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ABaHB--The only blog dedicated to all things LEGO mosaics.--JumboBricks

A Blog by Casey M., Katie W., Dave W., and Sean & Steph M.

Saturday, December 31, 2011

The Creative Brick Company Mosaics

Today I found a website run by The Creative Brick Company. It has a section featuring a gallery of computer-generated images of LEGO mosaics. There are also YouTube videos showing the creation of the mosaic. I have to admit that the Patrick Stewart mosaic is what first caught my eye, since Star Trek: The Next Generation is one of my all-time favorite television shows. But there are also mosaics of other well-known figures, including Audrey Hepburn, William and Kate, and Yoda from Star Wars.

These mosaics can also be found on flickr.

Also, I wish you all a very happy New Year!

Thursday, December 22, 2011

Rockefeller Center Christmas Tree in Mosaic

I found this wonderful Christmas tree mosaic on the LEGO Diem blog. It was made by Dark-Alamez.

The Rockefeller Center Christmas Tree in mosaic

I love the layering of elements to make a more detailed picture. Very festive!

Monday, December 19, 2011

Creative Processes

Casey's post yesterday about the Lord of the Rings mosaics reminded me of a small "Eye of Sauron" mosaic I made.

I see you!

I post this also to show different ways that LEGO creations can develop. A lot of times, a builder will think of what they want their final product to be, and then work on the techniques that they need to make it. Other times, a builder might learn certain techniques and then try to figure out what can be made using those techniques.

For example, the "Eye of Sauron" mosaic above originally looked like this:

Oval

I had been trying out different possible patterns that could be designed with cheese slopes. When I posted this mosaic, people thought that it looked a bit like the eye of Sauron. So then I re-did it with different colors and lighting. Thus the technique led to the product, instead of the product leading to the technique.

I suppose that most people use some combination of both methods. I can see advantages and disadvantages to both approaches. I usually find a technique and then see what I can do with it. This has given me the freedom to explore with a lot of different techniques and sometimes find novel ways of doing things. But I feel very limited in my ability to build a wide variety of different MOCs. It's not easy for me to have someone tell me to build something specific and achieve successful results.

What approach do you use?

Sunday, December 18, 2011

One Plastic Brick to Rule Them All...

If you haven't heard the buzz lately, The Lego Group recently announced their partnership with The Lord of the Rings properties, taken from the great epic by J. R. R. Tolkein. And boy, has the internet been in mad discussion! To celebrate the license, here are three mosaics to showcase the arrival!

doors_of_durin_MOC
The Doors of Durin by ktraphagen (Which is technically made out of Modulex, which is a smaller brick form, like Duplo is a bigger brick medium.)
 

Sauron is watching you
 
 
untitled (aka J. R. R. Tolkein's Signature) by Repoort

If you'd like to check out more exciting Lord of the Rings, There and Back Again/The Hobbit, and Tolkien Lego creations, be sure to check out Bruce N H's new blog, entitled TolkienBricks (and while you're there, check out his other great blogs too!).

Just as a side note, I hope everyone has been enjoying the new content with Katie's fantastic posts. Now that schools out I'm hoping on getting into the Christmas/Holiday spirit with some mosaic posts and exciting new ideas.

Stick around!
Casey

Saturday, December 17, 2011

Cathedral of St. Mirtin

I have a soft spot for mosaics that are integrated into a larger LEGO creation.

Milan Bikics' cathedral does this beautifully. It is very eye-catching, and one of its most striking features is the intricately mosaicked roof.


DK

Some other good shots of the beautiful roof can be found here and here , and throughout the majority of his photostream. Last I heard, the cathedral is still a work in progress. Once Milan said that his goal was to acquire one of every kind of LEGO piece ever made and to use them all in his cathedral. While I tend to focus on a limited palette of pieces, I think the "more-the-merrier" technique is quite effective here.

(I am fairly confident that Casey hasn't posted about this already, but if he has, I will just say that it certainly deserves a second look.)

Wednesday, December 14, 2011

"Design a Holiday Stamp" Contest Winner

Brixe63 has made a lot of neat LEGO creations, such as her optical illusions, highly-detailed house, and nesting Modulex piggy banks. Talent must run in her family, because her son just won a grand prize in Germany for the LEGO "Design a Holiday Stamp Contest." His entry was this charming little Christmas tree:


Christmas tree

As part of his prize, he won a professionally designed and framed mosaic of his design, made to look like a postage stamp:

LEGO mosaic

It's a MOC of a MOC. Now we just need someone to make a MOC of this, and we'll have nesting MOCs, just like the nesting piggy banks. Silliness aside, it's a lovely prize for a well-deserving entry. Congratulations!

There are apparently grand prize winners for the US and the UK, too. I'll have to look around to see if I can find those entries and prizes, too.

Monday, December 12, 2011

My LEGO Pony

I have two pre-school aged children, so I end up watching a lot of kids' TV shows. My favorite one, without a doubt, is My Little Pony: Friendship is Magic. Now it's true that I had lots of ponies when I was young, and loved them and saved them for my own daughter to play with. But beyond that, Friendship is Magic has a lot of intelligence and humor that makes it enjoyable. Apparently this show has spawned quite an internet following, which has started crossing over into the world of LEGO mosaics.



The first that I saw was this Rainbow Dash at BrickCon. I'm not sure if it's a mosaic in the strictest sense of the term, but it's definitely meant to be viewed as a two-dimensional creation.

Rainbow Dash at BrickCon

According to the BrickCon MOC card, this was made by Dani Dougherty and Thomas Michon and "needs to be about 20% cooler".


Then there is this rendition of Derpy Hooves, done by Andrew Somers:


Derpy Hooves!

Andrew also used Derpy in a parody entitled, "Call of Derpy: Modern Horsefare", dressing her up as a soldier and re-writing the My Little Pony theme song. You can find that parody here.

I found a few more pony mosaics and mosaic-like creations, although the image sharing has been disabled for those photographs.

Natron77 made mosaics of Fluttershy and Twilight Sparkle which he hung on his cubicle at work.

And finally, JK Animation made Rainbow Dash, Derpy Hooves, and Apple Jack, which you can see here.

Sunday, December 11, 2011

LEGO "LiteBrite"

I love to see all the different creative ways that people come up with to make LEGO mosaics. I heard someone joke about how he was going to show up to BrickCon with a mosaic made entirely out of LEGO tires, and I thought that might not be a bad idea at all.

I see that DJ Baggadonuts has come up with several interesting mosaic techniques. One of them is to stack headlight bricks into columns, and then stick jewels into the holes. Light will shine through from the back of the mosaic, creating an interesting effect. If the backlight is strong enough, it will light up, "sort of like a LEGO LiteBrite," as Mr. Baggadonuts says in his blog. (The blog archive is worth a look; in it you can find links to all sorts of entries explaining how he accomplishes his different mosaics.)

Here are two examples of this jewels-inserted-into-headlight bricks technique:

3D LEGO Mosaic v2 - #7

3D LEGO Mosaic v1, pic #1


The stability of the mosaics can cause a problem, as they are made of columns of headlight bricks and have very little cross-bracing (which only occurs in the black sections). But with persistence, it can be done.

Mr. Baggadonuts has several other interesting techniques that I would like to cover in future posts. ;-)

(Yes, yes, I love to use smileys. I can't help it! Everything seems so very serious without them. ;-) )

Teeny Tiny Mosaics

The winner in the small mosaic category at BrickCon this year was Dave Ware (BrickWares) for this tiny mosaic made from light sabers:


WithVase

He says it was based on the cover of A Clockwork Orange. You can read his discussion of this mosaic on his blog.

A similar technique that I've seen is to use axles instead of light sabers, as Linus (minkowsky) does here:

The Wave

Linus devised a mechanism to make the axles "wave" at him, as can be seen in the video here, with a behind-the-scenes glimpse here.

Friday, December 9, 2011

I Scream for Ice Cream Mosaics!

I probably should have included this in the previous post, but Mariann Asanuma (Model Gal) also brought her ice cream truck to show at BrickCon. It has a different mosaic on each side, so as to represent both names that the ice cream company uses. Once again I'm really interested in the bricks going at different angles so as to increase the amount of detail possible in such a small space.


Dreyer's Side

Edy's Side 1

And since we're on the topic of Mariann's mosaics, here is another small one that uses five different shades of blue to create the impression of a Wyland ocean painting:

Wyland mosaic

When Mariann writes about this picture in her blog, she talks about how she has to simplify the details in order to make it come out correctly. I hope she won't mind me quoting her wholesale here, but here is the paragraph:

"And here’s a Model Building Tip for you: Generally when I am doing a mosaic, especially when it is small like this one, I have to simplify the image and take away some of the details without losing the general look. Trying to do all the lines or shadings is almost impossible at this size, so you have to pick and choose what you keep in and what you take out. Sometimes that is easier to say than do. "

I'm not really sure how to accomplish these kinds of detailed mosaics like Mariann does; it might be worth asking her about sometime. ;-)

Thursday, December 8, 2011

Remembering 9/11

This post is a bit late in coming, but better late than never, right? I was able to attend BrickCon in Seattle for a day, and got to see lots of cool mosaics. The winning mosaic in the large category was called "Remembering 9/11" by Mariann Asanuma (Model Gal).


Remembering 9 / 11

I'm very impressed by the complicated techniques used to render this image. There are plates and bricks heading in all sorts of directions, which allows a greater amount of detail to be used. Mariann said this took her 100 hours to make this, and I'm not surprised.

I first saw this mosaic on Mariann's blog, Model Building Secrets. You can find her original write-up on it here.