Made as a part of a collaboration with Colorado LUGs (LEGO User Groups) CoWLUG and DENLUG, this Imperial fortress by Evan Crouch is just one piece of a massive LEGO Pirates layout. The cliffside citadel has a beautifully-textured outer wall, and is capped with quite the military unit. The large cannon, shown mid-discharge, is an excellent touch! And the motorized windmill is well done, sporting a roof similar to the LEGO Ideas Medieval Blacksmith. But my favorite part has got to be the perfect coastline at the base of the cliffs. Trimmed in lime green vegetation, the two tones of tan are a great remnant of the waves coming in off the coast. Add to it some of the white-capped waves off the shore, and the setting feels almost alive, even in this still photo.
If you couldn’t tell from the title, this LEGO castle masterpiece by Ben Hauger has got angles going every which way! The rockwork is terrific – a base of dark gray slopes conveying all kinds of craggy goodness. Yet the twisty vines laid out atop all those slopes are the real treat. Using chains of dark brown droid arms and assorted verdant bits in olive green, Ben laces his build’s foundation with a glorious bit of greenery. But for a more man-made angle, check out the beams supporting the right jetty. Those thick logs of LEGO lumber add a level of architectural realism to the creation, while showcasing a brilliant technique that I’m going to have to try myself.
Finally, taking a look at the build from a different angle, the full design of the main tower comes into view. Instead of relying on the simple, 45° look common to brick built turrets, Ben has bent his walls in a more custom fashion, relying on the rounded 1×2 plate and cheese slopes to marry the pieces together. Continuing the walls’ cobbling over those corners obscures the seam, but also creates a wonderful texture on the façade.
What is five feet tall and completely brimming with Heavy Metal badassery? No, not Ronnie James Dio or Glenn Danzig. Those two are taller than five feet but not by much. This stunning LEGO castle by Shawn Snyder stands five feet high (152.4cm) and is like every Iron Maiden and Motörhead album cover combined. If this seems reminiscent of images you’d find on the side of your weird uncle’s van in the ’70s or ’80s that is because it was inspired by the art of Frank Frazetta and also Shawn’s time playing the video games Darksiders, Skyrim, and Castlevania. You don’t need much color to convey the completely ominous feel this castle encompasses. In fact, Shawn’s stark color choices work in his favor here and instead employ repetition of form and the use of compelling textures. Note the tiny minifigs flanking the front steps and one on the upper balcony.
This closeup offers a detailed view of the skeletal sentries adorning the front of the castle as well as the centralized snarling horned skull.
Even the gargoyles are well-positioned and intricately detailed.
This Fortress of the Skeleton Mage has won a place in my dark and foreboding heart. I now have classic metal tunes stuck in my head but, in the whole scheme of things, that’s a pretty decent place for me to be. Rock on, Shawn! Rock on.
How’s your harvest season going? And by “harvest season” I mean your ability to procure pumpkin spice lattes at your local cafe; assuming not many of us know how to harvest pumpkin spice lattes from the Earth anymore. However, if you are among the rototiller and combine harvester set, then you may take interest in this Fortress of the Harvest in order to keep that pumpkin spice goodness protected. In just six hours, Jaap Bijl completed this neat little vignette with more finesse than some of us are capable of all week.
The rough textures, rustic windows and gold elements along the roof and spire are all particularly inspired. The butterscotch colored masonry bricks and the parts comprising the ground add warm autumn hues to this piece, but the purple elements, in this case 1×2 tiles and leaves, are seemingly becoming Jaap’s signature color choice. (You might remember his purple mushroom house we featured back in September.)
Usually when we see something this epic, it has already been inundated with hundreds of “likes” from adoring friends and fans. When I clicked “like” on this piece, I was number 5. That was surprising given how amazing this creation is. This castle among the rocks raises more questions than answers, like: who lives there? What are they protecting? Is it abandoned? Aside from the plant life, the hawk appears to be the only discernible living thing guarding this fortress. Amenk Sachio seems to be a builder of few words as all he had to say was #LEGOcastle.
Though there are a few statue-like guards, it is perhaps the lack of human activity and minimal explanation is what makes this so fascinating, We featured about half of this creation a year ago but it seems Amenk wasn’t finished building yet. Intricate gold filagree, bridges, buttresses, gargoyles and other details adorn the new addition as well as the old. Well, I’m intrigued, how about you?