It’s amazing how some things never go out of style. They’re timeless. Like the Beatles, denim, and bubblegum. Underwear (thank goodness)… Harry Potter… LEGO! And Pokémon. Articuno, one of three Legendary birds, was born into the Pokémon universe in 1996 with 150 other First Generation creatures (like Pikachu, Charmander, and Squirtle), and is still popular today with Pokémon Go. This beautiful build by mk bricks is a nod to the famous bird. The layering of parts to create an icy feathered appearance is well-achieved here. It’s not all that easy to avoid making these kind of builds look blocky and repetitious, but not here! And perhaps the coolest (pun intended) part is the most obvious. The bending technique to shape the iconic tail looks great! It really could not have been better accomplished.
New Zealand has some of the most interesting fauna in the world, with many of their animals not found anywhere else in the world. While on holiday there, Patrick B. was so enamored by the birds that he decided to recreate them in LEGO. The results are lovely! This collection showcases the Kea, Pukeko, Kakapo, and the iconic Kiwi. I have to say, that last one is pretty adorable in LEGO form. Here in Seattle where I live, we have a pair of gorgeous Keas at Woodland Park Zoo. These endangered mountainous creatures are quite intelligent and always busy. They’re one of my favorite birds, and nicely done here.
Back in 2013, Thomas Poulsom also did a couple of these New Zealand birds (and a badger). And a bit more recently, we’ve featured an article about another LEGO build of the critically endangered Kakapo. It’s a parrot unlike any other in the world! Check it out, and then learn more about what you can do to help them.
If your LEGO city is situated by the seas, here are four complementary birds that could be residents of the local shores. Tammo S creates a few feathery friends from a lesser black-backed gull, a parrot/finch, a common redshank and a royal tern. They’re tiny enough for a quick build, so start looking in your bin of parts and give them a go! My favourite is the proud parrot – what’s yours?
As a zoology nerd, my favorite things to write about are, of course, animals. When I saw these lovely LEGO birds by Luis Peña, I just couldn’t resist! The creative build features iconic species, including the Hyacinth Macaw, Scarlet Macaw, Andean Condor, Black-Necked Swans, Ringed Kingfisher, and Magellanic Woodpecker.
I adore Kingfishers, but I’d have to say that my favorite bird in the series is the Woodpecker. There is some clever parts usage here, giving it character. I love that mohawk headpiece, and the worm that is formerly an “Insectoid” (13757) from 70709 Galactic Titan.
Luis is a talented builder who we’ve featured before. If you like these animals, check out his recent Paleozoic sea creatures!
Sometimes the best designs come from constraints. When it comes to LEGO creations, builders are constrained by the size of their collection or the colors that LEGO elements are available in. In the case of this lovely model of a Bullfinch by Peter Ilmrud, one of the constraints is a glass dome from Ikea to keep his creations dust-free. If this looks familiar, there’s a good reason. We recently featured Peter’s Aladdin vignette also designed to fit under a glass dome. This Bullfinch, based on the LEGO Ideas Birds set 21301 fits perfectly atop a snow-covered branch, looking rather stately. I can almost hear chirping.
The tree is skillfully constructed to fit inside the glass dome, without feeling too cramped, or too minimal. The curved wall at the base provides a nice anchor to the scene and the use of loosely poured ice-cream scoops as freshly fallen snow is perfect.
Trek far enough through the tropical rainforests of South America, and you might be lucky enough to stumble upon the toco toucan. Toucans are widely recognized because of their big, bold, bodacious beaks. It’s a wonder they are able to support the weight of that massive-looking head. For that matter, we are amazed Sven Franic was able to pull off the same feat with his brick-built toucan. By utilizing a wide variety of curved elements, Sven has managed to sculpt out an excellent likeness of this magnificent bird. The wooden perch is also a nice touch, one that probably also helps with supporting bird’s weight. It’s “toucan-tastic!”
If you’ve never seen a red-crowned crane, they are certainly a site to behold. Standing at 5 feet (1.5 meters) tall, with a wingspan of 7-8 feet, and weighing up to 25 Lbs (over 11 Kg), these endangered creatures are among the largest birds in the world. Their mating dance is also incredible! Native to East Asia, the sacred cranes have significant symbolism in Japanese tradition. They represent luck, longevity, and fidelity, and they often show up in art, like this elegant diorama by ggwingx.
The background and base are a perfect tribute to the homeland of these beautiful animals. But what really stands out is the terrific use of those white clamshells, and black and white feather pieces to really give them dimension. The legs, necks, and heads are also clever. Altogether it’s a great use of simple parts to make something that truly embodies the gracefulness of these creatures.
Spring is for the birds. Helping usher in spring for TBB’s cover photo this month is Gregory Coquelz’s excellent rendition of Pixar’s For the Birds that we featured back in February. Each time you visit us on our social pages, you can imagine the endless chatter of birds on an electric cable. Or, it might be the birds outside your window. We’ll leave that up to you to figure out.
Want to see your own LEGO creation featured across TBB social media for a month? Then read the submission guidelines and send us your photo today. Photos that do not meet the submission guidelines will not be considered, and will be removed from the group.
The New Zealand fantail, or pīwakawaka in Te Reo (the language of the native Maori), is one of the cheekiest little birds you will ever meet. Beautifully recreated in LEGO by BrickMonkey MOCs, the fantail is known for its friendly ‘cheet cheet’ call and energetic flying antics. Smaller than a house sparrow, these audacious little guys flit around twittering and swooping within centimetres of your head if you find yourself outdoors in the native bush. The aptly named fantail is one of the most common and widely distributed native birds on the New Zealand mainland.
The Rainbow Lorikeet is a species of parrot found in Australia — unmistakable with its bright red beak and colourful plumage. Gabriel Thomson has built this fantastic LEGO rendition, complete with a tree branch to perch upon, and a little avian friend, a Superb Wren. I love the bright blue plumage of the Wren, a display of colour designed to attract the ladies in real life. Both birds have been well-shaped to give an accurate, natural appearance — no mean feat with plastic bricks instead of feathers.
If you want to see this model ‘in the brick’, it is on display in LEGO House — the new LEGO experience over in Billund, Denmark.