We’ve featured quite a few LEGO facades, but it’s surprising to see how much life might be behind these buildings. Kris Kelvin (Montgomery Burns) depicts the back lot of two buildings in excellent minifig-scale realism without sacrificing any detail or action. This diorama is bustling with new shipments of lobsters, Scala bottle elements, and pork chops. In addition to the goods, you’ll find dark tan tiles scattered across the sidewalks and air conditioners that really capture that city grime. There’s also a variety of bar and fence parts to create all sorts of railings, gates, and pipes throughout. We’ve spotted the use of some rare brown fence pieces incorporated into the tall gates of the lot entrance. And at the intersection, there’s a pair of stoplights supported by bar handles and lightsaber hilts.
According to Kris, this build, along with an autumn garden, is part of a larger city diorama in progress. While we’re waiting to see it all come together, visit our archives for a look at some more detailed dioramas.
No matter what day of the week it is, it’s always nice to go to the local farmer’s market. Not only are the food and goods top-notch, they also have a nice atmosphere. Not unlike Andrew Tate‘s village grocer, which has a charming house rather than tents and food stalls. No doubt the fruits and vegetables sold outside in crates are locally grown, given the small-town feel of the build. The ground floor has a small convenience shop, and the rest of the house must be where the owners live.
Andrew pays homage to a more famous LEGO grocer, a popular Modular Building set from 2008. The green and tan awning is similarly to the blue and white awning of the LEGO set, and both share the same white Fabuland lamp-posts. Andrew also references LEGO’s Winter Village series with this village grocer’s alpine architecture. It fits right in there, minus the cold and snow. Come to think of it, what’s Winter Village like when it’s not winter?
Is it a Tim Burton movie set? Is it a miniature fit for a museum about Medieval times? No, it is another fantastic creation from Ralf Langer. Ralf always surprises us with his super realistic medieval Tudor-style buildings. His creations are filled with tons of interesting techniques which he kindly reveals in tutorials not long after posting a creation. His latest model is called ‘A light in the dark’.
As far as I can tell Ralf didn’t use any special lighting to make the archway light up. He created the effect by using a range of yellow tones amidst a lot of grey, dark grey, dark brown, and black. The effect looks stunning. Another effect Ralf managed to get across beautifully is the calm after a storm. The streets look like they are covered in puddles. This is achieved by using chain link for the pavement. The puddles are made with black brick shapes which are placed between the chain links. The difference between the textured chain links and the smooth bricks really looks like rain puddles.
What is better than one LEGO modular building? Two LEGO modular buildings and make it a corner building! Kale Frost show us what an upscale Birch Books might have looked like. Kale stayed true to the official set design for most of his creation. He did however add a few little touches to make this creation truly stand out. Complete with a signboard in the shape of a book to emphasize that they are selling books inside. The lettering above the entrance also is a nice touch and it is executed very well using the new curved 1×1 slope. I do wonder what the S would look like had the curved 1×1 slope been used there as well. He further added a brick-built pillar box which goes great with the British vibe of the building. Now, all we can do is wait for an upscale version of the 107 house next to the Birch Books.
There are times when a LEGO fan starts building, gets into the groove of things, then finds it hard to stop. Especially when the build is a small street that keeps growing with each mini modular building placed on it. When I (Mansur “Waffles” Soeleman) attended my LUG‘s (LondonAFOLs) monthly meet-up via Zoom, the theme was mini modular buildings. Every year since 2007, LEGO released a large modular building, each of which can be arranged into a street layout. As a fifth anniversary to the lineup, LEGO created a microscale version of the first few buildings. I started to build a micro modular for the meet-up, and then I couldn’t help but build more. A few days after the meet-up, I ended up with a whole street.
Click to see each micro modular building in detail, along with the build process!
One of my favorite annual activities is heading to the mountain where my fam stays at an A-Frame in the snow, so this A-Frame build from, Norton74, immediately brings thoughts of winter and fun.
Where it gets good, and one of my favorite things about Norton74’s builds, is looking at all the details scattered throughout. These details tell the story of this cabin and really bring the build to life, further reminding me of our A-Frame vacay. Take a look at that log pile and saw, cookie rounds for log ends is a smooth move. Seriously, look at those logs. Other notable features that bring me to the mountain include the jagged roof, the abundance of wildlife, and the little doodads scattered here and there.
Now I need to see the inside of this cabin….is it February yet?
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This month’s cover photo, from Pieter Dennison, is a model of the Dunedin Railway Station in New Zealand. From the tower to the topiary garden, this scene captures all the nuance found in the Dunedin Railway Station, reportedly, one of New Zealand’s most photographed buildings. If you’d like to learn more about this build, read our previous coverage of this LEGO Dunedin Railway Station that Pieter spent five years building.
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This month’s cover photo, from Andrea Lattanzio, brings us this blast from the past with an incredibly detailed LEGO general store. The diorama is littered with items you might find at a remote general store, and luckily Andrea provides a close up look at the details (see below). Candy machines, phone booths, tools, and gas, this general store has you covered no matter your needs.
Here’s that closer look at some of the items you’ll see surrounding the general store. The water tower is a clear standout, but some of the other details like the power pole, the cable holding up the chimney pipe, and the cat going after that bird nest. This entire scene is a delight to take in.
Want to see your own LEGO creation featured across TBB social media for a month? Check out the submission guidelines and submit your photo today.
Stay safe and keep up with The Brothers Brick by liking us on Facebook and following us on Twitter or Pinterest. And for extra goodies, follow us on Instagram, Flickr, or subscribe to us on YouTube.
We might be heading into the summer up here in the northern hemisphere, but this LEGO model by Little John is all about cuddling up by the fire as the cold nights draw in. This rustic cabin makes for a cozy home for a family and their pets. They seem to be LEGO fans too, maybe even collectors, judging by the set boxes on display around the room. There’s an excellent use of printed tiles as pictures throughout the scene, and the furniture is simple but in keeping with the rest of the interior. I dread to think how long it took to put that floor together; it’s made entirely of brown plates in a selection of shades — an effective way to create a wooden floor look. My favorite detail is the boy playing with the toy castle — check out the wonderful little dragon with which he’s threatening the ramparts.
LEGO builder Alex Eylar captures the mood of many with his latest creation Lonely Chef. Alex says he’s missing restaurants during the current lockdown, but in this melancholy composition he also manages to communicate the quiet despair felt by many in the hospitality industry. I’ve spent my entire working life in the bar and drinks trade, and right now it feels like I’m watching the whole industry slide off a cliff in slow-motion. On a less gloomy note, this is a wonderful LEGO model — clean lines and a simple colour scheme, nicely-lit, and well-photographed. I’m looking forward to when such creations depict a moment from our history, rather than from our present.
Amidst a slew of spaceships and post-apocalyptic scenes, it’s always good to take a break and enjoy some food for the soul. Miro Dudas‘ latest LEGO model employs a larger-than-minifigure scale to depict a wonderful domestic kitchen. The styling here is excellent — from the panels of the kitchen cabinets through to the Belfast sink set into the worktop. I particularly like the neat stacks of crockery, the roller blind above the window, and the smooth tiling on the walls, which offers more texture than a blank background but doesn’t distract attention. There are a couple of small details worth a closer look — don’t miss the “cheesegrater slope” used as a knife block, and the hammers providing the rings for the gas stove. Overall, this kitchen wouldn’t look out of place in an IKEA catalog. Great stuff.
Some people shave their heads and then shed a tear while gazing in the mirror because the option of having cool Johnny Depp hair has long since expired. Allegedly. Shut up, don’t judge. Other people, like Maxim Baybakov have better experiences with haircuts and visit the same barbershop for twenty years. He liked his local barbershop so much he has recreated it in LEGO. He tells us the balcony still haunts him to this day. Why? He doesn’t provide the answer but I can only presume it was an incident that involved a freshly coiffed haircut and someone dumping hot oil or a pot of soup or something. No matter why the balcony haunts him, admittedly, the build techniques are pretty stellar. The inset tan storefront, the roof, and the round window are also quite charming.
It’s not quite instructions, but this shot offers sort of an exploded view that illustrates some of the more clever techniques for this build. With a little time and patience, this balcony can haunt you as well.