In the beginning, there was Brick, and it was good. It was smooth, perfect, and devoid of all color. Then one day, a great rumbling was heard deep within the brick and a wonderous sloshing sound. With a mighty crack, golden yellow life burst forth from the brick and spilled color into the universe. So goes the legend of the first Minifig, captured in all its glory by Andreas Lenander
While it’s best to stay indoors, sometimes you just need to go outside. Particularly when you need to “go” outside. This slice of modern LEGO life from Crises_crs is just cute enough to not be super-depressing.
There’s just the right hint of disrepair to the scene. The mix of exposed studs and 1×1 round tiles has the grass looking a little ragged. The pavement has a similar mix, leaving it just a little cracked. But both the dog and owner look pretty happy in their protective gear, all things considered. You have to wonder where they found that toilet paper, though. My local shops have been out of stock for a while.
A surprise announcement, a pop-up LEGO art gallery launch in London, and the start of a new line of LEGO products — 853967 Wooden Minifigure has had quite the introduction to the world. We’re not sure we’d call this a “set” as such, although it does feature a handful of regular LEGO bricks as well as the titular 20cm tall oak figurine. LEGO themselves describe the figurine as a “blank canvas” for personalisation and creative decoration. Whatever you want to call it, the wooden figure is available from Nov. 3, 2019, for VIP members, and Nov. 8 for everyone. It can be purchased from the LEGO Shop online for US $119.99 | CAN 154.99 | UK £109.99.
(EDIT: The wooden figure is also available from LEGO in bundles including a discount of up to $30 US when combined with various other LEGO products, including one 1,500-piece Classic set.)
Builder Louis of Nutwood packs a lot of story in a small space in this snow-covered castle scene. This is part 8 of a wonderful ongoing series by Louis, and not only is it visually interesting, but there’s a written component that accompanies each part of the heroes’ journey.
In this chapter, a pair of weary travelers, one in dire circumstances, arrive at Svalg Keep to seek help from its residents. The castle is nicely sculpted and I really like the way it seems to spill off of the confines of the base. The small wooden structures are a fitting addition and do a great job of breaking up the mostly gray and white color palette of the castle. Adding more color to the proceedings are the snow-laden trees utilizing fall colors on their branches. It can be hard to work in a limited number of colors, but Louis excels at it here.
Neville Longbottom is working overtime for that extra credit in this lovely scene by architeclego. A quick scroll through their Instagram feed shows architeclego’s skills at creating great models and a mastery over lighting and effects that really elevate their photos to the next level. This beautiful little Harry Potter themed creation is no exception!
While everyone else is out practicing their broom skills and spell casting, Neville is hard at work on his Herbology homework. His wand is at the ready and earmuffs firmly in place for working with the screaming mandrake root.The lab has a lived-in look with the many jars and plants scattered around the room and the two levels give the whole thing a nice sense of vertical scale. Ron’s rat Scabbers even makes an appearance, peeking out from behind the pots. It takes a deft hand to seamlessly use non-LEGO objects in a model, but architeclego does so here with great results. The real plants blend in quite nicely with their plastic counterparts and the spray of water in the greenhouse is a perfect dash of realism.
While the whole scene is fantastic, it’s the lighting and effects work that really make this scene shine. The daylight coming in through the windows looks authentic, but it’s the light beams coming from the greenhouse that provide the most impact. We all love seeing a nicely photographed LEGO model, but as this set up demonstrates, a little attention to lighting effects can really transcend the art form.
Order 66 has been executed. The Clone Wars have ended. Sith Lord Darth Vader has become Emperor Sheev Palpatine’s trusted enforcer, bringing Imperial order to an unruly galaxy. Tim Lydy has put his stamp on this era of turmoil with his first-ever Star Wars creation, and it is most excellent.
I really love how cramped and chaotic the trench feels. However the highlight for me is the giant statue of Palpatine constructed out of Light Aqua which doesn’t really have a very extensive parts selection yet.
I also appreciate the effort Tim went to incorporating the writing on the side of the scene in Aurabesh, the Star Wars universe’s standard alphabet.
There have been pictures showing anatomical diagrams of minifigs as far back as 2008 and brick-built versions starting in 2009, but this idea is still quite alive, as proven by Brixie63 with her latest creation. This half-dead minifig is not Brixie63’s first attempt at a scaled-up minifig — check out this Santa we featured last Christmas!
The minifig is built with the iconic red torso and blue legs on one half and a faithfully recreated skeleton on the other. The head is especially well built, capturing all the printing and curves with bricks facing all possible directions. I especially like the skeleton’s teeth made of 1×2 grill tiles.
During Christmas, many of us decorate our homes, trees and more, so why not our keys? Chungpo Cheng has the right idea with this classic Santa keychain creation.
The only problem in this case would be finding keys large enough! The builder has super-sized the classic Santa Claus minifig which still used a pirate cap instead of the modern purpose-moulded piece. What is most amazing in this creation is not just the accurate recreation at the scale (those hands are especially cool!), but the fact that each individual body part is its own finished creation, as seen on the picture below!
Now I really want to see a whole range of up-scaled minifig body parts that can be mixed and matched like the originals!
Sweden’s Andreas Lenander latest LEGO creation is a terrifying canoe ride right over the edge of a waterfall. These minifigures certainly appear as though they’re on an adventure they’re not likely to forget. I think what strikes me the most about this diorama is the palpable dynamic energy of the rushing water, free-floating figures, and tipping canoe as the river crests the edge of the cliff.
You could argue that there’s nothing particularly innovative about the techniques on display, but what Andreas has achieved here with a few simple, repetitive pieces is really remarkable. It’s a strong exhibit of how purposeful prop placement (the minifigs, canoe, water) over background noise (plants, splashing water, textured rocks) can achieve a visually interesting composition.
This was the winning entry in Swebrick‘s head-to-head elimination AFOL-vs-AFOL contest, which for 2018 was based on Adventure. We’ve also featured Andreas here recently for his lifelike cigarette smoking in an ashtray and earlier this summer with his Titan starfighter.
Henrik “teabox” Zwomp‘s adventure-themed LEGO diorama, titled From the Safety of the Basement, is a clever juxtaposition of real (minifigure) world players in their home as they venture forth through the not-so-real role-playing game world, complete with dungeon floor inlaid with the ubiquitous grid system. The wall texturing also provides a nice contrast to the scenes playing out in front of them, not too dissimilar from those achieved in our last D&D post, Mimic Mishap!
It’s a compelling scenario that is played out all over the world by inspiring (and inspired) dungeon masters and their willing victims (er, players), who act out a type of choose-your-own adventure story with an infinite number of scenarios all dictated by the fateful roll of the dice. I especially appreciate that the basement room not only includes standard geeky paraphernalia on the walls but also books, a scale version of the dungeon map, and character sheets.
For those following along at home, I’ve just gotten enough game experience to hit level 3 and got to pick an archetype for my character. Even though I’m often lost in the wealth of information in the game I’m helped along by my adventure companions and mostly-benevolent DM.
Last year, after Brickfair Virginia 2017, over a few drinks Magnus Lauglo, Aleksander Stein and I had a discussion on what to bring for 2018. The three of us have been attending BrickFair for years and have often admired the large collaborative displays at the event, with builders creating something together. Because of this we figured it would be nice for us to collaborate too rather than bringing our own stand-alone models. We soon agreed to build scenes from the Vietnam War.
I suspect that most ideas that come out of conversations in bars lead nowhere and that is probably a good thing. However, earlier this year we found that we were still pretty excited about this idea and we found that more people wanted to get involved. Ultimately, eleven more builders contributed (in no particular order): Peter Dornbach, Stijn van der Laan, Matt Hacker, Dean Roberts, Eínon, Evan Melick, Casey Mungle, Corvin, Yasser Mohran, Bret Harris and Brian Carter. Corvin, Aleksander and I are the only builders who don’t live in the US or Canada to regularly attend the Virginia event, but our Vietnam group turned out to be a pretty international crowd. We had builders who live in six different countries: the US, Denmark, Switzerland, Portugal, Norway and the Netherlands.
We picked Vietnam as the subject because we all watched classic Vietnam War movies when growing up, it is largely novel for most of us and it is far less common for military builds than models from, say, WW2. We considered building a single collaborative battle diorama, but chose to build separate scenes instead. It is hard to find a single battle that is actually interesting to build, as there is usually just a lot of terrain involved and multiple copies of trees, bunkers or vehicles. Separate scenes have the advantage of allowing different builders to give the subject their own twist. I was excited to see what the other guys came up with. The Vietnam War offers a lot of scope for building interesting military hardware, but we could also show some of the history, including the aftermath. Given the wide range of different models on display, we nailed it.
Taylor, of the Brandon and Taylor Walker building duo, has put out another entry in his Dungeons & Dragons series. As a newly-minted D&D player in the middle of his first adventure (I’m a half-elf Ranger with a sailor background who always follows orders, even if they’re wrong), I’m probably paying more attention to this one than I normally would have! There are five unique figures representing a range of the official character classes all facing off against a monstrous mimic treasure chest. The standout figure for me is the demonic tiefling with his mustache-for-horns. The floor and walls are also extremely well done, adding a patterned texture to offset the chaotic battle.
And if you’re as hungry for more D&D LEGO content as I currently am, check out our archives for cool models featured previously!