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Rosholt Hornet LEGO Mosaic

May 8th, 2010

After a long break from building, I recently worked with students from Rosholt Elementary School to build a LEGO mosaic of their school mascot – a hornet.  Shown below is the completed project, which is about 3 feet wide by 4 feet tall.

More pictures… READ FULL ARTICLE »

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Anti Aliasing with LEGO – Part 2

May 5th, 2010

In Part 1 of this series, I provided some simple examples of Anti-Aliasing (AA) with LEGO.  Today I will look at how the proper shade for each brick can be determined, for both standard and AA mosaics.  I will use the letter ‘A’ mosaic to demonstrate these processes.

In the image above, the red outline is the shape of the letter ‘A’ to be built as a LEGO mosaic.  The first step is to superimpose the outline over a grid of the desired size.  The smaller the pitch on the grid, the more accurately the ‘A’ can be represented, but the more bricks and effort it will take to complete the project.  For this example the ‘A’ will be positioned inside a 9 high by 11 wide grid.

Article Continues… READ FULL ARTICLE »

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Anti Aliasing With LEGO – Part 1

May 3rd, 2010

All my previous LEGO Mosaics fit neatly into two categories. First, there is the photo realistic type like the mosaics of my older kids, or my younger kids. Second, there is the solid area type like the Danny Phantom mosaic, or Starbucks logo mosaic.

Starting today, there is another category, which is solid area, anti-aliased mosaics.

In real life I am a business software developer. However, for fun I’ve recently started playing around with iPhone development. This hobby has introduced me to the concept of anti-aliased graphics. Generally speaking, anti-aliasing (AA) is the use of lighter (or darker) colors at region transitions to smooth out jagged transitions. LEGO bricks are a great way to demonstrate this technique.

lego mosaic anti alias example 1 lego mosaic anti alias example 2

Shown above are a couple LEGO mosaic examples with and without AA.  Hopefully the middle blue line seems less jaggedy and the right green circle and letter ‘A’ also appear smoother than those to the left.  I’ve purposely shown these images small, because in order for the advantage of AA to be realized visual blending of the pixels must occur.

Article Continues… READ FULL ARTICLE »

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Small LEGO Mosaics

February 12th, 2009

It’s been a while since I’ve posted anything new. Lately, I’ve been spending most of my LEGO hobby time on my BrickLink store. I miss building, so I decided to build a couple small LEGO mosaics. I’ve done several other 8-bit video game inspired mosaics in the past (e.g. Pacman, Dig Dug, Zelda, Mario, Pengo) but these two are the smallest. Even at this small size, the characters depicted are still recognizable.

The first mosaic is a close up of Mario Brothers Toad. Click on the thumbnail image below for a larger image. I used this picture as a building guide.

lego_toad_1.JPG

The second mosaic is the green dinosaur from Bubble Bobble. I found this article and adapted it to LEGO.

lego_bubble_bobble_1.JPG

On this mosaic, I decided to cut the LEGO baseplate to the shape of the mosaic. I’ve used this technique before on several mosaics including my Starbucks Coffee Mosaic.

Here is a picture of the back so you can see how I’ve cut the baseplate. I wrote a post a while back detailing my technique for cutting LEGO base plates.

lego_bubble_bobble_2.JPG

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Legend of Zelda LEGO Mosaic

July 7th, 2008

I’ve built another video game mosaic, this time inspired by The Legend of Zelda from the original Nintendo. (See several other video game mosaics posted in mosaic category). Once again, I found a cross stitch plan to use as a guide, this time on .tastethehappy.

zelda_1.JPG

Like I did with the Pacman LEGO Mosaic, I’m showing a thumbnail-sized image here, because it simulates seeing the mosaic from a distance, which makes it look more realistic to the game. (The thumbnail links to the full-sized image.)

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LEGO Picture Frame

June 10th, 2008

With only two days left until my Children’s Museum Workshop, I’ve decided to make a change to the project I will be doing with the kids. I was planning to do Small Square Mosaics, which I did previously with my son’s Cub Scout Den. However, after my post yesterday I thought it might be better to do a project both artistic and functional. So I decided to switch from a simple square mosaic to a picture frame mosaic.

frame_1.JPG

Shown above is my sample, which I made by moving the bricks from my original square mosaic sample to this base plate.

See below for more pictures and information on how I made the bases for these picture frames. READ FULL ARTICLE »

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Robotron LEGO Mosaic

June 4th, 2008

Yesterday I wrote a post showing off my Robotron LEGO Sculptures. I was happy with how they turned out, but they are very fragile. So I decided to incorporate them into a mosaic by building a black background and embedding the sculptures one stud deep. The effect is a relief, studs-up mosaic, similar to the lettering on the BrickPlayer Logo Sculpture.

robotron_mosaic_1.JPG

The image below better exposes the relief of this mosaic… READ FULL ARTICLE »

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Pacman LEGO Mosaic

May 31st, 2008

Here is the latest in my series of retro video game inspired LEGO mosaics. As with the Super Mario Mosaic, this was also built from plans I found on Sprite Stitch.  It was hard to pick which images from the plans to use, but building the mosaic was simple and took me less than an hour.

pacman_lego_mosaic_1.JPG

I decided this time to post a thumbnail-sized image which links to the full-sized image. I did this because I think seeing it about the size of actual game makes it look even more realistic.

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Cutting LEGO Base Plates

May 27th, 2008

Generally I’m a purist when it comes to my LEGO projects. Specifically, I don’t usually modify LEGO elements in any way, including bending, cutting, painting or otherwise destroying them. However, I have made one exception to this rule, which is that I sometimes cut LEGO base plates when I use them as mosaic backing.

Shown below is my Packer Logo Mosaic in both its original rectangular form, and newly modified form with cut base plate.

packer_logo_uncut_1.JPG

packer_logo_cut_1.JPG

I very happy with the cut base plate result, and prefer it to the original design. This change also has an added bonus – it frees up the white border bricks for other projects.

Read on for more information on the techniques I use to cut base plates including additional pictures… READ FULL ARTICLE »

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Super Mario LEGO Mosaic

May 21st, 2008

This is my third retro-video game LEGO mosaic, following the Dig Dug and Pengo mosaics. My previous posts featured coin-op games I played in the early 80s. Not long later, I got my first computer (a Commodore 64) and it wasn’t until a decade later that I got back to playing much besides C-64 games. (Eventually I will probably build something C-64 related because it was such a big part of my life for many years.)

Super Mario Bros 3 is the game that pulled me back into console gaming and I’ve played this game on and off ever since (now I play it with my kids on our Nintendo Wii). When I set out to find a good image to use as a guide, I found an excellent website Sprite Stitch, which has tons of retro-video game inspired artwork. I found exactly what I needed for this project along with many other plans and ideas for future projects.

mario_bros_3_2.JPG

I built Mario flying past one of those cute clouds with the eyes, which Sprite Stitch also had plans for. This is the same 32×32 baseplate as my other video-game inspired mosaics. After finding this website, you can count on seeing at least a couple more video game related mosaics from me.

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