Advice suggests avoiding eating heavy meals before bed. Nick Sweetman, the builder of this crazy rainbow nightmare, appears to have thrown caution to the wind. His bedroom scene is littered with treats and snacks galore. That Wonka bar hinting at the seriously psychedelic side effects of consuming too much sugar before sleep. It’s a premise that has allowed Nick to unleash every colour in the LEGO palette – in fact there is an artist’s brush and palette suggestively tucked away on one of the shelves – in aide of creating the most marvellous, hallucinatory, maelstrom. It’s a vibrant, queasy, spectacle of a build that celebrates colour and chaos with little regard for sensible modelling conventions… and I love it!
In the year 2018, Aquasharks is not a word that would turn many heads apart from the occasional hardcore adult LEGO fan. For the younger crowd, Aquasharks is an underwater LEGO theme from the 90’s that had some imaginative set designs and play features like magnets (which, admittedly, were everywhere back then). As opposed to some other themes from the same years, this particular one doesn’t seem to get much love from the online LEGO community, but luckily Jonas Obermaier is here to give it five minutes of glory… perhaps this time we won’t forget about it again?
The build is technically a hardsuit, but the heavy use of minifig parts (the core of the top half is based on the Aquasharks SCUBA gear) blurs the line between a heavily modified minifig and a compact mecha. With the builder’s skills in minifig design, this is hardly surprising. All sorts of small colourful parts capture the motif of the Aquasharks prints, and with enough imagination, the dark blue minifig hand in the center of the torso could look like a shark symbol!
Framed in just the right way, any life can seem interesting on social media, as shown in a LEGO scene by Arnaud B. The build and shot are quite clever in this artistic social commentary, with the phone frame hiding the seams between grayscale “real life” and full color “Instagram-filtered life” perfectly.
It’s time to turn back the clocks, then turn them forward again, as we travel to a retro view of the future where flying cars totally exist and all mass transit is in stylish monorails like this sweet LEGO version by Tammo S. With nifty brick-built lettering adorning the sides and a crazy bit of fantastic retro aesthetic with a prop and fins on top, this monorail is ready to guide us to the future. While my favorite design element is the rounded corners of the passenger windows, don’t overlook the fact that the cockpit is built at a crazy angle, which is no mean feat.
We see many grand castles and medieval scenes built out of LEGO all over the internet, but sometimes it is the little gems that make you go “wow!” Today’s “wow” is alego alego‘s microscale castle series, which focus on interesting parts usages.
We’ll start with the sea castle, as well as some of his other microscale castle creations The latest build is particularly neat, using stud shooters as towers connected by tiny staircases. My favourite part is that the shooters have the triggers inserted, so technically, one could shoot the tops off the towers!
This wild west scene by captainsmog shows the transfer of a notorious prisoner to federal custody under the watchful eye of the local Sheriff. This is one bandit who won’t be rescued by his posse, hooking up a rope or chain to the side window and yanking the wall right off the jail. His only hope will be an ambush in Rattlesnake Gorge… if his henchmen can rustle up some dynamite, that is. The prison coach, while simple in construction, clearly looks sturdy enough to hold any bandit, and the use of log bricks is the perfect choice for the front office of this classic building.
It’s always nice to see a clever use of those parts that are somewhat specialized, and that many builders have in large supply. If you have ever purchased a collectible mini-figure, or 2, then you probably have a some of those 3×4 plates with studs down the middle. Used here to build a simple slat roof. The builder also created an undertaker’s office which features siding made from angled tiles. By far my favorite detail is the marvelous vultures fashioned from a minifig hairpiece and a hand for the head. There is something strangely spooky about carrion birds made from body parts…
Rockstar’s newest video game, Red Dead Redemption 2, has been a highly anticipated sequel for fans of the first. Maybe it’s the vast open wild west world, with so many ways to create a unique experience. For some players, the greatest appeal for an open world like this is wandering around the wilderness like in this scene by Tuxedo Greedo. The landscape is both peaceful, and hostile in its stark setting. Curved white elements smooth out what would otherwise be a lonely, rocky landscape. Transparent clear bricks in place of more traditional tiles is a great choice for the stream, and white flower elements make the perfect snow-covered blossoms. One more missable details is the quarter-circle tiles wedged between the studs on the pine tree to represent fungus.
Sweden’s Andreas Lenander latest LEGO creation is a terrifying canoe ride right over the edge of a waterfall. These minifigures certainly appear as though they’re on an adventure they’re not likely to forget. I think what strikes me the most about this diorama is the palpable dynamic energy of the rushing water, free-floating figures, and tipping canoe as the river crests the edge of the cliff.
You could argue that there’s nothing particularly innovative about the techniques on display, but what Andreas has achieved here with a few simple, repetitive pieces is really remarkable. It’s a strong exhibit of how purposeful prop placement (the minifigs, canoe, water) over background noise (plants, splashing water, textured rocks) can achieve a visually interesting composition.
This was the winning entry in Swebrick‘s head-to-head elimination AFOL-vs-AFOL contest, which for 2018 was based on Adventure. We’ve also featured Andreas here recently for his lifelike cigarette smoking in an ashtray and earlier this summer with his Titan starfighter.
I’m always thrilled by tiny vignettes that squeeze in details that tell the story well. This vignette by Zed highlights the memorable scene in Harry Potter and the Philosopher’s Stone when the Hogwarts invitation letter is delivered to Harry in the Cupboard Under the Stairs. Though not fully movie accurate — as I do recall the door of the Dursley’s home was at the bottom of the staircase — it makes more sense for this little vignette to have it on the opposite end. I still can’t figure out how LEGO elements were arranged to construct that sturdy-looking entrance door, but it certainly looks good.
When I saw this dental chair built by Luis Peña, I was uncomfortably impressed. On one hand, it triggered anxiety about needing to schedule a dental appointment. At the same time, Luis’ attention to detail brought my teeth out of hiding with a beaming smile. The entire scene feels authentic, with a tilting chair, folding overhead lamp, and a drill. “Yikes!” Luis presented this lovely model to his sister-in-law, who is celebrating her 30th anniversary working as a dentist.
The wizarding world is back with a new Fantastic Beasts movie this fall, and with it comes a whole bunch of new LEGO, such as Newt’s Case of Magical Creatures. Over the years we’ve featured a lot of great custom Wizarding World LEGO creations here on TBB, but these vignettes by Thorsten Bonsch are among my personal favorites, capturing some iconic scenes from the first Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them, which was released to theaters in 2016.
The collection opens with Newt on the deck of the ship that will deliver him to New York. One of my favorite parts is the black robot arm that makes the armrest on the bench, which gives it a great wrought-iron look.
Next, there is the scene at the New York Customs station, where Newt disguises his mysterious case as an ordinary collection of mundane possessions. All of the other mini-figures in the scene are well suited to the time period. Also, this scene has some of the best floor textures I have seen in a while, including a simple 1×1 plate set upside down. Continue reading
Creating a street scene with real character is all about the details – big and small. And when it comes to post-apocalyptic scenes, like this street scene by Jan T. the best details are in the destruction and erosion of man-made structures as nature re-claims what is hers. I’m not sure how I feel about the clown. Either it would freak the heck out of me if I were to encounter him on the street, or it would bring a smile to my face, and we would share a laugh as we scrounged for supplies.
There are so many great parts used in this scene and one of my favorites is the use of the twisty stem surrounding the large leaf plant part that most of us just throw away. You can find these used as vines flowing in and out of the buildings. Then there is the mini-fig back brackets used to create a lovely architectural detail above the door on the left building. The broken walls and windows are also quite nice.