About Mark

I'm a young AFOL (Adult Fan of LEGO) with a passion for historical and castle themed LEGO creations. Not convinced? Have a look at my Flickr Stream.

Posts by Mark

Dracula’s den

Last year’s Colossal Castle Contest has been over for a month now, so naturally I was surprised to see a large castle Moc with the distinctive “CCC” in the title. The builder, Maciek (“Toltomeja” on Flickr), says that it is a re-build of his earlier CCC entry. I don’t know what the previous incarnation looked like but this one is a beauty!

Dracula Castle - CCC XIII

Speaking as a castle builder, it’s very exciting to see the old but superb techniques of tubular gothic windows and minifig flipper roofs. The builder also included an excellently detailed interior, something you don’t always see in a creation this scale.

Dracula Castle - CCC XIII

Maciek has uploaded lots of pictures so be sure to check them out in the Flickr album.

Droneuary highlights

January Droneuary is almost over and that means the special building month for all things drone is almost over too. There have been a myriad of stellar creations in this year’s challenge, but here are a few of my favorites:

The first is Olympus Mons from TBB’s own Simon Liu.
Olympus Mons
I just love the dramatic monochromatic feel this build exudes. It’s also interesting to note the religious undercurrent that Droneuary is known for. In this case the scene features Zeus instead of the usual “Dronezus”.

Next we have Markus Rollbühler and his trio of uniquely-colored Drones.
A Triplet of Drones.
There’s nothing like some rare and hard-to-find colors to get out of the comfort zone, but Markus makes it look surprisingly easy to build in dark turquoise, light aqua and bright light orange.

Finally we have the perennial Tyler Clites and his U.N. vs. Spetsnaz Drones.
U.N. vs. Spetsnaz Drones
The cold war didn’t end. Or did it? Tyler utilizes his mastery of character and figure posing here to full effect. You can almost feel the mist as the Russian drone sneaks up on his target.

Sunset slumber

Ever since Tyler and Nannan built their masterful floating island collaboration called Aurora, other builders have taken up this beautiful and unique genre both individually and in groups. One of the regulars in the new unexplored theme is Brother Steven. His latest build is a sight to behold!

Sunset Slumber

Built as part of the Isles of Aura, the combination of a quaint well-balanced creation and an excellent edit job makes this quite a stunning picture. I hope we see more floating islands in future!

What the LEGO T-rex was made for

While browsing through Flickr today, I stumbled on this hilarious scene created by Brick Police. I’ve seen several photos of his highly detailed and customized police figures in various situations before, but this really takes the cake! LAPD vs T-Rex I must admit it cheers me up to see the good ol’ T-rex having a brawl with the LAPD. I hope we get to see more fun uses of the LEGO Jurassic World dinosaurs outside their cages!

Medium azure never looked better!

And I thought we had already seen all the cool ships from last year… Turns out TBB favorite Tyler Clites has just posted his fabulous contribution to SHIPtember, last year’s month-long spaceship building challenge.


The builder says it took longer than a month to complete (not exactly ideal as it is only a month-long ordeal). But I think we can cut Tyler some slack with this one. Those curves are fantastic. The color choice is superb. Undoubtedly one of the most stunning spaceships I’ve ever seen!

The schizophrenic ice age squirrel

I was a big fan of the first Ice Age movie when it came out several years ago. My favorite character was this prehistoric squirrel-thing that was constantly causing tectonic plate shifts with his prized acorn. The crazy proportions of “Scrat” would make it seem like an impossibility to recreate him effectively in LEGO (though Bruce Lowell built a LEGO Scrat a few years ago). But captainsmog seems to have captured the frenzied and furry essence flawlessly. Yet another epic use of the Mixel eyes!

Acorn addict

Medieval done right with Luke Hutchison

The Castle theme has a long history within the LEGO community, and builders all over the world have produced magnificent creations in every size, shape, and color. Luke Hutchinson (Derfel Cadarn) is one of the originators of the now-common “ramshackle” style, characterized by the odd angles and an organic approach to the scene. His beautiful creations inspired me to start building with LEGO and posting my creations online many years ago.

So, naturally I was very excited to see a glimpse of his latest creation in a teaser pic a few months back. He continues to improve his own building style, pushing his creations further and further, influencing many other builders in this theme.

'Where The Wild Things Are...'

We had a chance to talk to Luke more about his creation and his approach.

Read more after the break!

It’s good to go out with a bang

Sometimes it’s scary and/or heart-wrenching going into a new year and another big step in time. And then sometimes we’re just thrilled to be done with it and move on. Chris maddison recently shared one rather hilarious perspective on the new year. I’ve got to admit, I laughed way too hard at these delightfully detailed numbers. Happy new year!

2016 Comes in with a Bang

A multitude of medieval manors

As the year winds down to a close, so does the long running Colossal Castle Contest. There have been a pile of amazing entries this year, and it seemed to me that the “Medieval Manor” category in particular had some serious build potential.

First, we have TBB favorite Isaac Snyder and his “Mitgardian Manor.”

Mitgardian Manor

The outside is impressive enough, but the builder has included a fully furnished interior as well, which is mind-blowing considering the plethora of facades these days.

Isaac has constructed this massive wintery edifice with his own distinct flair as well. I think it’s fascinating when talented builders develop their own LEGO building style. Both of these guys have made a bunch of creations recently so be sure to check them out!

Next, Henry F took to the contest’s challenge in his usual classic castle style with his Chevalier’s Manor.

Chevalier's Manor

If I wasn’t looking at it right now, I would not believe how good a bright yellow building with a bold red roof looks. This is like a perfect blend of the 80’s castle lines with a modern twist.

Just an extraordinary day at the harbor

It’s nice to see a middle eastern creation pop up in the Flickr feed now and then. Like many other genres, I think this theme in general has a lot of creative potential yet to be explored. So when an up-and-coming castle enthusiast like Joseph Z gives eastern-style architecture a go, it’s rather exciting to see!

Yusnaan Harbor

The studs-outs wall texture and the nifty palm trees are certainly worth noting. But I think the unique use of minifigs make this stand-out most to me. I see what looks like a victorian lady carrying her longsword across town, and even those alien musicians from Star Wars. The builder gives us a brief description about the locale but I want to know more about this cool and wacky place!

A mosaic worthy of the subject

LEGO mosaics are fascinating. I’ve never tried to build one but I would imagine it would be very difficult. Jimmy Clinch, however, seems to have had no trouble assembling this masterpiece.

Publius Aelius Hadrianus Augustus

The brilliant use of tan, dark tan, light grey, dark grey and even some dark green give this two-dimensional creation an amazing three-dimensional look. It’s as if you could reach out and “beep” emperor Hadrian on the nose!

The builder says that this was built to accompany the Brick to the Past group’s Roman frontier collaboration we featured a while back. Be sure to check that out if you haven’t already.

A treaty of epic proportions

One interesting thing about the LEGO castle theme is that the characters and factions always seem to be at odds with one another; fortifications and weapons come as second nature to the minifigs of the darker ages. So it quite refreshing to see this diorama from durazno_33, which features a whole bunch of castle minifigs from different factions getting together and celebrating without their swords drawn!
Treaty Signing Celebration Alt Pic

Clearly, this is no ordinary stuffy political treaty signing. It seems like an entire festival has sprung from this single event.

Laugh a Little

I really like how there are minifigs from almost every year and theme LEGO has created for their long-running castle set lines. Plus, those altBricks leaves give the scene a lively look that would certainly be lacking otherwise. Be sure to check out all the pictures in the builder’s Flickr album.