Hi there! After five glorious years, I have decided to retire this blog.
Feel free to visit my Flickr or YouTube channels instead.
Or follow my latest blogging exploits over at the Brothers Brick.


Thursday, December 31, 2009

Odd Lamb Sign

Gosh darn it, I was *so* planning to have my Countdown of the Best 9 Lego Creations of '09 ready by now. But today's blogging window got compressed out of existence, in between cooking up the mother and father of all curries for a party later, and introducing my kids to the Back to the Future trilogy (...which is really the *only* way they could possibly understand a parent who grew up in the 80's, right?!). Plus unexpected phone calls from other continents where its already the New Year and they're all already hammered and wouldn't it be funny to phone me while my hands are dripping in onion juice and my eyes are burning, yeah!

Anyway, the MOC-down will have to wait until tomorrow, and for now I shall simply ride on the coat tails of Philip Stark and wish you all...



Have a wild New year's Eve, know your designated driver, have an excellent new year, and keep the cool Lego creations a-comin', y'all hear now?

xx
oj
 

Wednesday, December 30, 2009

Stupid monthly poll results

Ok, the end-of-year clearing begins...

In my recent side poll "Worst Soup Flavor", there was no need to gather any further votes. The trend was obvious...

Cream of Monkey:0%
Peppered Cardboard:    27%
Soviet Union:73%

So its pretty clear that nearly everyone hates the idea of Soviet Union flavored soup. Correct, you win: I had to eat the stuff once and I can tell you it was vile! Kind of like soup made from a mixture of herpetic cabbages and constipation medicine. The only thing that would take the taste away was that chewing-tobacco flavored bread they make over there. Trust me, it all made British food suddenly seem very appealing.

Anyway, the poll also shows (rather amusingly) that no-one objects to Cream of Monkey soup! Well at least its got meat in it. And monkeys are not Communists, as far as I'm aware.

To that end, I thought I'd find some images of Lego monkeys getting creamed. And for some reason your name kept on coming up KARL!

Barrelling monkeys getting carried away


Sea Monkeys Carpooling


Freakin Monkeys


It is funny because the monkeys get dead.

("Peppered cardboard" by the way, is about the most succinct descirption of the low-cholestrol diet I've been on these past two years!)
 

Little black number

As an old skool stud-and-tube man, my lack of appreciation for Bionicle is kind of a matter of public record, except when a few geniuses occasionally show us all what is really possible if you look at these peculiar bricks in a different way, with an artists eye (example, example, example).

And now Bionicle fan -Disty- has demonstrated once again that its the artist, not the medium, that makes a great MOC...

God help me if this isn't Victoria Beckham!



Apparently this isn't a new work, just one that I had never seen before. It had been posted on BZPower, a site I had never heard of before. Due it being about Bionicle. So I had a nose around there. Hmm, definitely smells like teen spirit! Made me feel a lot like (to steal a quote from The Mighty Boosh) a "Geography teacher at a Drum and Bass convention". I think I'd better continue to steer clear of the Bionicle sub-culture for now, until I learn how to speak the lingo and do things like 'texting', whatever that is. Because I don't think my passion for hoodies alone is gonna get me a day pass!
 

Monday, December 28, 2009

Its a cigarette! No, its a plane! No, its a desert mammal!

As the Lego company continues to build dull single-piece animal bricks as part of their latest bet-the-farm-on-next-years-hit-or-flop movie franchise, fan builders put them to shame with stuff like this vastly superior camel by Flash...



And if you don't feel inclined to build one of these for yourself, don't worry: by next summer, the Prince of Persia camel brick will be going for about ten cents on BrickLink, and with a little spray paint and craft paper, can be fairly easily converted into an Avatar Dire Horse - the perfect steed for your non-existent official Navi mini-fig!
 

Sunday, December 27, 2009

You know, for Tauntauns

LEGOWOW is a French graphic designer who has fairly recently turned his hand to Lego, and appears to be demomstrating quite a flair for it, if his adorable little electric guitars are anything to go by.

So at first glance his micro AT-AT walkers and snow speeders from the Greatest Movie Ever Made Empire Strikes Back might seem like well-trodden territory (...no pun indended!).

But the real innovation here is his frame-by-frame recreation of the Hoth battle, that seems to successfully capture the essence of that action sequence...






Very enjoyable. I love it!

...proving once again that its not just clever brick-work that makes a good MOC: Interesting choice of subject and good presentation are half the battle (...again, no pun intended!).
 

Saturday, December 26, 2009

Did I say no more Xmas posts? I lied.

My new girlfriend I think, courtesy of Toshiya...


 

Friday, December 25, 2009

Ok, last Xmas post this year, I promise...

Father and son team Dave and John Xandegar, normally known for their larger character sculptures, crafted this great miniland scale winter sleigh ride scene...


You'd be NUTS not to...

Bill Ward was inspired to create this 'working' Lego nutcracker after seeing a performance of a certain well-known festive ballet by Tchaikovsky. Mmmm, I love the ballet.


And since it happens to be Bill's baby, this seems like a good time to remind my West coast readers about Bricks by the Bay, coming this April - the first Lego convention in the Bay area! Whichever part of the coastline you live on, you're probably less than a 2 hour flight away from the Bay, so "shift yer bloomin' arse" (as Eliza Doolittle would say) and come to the con. Or I'll tell everyone about those Halo meagbloks you've been keeping stashed away in that closet or probably shoe box.

:-|
 

Thursday, December 24, 2009

Twas Christmas Eve, and all through the house...

...no creature stirred, not even a PSYCHOTIC CHAINSAW WIELDING EVIL CLOWN SANTA WITH DEMURE ASSISTANT!

This is an old MOC by Moko, but of all the Christmas MOCs I've seen, this still remains the gold standard for me (sorry, Lino!). I guess the Japanese just have Christmas down to a fine art, you know?!



Wishing you all a very merry Hanukwanzmas!

...have an extra sip of the egg nog for me tomorrow, then report back any hilarious consequences, thanks.
 

Wednesday, December 23, 2009

I know what I want for Christmas...

...but I'm guessing its too late now. Santa's elves don't offer expedited shipping. Or expedited fabrication, I assume. Fortunately, I have a birthday coming up in a few months, and know a LOT of good knitters. Including at least one who I believe already has this pattern! <cough>

Presenting "Some Assembly Required", a knitting pattern by Amber Allison, available for purchase on www.ravelry.com...




 

Tuesday, December 22, 2009

You know, for twits...

Ok, this will have to be brief since I am in the middle of combined Christmas present / Birthday present wrapping hell. So in lieu of me actually being humorous, just find a small child and get them to tell you the 'Interrupting Cow' joke.

Fredoichi made an amazing (but almost certainly momentary) shift from super-sharp mecha to adorable cwute animals, in this case, the accursed Twitter Bird...



Nice work, there! So when does hunting season resume, again?
 

Monday, December 21, 2009

"Leete Latobarita Uruth..." (something, something, you get the idea)"

...sorry, I'm really not into quoting movie lines or the Dead Parrot sketch verbatim. There are plenty of other engineers who are quite happy to embarass themselves performing that feat. I'm one of those engineers who pretends to be normal. And sometimes I even pull it off! Then I go and totally blow it by asking if anyone else has seen "Hawk the Slayer". Now, where was I? Oh right...

If you are not a Miyazaki fan, please change the channel now!

As far as I know, Tokyo-based builder Arcadia Joker appears to be the first person to succeed in creating a Lego version of the Laputa robot that doesn't suck! His design is really perfectly proportioned, and also fully posable...




Ah, and not a single "flapter" variant in sight!
 

Sunday, December 20, 2009

Happy 16th anniversary Tommy and Dianna!

Uber geek Tommy Williamson made these for the misses, to celebrate their wedding anniversary...


Apparently she doesn't expect normal gifts any more. Hey, its hard to keep the spark alive after the 3rd century, you know!

Happy anniversary, guys!

Oh yeah, and thanks Tommy for making us all look bad now! :D
 

Buggy, but in a good way

In my youth I was a massive Entomology enthusiast, and kept all kinds of exotic insects, so the incredible life-like detail in these 'specimens' by pupipupi (Peter Fendrik) brought a lot of memories flooding back. I only wish he would make more of them!

Wall mounted, for your viewing enjoyment


Stag beetle


Dragonfly


Capricorn beetle


I don't know why people find bugs so icky - they're really fascinating, especially when observed up close. And I'm proud to say this philospohy has rubbed off on my kids, who will handle spiders, roaches and pill bugs without any hestitation!

"Awe, wook at the qwute wittle spider!"

...hmmm, probably not behavior I should be encouraging on our next trip to Australia, though!
 

Thursday, December 17, 2009

Merry Wrongmas!

I have no idea what's going on in this festive scene by 74louloute. I guess its just what goes on at the North Pole in the long off-season? Somehow I always imagined something more exotic, probably involving jacuzzis and a case of rum. Nevertheless, these figures are quite charming, and the use of specialized bricks is quite inventive!



UPDATE: Apparently, they are on strike! So where are the picket signs? Shouldn't they be standing at the front gates of the toy factory shouting "Scabs!" as all the non-union Elves file past?
 

Wednesday, December 16, 2009

i can haz scare u

Tsabo Tsaboc has done a wonderful job recreating in Lego two moments from the song "This Is Halloween" from Nightmare before Christmas. Mood-tastic!

These both relate to specific lines in the song. But with all the recent cat-chat on this blog, and the fact that someone just loaned my kids the LOL Cats book, I seem somehow strangely compelled to give them alternate titles...

UNDER UR BED SCARIN UR KIDZ


UNDER UR STARZ MESSIN WIV UR VACUUUM CLEANR

Tuesday, December 15, 2009

Cattiest. Post. Evaar!

Its great to see Monsterbrick (Matt Armstrong) creating stuff again at last, and his latest suite does not disappoint. Despite the fact that I recently stated my complete loathing for all feline-kind, these fellas are all completely adorable! In exactly the same way real-life cats aren't.

Roxy and Shadow

...my overall favorites; love the metallic gold eyes!

Rainbo Kitty

...psychadelic, dude!

Spooky and Spirit

...these are kinda half cat, half skeletal goat or something. Undead Hello Kitty?

Joey

...aww, miserably huggable!

Whisper


Cheese

...wtf?!

Martian Kitten

...green, of course; I like the flatness of this one; nice tail too!

We are Siamese if you please...

...all Siamese cats are EVIL!

Monday, December 14, 2009

You can keep your stinking cheese slopes!

Ahh, the humble 2x4 brick... It may not be the fanciest of Lego bricks, but it'll get you where you need to go. Its the kind of brick that won't quit on you. The kind that'll hold your hair back when you're throwing up into the toilet. It's the ham sandwich of Lego bricks. It's money. In fact, right now, there is probably a secret AFOL cult somewhere, dressed in tin foil, worshipping to a 2x4 shrine.

So what better theme for a Lego contest!

Last summer, Portugese AFOL group Comunidade 0937 held a contest to honor the 2x4, featuring MOCs with giant versions of the veteran brick. And Luis Baixinho has just uploaded some of his entries, my favorite of which is this sand castle...


His others were pretty clever too, and hopefully speak for themselves...


What theme would YOU spin around a giant 2x4?
 

Sunday, December 13, 2009

It's a dog's life

Lego set designer turned Brickjournal correspondent Megan Rothrock has created a lot of wierd and wonderful (and colorful!) creature MOCs over the years, but I really love her Lego treatment of her bull terrier Bandit...



...although I guess you could say I'm more of a cat person. Though not exactly by choice. There is a cat in our house. I am forced to feed and clean up after the cat. I am not permitted to drop-kick the cat. In return, the cat avoids everybody, except to awaken us at dawn for no reason, like some ungrateful mangy cockerel bastard. Yes, I am a cat person. With no chance of parole!
 

Thursday, December 10, 2009

It's a bird, its a plane, no its a... bison?!

Stefan ("2x4") has quite the talent for building iconic flying vehicles from movies and television. So at first glance, you might be forgiven for thinking his latest creation is a deviation from that theme. Unless you happen to be a fan of Avatar the Last Airbender, in which case you'll know that this one is also an iconic flying vehicle! (...albeit a fuzzy one)

Appa the Flying Bison



Its always great to see Lego based on this wonderful but often overlooked (and rather dismally mis-marketed) show. Especially since the official Avatar line of Lego sets ended so abruptly.

Fortunately, many Lego fans are also Avatar fans, so there have been plenty of custom Avatar models over the years (including my own). Some day I'll have to do a retrospective of them all.

And just in case you haven't already guessed yet that I'm this show's #1 FAN...



Boy, I really need to get a life!