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Pengo LEGO Mosaic

May 14th, 2008

After building the Dig Dug LEGO Mosaic a few days ago, I visited a couple retro-gaming websites and reminisced about the coin-op video games I played as a kid.  In doing so, I stumbled on another childhood favorite of mine, Pengo!  In general, this game was a less popular, but still one I loved.  I realized it would make a fun little mosaic, so I built one.

pengo_mosaic_1.JPG

I’ll probably build a few more of these before I get bored with retro-game mosaics.  There are at least another 5 games from this early 80’s era that always seemed to get my quarters, and they all have the same blocky 8-bit graphics that are so easily adaptable to brick mosaic form.

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Dig Dug LEGO Mosaic

May 11th, 2008

I tend to alternate between streaks of building sculptures, then mosaics. After recently ordering a bunch of LEGO chess boards to use as mosaic backing, I may have just switched over to mosaics for a while.

I’ve seen a lot of Donkey Kong, Mario Brothers, and Zelda mosaics. However, one of my favorite games in the early 80’s was Dig Dug, and I haven’t seen a LEGO mosaic of this theme yet. So, here’s my attempt at capturing several of the Dig Dug characters within 32×32 studs (pixels).

dd_mosaic_4.JPG

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Cub Scout LEGO Mosaic

May 6th, 2008

Tomorrow evening I will be leading my son’s Cub Scout den in a LEGO mosaic building activity.  This project will meet one of the requirements for the Artist merit badge – and it provides me an opportunity to try out what I’m planning for the Central Wisconsin Children’s Museum workshop next month.  Here is a mosaic I made to use as a sample.

little_mosaic_2.JPG

Each boy will be given a blank base plate 24 studs square (one quarter of an extra large base plate) to fill up with bricks.  The base plates cut easily with a good scissors.  I’m hoping this is a good size for 45-60 minutes of building time.

I will encourage them to create anything they want and offer some suggestions (e.g. collage, geometric or abstract designs, one large picture, letters, numbers, etc.)  I can’t wait to see what they create!

See below for details on the meaning of my collage mosaic and for pictures of the mosaics the kids made READ FULL ARTICLE »

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Packer Logo LEGO Mosaic

April 9th, 2008

I grew up in Green Bay, Wisconsin, only a few blocks from James Lofton’s house. (Anyone remember who he was?) For five years I lived in Arizona and when I told people I was from Wisconsin, on many occasions people replied – ‘So you must be a cheese head!’ Well, I have to admit I am guilty of that, and in my office hangs this Packer logo made from LEGO bricks as evidence.

packer.JPG

Below are the building plans for this mosaic in case any other cheese heads out there want to build their own Packer logo. READ FULL ARTICLE »

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LEGO Mosaic Mathew Abby

February 16th, 2008

My first large photo realistic mosaic was of my two oldest kids LEGO Mosaic Maddie Howie.  So, the subject for my second one was any easy choice, my other two children Mathew and Abby.

 mathew_abby_1.JPG

This mosaic is the same size as the other photo realistic one I made, 4 X-Large Gray Baseplates wide by 3 tall (45 inches by 30 inches).  However, for this project, I used a different construction technique.  Instead of building each base plate individually and then hanging all of the completed plates, I built the entire mosaic on the wall.  I hung 12 emtpy base plates, held together by plates to bridge the gaps. I then added bricks until the project was complete. READ FULL ARTICLE »

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LEGO Mosaic Danny Mathew

February 9th, 2008

I wanted to build a cartoon character LEGO Mosaic. I usually try to pick subjects that I haven’t seen done before in brick, or at least not done in a similar scale or style to what I have in mind. In this case, I offered for my step-son Mathew to pick the character and also offered to picture him with it.

Mathew really likes Danny Phantom from Nickelodeon and selected him as his first choice. After a quick scan of the web it was clear that no one had posted any brick mosaics of Danny Phantom before, so I was happy with his choice also.

Here is the finished product, which is 30 x 37.5 inches (2 x 2.5 X-Large Gray Baseplates).

danny_4.JPG

The first task in building this mosaic, was finding good source images to use for both Danny and Mathew. The image of Danny that I settled on was one from the back of a Pop-Tarts box. For Mathew, I took several digital pictures of him facing directly forward and picked out one. Both of my original source images are shown below. READ FULL ARTICLE »

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LEGO Mosaic Maddie Howie

January 27th, 2008

This was my first attempt at a large photo realistic LEGO Mosaic. It is of my two older kids, Maddie and Howie. I am pretty happy with how it turned out, especially being my first try at this. I did a lot of tinkering with the design before I started construction, which was time well spent, because once you start attaching bricks changes mean starting construction over again.

LEGO Mosaic Maddie Howie Compare

See if you can guess by the background where it was taken. This will be challenging because in order to get as much detail in the kids faces, I’ve only left a small amount of background visible. The source photograph, below, should help a little. I will post the answer in comments after a few guesses. READ FULL ARTICLE »

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Starbucks Coffee Mosaic

January 23rd, 2008

Recently, I was looking for an idea for a medium-size solid color LEGO Mosaic project.  I didn’t have to look very far. Sitting directly in front of my keyboard was a Venti Cafe Americano from Starbucks. I noticed the logo and thought it would make a great subject for a mosaic project. Furthermore, most people who know me are well aware of my love of Starbucks, so this would be a very fitting decoration for my home office.

Over the past couple years, I’ve built up a healthy supply of green bricks buying bulk tubs from LEGO Shop at Home. I rarely use many of them in my projects, and luckily the shade of green is very close to that of the Starbucks logo.  Aside from green, the only other color bricks I needed were black and white which I always have in abundance.

Shown below is the finished project, which is 30 inches in diameter, exactly two X-Large Gray Baseplates each direction.

Starbucks Logo

I built this mosaic one brick thick in a studs-out arrangement. I prefer studs-out vs. studs-up for mosaics because the final product is immediately identifiable as LEGO Bricks. In addition, it is faster to build, uses less bricks, and is simple to attach to the wall using LEGO technic plates.

As with all mosaics I’ve built, I start by digitizing and scaling a picture of my subject. In this case, I got the Starbucks logo by doing a Google Image search and selecting a high resolution source image. However, unlike photo-realistic mosaics, this mosaic required considerable hand cleanup. First, to ensure everything would be completely symmetrical, and second to properly show all the single brick-line elements of the center image. By the time I was satisfied with my digital building plans I had redrawn a considerable portion of the logo.

Shown below is the mosaic with the printed plans I used to construct it. READ FULL ARTICLE »

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