Monthly Archives: April 2011

55cm LEGO Ironman

I know nought about Iron Man but Alex Schranz (“Orion Pax”) was obviously a fan of the comic and has dedicated 55cm worth of ABS to recreating this armoured superhero. His dedication to recreating the ‘muscles’ on the figure really lend it a drawn air. And as an added bonus the light in the chest actually works. Superb building.


The keen-eyed will notice a slight difference between the most recent four shots and the rest.

Announcing “Numereji 2421” at BrickCon 2011 [News]

Yuri GagarinThis year marks the 50th anniversary of human space flight, as we celebrate Russian cosmonaut Yuri Gagarin‘s historic orbit on April 12, 1961. This year also marks the start of a new but attenuated space age — one without NASA’s Space Shuttle program. In a sense, humanity stands at a fork in the road of our collective existence. Do we fold back in on ourselves and continue eking out a day-to-day existence on a planet with fewer and fewer resources, or do we adapt to our changing world and find new ways of living — both here at home and possibly beyond?

These are serious questions with philosophical, scientific, and political import. But they’re also pretty cool inspiration for building with LEGO! The collaborative display for readers of The Brothers Brick at BrickCon 2011 later this year is titled Numereji 2421.

For hundreds of years humans traveled through space like locusts, jumping from one planet to the next as they exhausted each home in turn. An outbound emigrant ship suffered a navigational and power failure that led to crash landing on Numereji, a terrestrial planet with a breathable atmosphere. Although the colonists crashed in an arid part of the planet, there may be a broad variety of environments beyond the horizon.

NASA Mars colony concept art by Pat Rawlings

They settled into their home and built the town of New Howland. They held little hope of response to their distress signal, and for thirty years they survived off the remains of their ship, struggling to live alongside the alien flora and fauna. In time, they built a thriving, sustainable community.

Things changed five years ago when rescuers unexpectedly arrived and tenuous links were established with Outworld communities. Waves of immigrants have begun to arrive, and New Howland has become the main spaceport. Will Numerians follow the old pattern or take the new path blazed by the pioneering crash survivors?

The theme of BrickCon 2011 is “Building a Community.”

NASA Mars colony concept artApplying this theme to the collaborative display we’ll all build together, in what direction will your contribution take our fragile colony? Will you build a wind farm or a smuggler’s base? A cyber-library or Terran Expeditionary Marines recruiting office? Our future rests in your hands. The choice is yours.

We don’t currently have any particular standards in mind for the display, though we are returning to minifig-scale. The inevitable mix of technologies, terrains, and building styles provides lots of opportunities for a diversity of contributions.

Sources of inspiration for this display include:

Her arm clad in purest shimmering samite...

“The Lady of the Lake” by Brandon Bannerman (Catsy) combines innovative lighting, forced perspective, and a little software wizardry to create a gorgeous Arthurian scene.

The Lady and the Blade

Don’t miss Brandon’s setup shot for more info on how he achieved this photo.

Of course, everyone knows that strange women lying in ponds distributing swords is no basis for a system of government.

How to paint an artist.

Ah, the life of an artist. Glamorous, with paintings selling for millions upon millions, right? Eh, probably not. Unless you’re Picasso, this poor minifig probably won’t see his works reach seven digits in his lifetime. But that’s glamorous, right?

All he wants to do is pay for his fantastic flat, that he just cleaned. But he missed the red pigment. That’s going to stain.

I love the detail in this. The coat rack, especially, and the half-finished sculpture. Bravo, Walter Boy.

Beyond imagination: a LEGO exhibit in Hong Kong

The talented group of LEGO fans in Hong Kong have put together a large exhibit organized by and hosted in Cityplaza from April 15 – May 2. There are 3 sections of the display. The first features a panel of storyboards detailing development of the LEGO Company. The second is a display of 2,000 figures and large figure sculptures spanning over 30 years of minifig history.

The third and most exciting section is a display of 17 famous world landmarks and icons such as the Grand Palace in Thailand by Vincent Cheung, a pyramid from Egypt by ArzLan, the Saint Basil’s Cathedral in Russia by Schneider Cheung, and Tiananmen in China by Andy Hung. Some early pictures taken by Joey Kwok have been uploaded on Flickr. I’ll update this post as more pictures of the event show up.

M3 Grant Medium Tank by PhiMa

LEGO M4 Sherman tanks are the single most popular tank to build, so it’s nice to see a builder break out of that mold and reproduce in LEGO a less popular but more interesting tank design. PhiMa does this with the tank that preceded the Sherman, the M3 Grant.

M3 Grant Medium Tank - "Jack The Ripper"

Three reasons I think the Sherman is so popular are because 1) They were the most common tanks by the end of World War II, 2) The convention is to build them in gray (standing in for olive drab) and gray is a fairly common color in LEGO, and 3) The structure above the chassis is fairly straightforward (though the curves are hard to get right in LEGO). In contrast, M3 Grants were used widely by British forces in North Africa, requiring tan instead of gray/olive, and they’re a lot more complex — especially with those two turrets — above the treads.

But PhiMa’s version isn’t just about the pretty exterior; he’s built significant playability features into the model, including a full interior and detailed engine.

M3 Grant Medium Tank - "Jack The Ripper"

Microscale space rover

This microscale helium transport rover by Robert H. (Robiwan_Kenobi) has so many neat details to point out. For starters, there’s the spherical container modules made from ball turrets, the suspension springs made from ray guns, the command module made from a helmet visor, and the joints on the mecha made from half of a universal joint. Everything is integrated beautifully into this small but quality-oriented model.

Bricks Helping Japan – Charity LEGO Auctions Update 1

So far, our auctions have raised over FOUR THOUSAND DOLLARS! Thanks so much to everyone who has donated creations, and everyone who has bid on them!

There are half a dozen auctions ending in the next twelve hours, and a few more the next day. I’ll also be adding some new stuff this weekend, so keep an eye out for more MOCs, and some LEGO Cuusoo! Here are some of the auctions ending soon:

LOST - Season 1 - John Locke

Grand Admiral Thrawn

Once again, here’s the link to all of the on-going auctions to help the Red Cross in their efforts to help the victims of the earthquakes and tsunamis in Japan and the Pacific Rim.

Microscale 10188 Death Star makes up for lack of minifigs with sheer adorableness

As much as we enjoy them, I suspect we’re all used to seeing microscale modular buildings at this point. But a micro version of 10188 Death Star? Well done, Brickbuilder0937!

Death star mini-2

Brickbuilder0937 further miniaturizes the mini TIE Fighter, and includes every little scene from the official set — detention block, trash compactor, throne room, and more. But my favorite feature is the little extra star on the end of the Death Star laser. Adorable!