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Found 18 results

  1. Did you know that the UCS Millenium Falcon started as one designer's leisure build? That and a few other interesting news are here. Cheers to Jun for conducting the interview:
  2. HI guys, I want to share with you this interview we did to the builder of this MOC. As it is in Italian, turn on subtitles in English. Let me know if you are interested in other MOC videos exhibited in Italian events.
  3. BEAVeR

    EBSWF Blog Interview: Oky

    INTERVIEW: Oky Today we're interviewing Oky, a talented builder, reviewer, funny maker, and fellow blogger. EBSWF: Welcome Oky! How did your LEGO story begin? What are your favorite themes? Well, it all started when I was born… (Don’t worry, I won’t go into my whole life story. ) I have always had a desire to express my creativity and have been building with Lego as long as I can remember. The earliest recorded instance of me playing with Duplo is a home movie from when I was 2 years old. At some point I transitioned over to playing with System and never stopped. I never really had a “Dark Age”, although there was a brief period during my early teenage years when I had limited funds for my hobby and couldn’t buy new sets even though I wanted to. Being a teenager sucks. My favorite themes have always been licensed themes. It started with Star Wars, then Harry Potter, and now it’s Super Heroes. There’s just something about seeing my favorite franchises represented in the charming Lego style that I love. However, when it comes to buying sets and building new creations, I like to dabble in all themes to have some variety and take on new challenges. EBSWF: You've been a member of Eurobricks for a long time already. How did you get involved here? What has changed over the years? What do you like most here? I got introduced to Eurobricks the same way that most people get introduced to it: Google! I was looking for Lego news online and because I was living in Germany at the time, the first search results were sites like 1000steine.de and Imperium der Steine. From there, I followed a link to Eurobricks and immediately felt right at home. What I like so much is that the EB community is so friendly, helpful and massive, and it’s one of the places where Lego news hits first. I also love all the great creations, reviews, and contests. The contests are always fun to enter because it's a nice challenge going up against so many other talented builders and it gives me the motivation to put my best effort into a build. In a time where the internet is filled with hate and immaturity, it is comforting to know that there is still a place where you can have an intelligent conversation about your hobby with like-minded people all over the world. While the look of the forum has changed quite a bit over the years, the high quality of its content and members has remained the same. I did notice an increasing number of trolls and spam in recent years, but I think the moderators are doing a great job keeping the forums clean by dealing with these problems as soon as they arise. EBSWF: You're also a blogger for the Eurobricks Star Wars blog. How did that happen? A long time ago, in a PM inbox far, far away… the creator of the blog, KimT, approached me along with Brickdoctor and Clone O'Patra when he couldn’t run the blog by himself anymore. I was very honored of course and accepted. At the time, I was writing reviews of Star Wars: The Clone Wars episodes along with def and I carried that tradition over to the blog when def was unable to continue. This tradition still lives on today with our Star Wars Rebels Reviews. EBSWF: What's the best thing about blogging? Do you have a favorite moment or anecdote? I’d say the best thing about the blog are our readers. I know that sounds super corny, but it’s true. Being able to share our opinions and finds from around the web with other Lego Star Wars fans is what the blog is all about and what motivates me for blogging. The best moment was when we reached 1 million views. It is humbling to know that so many people are interested in reading these silly little posts that we do. EBSWF: Apart from long time active forum member and blogger, you're a Reviewers Academy teacher as well. What drives you to share your thoughts on sets? Like every Lego fan, I tend to have strong opinions about some sets and just feel the need to share that opinion with others to find out if anyone shares my opinion or not. Analyzing a set to see what makes it good or bad can be quite fun and allows me to let anyone who might be interested in the set know whether it’s worth buying or not. Also, as I have learned in the Reviewers Academy, writing a good review is an art form in and of itself and can be a fun challenge. Helping others master this art form by passing down my knowledge as a teacher is very rewarding. EBSWF: What's the favorite review you did? And what's your favorite review by another reviewer? Any tips for beginning reviewers? My favorite review that I have done is definitely that of 10246 Detective’s Office. Not only is it the largest set that I ever reviewed, but I also got the privilege to review the set before its release. The intro was a lot of fun to write and it allowed me to pay tribute to one of my favorite movie genres. It was a lot of work, but I am quite happy with the result. It’s impossible for me to pick a favorite from other Eurobricks reviews. They are all so good, especially those from my fellow Academy teachers, and everyone has their own style, humor, and approach to their reviews, making each of them unique. A tip for beginning reviewers? Join the Academy! It’s the best way to learn how to make quality reviews. And no, this is not a shameless plug at all! EBSWF: The thing you're most famous for are your hilarious, unparalleled single pane funnies. You are practically the reference in the genre. How did you begin making them? Where does the inspiration come from? When Clone O'Patra started the Single-pane Star Wars Funnies thread, I liked the idea and just thought it would be something fun to do, so I made one… then another one… and I kind of just kept going. Honestly, I’m surprised myself that I have been able to keep it up for so long. Coming up with ideas for funnies has become an everyday game for me. Most of the time, they will randomly come to me when I’m commuting or in the shower or just lost in thought. Other times, whenever I watch a movie, I constantly think to myself: “How can I make fun of this?” The Actor With Most Minifig Representations thread is also a great reference for making fun of an actor appearing in multiple different movies/shows. After so many funnies, it’s getting hard to keep coming up with good jokes, but I still get a good idea every once in a while. I have taken a little break from making them lately, but I’m ready to get back into it! EBSWF: We also see you MOCing quite a bit in a variety of genres, and notably Disney and Pixar oriented. You're also very active in discussion threads about their movies. Even your avatar is largely inspired by them. How do they appeal to you? If there is anything I love more than Star Wars, it’s Disney/Pixar movies. Their talent for storytelling and animation is outstanding and produces some of the best and most original movies out there. I grew up watching mostly Disney movies and shows and I love them to this day. Buzz Lightyear is my favorite animated character of all time which is why I modeled my avatar after him. It is my dream to work for Pixar someday, and since I am such a huge Disney fanboy, it is only natural that I like to build in that theme. Of course, I still like to build in Star Wars and other themes as well. My favorite thing to do is combining two themes I love, like my Star Warsminifigure mashups, or building one type of build in a variety of styles, like CubeDudes or my Superhero Racers. EBSWF: Are you currently working on any projects, or do you have something of which you've always dreamed doing? I recently moved into a new apartment and bought a coffee table that doubles as a display case, so I’m planning to make a large diorama to display inside of it. I am also planning to build some custom Brickheadz once they are released, and with the release of the Disney CMFs, I plan to make lots more Disney MOCs! Also, look out for some special reviews coming from me soon. One thing I have always dreamed of making is a feature-length brickfilm, but I don’t have nearly enough free time for such a large production. Maybe someday… EBSWF: What do people who aren't LEGO fans think of your hobby? My family has always been very supportive of my hobby. They even let me use a closet in their house to store my collection and I still get at least one Lego set from them for my birthday and Christmas. My friends also think that what I do is pretty cool as they are impressed with the sets and MOCs that I have on display. I think the rise of mainstream geek culture and the success of The Lego Movie has helped making it “cool” to be an Adult Fan of Lego, even if the villain of the movie is an AFOL. EBSWF: How has the LEGO hobby changed or impacted your life? Do you have any practical uses for LEGO? I think Lego has had quite an influence on who I am today. I am a digital artist creating videos, animation, and other creative material for marketing. My desire to create videos for a living began when I started making stop motion films with the Lego Studios camera. I enjoyed it so much that I decided to go to art school as an animation major and even used Lego as a medium for some of my school projects. Even to this day I still use Lego as an inspiration for my work and to plan out some of my projects. EBSWF: Other than LEGO, do you have any other hobbies or interests? As you can tell, I am very passionate about animation. I love watching cartoons and going to comic/cartoon centered conventions. I like watching movies in general and go to the theater at least once a week. I also enjoy playing videogames every once in a while (mostly action-adventure, racing, and puzzle games) and eating junk food. You know, typical nerd stuff. EBSWF: You're many things: active member, blogger, reviewer, photographer, MOCcer... Where do you put yourself in the AFOL spectrum, and how do you see yourself evolving? That’s an interesting question. I guess I am a little bit of everything. I just do whatever I feel like doing when I have the time for it. The important thing for me is to express myself, be it by sharing my opinion through a blog post, review, or forum discussion, or expressing my creativity through a photograph or MOC, and entertaining others while doing it. One way I could see myself evolving is by combining some of my talents in the future. Maybe someday I will combine my neck for video creation, Lego reviewing, and making jokes to start a YouTube channel for comedic Lego reviews. Meditate on this, I will.
  4. Hello, two days ago, I had the great opportunity, to interview the world famous 'Brick Artist' Nathan Sawaya. 'The Art of the Brick' exhibition in Hamburg - till July 19. Best wishes Andres
  5. Hello, I have a small child - so it was great talking with LEGO DUPLO Designer Nadine Lee in Billund about all the new products. Best wishes Andres
  6. Hello, with the Lego City design team I talked about police stations, the new ferry, (missing) baseplates - and the future. Best wishes Andres
  7. Hello, it has been great to talk with the Nexo Knights design team in Billund a few days ago - the journey for this new theme has just begun. So, do you collect the Nexo Powers? Best wishes Andres
  8. Hello, yesterday, at the press meeting 2016 in Billund, I did an interview with Jørgen Vig Knudstorp and talked about the past, the future and bricks. Best wishes Andres
  9. Hello, At the Skærbæk Fan Weekend 2015 last weekend, I had the great opportunity, to do an interview with Jamie Berard, Design Manager Specialist Lego Creator Expert. Jamie has created such great models like the Ferris Wheel or the Parisian Restaurant – and many more during the last ten years he works at Lego. Best wishes Andres
  10. INTERVIEW: Bob De Quatre Today we’re interviewing Bob De Quatre, our very own Sci-Fi Moderator and a talented builder from France. EBSWF: So, Bob, how did you get into the LEGO hobby? What is it that attracts you in Space and Star Wars in particular? I guess I get into Lego hobby like most of us here, by being a child playing with Lego... My collection back then was already mostly space themed, with Blacktron and M-tron sets. I'm also a 7th art lover, again mostly Sci-Fi. I've been a Star Wars fan since I was a kid. I was 9 or 10 when I first saw RotJ on my uncle's TV, he watching the movie while I was playing with... Legos. I have a photographic memory, and some scenes like the Sarlac pit were carved in my mind. I guess that not long after that I started watching the movies and dived deep in a galaxy far, far away.... EBSWF: In a couple of years, you went from regular member to Sci-Fi moderator. How did you get involved in the AFOL community in the first place? My first contact with Star Trek the AFOL community was in 2012. As an adult I've seen the UCS Star Destroyer, and I always wanted one, but I was still in dark age. In early 2012 I finally decided to build one, but I found pictures of an Executor and decided to go for it. I looked for pictures, instructions, and that's when I discovered Eurobricks. I joined after a few months of lurking... EBSWF: What are the up- and downsides of being a moderator, apart from being stuck in the wrong forum of course? I was surprised when Bonaparte asked me to become a regulator here. I wasn't sure to have what it takes (and I'm still not sure). There are lots of downsides being a moderator. Like I'll never have the chance to win a contest . Joke aside, being a moderator takes time and isn't as easy as some might think. There are some difficult situations, for exemple when members don't follow the rules and then don't understand when you tell them kindly... then you have to them in a less kindly way, and that's a part of the job I don't like. I don't think Sci-Fi is "the wrong forum", there are lots of interesting and various themes in Sci-Fi. Making an original MOC really feels starwarish isn't that simple. EBSWF: Being involved in SoNE from the very beginning, and now running AG (Andromeda's Gates) on the Sci-Fi forum, what do you like so much about setting up these community projects? I think I simply like community projects. When I look at all those MOCs done for SoNE, and AG now, I can't help but think that most of them wouldn't have been built if we didn't started those building games. We've seen players progressing, acquiring techniques and building better. I don't build much, but I'm happy to bring opportunities for EB members to build more and participate in something here on EB. EBSWF: Apart from being a very active community member, you're also an extremely talented creator of both Star Wars and other ships, often with crazy techniques. How do you go about this? What's your big secret? You'll make me blush ... Well My big secret is... Oh wait, someone rings at the door. EBSWF: Space pirates, space ninjas... not only are your creations amazing, the mere concepts are flabbergasting. Where do you keep getting the inspiration for these crazy mashups? My inspiration is: Why not? If it's possible, and if it's fun, just let's do it. I don't think there is a recipe for having inspiration. It just comes, or not... EBSWF: Your first creations were mostly digital, but later you moved to physical bricks. How did this transition go and what are the main differences? Well in fact all my big projects are all made in LDD first, with the exception of my latest entry for AG (the Cockroach). Now I use LDD to test things, to assemble bricks when I got an idea, that allows me to get back at them later when needed. So I haven't been through a complete transition, I just have more bricks and so tend to build more with bricks. EBSWF: Are you currently working on any projects, or do you have a creation you've dreamed of doing for a long time? I just finished a project (B-wing MOD) and have nothing to work on at the moment. I guess I'll always dream to build more iconic Star Wars ships, we'll see if some of those dreams come true one day. EBSWF: What do people who aren't LEGO fans think of your hobby? They tend to understand, now that I have builds to show. I'm not into minifigures, I build spaceships, so people understand when I explain that for me Lego bricks are a medium to express my creativity. I could paint, I could carve rocks, but no, I sculpt with Lego bricks. And that people understand. EBSWF: How has the LEGO hobby changed or impacted your life? Do you have any practical uses for LEGO? First the Lego hobby is costly, so it had a direct impact on my life. I've bought an appartment 2 years ago, and one of my two chambers have turned to a Lego room.To make AG runs smoothly I almost don't work anymore on Monday, well I go to work, but I spend the whole day on EB... Honestly, I think I spend too much time on that hobby... EBSWF: Other than LEGO, do you have any other hobbies? I try to do sport, it's important. I'm also a volunteer at my local movie theater, so I spent lots of time there to receive the public and to watch movies (thanks for the episode VII spoilers by the way...).
  11. Which LEGO Technic fan by now has not heard of Madoca1977? Two years ago he burst onto the MOC scene with some of the best Technic MOCs the LEGO world had ever seen, and has been releasing excellent MOC after excellent MOC ever since. Now, he has agreed to sit down with us folks at Rebrickable for an exclusive interview. Here's a snippet: Check out the rest of the interview over at Rebrickable.
  12. I do not now if it was already posted somewhere around here, but today I was talking to Bjarne Panduro Tveskov and he told me about his latest interview, so everyone interested can check it here: http://www.powerofth...ith-lego-at-17/
  13. Concept art for the film's stop motion animated scenes Recently I had the pleasure of a nice chat with Eurobricks member Sméagol, or Philip Heinrich, the creator of many wonderful brick films through the years. Philip and his cohorts are endeavouring to create a new film, a full length documentary, about animating LEGO. Right now they are in the fundraising phase of this exciting project. Let's learn a bit more straight from the horse's mouth, as it were. Welcome to Eurobricks. Please tell us a little about yourself and your previous projects. Thanks! I've followed Eurobricks on and off for years, having joined the forums in 2009. I'm an independent filmmaker. I recently completed a masters degree in film from Baylor University as well as my first feature film, the independent drama which is currently in the festival circuit. I've also made a lot of LEGO animated short films, including and ! I've been a fan of LEGO since I was a kid, and I've been involved in the LEGO animation community since 2002. I have owned and operated BricksInMotion, a community devoted to LEGO animation, since 2009. What is your role within the Bricks in Motion: The Documentary production? I am serving as the documentary's director and cinematographer. I'll be conducting the interviews and editing most of the film myself, with the help of a talented crew. I'm being joined by my fellow producers on the film, Nathan Wells, Zach Macias, and Doug Vandegrift. Who are the other primary talents that are making this film? The producers are helping with fundraising and logistics, as well as creative elements of the film. I intend to shoot about 40-50 hours of interviews for this film, but the finished movie will only be 80-100 minutes. So, I'll have them help me in deciding what to include. Nathan and Zach will also work with me on a series of animated segments to be included in the documentary as intercalary chapters of sorts: visual storytelling that parallels the themes of the documentary. Likewise, Doug Vandegrift will produce an animated credits sequence. In addition to producers Nathan Wells, Zach Macias, and Doug Vandegrift, we have our filming crew, Michael Macasa and Zachry Karisch. They are video professionals I've worked with before and will make sure the video and audio on this film is top notch. I'm collaborating with Joseph Frank to co-compose the film's soundtrack. Joseph is a talented composer who has worked on numerous LEGO animated films as well as other films in the past. What is this film about at its core? This film is about what drives people to be interested in telling stories with LEGO. While we have a mix of professionals and hobbyists in the film, all of these people have come to this unusual hobby, from their various backgrounds, with a common interest. I want to explore the personalities and motivations behind these people. It's a character study piece, not an informational piece. These are some of the most fascinating people I know, and I want to celebrate that in this film. Nobody I know, including LEGO animators, would especially enjoy a documentary specifically about the act of animating LEGO minifigures tediously for hours. Do you feel that this film is for brick animation enthusiasts or do you see it as aimed to a wider audience? I want it to be a film both audiences can enjoy. We are aiming for something universal in its appeal and themes, not something that will only appeal to LEGO enthusiasts. Why Kickstarter? Kickstarter just about has more traffic than all the other crowdfunding sites put together. We didn't want flexible funding on this project, since we need $10,000 or more to make the film at all, so Kickstarter made the most sense. One of the main rewards on Kickstarter is a DVD of many short animations. Why would I want this DVD even though the films are available online already? Are there any exclusives? If you are interested in a look at the filmmaking process, all or nearly all of the films on the DVD will have new audio commentary tracks by the films' directors. These commentaries aren't available elsewhere. This includes the 1980s short The Magic Portal as well as classics from the early 2000s and many more recent films. We are obtaining high quality versions of the films from their creators, so the Blu-ray and even the DVD will have superior image quality to YouTube in many cases. Magic Portal director Lindsay Fleay hopes to scan the original 16mm negative of his film to provide a new version that is of higher quality than ever before. I will be remastering Unrenewable for improved image quality as well. There will be exclusive content on the disc besides the commentaries. NXTManiac and I are working on short films that will appear on the collection as an exclusive. Furthermore, Chris Boyer's new sci-fi adventure will be available on the collection before anywhere else, as it makes its way through the film festival circuit. This sounds like a really exciting project! How can the readers help get this film produced? The most direct way is to back the Kickstarter project! If you don't have money to give but would like to help in other ways, we appreciate your efforts getting the word out about the project on Twitter, Facebook, and other social media. If there are any blogs or other publications we should know about, feel free to drop me a line at philipwh@gmail.com. We also have created two promotional videos, either of which you are free to upload to your own channel on YouTube or other video sites to let people know about the project. Is there anything else you'd like to share with the readers about this project? I hope that this project will bring exposure and credibility to the artistic community of LEGO animators and enthusiasts that exists online. While our working title for the documentary is Bricks in Motion, my intentions aren't limited to that particular website. I know the LEGO community has many websites and demographics, and I want to explore as much of that as possible. If we are able to hit relatively low stretch goals outlined on the Kickstarter page, I intend to travel to Europe and interview animators there as well. I know Eurobricks has a vibrant community and a forum devoted to animation. I look forward to seeing what the BricksInMotion and Eurobricks communities can accomplish together!
  14. INTERVIEW: markus1984 Today we're interviewing Markus, a talented builder from Austria and the winner of FBTB's recent Steam Wars contest. EBSWB: So, how did you first get introduced to LEGO, and why is the Star Wars theme your primary interest? Lego and Star Wars have been very dear to me even since my childhood! My love for Star Wars persists to this day. Lego has always been THE toy for me! It is and has always been the best and most creative toy in my opinion, where one's imagination really gets stimulated and one can let his creativity run free in any theme you want. Naturally, I recreated all kinds of Star Wars vehicles during that time (since official Star Wars sets didn't exist yet back then) in order to be able to play out the battles from the movies using Lego. Thanks to my nephew, I returned to the Lego hobby four years ago (after about 16 years of Dark Ages) and after seeing all the Lego Star Wars sets that you can get these days, I couldn't help but start collecting the UCS models, which then lead to MOCing. EBSWB: We know that you are also a member over at Imperium der Steine. How did you discover EB, and what made you decide to join? You guys know everything, don't you. Yes, in the German-speaking community, IDS is the best forum when it comes to Lego Star Wars MOC's, info, etc. (and other themes). Eurobricks was the second site after Flickr where I registered. I came upon it through various MOC searches on the web which kept taking me to EB, so as a beginner, I had no choice but to join the forum. EBSWB: You have built many detailed MOCs and some of them were even featured in the Lego Star Wars Visual Dictionary! How did you get this honor and how did it make you feel? Definitely one of the greatest honors that I have received to date! I still remember buying the first issue and wondering how one manages to get his MOC into a book like that. When I received the message from DK in December, my first response was if this was a joke! But the nice lady soon confirmed the legitimacy of the matter. I then simply sent her the files. Of course, I had to ask why they chose me since there is an incredible amount of great MOC's out there, some of which were surely better than mine. The answer that Lego had seen my MOC's and wanted to have them in the book was, of course, totally awesome!! The fact that there is now an official Lego book that is available for purchase worldwide and depicts my own work makes me speechless, but also very proud. EBSWB: Where do you get the inspiration and parts for your MOCs? Do you plan them in advance? Inspiration, phew. From everywhere actually! Various forums, movies, real-life, imagination, and of course also from other users. With Star Wars, I usually try to recreate certain scenes from the movies (EP IV-VI only! ) in ways that have never been seen before. Which is a big challenge since all the major scenes have already been done in many different variations over the years, so it is my goal to build them in a way that hasn't been seen numerous times before. 75% of my parts have been bought through Bricklink, some of them from the Lego Shops in Legoland, and a small percentage from my childhood and from all the sets that I treat myself to every now and then. I usually don't plan my MOC's. When I want to build something, I just start building or watch a specific scene over and over until I've registrated and memorized every detail. Whenever I run out of parts, I just order new ones. EBSWB: Are there any particular MOCs that you are currently working on or that you would love to build someday? Last month I was actually just busy disassembling and sorting all the MOC's that I took to the Star Wars Days exhibit at Legoland. Otherwise I just build small stuff for SoNE and other contests at the moment. Well, the dream MOC's that I've always wanted to build are definitely a large Hoth diorama and the Emperor's Arrival. But it's going to take a while until I have gathered all the necessary white parts and minifigures. To top Hoth is going to be virtually impossible as there are already about four impressive works based on this epic battle, but that's not so important to me since it's one of my absolute favorite battles from Star Wars and I simply HAVE to build it. EBSWB: Why did you join SoNE, and why the Empire? I wanted to join SoNE from the beginning, but somehow didn't have the time or motivation at the time. The main problem was that the stories were written in English, and while I can read and write reasonably well, writing a complex story in English seemed a bit too difficult, especially since all the translators start spitting out nonsense after more than two sentences. But eventually I got into SoNE thanks to Disco86. We had communicated a lot through IDS and collaborated on various projects such as the B-Tron reunion. He said he wanted a change from Castle and was going to build Star Wars now by participating in SoNE at EB. After a lengthy conversation in the chat, we decided to sign up and make a sort of cooperative project out of it, and I have to say that it's a lot of fun coming up with the story and taking turns. Well, even though the Rebels are the good guys and it's always good to see them win in the end, the Empire is just the Empire. Great vehicles, sinister, dark, and the Stormtroopers are definitely the most brilliant combat unit in the history of films. Therefore, it was clear for which side I was going to build. EBSWB: What's the most difficult thing you've ever tried to build? There are quite a few things. My first MOC was a recreation of Anio's Super Star Destroyer. I found it while browsing the web and was fascinated by that ship and its size. The problem was that back then I had no clue about "modern" Lego and the techniques that were possible with it. Because of this, it was one of the most difficult builds for me. There was also the Death Star Diorama and the Carbon Freeze Chamber. In both cases I was faced with the callenge of building a large round opening, and especially with the Freeze Chamber I racked my brain about how to make it as authentic as possible. EBSWB: Being such a talented builder, are there any builders that you look up to? Thank you very much! Phew, that's a tough question to answer. Very, very many. I'd have to make a list of all the builders that fascinate me. Basically, every build and its builder are admirable! Everyone works with the same bricks, but everyone uses their own style and techniques, so when you're looking at the newly posted MOC's, all you can say is WOW. EBSWB: How much time do you spend on LEGO, and what do other people who aren't LEGO fans think of your hobby? It depends: often I just need to take a break for a few days, but it's usually about two hours a day. At first it seemed quite odd and I tried to keep it as secret as possible, but after my first exhibit and various feedback from forums it got exponentially better and now I fully admit to it. Even though people still give me a weary smile from time to time, I know that I have a hobby that most people wish they had. I don't think there are many that can say that they have a hobby that they wholeheartedly love to do and I am very proud to have found something so fulfilling and also relaxing. EBSWB: How has the LEGO hobby changed or impacted your life? Do you have any practical uses for LEGO? Well, in a way it has changed my whole attitude towards life. It gives me a passion that I can fully indulge in and that is a lot of fun. I believe this is something that's extremely important to have in our modern stress- and pressure-filled everyday life. EBSWB: Other than LEGO, do you have any other hobbies? Haha, yes, a lot of them actually. I am often asked if I even have a girlfriend or a job since it seems like I spend my whole day building, but yeah, I even got married in the meantime. I have been doing external work for a long time and aside from building with Lego, I also like to watch and play soccer. In summer, I also like to play beach volleyball, in addition to the usual workout routine (walk, go to the gym, etc.). Furthermore, films and music are a big passion of mine and hitting it off with friends mustn't be neglected either. I often ask myself how it all works out. I would like to thank you very much! This has been a lot of fun and it was an honor to be able to give this interview. *All answers translated from German by Oky
  15. Hello everyone! Kooberz here. Recently, I was asked to create an interview/tour interview for the Red vs Blue Uk event held on August 2-4 in Leicester. They provided the questions, and I did my best to answer them in the best way, and present some of my best and previously unseen work. I hope you like it! Also just released, is a full tutorial on how to make my version of GLaDOS from Lego Portal 2 Part 1.
  16. Piranha

    EBSWF Blog Interview: Bane

    INTERVIEW: Bane Today we're interviewing Bane, a former mod on the German Star Wars forum, Imperium der Steine. He's also dabbled in photography, and reviewed a few sets here on Eurobricks. EBSWF: We're glad you could talk with us Bane, how did you come to like LEGO Star Wars? It’s an honor for me, thank you for the invitation! Well, everything began in 2005, when Revenge of the Sith aired in the cinemas. It was the first Star Wars movie I saw, but it wouldn’t be the last. It didn’t took me long to see the other movies. At the time, a good friend of mine was a big LEGO Star Wars collector. He had every possible set… and he infected me with the LEGO virus. EBSWF: Eurobricks is just one of hundreds of sites out there, how did you come across it? The first contact I made with LEGO communities on the internet was quite random. I found photos of the awesome “Imperial Inspection” from The Brick Time via Google images back in 2007. A month or so later, I joined Imperium der Steine. As Eurobricks is linked quite often in the news forums I decided to join EB in 2009. EBSWF: How much did you do for Imperium der Steine? How does it differ from EB? I left the moderating team of Imperium der Steine in October 2012 due to a lack of time and I left it definitely on Christmas. Three of my colleagues did the same, because of severe disagreements with the admin’s way to lead the community; even though I’m not exaggerating when I say that I worked with the best moderating team ever and I had a great time in the team. All of us were very dedicated to the forum. How much did I do for Imperium der Steine? Many users and colleagues perceived me as a sort of “think tank”. I led a MOC Index project last year for all the MOCs that have been presented since 2006. Thanks to a very efficient and motivated project team, we classified about 3500 MOCs within one month. I also had the idea of making a news blog with news about all the LEGO themes, as we only post LEGO Star Wars related news on the portal, this amongst other things. And of course, the classic moderating stuff like closing threads, helping newbies and deleting double posts. It differs from EB in many ways. First of all, it’s a German speaking forum and the main focus is LEGO Star Wars, which doesn’t mean that we don’t have non-Star Wars topics. EB is an AFOL community, IDS is open to all ages. The members are between age 11 and 55. When the forum started in 2006, there were two or three AFOLs, even the admin was only 16 years old at the time. Now it’s about fifty-fifty. That mixture between young and old is a pretty cool thing and it works! Every user is respected. The more experienced members help the younger ones to become better builders, same thing with reviews and customs. There are plenty of young people who build better than AFOLs. One of my favorite builders is only 14 years old. EBSWF: We know you're an AFOL, but what do people you know think of that? Who told you that I’m an AFOL? :D That’s funny, because nobody knows my real age. We even had a poll in the off-topic forum on IDS where user could guess my age. Quite amusing to see what people think of how old you are. But yes, I am. My friends know that I am a big Star Wars (and LEGO) fan, they like what I do. I don’t make a secret of it; but in the meantime we don't talk often about LEGO. EBSWF: Of course you build with LEGO, but do you have other hobbies? Actually I don’t build with lego besides of the official sets I buy. I have a very restricted amount of lego parts, I focus on minifigures and on my favorite Star Wars ships. Yes, I have other hobbies. I love photography, especially landscapes, urban impressions and macro. Good thing I live in Berlin, it is such a great city to take pictures. I also made internships in photo editorial departments of two press agencies 2-3 years ago, which was an awesome experience. I also play badminton, and of course there is no weekend where I don't go out with friends, if that’s counted as a hobby. EBSWF: How much time of your free time do you devote to LEGO related activities? Less than in the last years. As said, most of the time I spent was for the forum. I hope that I can be more active with LEGO photography, now that I left the team. But it seems as if a lot of “real life” work is coming towards me, so… we’ll see. But I’m really motivated! EBSWF: Have there been any changes or impacts to your life because of the LEGO hobby? Some people have used LEGO practically; have you found any uses for it? Yes, it helped me improve my macro photography skills. Apart from that, I met new people thanks to community events. Some of them became real friends. EBSWF: You chose 'Bane' for your username, is that because of the Batman character or some other reason? No, not at all. I read the Darth Bane trilogy by Drew Karpyshyn and was fascinated by Bane’s evil character. Some people say there are some similarities between him and me... (Note to myself: consider to stop using sarcasm on the internet *g*) EBSWF: Is your sig-fig your own custom? If so, have you made any others? Actually it’s just a kitbash. My sigfig has no face, I edit it every time I use it: Link 1 Link 2 Link 3 EBSWF: You are known here on EB for your great photography. How do you get such awesome shots? I wouldn’t qualify my shots as awesome. There are many things I could do better, but thank you, glad you like them! Many people think that you need an expensive professional DSLR camera for taking pictures. It’s a sure thing that a good camera can help, but it’s not the most important thing. I’m using a 7 year old Lumix bridge camera. Of course, not as good as a high-end DSLR but still, you can make acceptable pictures with older cameras. My advice to all of those who want to begin with LEGO photography: buy second-hand. It’s much cheaper and the quality is not worse. It might not be the best method, but most of the time I have no clear idea of what I want to photograph. So I place some minifigs on a neutral background; I imagine what they could say or what kind of relations they could have. When the idea takes shape in my head, there are two possibilities. Either I use the few LEGO pieces I have to build a scene or I keep a neutral background. Playing with light and lightning is crucial. Using different exposure times can change the look of the picture dramatically, that’s why I always make many photos of one scene. When the scene is set, I try different view angles. I also have a little photo studio lamp for indoor scenes, as normal lamps don’t provide the best light. Sometimes I take my minifigs out for a walk to find natural environments, this makes the picture more dynamic. Passersby might think I’m a freak, but the results are worth it most of the time.
  17. INTERVIEW: Erdbeereis Today we're talking with Erdbeereis, the newest moderator of the Star Wars Forum. He patrolled the high seas as a Pirate Moderator before joining the Star Wars Staff team, so we must admit that we don't know much about him. EBSWF: Thanks for talking with us, Erdbeereis. First off, how were you introduced to LEGO, and how did you discover Eurobricks? Thanks for having me! I hope that this interview will help the good people of the EB Star Wars forum get to know me a bit better. I have always enjoyed building with LEGO bricks; when I was little my family always set up our LEGO train around the Christmas tree and we built all sorts of things around that. My parents were nice and often bought me little sets. But I really started seriously around 2007, when I received a small LEGO set as a gift (4939 Cool Cars). For some reason, this set sparked a greater interest, which eventually led to what I am today. I can't remember exactly, but I believe I found Eurobricks when I was searching for LEGO websites online sometime in 2007. It looked like a good community with some interesting content, so I eventually joined. EBSWF: How in the world did you come up with the name 'Erdbeereis'? Are strawberries a favorite food of yours? And why did you choose the chef as your sigfig? "Erdbeereis" means strawberry ice cream in German. My dad is German, and I was born in Germany, so I've always had a connection to the country. I visit my relatives there every year, and there are a lot of great Italian ice cream shops. So, I thought I would honor my German side and my love for ice cream at the same time. Most English speakers always seem to think that my name has something to do with beer. One of the other things I love doing besides LEGO stuff is cooking (and eating of course). So, I thought the chef would be an appropriate choice for my sigfig (plus I always thought he was a friendly looking guy). EBSWF: It sounds like a strange question, but do you like LEGO Star Wars? We can't say we've seen much from you in this part of EB, though you have dabbled in building Star Wars. I do indeed like LEGO Star Wars. However, there is really not one LEGO theme that is my favorite. When I make MOCs, I usually try to build things from my own imagination rather than sticking to something that has already been created by someone else. For this reason, I don't typically build Star Wars MOCs. That first MOC there was one of my first ones that I ever posted. Truth be told, I completely forgot about it. I think it's safe to say I have improved my building skills since then. In addition, I'm not a huge movie buff like some Star Wars LEGO fans are, so I don't have that level of attachment to the theme. That being said, I do enjoy the theme, and I buy SW sets from time to time if they have some exciting minifigures at a reasonable price (this is sometimes difficult ) EBSWF: We know you're a mod. What's entailed in being one? We often hear EB staff members complain about their being tricked into accepting the job of being a part of the staff. I wasn't tricked, just brainwashed. As a mod I help plan contests and moderate the forum (keep discussions on track, move and merge topics/posts, let people know if they need to change their posting habits, etc.). Sometimes I check up on the EB Star Wars blog to make sure everything is running smoothly. EBSWF: Speaking of moderating, you were a mod in the Pirates forum for a while; does being a mod of the Star Wars forum differ from what you did over there? Good question! For the most part, the two forums require similar things. However, a major difference that I've noticed between the two forums is the type of members that post. To me, it seemed like most LEGO Pirates fans were pretty laid back. On the other hand, there are quite a few members here that are very particular when it comes to SW related things. For example, the frequent arguments about a model's accuracy, or the tendency to freak out when the Star Wars universe is changed in some way (case in point the Disney news). While these quarrels can be tiresome, it is nice to have dedicated fans and I think ultimately it is beneficial for our site to have people who strive for as much accuracy to the real thing as possible. That being said, I still like it when we can all just get along EBSWF: What do you do with your time when you're not playing with LEGO (or doing something related to the LEGO community), and how much time do you spend on LEGO related activities? Does being a mod affect the time you have to build? There are many things that I enjoy doing besides LEGO. I love playing sports like golf, soccer, basketball, football, anything really. As I said before, cooking is another thing that is fun for me. Especially trying out new dishes, and making creative and unusual things. I've recently been doing a lot of desserts, such as creating sorbet recipes and making cookies. Here are a few of the things I've made recently. Frozen mango parfait Macaron cookies Mandarin orange cake Sponge cake with buttermilk sherbet Mango sorbet with cherry sauce Pad Thai I also do a lot of traveling; I've been to 13 countries so far in my life, and I hope to visit many more. Finally, I play drums and piano. There aren't enough hours in the day to do all those things, but I do my best! It all depends on my schedule and the time of year when it comes to how long I spend doing LEGO-related activities. I definitely wouldn't say more than a few hours a week, but in the winter I do a lot more since I can't be outside as much. EBSWF: You're an AFOL, certainly not uncommon in the LEGO community, but what do 'normal' people think of that? I don't necessarily advertise my love of LEGO to the world, but I do enjoy showing my friends and family the things I build, or talking about interesting things going on at Eurobricks. The people I share things with usually think it's fascinating to see the many things one can do with LEGO bricks. EBSWF: Finally, do you have any plans for future projects in the Star Wars forum? Well we will just have to wait and see won't we? I can say there is an exciting event in the works for the near future, but that's all I will say for now.
  18. INTERVIEW: Rufus Today we're interviewing Rufus, the special themes mod, as well as a Reviewers Academy Teacher. EBSWF: Thanks for doing this, Rufus. Firstly, how did you get started with the LEGO hobby, and how great is your interest in LEGO Star Wars, as opposed to other themes? I’ve been a LEGO fan since I was about 5. I inherited a number of rather beaten-up 1970s sets from my brother, and started my own collection with some of the beautiful Classic Town sets from the early 80s. My first true love though was Classic Space, and I built up quite a sizeable space base from these amazing sets. Of course, being a child of the late 70s/early 80s, I was also a Star Wars fan. I remember trying – and failing, miserably – to build a Millennium Falcon from some Classic Space grey wedge plates! I never dreamed that, 20 years later, it would be Star Wars that got me back into LEGO. You can blame the original Snowspeeder 7130 for that! I’ve been collecting LEGO Star Wars ever since. For a loooong time, it was ONLY Star Wars, and initially only the UCS sets – I have nearly all of them. Then in about 2006, I was at a conference and a little bored in the evening, so I bought two sets – the A-Wing and the Tie Interceptor – and that got my into System Star Wars and the minifigure addiction caught hold! Recently, my LEGO interests have broadened greatly and Star Wars is no longer my over-riding passion, mainly because the Clone Wars and Expanded Universe sets don’t appeal to me that much; also I have got into MOCing in a big way and it’s difficult to MOC Star Wars without falling foul of the accuracy fiends! But I still collect the OT and PT sets and will continue to review them. It amazes me that after 13 years of the SW Licence, TLG are still putting out great sets; even though they are nowadays mostly improvements on previous ones. EBSWF: How did you find this site? I spent many years thinking I was the only AFOL in the world! Imagine my surprise when I discovered there was a whole community of people like me out there. I first discovered From Bricks to Bothans, but I kept following links to this ‘Eurobricks’ site, and it seemed a much more lively and interesting place, so I figured Eurobricks was for me. Like most people, I lurked here for a long time before finally signing up; what convinced me to join in the end was that I was working on my MOC of the Lambda Shuttle (which still doesn’t have a good System version), and wanted to show it off. EBSWF: What do the people around you think of you being an AFOL? Not many people know, and those that do don’t know the true extent of it! Close family and friends know, of course, and I think they look at my LEGO hobby as an eccentricity – an image I don’t try to refute! My wife also being an AFOL is both a blessing and a curse – it’s great to share the same hobby, but we don’t have anyone to moderate our spending. LEGO is inexorably taking over the house! EBSWF: Aside from LEGO, do you have any other hobbies? I’m a little bit of a musician. I play the guitar (reasonably well) and the saxophone (extremely badly). Till recently I played in a band doing rock covers in a variety of pubs around London – it was great fun until the usual ‘musical differences’ got in the way! Oh well, I have more time for LEGO now. EBSWF: How much time do you spend on LEGO related activities? Too much! Unfortunately, as the collection grows, so does the amount of time required to sort all the parts. Like most, we’ve been through every permutation of sorting technique and still haven’t found the best way. I probably spend equal amounts of time MOCing, reviewing, sorting, and doing online stuff like moderating. Keeping the variety is important as doing exclusively any one of these things can leave you a bit stale. I have a bajillion things I mean to do – particularly on Eurobricks – but rarely the time to bring them all to fruition. EBSWF: Has the LEGO hobby changed/impacted your life? Do you have any practical use of LEGO in your daily life? It has thoroughly taken over! Sometimes at the expense of real life things like mowing the lawn. Mostly, it’s a positive influence – we’ve made a load of great friends around the world through Eurobricks, who started as virtual friends and thanks to the things like the Eurobricks Event and Brickworld have become real friends. Otherwise, I’ve learned a lot through the hobby – particularly with regard to photography and photograph editing with Photoshop. I did consider building a life-size set of furniture from LEGO, but decided that was a step too far. So no, I don’t really have a practical use for all the LEGO! EBSWF: Have your moderator duties on EB effected how you relate to LEGO? Why or why not? Yes and no. How's that for an answer? Mostly no, because it hasn't changed my LEGO interests much; though I've probably focused more on Architecture than I might have, and it leaves a little less time for other interests like SW. In some ways it has broadened my interests, because sometimes as a moderator you have to go into forums you wouldn't normally visit, so come across things you wouldn't normally see; in Special Themes I've come to appreciate some of the amazing Arty and Military MOCs out there which I might not have looked at before. Mostly it leaves a little less time for my own interests within EB; for example, I do less in the Reviewers Academy (and less reviewing) than I'd like to. EBSWF: Why did you choose 'Rufus' for a username? This has been a secret since I joined EB – do you really want me to reveal it? Prepare to be disappointed! I’d like to say I’m named after the character Rufus in Bill and Ted’s Excellent Adventure, or after my Fabuland sigfig, but the truth is rather more mundane. Around the time I joined EB, I was playing an Xbox RPG called Fable II. You run around with a cute dog who finds stuff to dig up while you shoot bandits. My dog was called Rufus. Told you. EBSWF: Do you have a favorite Star Wars character? That’s a toughie. I imagine everyone picks Han Solo, but Han is far too obvious a maverick hero. I think for the Rebels I’d pick Lando – he makes the best of a difficult situation, and works hard to make up for his deal with the Empire. For the bad guys, I always really liked Admiral Piett. He has a quiet, calm dignity so often lacking in the stereotypically English-accented baddies. You won’t hear him cackling maniacally, or prematurely celebrating his moment of triumph. And he utters the immortal line, ‘Bounty hunters – we don’t need that scum.’ Shame his LEGO figure isn’t so great. EBSWF: You always make excellent reviews, but how do you go about making them? And how do you decide which sets to review? Thank you! This question is best answered the other way round. Generally, I buy sets I like, and review the ones that I feel would benefit from an in-depth look, or which haven’t had a quality review done before. Sometimes I get sent a preview copy of a set to review, which hopefully removes some of the bias inherent in only buying sets I like, but this isn’t likely to happen with Star Wars sets any time soon. Reviewing is a time-consuming process. For a mint set, I first take pictures of the box, then the contents, then spend far too much time arranging parts neatly. I think this is an important step though: the parts selection may be a factor in many people’s decision to buy one set over another. Then there’s the build process: shooting every few steps of the build, whilst keeping the nascent model and camera in the same positions is a painstaking process, but it does force you to think about the build as you do it. Once the model is complete, I take pictures from every conceivable angle, and show every feature of the set; for Star Wars sets in particular the minifigure selection is often at least as important as the model itself. I probably only end up using about a quarter of the pictures I take. Finally, there’s writing the review: for me this can be the hardest part, and writers’ block strikes more often that I’d like to admit. There’s a limit to the number of different ways you can describe the box art of a series! EBSWF: What was your favorite review? Oooh, that’s a tricky one. I’m very fond of the UCS R2-D2 review, and indeed some of my earlier UCS reviews (the Snowspeeder was my favourite for a long time, but I think I’ve improved since then. On balance, I’d have to say the 8129 AT-AT review – I went a little over the top, perhaps, but I had great fun posing the AT-AT. EBSWF: How do you make such great pictures for your reviews? (What's your setup; what camera do you use; what picture editing software do you use; etc.) Again, thank you! Mostly it’s down to practice. A reasonable camera is essential – you can’t do it with a webcam or a mobile phone. I use a bottom-of-the-range Canon 1000D, with the basic lens that came with it, but the equipment I really swear by is the tripod. With a tripod, you can use the best ISO setting and a narrow aperture, and just leave the shutter open for ages (never use the flash!) My ‘studio’ is simply the dining room table, with some white posterboard and the overhead lighting in the room. It’s really simple, but it did take quite some time to find a setup which produces consistent results every time. This produces a rather yellow raw image: For the processing, I use Photoshop Elements. I always recommend it (and I promise I get no commission from Adobe for this!) With Elements, you can do about 90% of what you can do with the full Photoshop for about a sixth of the price. About 30 seconds of editing turns it into this: