Neo Classic Space has existed for some time as a modern interpretation of the nostalgic grey and blue theme from the early official LEGO space sets of the late 70s into the 80s. But builder AFOL anonis stepping up the game with the sleek space cruiser. The SHIP (easily clocking in the 100-stud length for a SHIPtember entry) retains the styling of its smaller cousins, with an arrowhead shape, side-mounted blasters, and spoiler, while simultaneously smoothing out the hard edges.
I particularly love the shaping from the rear, where it gives off faint vibes of a Super Star Destroyer in classic space livery.
Throwing traditional building caution to the solar wind, Alex “Orion Pax” Jones’s insanely colourful ship is certainly one of the more unusual models to come out of this year’s SHIPtember challenge. Alex notes that he tried to use all of the colours in the LEGO palette, making his build not only a SHIP (a seriously huge investment in parts), but also a SHIC (a seriously huge investment in colours).
After its namesake, the side of the vessel operates as an interstellar PAX or peace sign. Borrowing heavily from the graphic flourishes of graffiti aesthetic, the spacecraft shrugs off the utilitarian norms of spacecraft design in favour of a brash, exuberant look. Alex explains his ethos best when he says: “If you ride, ride in style!”
Hard science fiction spaceships often conform to a few venerable aesthetics, key among them a predominance of NASA-like white. However, in LEGO builder halfbeak‘s timeline, a group of disgruntled astronauts have broken ties with NASA and formed their own space agency, so it makes sense they’ve inverted the usual colors. This marvelously gangly spacecraft is powered by antimatter, which it captures in huge nets.
It’s rare that a spaceship can rival a sailing ship for rigging, but the wiry electromagnetic nets surrounding the vessel are a truly fantastic bit of LEGO engineering, painstakingly pieced together with string and a variety of thin LEGO elements, such as fishing rods. The repetitious use of LEGO radar dishes throughout the craft brings a unifying motif, and they make for an especially interesting texture along the ribbed twin prongs on the front.
LEGO fans are frequently inspired to give life to Star Wars-inspired builds, but even though builder Shawn Snyder may not have had Star Wars front of mind when building this slick ship, we’d like to think it could have happened in an alternate timeline. The robust, industrial design paired with the classic windscreen makes it look a bit like an Incom T-47 that’s been seriously souped up to give it a buffed up, mean and rugged look suited for spaceflight. Of course, it’s different some pretty significant ways, but the color theme certainly strikes a familiar chord with last years 75144 UCS Snowspeeder. There’s no sign of obvious canons but I’m pretty sure there’s some heavy weaponry hidden inside just waiting to take the next AT-AT down, or whatever their equivalent is in the universe where this ship exists.
Called the Celestial Barracuda, this marine-inspired vessel by LEGO designer Niek Van Slagmaat(most recently of 21311 Voltron fame) is one of the more uniquely designed spaceSHIPs of recent memory. Traversing the inky deeps of space and reality as an interdimensional transport ship, the ship takes the form of a sinuous fish. Niek expertly strikes a balance between placing tiles for a smooth exterior and strategically leaving studs exposed to create a textured, weathered hull. He’s also used a sprinkling of dark tan among the orange bricks, highlighting where the orange paint has peeled over eons of space travel.
The ship’s fish-like features aren’t just for show, though, as they serve a more utilitarian purpose in supporting the small fleet of nimble craft that surrounds it like pilot fish. Continue reading →
As the month of September draws closer to an end, so too, the month-long annual epic that is SHIPtember. The challenge of building a spacecraft that measures at least 100 studs in any direction (AKA a SHIP) in a single month is no easy accomplishment. One of the most critical aspects of a good SHIP is its structural frame, requiring careful crafting to keep the vessel from falling apart under its own weight without looking too bulky or boxy. This ship by Chris Perron is a great example of this balance, combining form with industrial function. Another hallmark of the SHIPtember shipyard comes from making use of parts not typically thought of as spaceship parts, like the trapezoidal orange dump truck ends so expertly used by Chris to form the hexagonal sections along the fuselage. Another great detail are the flat gold flanges in front formed by angled tiles.
Patty Rau has launched Cinderella into space aboard the FGP When You Wish Upon A Star. There’s a lot to love about this LEGO spaceship. The bulbous midsection is a great nod to the vehicle’s origin as a pumpkin. The ship also contains elements from all three minidoll-scale versions of Cinderella’s carriage: printed inverse slopes from Cinderella’s Carriage (2016), printed curved slopes from Cinderella’s Dream Carriage (2014), and gold filagrees from Cinderella’s Enchanted Evening.
It seems like Patty is doing a series of Disney Princess spaceships, as she has also created one for Aurora from Sleeping Beauty. Apparently Sweet Mayhem isn’t the only minidoll with a spaceship.
As September looms nearer by the day, seems like builder noblebun is already flexing his muscles for the upcoming SHIPtember event where fans of LEGO battle to outdo one another creating huge ships. Sounds simple? The challenge rules just say the SHIP needs to be 100 studs or longer (also known as a Seriously Huge Investment in Parts). This digital build is outstanding for the seriously smooth texture that makes it feel like the lines are all actually part of a futuristic design and not the signs of LEGO elements pieced together. I seriously love how the microfigures were used as part of the centerline texture and greebling effects.
When revisiting a classic LEGO theme such as the first wave of Blacktron sets, as CK-MCMLXXXI does here with his Ravenwing Fighter, you have to really get your head around the original design principles. It seems obvious when pointed out, but the black- and yellow-accented Blacktron fleet references the danger markings of the animal kingdom. The insect quality of this nifty spacecraft draws on this, bringing to mind an angry hornet. Best of all, it takes the triangular Blacktron insignia and uses its angles to form a distinctive bug-wing shape. Marrying this with an abdomen-like cylindrical body completes a near perfect Blacktron vehicle.
Over the past few years, Rob Damiano has been building up a believable world around his Classic Space-inspired Nova Team. We have featured his work before and were pleasantly surprised to see this lovely Nova Team star-fighter. In a nod to the Classic Space ship numbering system, Rob named his star-fighter the LL-824 Paladin, and it is clad in the iconic blue, gray and trans yellow colors. It looks incredibly fun and swooshable. However, what really makes Rob’s work stand out is his photography, which utilizes a mix of practical effects and digital editing. While the Paladin is great, the setting and lighting help bring it life. It is reminiscent of the lively scenes found in LEGO product catalogs of the 1980s and 1990s, which also happen to be one of Rob’s sources of inspiration.
It’s always fun when we find builds that come with a little bit of a story. This scene, “Alliance Against the Invader,” by Jon Stead, is one of those builds. According to Jon, the year is 1178 and a medieval kingdom has been rocked by an object falling from the sky. A flaming saucer smashes into the forest and the alien invader it contains is ready to kill. Now it’s time for warring factions to come together to fight the beast and save the kingdom!
This sleek craft by CK-MCMLXXXI is a study in symmetry. Not only left to right along the central axis, as is more common in spaceship design, but also top to bottom. It feels like that solid white canopy at the front, combined with that 45-degree wedge plate was the central element to inspire this design. Regardless of where the idea came from, this craft is jammed with great greebly bits in a variety of colors, some really nice connections, and plenty of curved elements that give the vessel a refined, yet functional look.
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