I think this ferocious floral fright by Woomy World is just jealous it didn’t get included in the LEGO Botanical Collection 10329 Tiny Plants set, scheduled for release on December 1st. That would explain the sneer it’s rocking in the shot below, but it could also be the spiky shield pieces from the Hero Factory series crafted into that toothy visage. In fact, the whole creation is brimming with Bionicle and Hero Factory parts, leading to a very natural look and a dark, sinewy stem.
Natural forms abound in this outdoor LEGO scene by Mark van der Maarel. Birch trees topped with dark green foliage stand in the foreground of a massive stone archway, overgrown in places with creeping vines. A brilliant medium blue stream babbles through the scene, highlighted in round while plates and slopes to give the water a level of unease. But one figure stands alone, quite out of place with its environs. A visitor, clad in white, ponders the beauty of a brave butterfly. With no indication of how this extraterrestrial nomad arrived or what its intentions are, the viewer is left to fill in the gaps on their own. And its that mystery which makes this work truly outstanding in my eyes!
I’ve been excited and encouraged by LEGO’s latest push for sets that feature natural forms. Their botanical collection, specifically the 10281 Bonsai Tree, has embraced this concept deftly. And 10315 Tranquil Garden, releasing on August 1st, follows in that same vein, featuring the plants and structures of a Japanese garden in brick form. But will this set lead to serenity and peace-of-mind, or will it be a high-maintenance plot in need of constant pruning? Consisting of 1,363 pieces, the Tranquil Garden retails for US $109.99 | CAN $139.99 | UK £94.99.
The LEGO Group sent The Brothers Brick an early copy of this set for review. Providing TBB with products for review guarantees neither coverage nor positive reviews.
Forget the headlight brick or jumper plate; I can’t think of a LEGO part more beloved by builders than the common frog! And builder/amphibian wrangler Roanoke Handybuck has done a great job providing the infamous hoppers with a spot all their own for a festival of frogs. All the subtle details paying homage to frog-kind in this scene are excellent, from the statues to the door handles. The color choices are clean, with the light blue water, golden leaves, and lavender pennants contrasting nicely with the gray rock surrounding the scene. I love the intricate use of slopes and plates forming the arch above the podium. And overall, this watering hole feels private, as if this is a secret meeting only a few are lucky enough to enjoy.
The Brothers Brick alumni Nannan Zhang has a knack for creating innovative and breathtaking worlds in LEGO. His specialty seems to be mixing manmade devices with biological elements and this stunning The Last Wisteria is no exception. Let me rephrase that; it’s quite exceptional. His grasp for integrating shapes and colors demonstrates the abilities of a true artist. The tree’s roots intermingled among cold hexagonal tiles are truly awe-inspiring. Even the wisteria’s leaves have a neat order to them. As capable as I like to think I am, even my own words don’t do this piece justice so instead, we’ll let Nannan use his; Among rapid cybernetic hybridization, a thing of beauty flourishes above the metallic earth.. A thing of beauty, indeed. Check out our Nannan Zhang archives to see why sometimes we’re lost for words but we still try anyway.
A product of the recent “Construction Constructions” LEGO building contest over at New Elementary, Jaroslaw Walter has implemented quite the assortment of construction contraband in this backyard diorama. First up is the expert use of the forklift roll cage for the legs of the lawn chairs and table. This furniture sits on an area of pavers made of bulldozer treads which add the perfect bit of texture to the patio area. And the dozer scoops for planters along the left wall are a brilliant choice, fitting into the rest of the scene expertly. But my favorite usage has got to be all the minifig wrenches used throughout the scene in everything from a lock to plant stems.
Inspired by his travel experience with beautiful Japan, Alanboar Cheung shares with us this wonderful LEGO painting. It’s built in the style of Japan’s kakemono (hanging thing), more commonly known as kakejiku (hanging scroll). This form of art typically contains paintings and calligraphy inscriptions on a flexible backing to allow for rolling for storage. Alanboar’s creation follows suit, depicting a pagoda, cherry blossoms, and the great Mount Fuji. There’s even a golden phoenix flying overhead! The scene stands out in its 3D glory, bringing it life for us the way that LEGO does. I love how Alanboar is able to recreate the kanji for Japan (Nihon) in LEGO styled calligraphy.
Here we can take a look at the whole scroll to fully appreciate the level of detail found in this build. The painting really pops against the neutral colors of the scroll! There’s no doubt this would be the center piece of any wall.
I hate to interrupt a person in mourning, but I have to geek out over this absolutely gorgeous resting place. Joe (jnj_bricks) collaborated with W. Navarre to pay homage to the game Plague Tale: Requiem. And, I have to say, rarely has nature rendered in LEGO looked so, well…natural. The various rock faces come together at dazzling angles. Grass and weeds are perfectly suggested with minifigure claws and chopsticks. And that out-of-focus, forced perspective background gives an epic scope to the whole thing. What I wouldn’t give to visit this place…I mean, other than burying my brother here. Sorry, Amica, I’ll let you get back to that…
LEGO has just unveiled the LEGO 21338 Ideas A-Frame Cabin in its final form. The A-Frame cabin was selected as one of the winners from the second 2021 review results submitted by Andrea Lattanzio (norton74). It will be available on February 6, 2023 and retailing for US $179.99 | CAN $239.99 | UK £159.99
Stories of Will-o’-the-wisps, like LEGO, can be found all over the world, with many representations in artwork, like this build by AjRed17. Will-o’-the-wisps are often found near or in bogs and marshes, most likely caused by gaseous emissions lighting the dark. The stories they appear in often warn of following such lights and losing one’s way. Maybe they’re ghosts, or maybe just releasing gas sparking in the night. Either way, they’re haunting with their ethereal beauty. The one in this build hangs in the air beside a blooming, curving tree. The tree possesses cool parts usage with pink frogs for the flowers. The scene is tranquil and calming, something I wouldn’t mind having on my desk.
It’s been 50 years since this LEGO chess battle began. And now, with the board overgrown and partially flooded, builder Rilbist shows us the resulting armistice in the great battle between the two sides of the checker-print board. I think this is a wonderful concept, especially given the limitation of only using part colors that were available half a century ago. Each of the pieces is instantly recognizable, and ornate without being distracting from the real star of the show: the state of the playing field. The weathering is divine, and I particularly like the pool of water in the center that flows out of the board, connecting this deadlocked game with the outer world.
Leaves turning into vibrant reds, yellows, and oranges in the Fall are beautiful in real life and in LEGO. This build from Patrick Biggs showcases the annual changing of the leaves in a big way! There’s the forest itself, with all those little star and flower pieces spreading out across the base of the scene. However, the center of the build is the great stag standing tall over the forest. The giant spirit of Autumn is beautifully sculpted, once again showing off Patrick’s abilities to craft lovely creatures out of LEGO. The spirit looks over the world, paying no mind to the human-made church in the foreground of the forest. It’s a beautiful reminder that Nature doesn’t care what the latest invention of Humanity is. Nature will carry on as it always has, and how lucky we are to be witness to the splendor of our planet!