As I have undoubtedly said before in these pages, and will almost certainly say again, I love immersive LEGO scenes, the sort that fill every corner of the image with LEGO (or a neutral sky background, as often I’m not too fond of brick-built skies). There’s something magical about being able to step into a creation that way. But it takes a lot of bricks, usually, and some meticulous planning of angles to make it work. There is a more natural way, and master-builder Markus Rollbühler shows us how: build a fantastic vignette that fills the frame and then put an iPad behind it with the rest of the scenery.
Some simple techniques in the build go a long way, such as tiles pushed down only partway to create a weathered brick arch, loose bricks on their sides for cobblestones, and some of his signature bushes made of grass stalks and leaves. The perfect lighting, the minifig posing, and the iPad’s added depth all lend themselves to a delightful scene. And no fancy Photoshopping required!
Time and again, Markus Rollbühler continues to amaze me with his attention to detail, and the “oohs” and “aahs” continue with his latest build — a charming farmhouse. In addition to having excellent composition, the scene also features some excellent use of parts. The thatched roof effect is achieved with dozens of claws, the smoke billowing out the chimney is actually a rat flipped upside-down, and the cork in the wine pitcher is represented by a microphone. The greenery is also enjoyable, especially the effect produced by placing 3-leafed plant elements atop the stems of bushes.
Minifgure accessories are an often underused section of the LEGO parts palette. While many builders may think up creative ways to integrate these parts outside of the use they were designed for, many of us lack the quantity needed to carry out our ideas. Markus Rollbühler manages to pull it off with ease though with his latest mech Black Widow.
Obvious standouts are Count Dooku’s lightsabers and the skeleton pattern armour, and both elements help give the legs an organic shape, while the armour’s print is perfect for an arachnoid style mech. I’m personally quite excited to see the relatively new neck bracket with 4 handles used to help shape the body of the mech. When that piece was revealed, I expected to see it in more creations and I’m hoping this is the start of a trend. Non-minfigure parts are expertly used here as well, such as the main section being flawlessly shaped with a Zamor Sphere holder forming a natural spine. Finally, my favourite bit of texture is created using a Technic connector on the legs – not only is the piece functional, but it looks good too!
For sure, the most epic LEGO battles of the late 90-s took place in deep oceans, where heroic Aquanaut miners fought against the villainous Aquasharks. Many years have passed, but the heroes (and antiheroes) are not forgotten — although, some of them have evolved a lot since then. LEGO designers Chris Perron and Markus Rollbühler team up and dive deep to find out that the waters are still as dangerous as 20 years ago. Now, the battlefield teems with giant sharks like this Mega Shark Scout. Designed for espionage attacks, the shark looks absolutely terrifying; aggressive design and the striking contrast of black, blue, and transparent orange picture an enemy you better avoid at all costs. But can you name all the pieces used for the design of the circle section right behind the shark’s head?
It turns out Fabuland has a good boy in charge of fire safety. Markus Rollbühler presents Barty and his shiny red Fire Brigade Bulldog Mech. This is part of Markus’ ongoing campaign to build one mech a week for a year, which is what we call job security at the Brothers Brick. So long as he keeps cranking out quality builds, we’ll have something to write about. No blazing fire (and incidentally no rug either) is safe from Barty’s watchful patrol. Even if he does ruin your one-of-a-kind Persian Fine Serapi Handmade Wool Area Rug, how can you stay mad at Barty when he has a face like that? With him it’s either nice rugs or unwavering fire safety. Make your choice.
When was the last time you raised your eyes to the sky? There could be so much hidden above the clouds, for example, a community of brave aviators hopping between mountain peaks in their agile airplanes. A breathtaking collaboration project by amazingly talented German LEGO builders, Vaionaut, Ben Tritschler,Marcel V., Mark van der Maarel, Markus Rollbühler, Sylon-tw, and Willem (Steinchen), called Skytopia, is full of steam- and dieselpunk vibes, including huge propellers, flying boats and tons of wood and metal.
Mech Monday is often one of the best things about the start of another work week, and today is no exception. With this colorful mech by Markus Rollbühler, we see one of the most interesting parts uses I have seen in a while. Minifigure legs are used here to form the center of this medical mech’s charming face. And what better place for legs, than in a saddle? In this case, this saddle with stirrups from the LEGO Friends theme forms the rest of the mech’s head.
There are so many other great part uses worth mentioning, like the fenders from the Disney/Pixar Cars franchise used on the thighs. And how about those window screens, snapped to either side of the forearms? One more great detail to call out is the big hand part used for the heel.
LEGO builder Markus Rollbühlerreturns to the Brothers Brick with WheelSpin, a mono-wheel utility drone. Part of the year-long Mech Monday project, WheelSpin is a self-balancing mono-wheel drone with multiple configuration options. The base of the mech is filled with great texturing, with greebles including Technic chain links, hammers, and space blasters. The lime green of the armor creates a nice contrast to the transparent blue of the eye sensor, blade shield, and the shock absorber at the base of the leg.
The industrial version shown here comes complete with a grabbing claw and saw blade — advertised as “perfect for any kind of industrial job.” Personally, I see it as greeter at Wal-Mart in a very dystopian future. Your mileage may vary.
The comic book concept of a multiverse is a cool thing. The heroes and villains you know are seen through a distorted lens, bringing new twists to established characters. Markus Rollbühler brings us a steampunk version of Spider-Man and Doc Ock that could easily fit into a sequel of Into The Spider-Verse.
Spider-Man is still pretty recognizable with signature torso and mask, but the red cloak gives us our first hint that things are different. Markus then makes use of rare parts to complete the look: the hat from the Toy Soldier and legs from The Lone Ranger’s Captain Fuller.
Everyone has their favorite season, and mine is definitely winter. But looking at this magnificent vignettes by Markus Rollbühler, I think I have to reconsider this. Studying these vignettes is the opposite of putting together a jigsaw puzzle; instead of searching a correct place for a small piece, Markus invites us to find all the tiniest details in his assembled dioramas. I shall not spoil fun of discovering all the brilliant ideas hidden around the seasons, but I can’t help admiring a genius reindeer built of visor goggles and a stud shooter trigger!
Sometimes I come across LEGO builds that add a new wrinkle to my brain as I’m scanning all the details while trying to spot all the exquisite parts uses. Markus Rollbühler tends to be a name synonymous with said builds. His newest addition to Mech Monday, #22: ATLAS – Multipurpose Carrier, is absolutely no exception. The first question I thought was, “Where do I start?” and the first elements to grab me were the Minifig Jet Pack and 1×1 Decorated Tile with Telephone Speaker Pattern. That combination is pure greeble at a tiny scale. Next, the new(ish) Minifig Blaster with studs on all sides. Not only did they get used for legs, they were also used for its well-armored head stock. It took me a few seconds of admiring Bucket Handles and Minifig Hands, to realise Markus is even hiding segments from a Yoda Wristwatch for the mech’s back.
All of that without even mentioning the paint job. The militarised tone is well balanced between its shell of sand green and its industrial framework of bluish greys. Add some touches of Dark Tan into the mix and its complete. I am curious to see it in other colour schemes though–adaptations for different purposes perhaps?
If you missed it, check out Markus Rollbühler’s last LEGO Mech we featured.
This purple beast isn’t just your average cargo lifter. It’s a mean, lean, hefting machine. I mean, just look at that third arm! Markus Rollbühler, a frequently featured builder on The Brothers Brick, treats us again with his latest mech creation. The level of detail is, as usual. incredible. I really like the light on the mech’s left side and the vent features next to the cockpit. The mech’s carrying capacity is only possible, however, thanks to at least eight small ball and socket joints.
I’m sure this mech could definitely beat down anything from Alien.