Creating organic natural shapes using plastic bricks is not a simple thing, and making those shapes fit together into something simple and beautiful is truly an art form. Despite being monochromatic, this sculpture of a Humpback whale by Anthony Séjourné does an amazing job of capturing the majestic grace of one of the world’s largest marine mammals. I especially liked the use of so many hollow studs to represent barnacles. And the fluke is quite nice as well (that’s the whale’s tail, for those less well versed in whale biology).
You don’t need a huge pile of pieces or a deep wallet to be able to create something beautiful with LEGO. This bottlenose dolphin by Ken Ito (暁工房) is a perfect example of how just a few pieces can bring a scene to life. The dolphin consists of fewer than 20 pieces, and the base employs only simple, common elements. But there’s more motion evoked with them than you’ll find in many models that are much larger.
Ken’s gorilla is another perfect specimen, utilizing simple pieces to craft the animal’s shape. The head and face are particularly impressive, which really consist of only three slopes, but there’s no mistaking this noble creature’s gaze.
Part horse, part fish, part dragon, part saxophone — the seahorse is one of the weirdest-looking creatures you’ll find under the water. However this aquatic oddity’s peculiar appearance hasn’t put Brother Steven off creating a LEGO version, and the result is lovely. The orange works well, with restrained use of pearl gold and some exposed studs adding some welcome texture and scale-like details, and the spines along the back are excellent. The sandy base is nicely done — adding a coral reef context without distracting from the central model, but the overall shaping is the main attraction here. Don’t miss the use of minifigure legs to create the final curl of the seahorse’s tail — an inspired parts use.
The world-famous Great Wave Off Kanagawa print by Japanese painter Hokusai gets the LEGO treatment in this great piece of work by koffiemoc. The model’s inspiration is immediately recognisable — from the overall colour scheme, the towering wave threatening the three boats, through to the triangular white peak of Mount Fuji in the central distance. The builder has added in some of the more subtle details of the artwork too — the crests of the waves are tipped with clips, capturing Hokusai’s depiction of the water having claws. There is also the triangular shape of the foreground wave, mirroring the form of the background mountain. This is a beautiful brick-built tribute to a beautiful image.
I came into The Brothers Brick contributor gig knowing I would be challenged to find and write about LEGO creations outside of my comfort zone. What I didn’t expect was how quickly I would fall down the deep rabbit hole of Bionicle creations, and I keep finding myself drawn to Logey Bear’s works, many of which have been featured on TBB in the past (my favorite being Captain Falcon of Nintendo F-Zero fame). His latest model is an oceanic delight, a Bionicle-Galidor hybrid model that barely registered to me as LEGO at first glance. The key component of this radical ray is the pair of “powerizer legs” comprising the front of the beast. The spinal ridge straight through to the tail is also a slick, organic touch.
Ships are not a rarity in LEGO fan creations, although we do not see yachts quite as often as cargo or fishing ships. This build, called Lake Union Dreamboat “Vagabond” by Markus Ronge is a fine addition to the LEGO yacht collection. I love the shaping on the upper half of the hull, as well as the elegant colour choices and how they are managed. The details on the outside are great, but what really sells the model for me is the effort put in the interiors, most notably the curtains behind the windows.
The builder also provides a view of the Vagabond in an alternate setting, with a family watching whales.
The Tournament of Roses Parade is a fun event held annually in Pasadena, California on New Years Day. Bill Vollbrecht has built a LEGO model representing the typical parade float that can be seen during the parade. This particular float has an underwater theme with a shapely red and yellow octopus taking centre stage with tentacles reaching across the rest of the build. There’s a lot going on down on the sea bed, with divers finding buried treasure and a couple of mer-folk waving to their adoring crowd and Poseidon sitting on his golden throne. My favourite aspect of this build, other than the octopus itself, is the use of colour – I imagine the real parade floats are just as eye-catching.
It’s no wonder that “darling it’s better, down where it’s wetter” in such a colourful, fun-filled environment.
Built for the #Summer Memories Contest on the Brickly app, this scene titled “Summer Beach” by Mark E. is a beautiful representation of an idyllic visit to the beach. I love the visual of the waves breaking and foaming on the beach, with the dark greens highlighting the ocean. Illustrating fond memories of building sand castles with friends and siblings, the only thing more certain than a fun afternoon in the sand was the incoming tide sure to level all your hard work.
If you have a spare five minutes I would thoroughly recommend watching the mesmerizing time-lapse of Mark’s build on YouTube.
Ever wondered what LEGO enthusiasts do with those neon-pink, azure blue, flaming orange, dark red, and medium lavender bricks? Well, Robert4168 has layered his to recreate the undulating seafloor, and then plated all those colorful pieces with transparent elements to give it a watery feel. Sprinkled with coral, seaweed, and wonderful anemonies and dotted with an abundance of thriving marine life. This colorful underwater sanctuary is as serene as a personal home aquarium, with the fish nibbling at the top of the water. You can almost hear the bubbles.
When it comes to scale models of sea vessels, Dutch builder Arjan Oude Kotte is in a class of his own. When he unveiled a gigantic minifig scale version of rescue vessel the Grampian Don a couple of years ago, we were impressed by all the details and his sculpting of its bulbous bow. But in preparing to show the model at the STEAM expo, Arjan finally completed it with decals, a daughter ship, and built-in lighting, making for one of the most atmospheric and realistic presentations of a LEGO model that I’ve seen in a long time. I can almost feel the cold sea air!
To get our Northern hemisphere readers in the mood for the impending start of Summer, here’s a beautifully composed model of a Hawaiian girl catching some surf by Miro Dudas. And yes, she’s even playing the ukulele at the same time. Because why the heck not?! Bet you won’t see that move in the new Point Break movie.
This scene of oceanic doom, built by Hen Peril, has a great sense of action going on. I love the chaotic feel and the convincing poses of the figures. Unfortunately, I don’t think they stand a chance!