Anime (アニメ in Japanese) is the style of animation or cartoons popularized in Japan, but appreciated worldwide today. Anime inspires lots of LEGO models from builders everywhere. Whether you love the artistry of Hayao Miyazaki or mecha from shows like Gundam and Evangelion, you’ll find many wonderful LEGO creations inspired by anime here on The Brothers Brick.
Mike Dung has created a troop of supercute chibi schoolgirls. A relatively simple frame structure and face design manages to support distinctly different characters thanks to great use of color, and some fantastic hairdo designs. Brilliant stuff Mike.
For the anime aficionados among you, these characters are from Love Live! School Idol Project (ラブライブ), a Japanese multimedia project co-developed by three companies. The project revolves around a group of fictional school girls who become idols in order to save their school from shutting down.
Anpanman was a popular Japanese children book series that ran from the early seventies until 2013, and among its record-holding 1,768-character roster was the main series antagonist, Baikinman. A devious bacteria man from the Germ Planet, he fought the title character in endless battles. Depicted here in a more serious (and deadly) manner by builder Moko, Baikiniman is clearly a monster you don’t want to mess with. That is, unless you have his one weakness on hand, soap, which causes him to shrink down to the size of a fly.
With fellow animated show Adventure Time becoming a retail set soon, it seems a shame that the famous Dragon Ball series will probably never see an official set (perhaps thanks to a few scenes involving a blue-haired character and her underwear).
Regardless, the beauty of being a LEGO fan is being able to make what the company won’t, and today Logey Bear did that with the Saiyan prince Vegeta.
While this is a remix of the builder’s previous model, the addition of the warm gold armour pieces to make up the well-known Saiyan armour, as well as a brick-built head (distinct “M” pattern hairline included) and there’s no mistaking who this is.
I present you with this collaborative LEGO music box by Banghoo H and Yeom-E. This intricate build features Laputa, the castle in the sky, and a steampunk-inspired, gear-filled mechanism to play music at the base.
Mike Dung has brought Aya Shameimaru from the Touhou Project to life in LEGO. Aya Shameimaru is a character who appears as a reporter in many of the games within the Touhou Project series. Aya covers the news in the fictional realm of Gensokyo and also belongs to the Crow Tengu species, giving her a height advantage when taking photographs. Mike manages to convey character details and also the fantastical nature of the game within his build.
I have to admit that I really like all the crows, Aya’s wings, the crow seen flying just below Aya, and the clever use of the black hotdog part to show a crow flying in the background. Forced perspective is utilised particularly well in the microscale Shinto shrine that appears to lie far below Aya as she enjoys her birds-eye view of the world. The overall feeling is one of movement, distance and height, something that is not easy to achieve within a small build.
Spawned from the loins of mold-breaking show Adventure Time, and apparently destined for a similar kind of cult following, Steven Universe is a critically acclaimed American animation about a boy and his troop of supernatural friends, the Crystal Gems. It’s on frequently in my house, although I’ll admit I haven’t been bitten by the bug yet. But Danish builder Ilia must have, judging by his superb sculpture of the show’s titular character:
Today, children and adults from all over the country will be donning their festive creepy and cool costumes for a night out gathering goodies or having fun with friends. But I know two particular builders who probably won’t be out and about. At all. Because right now they are locked in a life-and-death struggle for victory.
For those who are surprised, the Iron Builder is a recurring contest which pits two talented builders against each other in a duel to best incorporate a secret part. The current round is bringing forth some crazy good LEGO creations!
Chris Maddison brings us our favorite feathered ballistic missile from the ever-popular Angry Birds game.
When you finally get over how eye-catching and realistic the build looks, the clever simplicity is stunning. As a side note, in case you hadn’t heard, you can expect official LEGO Angry Birds sets next year.
Not to be outdone, Mike Nieves shows his characteristic System/Bionicle/Technic style with his recreation of Renji Abarai from Bleach.
I’m not very familiar with Anime in general, but a quick Google search shows just how well Mike was able to recreate the distinctive character at this scale.
Both builders have used the black forklift skid (the mandatory secret piece) to full advantage. But who will win?
The Brothers Brick are huge fans of the Japanese animator and film maker Hayao Miyazaki. And even though his works have got the LEGO treatment on many occasions, we always enjoy seeing a fresh take on them. So we were thrilled when Finnish builder Eero Okkonen decided to build large scale versions of Mito, Nausicaä, Lord Yupa and Kushana from the epic Nausicaa of the Valley of the Winds.
UPDATE: Here’s the complete cast (for now, Eero says), with the addition of Charuka, Chikuku, and Kurotowa.
Vehicles and vessels from anime shows continue to be a popular subject with LEGO builders. Christopher Hoffmann joins the fray with this small but well-executed Swordfish II fighter from Cowboy Bebop. Much of Christoph’s microscale Swordfish is built from Technic parts, though it certainly doesn’t look like it, does it?
If you like this microscale version, I think you’ll also enjoy Adrian Florea’s minifig-scale Cowboy Bebop Swordfish.
Despite more comebacks and fewer female characters than the Star Wars franchise, the Smurfs are still wildly popular today, almost 60 years after their first appearance as a Belgian comic strip. With two new Smurf movies behind us and another one in the works, it was only a matter of time before fans got tired waiting for LEGO to get in on the action, and took matters into their own hands. Which is exactly what Lee Jones and a team of builders did at BrickWorld Chicago did last month!
This huge diorama depicts the Smurf village, complete with forest landscaping, mushroom houses, and a forced-perspective version of Gargamel’s castle. All beautifully rounded off with the giant intruding faces of Gargamel and Azrael (courtesy of Tyler Halliwell and Kevin Lauer).
But the most remarkable part of this display have to be the Smurf minifigs. No, you’re not seeing things… Those aren’t shoddy clone brand figures. And no, LEGO didn’t secretly launch a line of collectible Smurf figs when no-one was looking. These are 100% custom manufactured! Lee’s team worked with BrickForge and Brick Fortress to design and produce custom components (heads, tails, even rotatable arms) all to “LEGO quality”. The results speak for themselves. Our pals at Beyond the Brick talked to Lee at BrickWorld and got the low-down…