Virtually Real – Digital Special

Dodoge Polara 1961

We don’t often feature virtual Lego creations at The Lego Car Blog. The Elves can be a picky bunch and usually prefer something more solid; something that they can really get their teeth into. We’ve tried to train them not to bite but you have been warned!

The 5th July 2013 saw the first birthday of LDD to POV-Ray Convertor. This software created a user friendly method to convert well-built and interesting virtual MOCs into images which look good too. These images can then be processed in Photoshop or GIMP, just like photographs of real bricks. Over the last twelve months builders have refined their choices of settings, achieving increasingly realistic results, and in this Special we’ll showcase some of the best digital creations and builders around today.


Peter Blackert (lego911) has been extremely busy this month, publishing over 100 images on his Flickr photostream. His stylishly curved and chromed 1961 Dodge Polara, complete with a stylishly curved driver, features at the top of this post. Being made in LDD allows this car to be built in a colour which would be hard (or impossible?) to use in real bricks. Amongst the Cadillacs, Fords, Mercedes and combine harvesters that he has recently posted, is an Alfa Romeo Giulia in full Carabineri livery. These were the standard Italian police car of the 1960’s and feature in the “Italian Job” chases. Peter mentions this being part of his motivation to build this car.

Another prolific virtual builder is Garry Rocks. His creations include realistic military vehicles, such as the “Snowstorm” Heavy Tank below, plus a variety of sci-fi machines. The Snowstorm features all of the sensors and weapons of a modern military vehicle. You can see more of Garry’s work on his Flickr photostream.

Snow Tank 500w

Another builder who has exploited LDD’s ability to provide any brick in any colour is Michael Gale. Michael’s Flickr photostream shows his British Rail Class 73 Electro-Diesel in seven different liveries. These would cost a lot to build via Bricklink and some of the liveries would be impossible to build in real bricks.

Class 73 500w

Having featured automobiles and trains, this post finishes with a ‘plane. Corvin Stichert’s minifig-scale MD CF-18 Hornet took 18 hours to render and includes details such as the fences on the leading edge extensions. Rendering transparent pieces, like this fighter’s canopy, takes a lot of computing power and patience is definitely a virtue of the virtual builder. As home computers and especially laptops become faster, rendering virtual bricks should become more accessible and more fun.

F18 500w

If you’ve been impressed by the results that virtual builders are achieving and fancy a go yourself, or you’re a megalomaniac who wants to build and render a thousand life-like Lego main battle tanks, you can download the tools from these links: Lego Digital Designer; LDD to POV-Ray Convertor; POV-Ray. Have fun!

4 thoughts on “Virtually Real – Digital Special

  1. Pingback: Virtually Real – Digital Special | Automoviles

    1. Dr Asp Menace

      Thanks for your comments! We’re trying to train the Elves to bring back more digital MOCs but it’s proving to be a long process. They’re gradually getting the hang of it and we hope to feature some more digital builders in the future.

  2. Pingback: Virtual VTOL | The Lego Car Blog

Comment here!