Sunday, May 4, 2014

Mini LEGO Con

Name of Model: Mini LEGO Con
Created by various people, see below
Found at (semi-official Flickr group):
Details: As I hinted at earlier, there's a big project I've been involved with for a while now that I am really excited to share with everyone. That project is Mini LEGO Con - in short, a miniland scale model of a LEGO convention. This is a massive group layout that you can expect to see at many LEGO conventions (and other conventions, too!) in the years to come.

Mini LEGO Con was first displayed at BrickCon 2012 by Steve Oakes (BrickCon Microscale coordinator) and Mariann Asanuma (former LEGOLAND Master Model Builder). Mariann brought Mini Con to other events throughout 2013 (BricksCascade, Emerald City Comic Con, BrickWorld, BrickFair VA, Bricks by the Bay, BrickCon). After BrickFair VA, BrickFair coordinator Todd Webb decided to make Mini Con a part of BrickFair going forward, and purchased the parts required to assemble the layout at future conventions. Most notably, Todd decided to change the layout from being a caricature of a convention to being an exact match - at BrickFair, the baseplates and tables are set up in the same layout as the convention itself.

Back at BrickFair Alabama 2014, I (Dan) assembled the miniland-scale (roughly 1:20) tables, chairs, and stanchions for use at BrickFair events, the next of which will be in Manchester, New Hampshire, this upcoming weekend (public hours are May 10th & May 11th, 2014, 11:00am - 4:00pm, we'd love to see you there!). If you've registered to participate, you should make sure to bring a miniland-scale version of yourself and microscale versions of the models you're bringing (BrickFair provides the bare bones of the layout, so you shouldn't need to pack your own mini tables and mini stanchions). If you're attending as public, you're in for a real treat, as this enormous layout will completely match the map of the convention (and should be filled in even more than the layout in Alabama earlier this year).

Can't make it to New Hampshire next weekend? BrickFair will also be in Virginia (July 30th-August 3rd) and New Jersey (October 30th-November 2nd), and similar, smaller layouts (without BrickFair's backing) should be appearing at BrickWorld Chicago (June 11th-15th) and BrickCon (October 2nd-5th). We're hoping this catches on more generally as a theme and a building standard for group layouts at LEGO events (like moonbase or the Cafe Corner standard).

I've started a Flickr group to make it easier to find ideas, inspiration, and displays related to this theme. For blogging purposes here, we're mostly talking about LEGO conventions, but these displays are also a hit at Comic and Sci-Fi conventions (think: minilanders in costume as their favorite characters) and I intend to expand to Maker Faires this year as well. The Flickr group discussions include an attempt at a list of all Mini Con events.

Saturday, May 3, 2014


Name of Model: Banjo and Kazooie
Created by: Sir Nadroj
Found at:
Details: I regret that we don't see as much from Sir Nadroj as we used to, but whatever he builds never fails to amaze. I'll admit to never playing the game(s), but I am familiar with the characters and they are captured perfectly here. Particularly amazing to me is the way Banjo's brow is handled, surrounding those ball socket eyes perfectly. Not an easy task with a part easier used in even goofier-looking creatures. The paws deserve a shout-out too; I didn't even know you could use that technique with the 2x2 slope pieces.