Tag Archives: BrickCon

BrickCon happens the first weekend in October every year in Seattle. BrickCon is the longest continuously running LEGO fan convention in the world, and it’s also our favorite LEGO con! Learn more (and consider attending yourself) at BrickCon.org.

Tales from Hub 14.

It was my distinct pleasure to attend the 12th annual BrickCon in Seattle last weekend along with about half of TBB’s contributors, hundreds of talented builders and thousands of slack-jawed public hours gawkers. While I’m sure you’ll be seeing and reading more about the convention from my Brothers, I’ll be focusing this post on a collaborative sci-fi project I took part in called Hub 14 that featured 23 builders from Brazil, Canada, Germany and a U.S. contingent that included both Alaska and Hawaii.

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Hub 14 was a sprawling 4ft by 12ft slice of alien landscape that included an air-traffic control hub, landing pads and swampy terrain that provided a stage for dozens of VTOL spaceships, mecha, minifigs, monsters, hard-suits and personal conveyances of every variety. Although it apparently won a category award of some kind (I didn’t actually see it happen) Hub creator Michael Rutherford claims that no trophy was actually distributed and if there was he had no specific knowledge of such an artifact. The real value of the Hub was the camaraderie enjoyed by its participants and the shared effort to bring the diorama to life. Clear evidence of the spirit of the Hub was the exchange of VTOL’s by many of the builders at the end of the convention, with nobody being more generous than Simon Liu, who basically gave everything away. Everyone pitched in from set-up to tear-down and I think I can safely say that a good time was had along the way. My favorite aspect of the project was meeting and working with some of my favorite builders that I’ve somehow missed in my convention travels, people like Pascal, Gilcelio, Nick, Sam, Chris, Aaron, Adam, Evan, Ryan, Simon and Will. While it’s great to work with beloved cronies like Mark, Breanne, Bram, Josh, Ian and Ley (to name a few) there is a special thrill adding new blood to the mix. I learned a great deal about collaboration along the way and I feel like I’m a better builder as a result.

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But there was also a dark side to the shenanigans occurring at Hub 14, most notably this truly disturbing and deadly embrace shared by Michael Rutherford and Ryan Wilhelm. While this borderline cosplay only lasted a brief 3 and a half minutes to get as fellow Hubbite Simon Liu put it “Just the right shot“, it seemed to most observers that time was slowed like Neo stopping incoming bullets in The Matrix. I like to think I’ve been to my share of conventions and seen some odd behavior out of my fellow Lego nerds, but this was a whole new level of strangeness….at least in the on-site venue. I still wake up screaming, thinking about this terrible soul-kiss…and yes constant reader…there was tongue.

<insert disturbing title here>

Although my final anecdote is only superficially related to Hub 14, it is without qualification, the best. No doubt as a result of his association with the Hub, the eternally effervescent Nick Trotta was approached by Lego’s own Keith Severson (Sr. Manager of Community Support) about taking Nick’s “Solar Sweeper” starfighter back to Billund to be displayed within their innovation studio. Apparently it will be set up in an area for LEGO designers to regularly see and take some inspiration from what our awesome building community is up to. In Nick’s own understated words “Wow!“. After meeting Nick and his long suffering (and much funnier) wife Adelle, I can safely say it couldn’t have happened to a nicer, more humble dude. So keep hope alive constant reader, if you have the requisite skills you might just get “discovered” at a convention.

LEGO Group is taking Solar Sweeper to Billund!

So many thanks to the hard working and hard partying international crew of builders that was Hub 14, you guys (and gal) are the best. The project would not have been possible without the generosity and logistical assistance from TBB’s elder statesman Andrew Becraft who not only allowed me to ship 10 boxes to his domicile but also moved them to the venue and shipped them back without so much as a complaint. Thanks also to Wayne Hussey and team for another fabulous BrickCon! If you are interested in the specific contributions of each member you can follow the links throughout the article or head on over to Ryan Rubino’s photostream for additional action. Due to post-convention hangover disorder (PCHD), some of the contributors have not yet officially posted their models to Flickr, so stay tuned to your stream for more details. There is a public Group Pool for the Hub, but again, because of PCHD it is still in its infancy.

Hubbites Assemble!

I’ve been told by experts in the know that this sort of coverage isn’t well loved by our audience and usually results in a downward spike in statistical interest, so thank you for your indulgence. If you have a thought you’d like to share on the topic of convention coverage I’d love to read about it in the comments.

BrickCon 2013 starts today!

Things might be a little quieter here on Brothers-Brick.com over the next four days, because about half the TBB team will be in Seattle for BrickCon 2013.

BrickCon 2009 panorama by DaddyBen

One thing I’ve learned about BrickCon over the years — this will be my eighth BrickCon since I first attended in 2006 — is that it’s an experience that you just have to be there for. Unfortunately, that means we haven’t been covering every single day of BrickCon like we did back in 2006-2007.

Nevertheless, you can still follow along at home through the photos, tweets, and blog posts by various attendees. First, there’s the BrickCon photo pool on Flickr, where you can follow along as people add photos of setup, events, and the LEGO models everyone comes to see.

Second, here are the Twitter users we’re aware of who are tweeting from BrickCon 2013 (when the awful data connection in the venue permits…):

(I’ll add to this list later as I find out who’s at BrickCon and who’s posting while they’re there.)

LEGO Gollum reminds us that there are only a few more days to register for BrickCon 2013!

BrickCon 2013 is less than a month away and registration will be closing in two weeks! If you are planning on attending the longest-running LEGO fan convention in North America, you had better get registered. There will be prizes, games, seminars, round-table talks, food, new friends and, of course, tons and tons of cool LEGO creations to drool over. This will be my eighth BrickCon and every one has been fun and unique. You definitely don’t want to miss the party! Iain Heath posted this video gem to remind all of us how precious registration really is…

If you plan to attend the whole convention, register through the BrickCon Builder’s site.

If you plan to only view the displays during the public hours, buy tickets in advance at the Public BrickCon sit.

BrickCon 2013 registration now open [News]

BrickCon 2013 is now open for registration! As we’ve said before, BrickCon is our favorite LEGO convention in the increasingly busy North American LEGO convention circuit.

BrickCon 2013

The official theme for BrickCon 2013 is “Pigs vs. Cows” (as I’m sure everyone gathered from the Kickstarter project we highlighted earlier this year). What does that craziness mean? Well, that’s really up to you — LEGO is, after all, a creative medium. I’m not sure how town and train builders will manifest the theme in their layout, or whether we can expect cows storming the pig-defended beaches of a LEGO Normandy, but I do know that the castle builders have something spectacular planned.

Speaking of collaborations, watch this space for more info on the various themes that will give you the opportunity to contribute to a group build.

If you haven’t been to BrickCon before, check out BrickCon photos on Flickr and our own BrickCon coverage here on The Brothers Brick.

Be sure to go to BrickCon.org/Builders/ to register for the full, four-day private convention.

The exclusive “Pigs vs. Cows” BrickArms crate has been unveiled

Guy Himber’s Pigs vs. Cows project is well underway, but still needs pledges! An exciting part of some the pledges is an exclusive PvC BrickArms crate that will be included with the Pig and Cow heads.

Pledge now!

Also one of the $1000 pledges has been picked up so everyone will be receiving cat heads as well! As the picture states, the cat is still a work-in-progress.

Cat Warrior Work In Progress for Pigs vs Cows on Kickstarter

Pledge now!

PIGS vs. COWS!!!

In preparation for the Pigs vs. Cows theme at BrickCon 2013, Guy Himber (V&A Steamworks) has launched a Kickstarter campaign to produce minifig-compatible pig and cow heads!

Head over to Kickstater and pledge to get some of these great heads to spice up your Pigs vs Cows creations! Keep watch here on The Brothers Brick for more news on the Pigs vs. Cows theme and BrickCon 2013!!!

Hillel Cooperman’s BrickCon keynote video now online

Since BrickCon 2010, we’ve been treated to Hillel Cooperman‘s hilarious opinions about the world of LEGO fandom. This year’s keynote address is now online, and gives you a flavor of what it’s like to get in a room and laugh together with 500 of your closest friends. This year, Hillel shares a lovely retrospective of the first 10 years of the longest-running LEGO convention.

Warning: This is an uncensored video at a convention for adult LEGO fans. Expect the occasional four-letter word…

Pixel-by-pixel map of Zelda’s Hyrule built from LEGO

No, we’re not done yet featuring all the great LEGO creations debuted at BrickCon 2012 last month! Michael Kuroda (madoruk) just posted his massive map of Hyrule from the original Legend of Zelda.

The Legend of Zelda: Hyrule

Each LEGO stud represents 16×16 pixels on the in-game map, and the overall LEGO map is 256 studs wide by 88 studs tall!

One of the things I really like about Michael’s work is that he builds in a lot of different genres, so be sure to check out his photostream for lots more good stuff.

LEGO Rialto Bridge

Anupehr has been creating some incredible LEGO versions of famous landmarks from around the world. One of her most recent, the Rialto bridge, won ‘Best Architectural Style’ at BrickCon earlier this month. This is one builder to keep an eye on. She has managed to fly under the radar for some time but she has some incredible skills.

The Rialto Bridge, Venice.

Check out the whole set of pictures for more details.

Enter the FUN HAUS! A celebration of life ... through death!

Continuing our coverage of great LEGO models debuted at BrickCon 2012, Paul Hetherington just posted his FUN HAUS! building, which won “Best in Town.” (Paul has a serious winning streak going — he also won Town trophies in 2010 and 2011, and won our “Best Apocafied Building” prize during Zombie Apocafest 2009 for his Turns at Midnight carousel.)

FUN HAUS!

Paul’s funhouse was inspired by the Mexican Day of the Dead (Dia de los Muertos) celebrations, as well as the work of artist Pooch. The building features moving cars as well as letters, so the video is well worth a watch.