Tag Archives: Ancient Egypt

Build small, think big

Since being introduced with the LEGO Collectible Minifigure Series 2 back in 2010, the so-called trophy figure has been a boon for microscale and nanoscale builders. Sometimes this means creations at a truly colossal scale (relatively speaking), but Caleb Huet shows us that smaller, more introspective builds can be just as good. In this case, our nano-fig is walking through the desert. I’m not sure whether this takes place in the past or future though. At first, I thought the setting was some Egyptian ruins, but with the markings on the floor I’m not so sure. Did the Egyptians have floor lighting? That seems something more in line with extra-terrestrial civilisations. But the pyramids… What if the ancient Egyptians had help with their superstructures? Did the aliens take the floor lighting back with them? Is our intrepid nano-fig having the same epiphany?

The Desert

See, small builds really make you think. Even if they’re not particularly sensible thoughts.

Ancient Egyptian amphibian with hands for feet

Builder W Navarre has taken inspiration from the latest LEGO Architecture set and travelled to Egypt for his latest Iron Builder salvo. The centrepiece is a rather jolly-looking frog, cleverly using the bright green hand piece for the eye stalks. It also sees apples repurposed as big toes on the front legs. This little amphibian does go some way to deceive regarding the scale of the build though! The rest of the build gives slightly more clues, and is worth investigating in its own right as there are some great techniques on display. Much of the background is brick-built in microscale and blurred to add some forced perspective, even the water of the river Nile below. The best bit might just be the hieroglyphs on the frog’s plinth though! A mish-mash of parts, together with some gaps naturally created by the geometry of LEGO pieces, gives them a terrifically authentic weathered feel. Another of the seed part hands even makes an appearance, although it is well hidden – can you spot it?

Premonition: Nile Frogs

Three cheers for brick-built backgrounds! Ra! Ra! Ra!

I always say it, there are just not enough Stargate builds out there. That seems to be changing more and more, as seen here with this vignette by Builder Douglas Hughes. Somewhat of a double hitter for references, this model follows in the style of our 2021 Creation of the Year with its own distinct character. Capturing some Stargate history, Douglas imagined the false god moving into his new apartments. A Cheops class warship shoots a matter stream down into the Great Pyramids of Giza as the sun sets behind it, the Nile alight with a red glare. Clever building techniques and color-blocking create a gradient that effectively emulates the dulling brightness of the setting sun. The use of black bricks for the pyramids and ship is a great way to achieve the silhouette effect. The translucent red river is my favorite part though, as it’s a perfect way to capture the depth of field with an added layer of realism.

Ra the Goa'uld

This is a great example of the power models like this have and Douglas did a fantastic job with its color and layout. Maybe 2022 will bring us more of these delightful vignettes in addition to more Stargate love. Whatever it brings, I hope its not a bunch of Goa’uld in a Cheops.

An ominous oasis in the desert is full of charm

This Egyptian temple at the edge of an oasis is more than just a stack of tan bricks. Sebeus I makes good use of stickers from the Pharaoh’s Quest LEGO theme for the tall pinnacle in the foreground, but the star of this build is the large hieroglyphics across the front of the temple, constructed using slopes and some clever sideways-facing plates and tiles. The entrance uses some simple textures to create visual interest, and those statues of Anubis flanking the doorway are very accurate.

Forbidden Oasis

LEGO bust of Nefertiti captures ageless beauty

Although Koen Zwanengburg may not be as prolific as some builders, he makes up for it in sheer quality and talent, winning TBB’s LEGO Creation of the Year award for 2020 with his 16,000 LEGO brick mask of King Tut, for example. Koen follows up that Egyptian-themed LEGO creation with a depiction of the woman most modern scholars believe was Tutankhamen’s mother, Queen Nefertiti, the wife of the “heretic king” Akhenaten.


Koen has recreated the famous bust of Nefertiti sculpted by Thutmose, discovered in the artist’s ancient workshop in Amarna by German archaeologists in 1912 (and controversially still housed in the Egyptian Museum of Berlin rather than in its home country of Egypt).

See more details of this amazing LEGO sculpture of Nefertiti

Headdresses and cocktail dresses

With his new LEGO creation, Eero Okkonen begs the question; Ancient headdresses and cocktail dresses are a nice combo, right? Wait, let me think about this. Yes. Yes, they are. Margibi Imber pulls the ensemble off nicely with her Ancient Egyptian-inspired headdress complete with a scarab ornament. She pairs that with a festive strapless cocktail dress for a surprisingly coherent outfit. Accessorize with leg-length boots and a matching handbag and you have yourselves the makings of a fabulous night on the town. (Your results may vary.) My favorite detail is the LEGO netting used for hair. While Eero is certainly capable of building other things, find out why he’s among our favorite character builders in our archives.

Margibi Imber

Egad! Egyptian stuff that’s historically colored, and not just tan

It is a common misconception that ancient Egyptian architecture was as blandly colored as the surrounding desert. Historians, and, it seems, LEGO builder Mihai Marius Mihu, believe otherwise. And if you ever played Assassin’s Creed: Origins (which was heavily inspired by historic research) you might have climbed up a temple much like this one, dedicated to Anubis, the jackal-headed god of the afterlife. There are so many wonderful splashes of color, from the tiny row of green, gold, red, and blue tiles along the roof-line, to the elaborately detailed carvings atop the rows of pillars on each side.

The Temple of Anubis