When you put a title like Castle Bros on the line, you better be ready to back it up eventually with some epic, medieval models. After he and his brother succeeded in securing the victory, LEGO Masters contestant Caleb Schilling was well aware of this obligation. Compelled to revive the build that won the bet, Caleb did so with style. The Joust of Sir Bob and Sir Leon takes place high on the bridge above the castle gates, surrounded by colorful citizens celebrating the competition. Red and blue banners wave above their heads for their favorite knights as they look on from various levels of this towering castle. The molding of the bridge is brilliantly detailed, emulating carved stone with gold inlets. Honestly, the parapets of each tower and turret are beautifully designed with wonderfully textured walls and arrowslits dotting them. My absolute favorite portion is the entryway. This design is honestly gorgeous. The use of sand green and dark orange contrasts nicely with the highlight of white and peek of yellow from above. The plants adorning the windowsills, the ivy climbing the left turret, and the bright tree atop the entryway add an organic element to the stone and mortar.
Caleb Schilling, and Jacob for that matter, have impressed me so far in their tenure as the Castle Bros. Their use of bright colors to contrast the greys and browns common in castle designs breathes life into the concept. This model and that from the show seem almost animated with how the characters and buildings complement each other. I can’t wait to see Caleb’s next castle.
One of the things in the Harry Potter universe that always caught my attention was the charmed tents. Nothing as magical as 3 people entering a really small tent to discover that it is very spacious on the inside. Caleb Schilling takes this setting and gives us the Quidditch World Cup scene where the Weasley family camps in a borrowed charmed tent during the sport event. The tent is made of fabric, which is really hard to create with a hard plastic construction toy. However, Caleb managed to make the flowing fabric feel come across quite beautifully thanks to the round wall, patterns on all the walls, and the curtains hanging from the ceiling. The tent has everything a family needs to camp in comfort: beds, couches, chairs, tables, a heating stove, and even a rug with fringe!
Rescue from the Merpeople was released in 2005, that’s right, 15 years ago! It was a small build but it contained 5 unique figures. It was the first set, and still one of the only sets, containing sleepy faced minifigurs. On top of that LEGO gave us their first mermaid minifigure. Whether or not you think the mermaid is pretty is a matter of taste. In 15 years a lot has changed in the world of LEGO and Caleb Schilling shows us a peek of what the set might look like if LEGO would ever decide to redesign it. I am really fond of the demure use of colour in this creation. The only vibrant colour comes from the vegetation and some of the characters’ outfits. The base is especially well made, showing little to no studs. The skirts on Hermoine and Cho further add to the flowing underwater feel of this creation.
There are castles that are blocky grey fortresses, and there are castles that look like fairytales come to life. One such castle is the ornate Schloss Drachenburg, which bears resemblance to the more famous Neuschwastein. Just a few miles south of the German city of Bonn, this 19th century villa was the passion project of builder Caleb Schilling who replicated this building with an attention to accuracy. A range of earthen tones dominate most of the exterior, while the dark grey adorns the top sections. The overall appearance of this build already satisfies my hunger for beautifully built architecture, but there are plenty of details yet to savour.
Click here to take a closer look at the many architectural details!