Last year Bricklink hosted its first AFOL Designer Program (ADP), a grand effort to make fan designs come alive and be available for purchase. If you’re unfamiliar with Bricklink, it’s an Amazon-like marketplace for purchasing current and discontinued LEGO products. This includes the sale of individual LEGO bricks for restoring sets or making original models known by many fans as My-Own-Creations, or MOCs for short. The Brothers Brick features fan-designed creations every day, and we often receive questions regarding instructions or if they can be purchased. While ready-made MOC kits are not a new concept, where Bricklink’s ADP program shines is in how it took the needed time to solicit builds from the community and used a Kickstarter-like system for fans to determine which sets would be produced for purchase. Best of all, the program received an endorsement from the LEGO Group.
As of now, all of the sets have been selected and are slated to ship this month to the proud supporters who funded them. Bricklink has provided an early copy of the Wild West Saloon by Jonas Kramm (aka Legopard) to the Brothers Brick. When it comes to the number of supporters, this design ranked second to the Löwenstein Castle we recently reviewed. This set comes with 1496 parts, is priced at US $149.99 before shipping, and does not come with any minifigures.
Click to read the full review of the Wild West Saloon designed by Jonas Kramm
Building replicas of real-world objects is a common theme with LEGO creators, and while they span the range of size, from larger than life to microscale, creating 1:1 scale models like this Underwood typewriter by Jonas Kramm is a true art form. This model of the classic typewriter fits a standard 8.5 x 11 sheet of paper. There is so much attention to detail in this model, but I especially love the two gold tiles used as the attachment point for the typewriter’s case. If I close my eyes, I can almost hear the clickety-click-clack of the keys.
Christmas may have come and gone, but Jonas Kramm is still celebrating with this elaborate scene calls “Christmas at Hogwarts.” I love the composition of this build, which is filled with plenty of excellent architectural details and brick-built furniture. Jonas drew partial inspiration from The Book of Unwritten Tales 2, a modern point-and-click adventure game. This is where he found the idea for the curved balustrade and fireplace depicting stacks of books. Some of my favorite details include the bat-a-rang used in a candelabra, gifts tied with LEGO rubber bands and Belville bows, and the dark orange easy chair. The tree also looks nice, with enough decorations to make it stand out but not distract one’s eye from the rest of the image. I’m sure Harry would approve!
As the holidays draw closer, and the decorations, twinkly lights, and baked goodies fill our homes with joy, LEGO creators around the world are busy building snow-covered or otherwise holiday-themed models. Frequently featured builder Jonas Kramm has created a mashup of his microscale house from Up in the form of a gingerbread house. Even though it is based on the colorful balloon-borne building, it would fit right in with a collection of other gingerbread houses, with its frosting-covered roof, colorful candies, and candy cane striped pillars.
There is something about the jungle that just fills me with all sorts of unexplainable pleasant feelings. While I understand that the humid hell filled with insects that is a real-life jungle would evoke a different kind of emotion, that does not mean we can’t enjoy an insect-free jungle shrine from our armchairs, like this one built in LEGO by Jonas Kramm. This is more than just a pretty build though, Jonas has created this “Shrine of Nature” to explore the unusual use for minecraft animal head pieces as described in his article on the New Elementary blog.
The focus of the build is the central pattern built out of multiple Minecraft wolf heads in two staggered rows, with a lit up translucent green background, giving a mysterious tone to the creation. The exotic and unique plant and animal life in the scene are great too, using all sorts of exotic pieces in unique ways.