It should come as a surprise to no one that I am an expert bassist. And by expert I mean I can play that one riff from “7 Nation Army”. Over and over again. For like nine hours at a time if you request it, and I sincerely hope that you do someday. An array of cool petals would only make the experience that much sweeter because variety is the spice of life, after all. As enriching as that would be for all of us, despite my best intentions, I don’t think I could look as cool as Zinnia Superfuzz while doing it. She’s a new creation by Eero Okkonen and everything from her stance to her rocking flower power clothing and awesome yellow bass says she’s going to take expert to a whole new level that would put me to shame, I’m sure.
Still, if you care to be dazzled, I am also fairly proficient at that one intro riff from “Smoke on the Water.” Just putting that out there.
Sometimes you got to take a break from cracking rib cages and crushing skulls to stop and marvel at the beautiful miracle of life. That is the scene that Eero Okkonen has presented us today with a piece he calls “Munburr, the proud father”. With armor still on and the left side of his face covered in what might be blood or warpaint, this murderous dwarven beserker takes pride in the tender little life he had helped bring into this world. While a proud papa, Munburr, like many new dads, appears rather perplexed at the bundle of joy in his gauntlet covered arms. His expression seems to say, “If you can’t kill it and you can’t eat it, then what the heck can you do with it?” They’ll figure it out over time as the baby will likely grow up to be a murderous dwarven beserker just like his dad and they’ll go off on dwarven beserker adventures together, the cat’s in the cradle and the silver spoon and all that. Isn’t the Circle of Life grand?
The world of Magic: the Gathering is, despite its cheap fantasy storyline, a treasure trove of characters and other motives. Some (far too few, if you ask me!) LEGO builders like Eero Okkonen take inspiration from it and create amazing works of art. This recreation of The Wanderer is a great example of a builder capturing the original artwork perfectly. The Wanderer is a clichéd mysterious character in the lore that would be quite interesting if it was in any other story.
The build is mostly what one would expect from this master character builder. The real highlight is the incredible accuracy to the source material. The exotic colours like pink, gold and sand green are not the easiest to work with in LEGO, but Eero stretched his collection to the limit and successfully recreated the character, with all her challenges. The most interesting part usage to me was the Technic figure scuba flipper used as the ends of the hair. To read more about the building process, check out Eero’s own blog post on Cyclopic bricks.
LEGO builders have often explored the theme of “speeder bikes” – flying motorcycle-esque vehicles with a grand and glorious racing tradition. (Or, for those looking for the possible origins of the trope, a callback to the forest chase scene in Return of the Jedi. Although usually built in minifigure scale for maxium swooshability, there’s no reason that one couldn’t make a larger version. In fact, Eero Okkonen has done just that in Kiirus Ögonblick and The Carp Speeder, mixing skill in large figure builds with…a fish. Not just any fish, though, but a carp. A blue and orange, jet powered, mechanical-hybrid carp….Because why not?
See more of this fishy speeder bike.
When it comes to cute robots, Eero Okkonen really knows his stuff. Huwbot, built for the Huwbot contest brought to you by our friends over at Brickset, brings you LEGO with an extra side of delight. This robot has the Brickset server’s background jobs clearly in mind, with the logo incorporated as the robot’s brain. The shaping and build also has deliberate callbacks to web design and function, as Eero discusses at his website.
Regardless of his origins, though, Huwbot a stellar creation. Technic eyeball joints bring a lot of expressive character, enhanced by the super-poseable arms and hands. I also love the repeated use of macaroni bricks to add some smooth curves to both the head and base. But the best bit is the Clickits heart that is displayed front and center.
Eero has also provided Huwbot with a red wagon to assist in those background jobs. This, too, is a fun little build. The handle construction is topped with a 1x4x2 bar element that lets Huwbot get a grip on things. And the wagon comes filled with LEGO sets! Really, what more could you ask for?
A good LEGO creation will be good despite the motive and theme it depicts. Some times though, a build comes up that is both built well and plays on your personal interests. The builder that does that to me most often is Eero Okkonen. If you have been following The Brothers Brick for a while you are probably familiar with Eero’s beautiful character builds of various themes, many of which come from the Magic the Gathering trading card game, just like this particular one.
The build represents an elf planeswalker (basically a glorified mage) important in Magic’s storyline. The character’s likeness is incredibly well captured in LEGO, especially the iconic green markings on her face. The clothing and posing is great as well, with a flowing green cape and a green flame in her hand. You can read more about the build on Eero’s blog, Cyclopic Bricks. The builder is so good at capturing iconic characters that one could call him an Iconic Master…
Readers from eastern Europe will instantly recognize this adorable critter from the Czech cartoon Krtek (which means “little mole” in Czech). Having read books and seen cartoons of Krtek’s adventures throughout my childhood, I never thought to see the character built out of LEGO. But when I saw this perfect recreation by Eero Okkonen, I went full “aww-mode”.
The pose on the image is so iconic that one would hardly notice this is LEGO, were it not for a jagged edge here and there. Curved pieces capture the character’s shape very well, but my favourite parts are the red nose and the three long hairs on the mole’s head. As a master character builder, Eero has explored many different source materials and themes, but none quite as iconic as this one. Thanks for the nostalgia trip, Eero!
Builder Eero Okkonen returns yet again to The Brothers Brick with another amazing large scale figure. Say hello to the Blue Angel of Hallow – described by Eero in his blog post as “a superdigital being who watches over multimedia connections, protecting people from malignity and sourness.” Truly the sort of guardian we often need in today’s digital world.
Eero has once again found underutilized parts to create interesting textures and shapes. Insectoid wings bring more than a hint of circuitry, and the use of Space Port solar arrays for the skirts is inspired. The glittery solar panel sticker has an entirely different look when seen from the underside, reminding me of static or high jpeg compression. The blue of the armor and Clikits bracelet halo contrasts well with the magenta highlights and light green Hero Factory swords of her hair.
G. K. Chesterton was a prolific English man of letters from the early 20th century, writing countless articles, editorials, letters, non-fiction books, short stories, novels, and even epic poems. One of his most beloved and recognizable characters is the crime-solving priest, Father Brown. Father Brown could rival the more famous Sherlock Holmes in his ability to unravel any mystery by using his powers of observation and deduction. Brought to life in LEGO form by prolific Finnish man of bricks Eero Okkonen, this Father Brown is modeled after the character as played by Mark Williams on the BBC show. The eyes are hidden behind round glasses, and the shoulders are slightly hunched over. The black cassock, the clerical garb worn by the priest in his exploits, is well done, even including a slight bulge for the rounded belly that the unassuming Father Brown had acquired over the years.
A round wheel well in white makes for a lovely clerical collar, and a tire holds on the hat, allowing for a more natural angle. A Technic connector allows a subtle curve for the chin. The studs on the cassock were inevitable, as covering them would have ruined the otherwise flowing lines of the fabric, and they don’t detract from the final appearance. To distinguish between the studs and the buttons, 1×1 round tiles have been used. The base adds a nice touch, with a small splash of color against all the black, with the vaguely gothic architecture recalling the English countryside where the priest did most of his sleuthing. My favorite detail, however, is the umbrella that the crime-solving cleric carried everywhere he went.
Builder Eero Okkonen is no stranger to The Brothers Brick. His large-scale figures are something of a legend around here, often featuring warriors, wizards, and sci-fi women. Today, he brings us a samurai warrior, joined by a maiko, or apprentice geisha sharing tea. He beautifully captures both the modest down-turned visage of the maiko and the tired pride of the old warrior. What makes this build unusual for Eero is that the stunning figures are set in a lush landscape, which features a blooming garden complete with Zen Buddhist shrines and a reflection pool.
I love the way he has used the texture of the undersides of 1×2 plates for the samurai’s armor, along with the decorative flowers stuck to them. The elbow brick in light bluish grey is used to good effect in both the facial hair of the samurai and the three legged shrine in the corner. You also don’t want to miss the golden chainsaw blade used as a hair ornament on the maiko! The whole scene is so tranquil that I wish I could go there and take part. Now where did I put my tea cup?
There are a handful of builders who consistently produce spectacular creations; Eero Okkonen is one of them. This time out he’s turned his attention to a reimagining of the classic 2012 Ninjago set 9448 Samurai Mech. It’s quite the upgrade! The official LEGO set is a little clunky and disproportioned, but in contrast Eero has designed a tough giant of a mech, which cleverly integrates the key aesthetic elements of the original, such as the gold stomach ring and katana blade. It’s however in the detailed building of the mech’s head, which utilises an array of black macaroni tubes and specialised elements to create its demonic features, that we see a master-builder lift his model out of the ordinary.
It looks like the classic chopper is never going out of style, as demonstrated by this futuristic looking bike with swooping handlebars by Eero Okkonen. I love the way that the wings on the rider’s boots are picked up as a detail on the back of the bike. One missable detail is the red bumper part used to support the rider as he’s leaning into those sharp turns.
I don’t know about you, but I am also getting a definite Akira vibe with those big red angled parts at the front and back of the bike. And speaking of red parts, the macaroni pipes give those boots quite the look.
If you like this model, be sure to check out some other creations by Eero recently featured here on TBB.