Back in 2013 Tyler Clites contributed a fantastic tutorial to the Brothers Brick on how to photograph your LEGO creations; and his latest creation proves once again that not only is he one of the LEGO community’s most talented builders, he’s also a master at presenting his work. Of course the featured spaceship has all the hallmarks you’d expect from Tyler: nice piece usage throughout, wonderfully shaped engines, and appealing splashes of colour for detail. However, as he notes, he wanted more for this craft than a shot of it flying through space. With a repurposed rock base, and the creation of some creepy bug aliens, we now have a story to be told. Hunkered down for repairs in the middle of nowhere, the ship’s auto turrets save the day. Mix in ace lighting effects and a swirling mist, courtesy of a vape pen, and you have what I have previously written about, the perfect marriage between LEGO and photography.
Early last month, we noted how changes to Flickr’s free accounts have the potential to significantly harm the historical record of the LEGO hobbyist (AFOL) community. Historically, Flickr provided unlimited storage to its Free account users, but the number of photos that can be hosted on a Free account will be limited to 1,000 starting January 1st, 2019. As a result, many LEGO creations hosted in Free accounts are now at risk of disappearing forever. This is particularly heartbreaking for photos from LEGO builders who have passed away or are no longer participating in the hobbyist community. But we have good news to share, so please read on!
In a world where castle means intense textures and exotic part uses, Henjin Quilones brings a breath of fresh air with an all-LEGO library scene.
While there are a few unique techniques like the huge armchairs and nice angles on the roof’s underside, the real quality of the creation is its atmosphere. The composition and posing of the minifigs really set up a great mood. The best part has to be the lighting, with warm sunlight shining through the windows and a lit fireplace. This is one of those cases when a creation is as much a build as an artistic photograph.
It appears Aaron Newman has developed an affinity for flying elements in his LEGO creations, as they appear in several of his latest builds. Floating and flying parts are nothing new, but few builders take the effort of going the extra step to make them look this good (presumably by digitally editing out the supports–or maybe learning black magic and making parts float for real!).
Aaron has used his editing and presentation magic on more than just the flying draconic skeleton. The purple light emanating from the circle on the ground was achieved with a glass table and a lot of effort, while Aaron says the backlit stained glass windows were just as difficult to get right. We should not ignore the actual LEGO build though. It is all about atmosphere here and every part helps create it. The architecture with the circular design of the hall gives a nice focal point to the scene, and the impression is finished off by the ground texture, passing from a cobblestone floor through a circular section of the tiling into a clean glowing purple area. And if you are, like me, wondering what makes the little purple gaps between the “stones” of the circle, Aaron has revealed the secret: purple quarter-circle roller coaster tracks!
Here’s a great little LEGO scene from Foolish Bricks depicting a lazy morning spent on the sofa. There are no fancy building techniques on display, but there’s a good selection of parts which add depth and texture to every surface, and the details are meticulously placed to great effect. The precise layout is enhanced by some good macro photography, and the overall presentation is excellent — those light rays and the curl of steam from the coffee mug (which I’m assuming was added in post-production) elevate this model into something special.
Krzysztof Cytacki’s Technic version of a Landrover Defender is an excellent version of Great Britain’s gift to the world of 4×4 offroading. While the model itself is nice, the photography is what first attracted me to Cytacki’s work. By taking pictures of his Landrover in the wilderness, Cytacki perfectly captures the feeling of a televised auto ad. You can almost hear the roar of the engine and smell the earthy aroma of mud kicking back as the vehicle scales the rugged terrain. The natural setting does better justice to Cytacki’s model than a plain background could achieve.
LEGO photography is an art in and of itself, as demonstrated by brickexplorer’s images shared on Instagram. This particular scene is cute and funny thanks to well-executed visual storytelling. It’s a tale of the guy who thinks he can cook but is so distracted by his pets that he sets his food on fire. Meanwhile, Brickexplorer’s failed little chef is oblivious to the woman shouting at him from behind. If the fish flopping around near the dishwasher is any indication, this guy is about as good at taking care of his pets as he is making dinner.
Everything about this scene is lively and fun to look at, thanks to the builder’s use of color and lighting. The way the sun shines brightly through the window reminds me of a morning sunrise. And editing the image to include smoke makes this scene all the more believable.
We have been enjoying a taste of Italy in a series of photographs by brickexplorer on Instagram. First we take in the view of a gondolier cruising along the famous canals of Venice. I love the combination of natural elements (be that water, sky or earth) with LEGO built surroundings.
Finally, as the sun goes down, it’s time to relax and enjoy some freshly made stone baked pizza. The lights inside the pizzeria make it seem so inviting, I’m not sure how far people travel to enjoy theis infamous pizza, it looks like a rocket has just landed on the left.
The month of February has already brought to Moscow, Russia about 10 inches of snow — and it doesn’t seem to stop snowing! Talented Moscow-based toy photographer brickexplorer captures the mood of the frosty night just perfectly; the whole scene in the picture looks extremely cozy in the warm light of the old tram’s headlights. According to the description of the photo the snow piles are made of baking soda, which is a perfect tip for any LEGO toy photographer.
The planet-city of Coruscant is magnificent in the setting sun, and the expansive urban landscapes were one of my favorite visuals from the prequel trilogy. This image by Malen Garek of a view from the Jedi temple may have been erased from the archives, but it’s breathtaking nonetheless. Malen has nailed the colors, and the forced perspective backdrop is one of the better I’ve seen.
Black & white. All important photos are taken in black & white. And atmosphere. Edgy, rainy atmosphere that would make small children and adults nervous. And lighting. Really subtle and aesthetically pleasing lighting.
This portrait of Bruce Wayne by legomeee would certainly get LEGO Batman’s brooding stamp of approval for appropriate tone. I’m not sure what he is looking at, but that umbrella is macho. I dig it.
Now, get yourself ready, for some inspiration. If you want to make the world a better place, Take a look at yourself and make a change. Hooo! – Batman.
It’s a bad day in the fog for this hapless crew of mariners. They’ve stumbled across the most infamous sea-beast of yore, the might Kraken, whose arms entangle ships like playthings. Mark of Falworth’s awesome diorama sets us right in the middle of the action as the giant cephalopod drags the ship to the watery depths.
The fog (made with a fog machine, not Photoshop) adds a grim bit of horror to the scene, and the technical details are outstanding. Check out the suction cups made of buckets, and the peeling planking of the deck.