paupadros

[MOC] Baseplate Alley

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Head to Baseplate Alley and have a blast!

Here it is finally, my tenth modular building! Almost a full year after my previous (Disco 2000 Vinyl Store), I’ve put together enough ideas to fill a whole 32x32 baseplate. :angel_sing::angel_sing:

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Architecturally, I believe this is my most complete model. The designs throughout are not only daring but also well-balanced and complement one another, something I used to struggle quite a bit with. Both buildings are almost identical in shape and proportions and vary in details and colours. In fact, originally there only was one building: the striped one on the right. I loved it so much, but I was struggling to find something that would complement it well. In the end, I thought. “If I love how this turned out, why not repeat the already existing motifs to create a grander picture?” (almost like you would in a song; the chorus and the melodies are often repeated various times). The building on the left is my favourite of the two. The orange and bright blue colour scheme of the model is taken from Henri Matisse’s “The Dance” painting and I think it looks marvellous. Both buildings sit on a rather peculiar angle. I was looking for a way to offset the model from the usual 90-degree grid and found that two of the piece 54384 (https://brickset.com/parts/design-54384turned at about 20 degrees filled about 12.5 studs and that allowed me to build an angled façade without any seams! Duplicating that didn’t solve the slight error, but some handy trickery helped hiding it.

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The rest of the model is completed with Medium Nougat façades on top of a Sand Green ground floor. I especially like how the windows in Sand Green (inspiration from my own previous model) work with the façade with yellow windows on the side.

My favourite bit to build of modular are cornices and rooflines; it’s quite amazing how they can transform the look of a building. The one for the striped building is one that I’ve wanted to put on a model for a really long time; I think it’s really elegant and that it suits the building nicely (I’ve had it built for roughly a year and a half). The one for the blue building is a brand-new design especially designed to both enhance the other building (this one’s set slightly further back in some areas) and make the blue building have an almost castle feeling. The roofline for the nougat part is the minimum expression of the same concept of the white roofline. Using the new arches from the large Hogwarts Castle and the 1x1 bow pieces also found to top off the black box on the ground floor of the blue building, I’ve created this wave design. It’s rather simple to be honest, only impossible for a very long time.

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Interiors:

Interiors have never been my biggest strength, but I’ve put extra effort to make them really pop in this model (it’s my tenth, I should start getting better, shouldn’t I? :hmpf_bad:). The nature of the façade makes this modular way more modular than any of my previous models. Both top floors detach into three parts, one for each façade and one for the actual interior. This was not intentional but makes this model way more playable.  Beyond that, I’ve also added an open ventilation shaft to add more interest to the interior and more light to all the rooms. Here’s a 3D view of the model with all its sections: https://www.mecabricks.com/en/models/Geje68pxvKX.

1. Ground floor:

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On the ground floor are two art galleries. They have interpretations of real-life works (I will admit that some of them are not particularly easy to identify), but you can find a Picasso, a Manet, a Botticelli, a Mondrian and a Matisse. I bet you’ll see the last one. They’re telling me that Matisse himself has decorated the façade of the left building using the colours from the piece he’s presenting here… Who knows, maybe it’s the art gallery that is running low on cash!

I really like how this rendering turned out, it really tells a story.

2. Middle floor:

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Both the top floors are dedicated to the publisher of the ABS-famous newspaper “Stud Times”. Today’s edition is a packed one! The Iron Horse is closing because of chef Emma’s death, the celebrity detective Ace Brickman is seen eating in Jim’s Diner rather than at the usual Chez Albert, news about battered leg assemblies and even a front cover advert of face transplants! On the middle floor we have the machine printing out the newspapers with all the needed tools and equipment. There’s also a hidden little play feature, there’s a little rotating crank for extra movement (it doesn’t actually do anything). And before you say it, yes, the windows on the back are copied from Downtown Diner.

3. Top floor:

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Piles and piles of newspapers, typewriters (the design is the same one @Bricked1980 used in his Police Station), four clocks to check what time it is in the various parts of the globe, phones, coffee mugs to swallow the sweat, a fax machine and, of course, a paper bin to throw away texts with mistakes!

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To see everything that I haven’t been able to explain in words, feel free to take a look at the model yourselves, many of the “how was this/that made” are visible! From here I encourage all the digital builders to upload their models to Mecabricks, there's hardly anything more enriching as a builder than seeing how others are building!

3D view of the model:

https://www.mecabricks.com/en/models/Lkj9DgqB2Ap

3D view of the interiors (+ how the façades are built)

https://www.mecabricks.com/en/models/Geje68pxvKX

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Thanks for reading through and hope you like the model!

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PD: Please, could you comment on the various things I've changed in presentation. Mainly rendering engine and format of the image (now a squarer 3300x2550 format rather than the wider 3840x2160 format). Please say someone got thejokes in the newspaper :grin:

Edited by paupadros

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Wow! I first saw this on Flickr earlier this morning, and I must say it looks very nice indeed. The whole model looks very polished and it's clear you have spent a lot of time getting this one just perfect. The most striking thing to me is the way you've set the front walls at an angle. It looks really fantastic and I don't think I've ever seen anyone do this in the same way before. :wub:

Also I love the colour scheme, it's very bright in your typical style, yet the colours all work together really well. The various blues and oranges are a lovely combination and the stripey building on the right really pops. Other things I really like are the curved stairs and the way you've created a narrow alleyway at the side in a similar effect to Downtown Diner.

Your renders also look amazing, especially the interior shots using the depth of field effect. Are these rendered using the native mecabricks rendering system or have you made them externally using Blender?

Finally, I'm flattered that you decided to use my typewriter build from my Lego Ideas Police Station. :classic:

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1 hour ago, Bricked1980 said:

Wow! I first saw this on Flickr earlier this morning, and I must say it looks very nice indeed. The whole model looks very polished and it's clear you have spent a lot of time getting this one just perfect. The most striking thing to me is the way you've set the front walls at an angle. It looks really fantastic and I don't think I've ever seen anyone do this in the same way before. :wub:

Also I love the colour scheme, it's very bright in your typical style, yet the colours all work together really well. The various blues and oranges are a lovely combination and the stripey building on the right really pops. Other things I really like are the curved stairs and the way you've created a narrow alleyway at the side in a similar effect to Downtown Diner.

Your renders also look amazing, especially the interior shots using the depth of field effect. Are these rendered using the native mecabricks rendering system or have you made them externally using Blender?

Finally, I'm flattered that you decided to use my typewriter build from my Lego Ideas Police Station. :classic:

Thanks a lot @Bricked1980! Without a doubt, this was not a rushed model. It took a little while to even come up with the way to build the triangles and it was two/three months more before I realised that I had to duplicate the triangular façade to make the model more harmonious. Because I mainly build in LDD, towards the end I had to do trial and error back and forth in Mecabricks to make sure that all the designs I planned on doing using newer pieces were actually feasible :snicker: (mainly the roofline that wraps around the back, the Medium Nougat one).

The colours are something I always take lots of care about. The colours of the striped façade are actually taken from my own model; I used a very similar colour scheme for the floor of the Pharmacy in Klee Corner and the blue/orange colours were one of those "why hadn't I thought of that before". I think they work well. The whole alleyway is, as you correctly point out, reminiscent of Dowtown Diner. It framed the space well. Another façade there would have ruined both the other two façades and the "breathing space" of the model (plus it's already on 3500 bricks, so quite part-heavy).

All the renderings are done using Blender, with @Scrubs' magnificent add-on, of course. I'm surprised how well they turned out. I used HDRIs (360 images of lighting) of skies to make the lighting seem absolutely real, not studio lighting, outdoors lighting. Interiors are never my thing (hence why I put a ventilation shaft, to make the interior spaces smaller and to have less space to ruin :iamded_lol:) and I was trying to come up with an original design, but yours is very good, so I just rolled with it hoping you woun't get mad. :grin:

So glad you like it!

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The shape of this Modular Building surely took me by surprise! It is incredibly well built! The colors are pleasing and clean, (mostly perfect, except for the green baseplate, it clashes a bit with the sand green walls..., IMO :laugh:) The window design you built here is also superb (mostly on the front and especially on the upper floors), it's really simple but incredibly effective. 

The interior shots are really nice btw. I've always struggled with DOF, and you pulled it off very well here! 

This is just my thoughts, but using sky HDRIs does make the render look flat. Especially without any additional lighting to create some interesting reflections. But I think it all comes down to preference, your renders look really great as it is already, and I'm just nitpicking. :grin:

Other than that, fantastic Modular Building! Can't wait to see another one from you!

 

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Wow! Just wow ... that looks so good.

Is there an identifier or sign that I'm missing which lets Lego City minifigure citizens know about the art gallery on the ground floor? Or the newspaper office on the third floor? Or are they both "underground" establishments which don't want to be easily found by unsophisticated plebeians?

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So strange to me but so nice, it works perfectly. My creations are always classic, your imagination is really more creative than mine

I like the colors, the shape of the building, nice interiors to

Superb realisation

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6 hours ago, ExeSandbox said:

The shape of this Modular Building surely took me by surprise! It is incredibly well built! The colors are pleasing and clean, (mostly perfect, except for the green baseplate, it clashes a bit with the sand green walls..., IMO :laugh:) The window design you built here is also superb (mostly on the front and especially on the upper floors), it's really simple but incredibly effective. 

The interior shots are really nice btw. I've always struggled with DOF, and you pulled it off very well here! 

This is just my thoughts, but using sky HDRIs does make the render look flat. Especially without any additional lighting to create some interesting reflections. But I think it all comes down to preference, your renders look really great as it is already, and I'm just nitpicking. :grin:

Other than that, fantastic Modular Building! Can't wait to see another one from you!

Thanks a lot @ExeSandbox! It really does mean a lot coming from you, I love your builds so much. I was a bit hesitant about the colour choices, but I think they balance out one another quite effectively. As for the green baseplate, you might be right, but more than a conscious choice it's just that I design the models on this green baseplate (I prefer imagining a flat green field than a desert-like tan slab of nothing :grin:). Definitely no need to complicate the windows more; I did try out some more orante designs but they gathered too much attention and I wanted the façade colours and the façade detailing to catch the attention first.

The thing is... I'm really bad at lighting design :look:. I struggle quite a bit with placing additional lights to enhance the HDRi. I prefer just to play around with the orientation of the HDRi itself until it creates nice shadows rather than faking it using lamps. The interiors too are done using HDRIs. Just find a warmer one, add some DOF and you're done! Thanks a lot again. I don't know when I'll build a new model, time is quite sparse!

4 hours ago, Agent 86 said:

Wow! Just wow ... that looks so good.

Is there an identifier or sign that I'm missing which lets Lego City minifigure citizens know about the art gallery on the ground floor? Or the newspaper office on the third floor? Or are they both "underground" establishments which don't want to be easily found by unsophisticated plebeians?

Thanks! :laugh: The building does the promo for them. Where's your art gallery? Oh, in that crazy angled strpied bizarre building thing.

I just didn't want to add any extra signage around.

3 hours ago, Man with a hat said:

Impressive. It is very colourful and almost distracts from the clever angles used in your building. 

Thank you! The colour choices came way later, but I think that the model is attractive for the colours at first glance and the nifty angles are what turn it into something more than a screaming diva.

1 hour ago, jalemac34 said:

So strange to me but so nice, it works perfectly. My creations are always classic, your imagination is really more creative than mine

I like the colors, the shape of the building, nice interiors to

Superb realisation

Lego is an extremely versatile medium. I follow your content quite a bit. I mean, your models have nothing to envy mine. I sometimes wish I could build a classic modular, with all the intricate details, the gabled roofs, but, I don't know why, I always end up designing bizarre Frankensteins. Anyway, thanks for your comment, really appreciated!

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Very creative and colorful, excellent parts usage, your street looks great all together. Its funny, I'm so used to windows (mine included) being recessed by half a stud that yours which stick out really stand out. On your blue facade you have blocks of plates on their sides, was that structural or just for texture? Also I love that you have a newspaper publisher in there.

One last thing, it took me a while to notice that the blue sides were angled, you should take another photo which really shows this interesting aspect of your build.

Edited by gotoAndLego

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19 hours ago, gotoAndLego said:

Very creative and colorful, excellent parts usage, your street looks great all together. Its funny, I'm so used to windows (mine included) being recessed by half a stud that yours which stick out really stand out. On your blue facade you have blocks of plates on their sides, was that structural or just for texture? Also I love that you have a newspaper publisher in there.

One last thing, it took me a while to notice that the blue sides were angled, you should take another photo which really shows this interesting aspect of your build.

Thank you! In my street, I also tend to have windows recessed half or a full stud in so it's also fun for a change. As little of a change as it is, it really makes the windows ten times more visible and more vital to get right for the build. All the plate designs in the blue building are purely decorational. In fact, I've kept them as a vestige of what I wanted to put in here. Originally, I played with another psychedelic pattern for that façade (one that looked a bit like a staricase using white, red, green and black), but both buildings clashed too much so I simplified the design to this simple classic Blue. I the texture as it is now is subtle and adds to the build, unlike previously where the pattern ruined it. I had written faux newspapers for modular town before, they had to have the publisher somewhere! :laugh:

I'm not sure about what you mean in the last paragraph. The fact that both the striped and the blue façades are not in the grid?

Thank you anyway. Btw, I love your library build.

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3 hours ago, paupadros said:

Thank you! In my street, I also tend to have windows recessed half or a full stud in so it's also fun for a change. As little of a change as it is, it really makes the windows ten times more visible and more vital to get right for the build.

I like the way you stylized them with curves on the blue facade.

3 hours ago, paupadros said:

I'm not sure about what you mean in the last paragraph. The fact that both the striped and the blue façades are not in the grid?

Yes, the blue and striped side is angled and not parallel with the curb. I think you need to take another photo which really shows this cool aspect of your building.

3 hours ago, paupadros said:

Btw, I love your library build.

Thank you

 

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22 hours ago, gotoAndLego said:

I like the way you stylized them with curves on the blue facade.

Little details! :wink: One is turned the other way round.

22 hours ago, gotoAndLego said:

Yes, the blue and striped side is angled and not parallel with the curb. I think you need to take another photo which really shows this cool aspect of your building.

Maybe I will, but I think it's also fun to let people find it out rather than throwing it at their faces.

13 hours ago, LEGO Train 12 Volts said:

Wow very innovative orange windows!

Beautiful modular building! :wub:

Thanks a lot!

4 hours ago, SteamSewnEmpire said:

Great technique. Not even remotely a fan of the style here, but that's totally subjective. Love the angled fronts.

You could build a whole modular using the same technique but with buildings you do like. The format is very flexible, you just need to build two 12-wide models and placing them in that exact angle.

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