) with all the greyness.
Staff came out rather quickly. It's the Hobbit version with somewhat spiral-like shaping. I used both TECHNIC connectors and round bricks to create the rough pattern. It couldn't have looked too polished. The pipe is extremely simple, as it has only three pieces, but setting it on the right angle in wizard's hand was always horrendous - but it ended up being one of my favorite parts of this MOC.
And now we have all the bearded folk (...and Kili) gathered, so it's time to fing the burglar, who is just an ordinary Baggings of Bag End... Check him out, right on the top of this post!