About Iain

Iain Heath is an avid builder specializing in the "Bricks of Character" style, which he helped define. He has been using LEGO to parody popular culture since 2007, when he created the now infamous Stephen Hawking model. He is a SeaLUG member and regular theme coordinator at BrickCon. For five years he also ran a blog called The Living Brick, that showcased the best character-based LEGO creations from around the world. You can find his irreverent body of work on Flickr.

Posts by Iain

The historical Danish town of Roskilde recreated in LEGO

Danish teen Lasse VestergÄrd has already proved himself adept at large architectural builds with historic themes, such as the Ancient Greece diorama we featured a while ago. His most recent work also has a historic angle, but is closer to home. His home town of Roskilde, to be precise:

Lasse chose 1:100 scale for this diorama, which not only allowed him to cover the entire city center, but also enabled him to capture the distinctive architectural style of its many historic buildings. In the full set of images, Lasse even explains the history behind each individual one.

I would imagine modeling an entire town this accurately required not only a lot of build time, but also a lot of on-the-ground research. So it comes as no surprise to learn that it took Lasse 16 months to complete! Rendered using a mountain of gorgeous dark red bricks, the centerpiece is obviously Roskilde Cathedral, which like many older cathedrals was extended over the centuries and thus features many differing architectural styles.

The build was recently displayed at the Klodsfest LEGO event in Roskilde itself. One of the features I personally enjoy about this diorama – because of the scale used – are all the 2-stud-wide vehicles dotted about the landscape.

How the other half lives

If you were a celebrity in England in the 80’s, you may very well have lived in a chintzy mock Tudor mansion, similar to the one recreated in amazing detail here by Joe Perez. And there would likely have been a supercar of some kind parked outside. Similar to the Ferrari that Joe has parked outside his version.

And being the 80’s, you would have definitely been sporting padded shoulders …Miami Vice style!

And decades later, long after the public has forgotten you, and you are reduced to making occasional appearances on game shows, you would probably get someone to build a complete replica of your entire home out of LEGO. Like someone apparently commissioned Joe to do right here!

Friday Night Fights: In pursuit of Exo-llence

Welcome back fight fans, to Sin City Nevada for another round of Friday Night Fights. Tonight we join an ongoing fray, as the LEGO world continues to be gripped with Exo-suit mania. Hec, even the animals are getting in on the action! But let’s up the ante and give this a cinematic twist, shall we?

In the R-rated corner, we have a recreation of an A.P.U. from The Matrix Trilogy by Niki Dregant:

While over in the PG-rated corner, lurks a Unikitty-piloted Cloud Cuckoo Land Mech by Martin Gee:

As usual, constant reader, you are tasked with deciding, by way of comment, who will stomp their way to glory, and who is destined for the scrap heap. On the last edition of Friday Night Fights, Devil in the architecture Details, Nick Barrett’s Georgian town house prevailed with a monumental score of 11-0. Tune in next week for another action packed edition of Friday Night Fights!

BrickCon 2014 less than 4 weeks away [News]

Builders, get building – because it’s time to get your Con on!

BrickCon starts October 2nd in Seattle. This is the longest running LEGO convention in the US, and also the ancestral home of The Brothers Brick. If you haven’t done so already, register before September 18th to secure your goody bag and avoid paying the late registration fee of $100. Don’t say we didn’t warn you. As well as all the usual fun and games, this year’s BrickCon includes a couple of special attractions that we’d like to draw your attention to…

Invasion!

The overarching theme of this year’s convention is “Invasion!“. Builders from different specialties are encouraged to collaborate to create mash-ups of traditionally separate themes. Aliens crash-landing in medieval times? Dragons roaming through World War II Europe? Pirates sailing down main street? The more anachronistic the better!

  

ChronoCon 10,000 BC

The Brothers Brick is also sponsoring a collaborative display (in the same vein as our Zombie Apocafest, Big in Japan, and Numereji displays from previous years). This year the theme is time travel. Imagine if time travelers held conventions, and this one was being hosted by the stone age (…yes, a stone age that features dinosaurs!). Our previous post explains everything in detail, and there’s also a Flickr group for inspiration and help. But essentially you just need to build something to add to the display – we’ll work out the rest. There’ll be swag for participants, and of course trophies for the best contributions.

 

You killed the car!

Swedish LUG Swebrick recently held its annual “AFOL vs AFOL” building contest. The theme this year was to build any scene from an 80’s movie or TV show featuring a vehicle. First place went to Etzel87 for this perfect choice of moment from the cult movie Ferris Bueller’s Day Off – a movie where the vehicle is actually the co-star! Some of the other entries were quite fun too.


 

In the company of dwarves

The first installment of Peter Jackson’s sprawling Hobbit adaptation hit theaters almost two years ago now. Shortly after the premiere, Finnish builder and TBB regular Pate-keetongu decided to build two of the dwarves from the movie. And he just kept going! Now, his grand opus is finally complete. So we present to you, the company of Thorin Oakenshield in LEGO (or as the builder describes it on his blog, the “Hobbitsplosion“).

As breathtaking as the above spread is, it cannot do the individual builds justice. So we encourage you to check out the full album on Flickr, or visit the builder’s blog for lots of close-ups. Each character’s hair, costume and equipment has been accurately captured, making each one instantly recognizable.

And coincidentally, I recently interviewed this builder for a coming issue of LEGO fan magazine BrickJournal, where you’ll be able to learn more about his inspirations, building techniques, and impressive body of work.

Small business

LEGO’s Cafe Corner sets evoke a world of historic multi-story architecture and fine European living. So where are the sets that folks on Main Street can relate to? Well, eyescream54 has provided the solution, just in time for Labor Day…

First up is this donut shack, complete with super-enthusiastic shopkeeper, fully loaded fryer, and a brick-built sign that’s probably big enough to be seen from space.

Not sure if that race car belongs to the shopkeeper – maybe that’s why he looks so happy!

Next we have an authentic pizzeria, with authentic brick oven, and authentic Italian owner…

 

And finally, this totally tubular surf shop, complete with surfer dudes waxing their boards..

 

Fingers crossed that this builder’s next creation is an Irish pub!

A feast for the eyes

As popular as LEGO’s Mixels line has become, I must admit to me they are just great “parts packs”. And now I have more eyeball bricks than I know what to do with! But it’s heartening to see how these new parts seem to have stimulated a minor surge in character-based builds since the line’s introduction back in March.

Case in point: Serbian builder Djordje uses them to great effect in this recreation of Goofy, everyone’s favorite …erm, what the heck is he again?

1:16 scale LEGO locomotive is over a meter long

Better known for super-accurate scale model motorcycles and trucks, Dutch builder Bricksonwheels has decided to try his hand at a train. And not surprisingly, the result is spectacular – and also huge!

At 1.31m in length, this model EMD SD40-2 freight locomotive required months of building and approximately 20,000 bricks to complete. It was built at 1:16 scale …which I suppose technically puts it in the “rideable” 3/4 inch scale Live Steam gauge! It will also be featured in an upcoming book on LEGO scale model building by No Starch Press.