Heya! It's been a while, huh?
January marked my 3 year anniversary here at LEGO. Things were a little busier than expected, hence the lack of activity here, including the lack of a list of things I worked on. So here it goes:
75886 - Ferrari 488 GT3 Scuderia Corsa
That's a mouthful of a name for a set but another fun one to work on. The big challenge as with every model of an actual car is to capture the icons. On the 488 there's quite a few, but the biggest one in terms of the build was the large air-intake above the rear wheels. Originally the intention was to have 1-plate thick gap and then use the new 35787 triangle tile, but then the 1x2 bows with cutout came along and as you can see the intake got a lot more prominent than a 1-plate gap. The trickiest bit on this one was actually the front bumper. It involves both sideways and upside down building and had to maintain enough ground clearance to not scrape the asphalt. What a drag that would be. My favorite small details would be the espresso machine head plates representing the support struts for the front diffusor and the 1x1 quarter tile used as rearview mirrors. We don't get to include those that often. A big shoutout to my colleague in the graphics design team who made the stickers line up really nicely on the final model.
75887 - Porsche 919 Hybrid
I got the opportunity to help out Speed Champions with two sets for this year. This was a really exciting model to work on, since the actual car had not been revealed at the time yet, so we were among the first to get a look at it. The concept models for the 919 that we had built before were all based on previous years versions, but Porsche changed the design quite a bit for the new one, which brought about some challenges. The square road sign in combination with the new-ish 1x2 bow w. cutout recreate the aerodynamic shaping on the body. And using the classic doors and new wheel arches allowed me to build this one as low to the ground as possible. This wasn't the only Porsche I had my hands on in Speed Champions though, I helped to design the back of the 911 RSR in 75888 as well. Fun Trivia: The stickers originally had the number 1 printed on, but then Car #2 won the LeMans race, so we quickly went back in and changed it.
60177 - Air Show Jet
Kicking off 2018 with a fast little jet. Jets are cool. The longest discussions were actually about the color scheme and stickers.
60174 - Mountain Police Headquarters
Building a police station is a bit of a rite of passage in City so I was very excited to get asked to do it only in my 2nd year. It's an important set in the lineup and it's pretty big and gets a lot of attention from marketing, so the team has a big interest in getting this one right. The general layout with the three levels of garage/prison/office was already decided when I started on the model. The big challenge lay in how to connect those three levels in a stable way without over-complicating the build. And yes, police is a theme we do frequently because - well, there tends to be a new generation of 5 year olds every couple of years. The fun part for this one was to mix it up a little bit - most obviously with the crooks helicopter. Some fun trivia: I chose the tail-fin of that helicopter because it was also featured in Onua Mistika some ten years ago. During development I came upon the issue of using a door-frame as a structural support in the back of the station - which left a pretty big hole from the garage leading directly to the cougar's cave. That's why there is a door now with a "keep out" sticker. The graphic designer also came up with an awesome little joke with the master crook having a framed picture of his pet piranha in the cell - the same fish that the police are holding in the small aquarium in their office.
60162 - Jungle Air Drop Helicopter
This technically isn't my set, since one of my colleagues was responsible for it, but in order to meet deadlines, we tag-teamed on this one. Obviously I only did the really cool stuff in this one: The tower with the crane and the jungle ruins. But that's what's great about working in a team: Everybody gets to suggest ideas, doesn't matter if you do graphics and have a good idea for a model or if you are a model designer with a good idea for a TV spot. Which also leads to everybody being able to have a little personal touch in the sets. Fun trivia about this one: We were never quite sure what the statue outside the cave was supposed to represent, so in the end it was dubbed "Bear-Hamster".
60138 - High Speed Chase
One of my favorites that I worked on so far. Building vehicles is fun, so to get to do three in one box was awesome! And it also marks the return of Chase McCain who's back on duty in LEGO City Undercover.
60136 Police Starter Set
This wasn't originally my assignment but a change in the assortment happened and I was asked to take over. The idea behind the starter sets is to pack a lot of characters and story into a small box so it can be a good first set for younger kids. Very happy that the little police car could be big enough to fit both the dog or one of the captured crooks. One of my colleagues came up with the brilliant little exploding function for the ATM.
60121 - Volcano exploration truck
My first boxed set. It was super-exciting to play around with the then-new new bar connector pieces and bull bar on the front of the truck. The biggest challenge was to figure out the correct order of the build of the rollcage.
11911 - LEGO City build your own adventure book
My first official model, though not in a box. My brief was a small firefighter's car and a scenario. This being the first model, I was surprised to find how much thought goes into something just this small. Probably had a dozen or so different variants lined up on my desk at one point of just the car. I keep some of them in a drawer still, as a reminder.
Super Excited to finally show y’all my first official LEGO Set! Our LEGO City Volcano Explorers need to go places, so they need a big truck to get there.
Worked on this for about 6 months last year. Still doesn’t feel quite real that this little thing I was brooding over on my desk is now shipping worldwide!
during my recruitment workshop there was a camera team, putting together a documentary about getting the design job and the company in general. Very interesting and aside from my colleague Justin in Super Heroes, I show up in the background every now and then, not to mention our very own 55555 ^^
Hope you get a little glimpse behind the scenes!
Major props to the art department of the film, the movie looks great and the CGI was really well-integrated. Scenes where characters and dinos were interacting in closeups looked really nice and it actually felt like an actual creature was there and getting touched, not just a green-skinned thing that was replaced later. I think some animatronics were used, but it's hard to tell.
The premise of the new bad dino is also cool, turning living creatures into products to be marketed and focus-group tested. The Raptor-Squad was a very cool idea as well, but depending on how much you're willing to suspend your disbelief, you might be disappointed or think its silly.
In the end, the moral remains the same though: Don't mess with nature. I was hoping for a Jeff Goldblum cameo and him going "How many times do I have to tell you 'I told you so'?" but no luck there.
Which is also where the downsides start: The plot is very predictable, especially if you've seen the trailers. It's pretty obvious after the first 15 minutes who will live and who is dino-grub, with one exception IMO. While the characters are likeable, especially Chris Pratt as Owen, brothers Zach & Gray and of course Dr. Wu, the rest are not quite as interesting.
Pictured: The deepest relationship in the movie.
The other thing that bothered me a bit was the comedic relief. In the end nearly every action-scene was followed up with a funny one-liner or reaction. The first movie had those scenes too, but the difference was that the characters were playing it straight and in character in that film; here it feels forced because there is just way too much of it, which takes away from the suspenseful scenes and a lot of times feels out of place considering the situation the characters are in.
Overall I really like the movie. It's a fun 2 hour adventure film, but if you prefer to wait until it comes out on DvD/stream, you're not missing anything by not seeing it in cinemas. I would rate it equal or a little higher than Lost World, definitely better than 3 but not as good as the original.
There can only be one king after all
Official LEGO designer. However, this blog is a private one and anything I post here does not necessarily reflect the views of the LEGO Group.
I can absolutely not talk about anything that's under development, nor comment on any rumors, speculation, leaks and anything else that has not been officially released. As a rule of thumb: If it's not sold on shelves, we can't talk about it.