While Peter Jackson's vision of Middle Earth may be the dominant one right now, artists have long put their own spin on J.R.R. Tolkien's world. Dresden Codak cartoonist Aaron Diaz shares his own visual interpretation of Tolkien by illustrating each character of The Silmarillion, as well the book's characters and creatures.

Diaz explains on The Silmarillion Project blog that he decided to undertake this illustration project in part because, lovely as they are, Jackson's movies have so overwhelmed the popular vision of Middle Earth and Diaz wants to encourage a diversity of artistic interpretations. He also wants to add a bit of diversity to Middle Earth itself:

A second motivation is to provide a greater representation of women and people of color in the narratives. While Tolkien made more than a few missteps regarding race and gender, the "everyone is white" trend in adaptations is a symptom of other people ignoring what's in the texts. Additionally, all of Tolkien's writings are presented as if they're written from a limited and flawed historical perspective (LoTR and The Hobbit were "written" by Hobbits, etc). The position of my adaptation is to present what "actually" happened- the events upon which the flawed or biased history is based. Just like with real historians, the presence of women and people of color, and their achievements, are frequently ignored.

You can see a few of Diaz's pieces below, but be sure to check out the entire ongoing endeavor at The Silmarillion Project.