Tag Archives: Event

LEGO fan events and conventions happen all over the world, from LEGO Fanwelt in Germany to BrickCon in Seattle. Follow along at home with our coverage of the people, news, and models from events everywhere.

Building prehistoric creatures with Bright Bricks

Building with LEGO professionally may sound like a dream job to many of us. Recently, whilst I was in the UK for Brighton Modelworld I caught up with Ed Diment (Lego Monster), who gave up his job as a management consultant more than two years ago to partner up with Duncan Titchmarsh, who is the UK’s sole Lego Certified Professional. Together they run Bright Bricks.

We talked about being a professional LEGO-builder and discussed their latest event. From the 26th of February to the 27th of April, the Milestones Museum in Basingstoke (UK) hosts the Lost World Zoo. Bright Bricks and various members of the UK’s LEGO community that were drawn in for this, built dozens of models of prehistoric creatures and plants, that are now on display in the museum. They were finishing the models for this during my visit and I lent a hand working on a 4 meter tall model of a Moa, which is an extinct New Zealand walking bird. They also built a massive sabre tooth tiger, which I photographed in the company workshop.

Bright Bricks workshop

Two more smaller examples are the ammonite by Tim Goddard (Rogue Bantha and a sabre toothed squirrel, built by Joe Perez (Mortalswordsman).

Ammonite

Ammonite

Visitors to the museum can also take part in activities, such as building a life-size woolly mammoth out of LEGO bricks. Yes, you did read that right: life-size. These guys like to do things big.

The company has been steadily growing. It currently employs about a dozen people working full-time, as well as several more on a temporary basis. The growth has meant having to move several times, because space in the workshop kept running out. They’re now based in a large unit on an industrial estate in Hampshire. Even though this is probably larger than all their previous workshops combined, the number of people, the large builds and the vast numbers of parts that they have in stock means that it can still be pretty difficult to move around in. The growth has also come with an increased amount of red tape. For instance, UK law requires a company of a given size to have an environmental policy and a health and safety policy, that includes having to find out how much heat is produced by a vast quantity of LEGO going up in flames. Ed probably spends more time on this and on dealing with clients and the media than he does on building. He still builds a lot, though, and with a seemingly endless supply of bricks. According to Ed, his current job is not as much fun as building AFOL models all day, but it is still definitely more fun than a regular job. Having spent a day putting more bricks together than I normally do in about a month, I can believe him (although I was still happy to go back to my day job).

If you’re in the South of the UK, I highly recommend that go check out the Lost World Zoo.

Brickish in Brighton

Last weekend, more than a dozen members of the Brickish Association descended on the seaside town of Brighton in the Southern UK for Brighton Modelworld. This is an event for modelbuilding of all kinds, from wooden dollhouses to gasoline-powered mini tanks large enough to seat a person. This was the seventh time that Brickish had a display there and the fifth time that I attended myself. Here are a few of the highlights.

Julie Greig (Jujem71) displayed a collection of minifigs that represent various generations of Doctor Who and their assistants, which were instantly recognizable to many fans of the series.

Many Doctors

A British TV show that is not nearly as well known outside of the UK as Doctor Who is Stingray. It showed the adventures of a submarine called Stingray, which was home-based at a town/mi;itary base called Marineville. This was built in microscale by Andrew Danieli (kaitain).

Bricks at Brighton 2014

We also had a collection of rockets, including my own. Mine were completely dwarfed, however, by the moon rocket from Tintin built by Ian Greig (Bluemoose) and the space Shuttle Endeavour built by Ed Diment (Lego Monster), Annie Diment (Mrs Monster), Naomi Farr (euphonica) and Stuart Crawshaw (OptimalControl).

Bricks at Brighton 2014

More pictures of these and other LEGO models at the event can be found in the Bricks at brighton flickr group. It was hard not to notice how, for instance, the train displays seem to change very little from year to year. Perhaps the (largely) elderly gentlemen who build them add a new house or a new tree every now and then, but the LEGO display is completely different every year. LEGO is so much more flexible and this makes us very popular with the visitors and the organizers alike. I’m already looking forward to next year’s display.

Steam 2013 round-up

While most of my fellow Brothers were having a great time at Brickcon in Seattle, I was enjoying myself immensely at the UK’s largest LEGO-event: the Great Western Lego Show in Swindon. The show is organised by Martin Long, who is the president of the Brickish Association. The show took place on Saturday the 5th and Sunday the 6th of October at a great location: the Great Western Railway museum, a.k.a. the Steam Museum. Most of the models on show were built by members of the association, who tend to refer to the show simply as ‘Steam’.

GWLS (STEAM) 2013

The models were all of a very high quality, but I want to share a few highlights with you. The first is the Rolls Royce Trent 1000 jet engine build by Bright Bricks, which is a company run by Duncan Titmarsh -the UK’s only Lego Certified Professional- and Ed Diment (Lego Monster). The model is built to half scale, weighs 350 kg and was commissioned by Rolls Royce for last year’s Farnborough Air Show. It is beautifully built and by means of an electric motor the fans actually spin, which gives it certain hypnotic quality.

Great Western Lego Show at STEAM 2013 42

Another very large and impressive model was the Tigelfáh Castle layout (We featured part of this a few weeks ago). It was a collaborative build by no fewer than eight builders: James Pegrum (peggyjdb), Harry Russell (Kǻrrde), Thomas Coleman (Malravion), Luke Watkins Hutchinson (- Derfel Cadarn -), Barney Main (SlyOwl), Colin Parry (Cuahchic), Jimmy Clynche (Invicta Bricks) and Steven Snasdell (workshysteve). It was enormous, fantastically detailed and very hard to capture in a single photo! No matter from what angle you looked at this, you always spotted a nice new detail.

One of the favourites of the public at the Steam show is the mosaic build. Members of the audience can fill a baseplate with 2×2 plates (in pre-arranged patterns printed out on paper), after which the plate is added to the mosaic. The mosaic gradually grows during the show and the end result is always spectacular.

STEAM (Great Western LEGO Show) 2013

For more pictures of these and other models at the show, check out the photosets by Andrew Harvey, Alec Hole and Drew Maughan. This was my 7th time at the event and it just keeps getting better. I know I am not the only builder already planning what to build for the show next year.

BrisBricks 2013 Convention

For those of you in Brisbane, next weekend (Oct 5th-7th) will see the BrisBricks LEGO Convention out at Chandler. Details below.

OPENING TIMES:
Saturday 5th October 2013 – 9:00am-5:00pm
Sunday 6th October 2013 – 10:30am-5:00pm
Monday 7th October 2013 – 9:00am-4:00pm

Autism Community Session:
Sunday 6th October 2013 – 9:00am-10:30am

TICKET PRICES:
Adult: $10.00
Child (3-15yrs): $5.00
Under 3yrs FREE

Book tickets online:
To book tickets click here http://www.trybooking.com/DDJR

Tickets sold at door:
Limited tickets will be available at the door. (cash only)
Book online to avoid disappointment as sessions often reach capacity
Pre-paid tickets will take priority entry

Brick Fiesta 2013 wrap up and walkthrough video

Brick Fiesta 2013 took place in Dallas this past weekend. In its third annual event, Brick Fiesta has grown to be one of the largest medium-sized Lego conventions in the US, trailing behind its big sibs known as BrickFair, Brickworld, and BrickCon. This year the event was held in my location of residence, so I attended the convention, albeit briefly, to set up some MOCs and do coverage of the displays. Here are some of my favorite creations from the event.

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Matthew Greene’s Hobbiton was a colorful display full of lush landscaping. The cheerful colors and peaceful action of the Hobbits (minus the fire that burned on the top right on Sunday) was a soothing contrast to the builder’s other WW2 display that also attracted lots of attention.

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The Unexplored Ruins by a team of 5 builders showcased a lot of advanced techniques used to create a realistic-looking ruined castle. In the walkthrough videos I showed a close up of the MOC and highlight a few parts that I really liked.

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Even though I’m not a train builder, I enjoyed this layout by David Hawkins for the detailed landscape and the few realistic buildings.

These are many more creations that I enjoyed besides these featured ones. I encourage you to browse through the Brick Fiesta Flickr group to see more photos from the event. I have also recorded around an hour of video of me walking through the exhibit hall and talking about the displays in 4 clips, with part one shown below:

Incredible Steampunk Castle made from 20,000 LEGO pieces

This amazing “Steam Castle Falls” diorama was presented at the recent Fana’Briques expo in Rosheim, France, and represents the combined effort of three builders: Arnaud Besson (74louloute), Olivier Curto (oLaF LM) and Jimmy Fortel (6kyubi6). My complete absence of francais aside, I wish I could have been there to see it.

Steam Castle Falls

Steam Castle Falls 1/3 - Kyubi's partWeighing in at over 20,000 pieces, and taking each builder over four months to make, the diorama is clearly the result of a lot of effort. It is impressive that three builders managed to make something work together so cohesively, especially when you consider that the three live in different corners of France.

Steam Castle FallsFurthermore, the major part of the diorama went on a 1000km trip, while another section took a long train trip. And unfortunately for everyone, the diorama could have been even bigger, had the originally planned fourth builder “Capt’n Spaulding” been able to participate.

Steam Castle Falls 1/3 - Main Picture
With major inspiration from this picture, the diorama follows a loose interpretation of a medieval theme. Although I get a strong vibe of techwest anime cartoons as well. Regardless of what inspired it, it’s certainly an incredible work.

Brickworld walkthrough videos

For those who weren’t at Brickworld two weeks ago, there are two walkthrough videos of the convention by Paul Vermeesch and Josh Hanlon. The video by Paul features two narrators, Max Pointner and Ian Spacek, in an edited coverage of the exhibit hall. The other video by Josh features himself and Matthew Kay as the commentators in an in-depth look at many of the creations on display. Sit back, grab a snack, and enjoy the best MOCs that Brickworld has to offer!

Brickworld 2013 Wrap-Up

This past weekend was Brickworld 2013 in Schaumberg, Illinois, and Chris and I attended. I attended for the first time; it was fun being a “newbie” for once, despite this being my 11th LEGO convention. This was my first event outside of the Pacific Northwest! Though really, Chicago, the tornados were a bit much. Really. No need for that.

All weather and terrible airline travel aside, the event was a blast. This was the first year in the new location and by all accounts, it was a fabulous decision to move and improved the convention-going experience greatly. Unlike last year, all the creations this year were housed in the same MASSIVE space.

Over the next few days, pictures of some of the amazing creations will pop online. I want to highlight a few of my favorites:

Smaug by Sharon Vance

The Marquis, by Peter Mowry

Area 51 by Brian Williams

This was really fantastic. We’ve blogged the warehouse previously; now he’s added the shooting location for the Moon Landing, a Stargate, and a number of other fantastic references!

Product announcements

There were two bits of news which we already reported: the reveal of 10234 Sydney Opera House and announcing the Curiosity Rover.

For me, the value of any convention comes from the memories; I attend just as much, if not more, for the people as I do the brick. I saw people I haven’t seen in years, met new friends, and made enough memories and paper planes to last a lifetime. Or at least until BrickCon.

World War Brick 2013 in Minneapolis, MN – June 28-30 [News]

World War Brick is a LEGO fan event organized by Brickmania that brings together builders who display LEGO models inspired by historical and military themes. The second annual event will take place in Minneapolis, Minnesota at Brickmania Toyworks.

World War Brick banner

Discount pre-registration for weekend passes (the private convention) ended yesterday, but you can use a special coupon code for TBB readers when you register and get $10 off: TBBWWB

As with most LEGO fan conventions, you can also see the models on display during public exhibition times, Saturday and Sunday from 10:00 AM to 4:00 PM.

Head on over to WorldWarBrick.com for complete details