Tag Archives: Geneva Durand

Mirror, mirror on the wall, which baby is the fairest of them all

LEGO is not just great for building. It’s also great for storytelling. This is exceptionally well done by Geneva Durand. We are witnessing an evil Queen on her way to kill a newborn who is said to be destined to one day end her reign. It almost sounds biblical with just a touch of Snow White. I guess the evil Queen also sometimes dabbles a bit in magic because her knights appear to be floating down from the village walls without being crushed. It is their task to find the little baby and end it. On that note, can you spot the little infant?

Endurance

Idyllic autumn shrine

Some LEGO creations we feature are really big and elaborate. Others, like this one by Geneva Durand, are rather small. But that does not mean that they are less impressive. When you build on a smaller scale, everything is in focus. This means everything that you put into your creation has to be thought out thoroughly because everything will be much more noticeable. Idyll by Geneva is a very good example. As the name highlights the creation is meant to look idyllic and it does. It gives you a sense of calm which I love. The autumn leaves give this creation a big pop of colour and I love the addition of the coral pink. Using black or dark brown for the tree, the wooden frame of the house, the shrine, and the minifigure accessories balance out the vibrancy of the fallen leaves. If this doesn’t get you in the autumn mood, I don’t know what will.

Idyll

A gothic murder mystery awaits inside this glorious manor

As part of a challenge to create a hypothetical new LEGO theme, Geneva Durand opted to make something of a game out of it. The Detection theme’s flagship set is the Greenwold House, an 871-piece home full of classic crime novel fun. The front of the home offers tons of gorgeous detail – thanks in large part to an ample use of microphones and roller skates – while still keeping things at a scale suitable for a set on the shelves at Target.

Detection

The reverse side features six rooms, filled with clues for the Doctor and Detective (and the builder) to examine in hopes of separating fact from fiction and solving the crime. It’s a LEGO build experience and a murder mystery puzzle all rolled into one. Where I can preorder?

A flaming sword is scarier than a regular sword

This new LEGO creation by Geneva Durand begs the question; what is scarier than a regular sword? A flaming sword, of course. No, it’s true; it’s like science-fact written in the annuls of science-y stuff. The same can be said for flaming arrows, a flaming axe, and Flaming Hot Funyuns. I mean, have you seen those things? How are they even considered suitable for human consumption? Anyway, the builder tells us this 1:1 scale weapon is not quite swooshable but you can swing it around a bit if you’re careful. And it is super fun!

Flaming Sword

Geneva borrowed an epic cape from her brother and while we’re not quite sure if this is a real human in the photo, here’s a shot of a human-like figure standing with the sword to show off its imposing scale. It’s an image suitably bitchin’ enough to be airbrushed on the side of a 70s-era van or a Molly Hatchet album cover.

Flaming Sword

What ne’er-do-wells will we find down this dark alley?

I’d love to know the secrets of this alleyway scene by Geneva Durand. The setting itself looks very moody – a dark alley on a rainy day, with only a solitary lantern for light. And then there are the characters… We can only see the back of one, suggesting we’re eavesdropping on this particular conversation. The other does look quite pleased with himself though. What could be in that envelope? Is he delivering good news that they don’t want prying eyes to see? Or is it something more nefarious – an ultimatum, or a ransom payment? There’s real tension in the air thanks to the excellent photo composition, but let’s not take away from the equally excellent model!

The Alleyway

The stone walls are made of tiles inset using brackets, each attached to a hinge plate. This means each ‘brick’ can have its own subtle angle, emulating the haphazard look these old walls often have. The cobbled street, made using round tiles, only serves to accentuate this. The hinge plates on the timber buttresses are functional first and foremost, but also serve a decorative purpose in an area that could otherwise look fairly uninteresting. Geneva has provided an interesting behind-the-scenes shot showing just how the alleyway comes together.

Smug Smaug Sits Smartly in the Spotlight

There are a lot of Lord of the Rings LEGO creations out there, but Geneva Durand brings something extra to this offering. The great dragon Smaug sits atop a golden horde – pretty standard there – but this horde is lit from below with a warm yellow glow. The dragon’s form is excellent, with a good mix of red colors and a solid wing design featuring curved tile to create texture. Triangle tiles are clipped and wedged upright to create the creature’s spine, and golden horns are used to give him a grumpy expression over the Mixel 1×1 round printed tile eyes. The mix of golden-toned elements, chromed gold coins, and under-lit transparent elements, though, is what made this build stand out to me. Mainly because I wonder if Smaug’s body heat is melting that pile of gold, or maybe he just farts fire. Well, whatever it smells like, this build looks great.

Smaug

Want more LOTR goodness? Check out some other featured builds!

Microscale metropolis is a masterpiece in minimalism

A great LEGO model is not just about building techniques or choosing the perfect part. Lighting and composition are equally important. And sometimes the unexpected little things make the biggest impact. In this skyline by Geneva Durand which is made up of a collection of mostly distinct individual elements, along with just a few small builds, the lighting is one of the best parts, as it fills the city with a sort of golden hour vibe.

Micro Skyline

I do want to give props for a few very nice parts usages. First, the bridge is made up of ice 2 axes clasped in the middle by a single Minifig hand. A roller skate perfectly fits a brick at the top and a tile at the bottom on the left edge. and right next to that is a large tooth/claw element that reminds me of that famous London skyscraper, The Shard. But my favorite part by far is the vintage sci-fi ray gun.

A story in bricks: Ladyhawke comes to life in a family affair

Often, art ends up being a family business. How many Bachs and Strausses and Brueghels are there, to name a few? In the LEGO world, there are few notable families, too, one of which is the Durand clan. They boast such talents as Geneva (formerly known as KaiNRG), Isaiah (also known as Robert4168/Garmadon), Josiah (also known as W. Navarre), Sarah (also known as 24 Cupcakes), and Anna. All but Isaiah contributed to the collaborative build category of this year’s Summer Joust (put on by another famous LEGO family, Isaac and John Snyder), and the resulting story told in bricks is breathtaking. They opted for a full-frame, all-LEGO format for their presentation, which is exactly my cup of tea. They are telling, in four builds, the story of Ladyhawke, a 1985 medieval fantasy movie starring Matthew Broderick and Michelle Pfeiffer. The story begins in Aquila, built in technicolor by Josiah.

Entering Aquila

Click to see the other builds in the collaboration

Step on it! – A forest drive has LEGO bricks on the move

Have you ever been a passenger in a car when the driver is just going way too slow? Geneva Durand seems to have had that experience, and brings that frustration to life in an expressive, yet tiny, creation. In this scene, brick-built horses pull a carriage fit for microfigure nobility through a dense forest. Every feature is instantly recognizable, which is pretty astounding considering those microfigures are just under 2 centimeters tall.

A Forest Drive

It’s a twisty path, so maybe the driver is justified in a more cautious pace. Perhaps the passenger is just upset that his crown is way too tall to fit inside the carriage, requiring him to lean out the window the whole way. Geneva first designed the carriage back in 2013, and later updated it in 2017. Maybe their next iteration will include a little more headroom!

In the meantime, though, we can appreciate the skill that goes into the current build. I like the “studs down” building approach for the horses, the variety of techniques used for the tree trunks, and the subtle curves in the carriage canopy. There is also some great part usage, including minifigure hands for flags, and helmet plumes for the horsetails.

Be sure to check out Geneva’s blog post detailing the techniques that went into the forest background.