I've done a lot of interesting stuff on LEGO for the Art Attack readers, everything from the toy bricks' contributions to science to the recent Brick Fiesta to Imagine Rigney's monstrous reproduction of Rapture from BioShock. The more I meet people in the LEGO community, the more I realize that it is a bastion of creativity that brings some truly amazing pieces of art into the world.
I personally don't have the building spark anymore. I'm perfectly happy with the occasional store-bought builds to pass a happy evening. I did start to wonder, though: Do any of these talented people ever get the chance to take their creations legit?
The answer is yes. The LEGO Cuusoo project allows builders to upload designs. If your design can win 10,000 supporters, then it will be brought up at the quarterly meetings for consideration for official licensing. You can even make money off of this from the royalties, and considering the expense of LEGO, it's probably not a tiny sum.
I spent a happy few hours browsing the site for innovative builds. Here's what I found.
LEGO has made an airship before, but it frankly sucked explosive gas. This intrepid beauty is a much more impressive affair. The inner workings of the main balloon are actually very complicated, reminiscent of real-life designs. It's the perfect steampunk accessory.
This candy store build with the Wonka-esque front is meant to be sort of Victorian, and is almost a work of art in and of itself. It features the store on the bottom floor with spiral staircases leading to lodging areas on the upper levels. The winding exterior staircase and the massive statues on the roof are my personal favorite touches.
One of LEGO's neater lines is its architecture series that offers simple, stark builds of famous landmarks. One user wants to add some of the more innovative technological inventions to the list. Here's the pitch for a pipe organ. It makes me wonder if LEGO would follow it up with the ENIAC computer.
Sadly, there's no way to make a LEGO structure bigger on the inside than the out, but you don't get into this hobby without a little imagination. This build is based on the Eleventh Doctor's TARDIS bridge, and it comes out pretty damn accurate. Also included is a spot-on representation of Amy Pond's house from the first episode of the fifth season. Sadly, no Daleks, but you can support a set of DW mini figures here.
Like the airship before, LEGO has tackled the Star Wars Jawa Sandcrawler before, but there is just no comparison between the official build and this masterpiece. Not only is the rusty exterior much better done, the interior is a vast, complex affair full of machinery.
LEGO has its new Monster Fighters line, and I've already picked up the hearse build it offers because I'm the nerdiest goth in Houston. They do offer a haunted house, but this build based on the Norman Bates residence from Psycho has a lot more oomph to its style.
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I feel no need to add anything else. That picture makes all my point for me.