Good news for the online Lego community! BrickNerd, one of the Lego sites that used to do this whole blogging thing properly (unlike this smoking hole in the ground) is back, and under new management!
After spending several months as silent as Donald Trump’s conscience, a band of illustrious fans of Lego have resuscitated the dead website. We think BrickNerd’s return is good for the whole Lego community, and particularly for the team here at TLCB as it enables us to take the piss out of them constantly again for their almost fanatical devotion to a certain sci-fi movie franchise.
Here at TLCB we wish BrickNerd’s new management the best of luck, which – coming from this shower of ineptitude – means absolutely nothing. Go and and check them out via the link above, and then come back here for more pointless bickering, incompetent writing, and occasional political slurs.
Now if only someone could do the same with MOCpages…
You thought we’d forgotten about this feature! And you’d be right. We’ve been spectacularly lazy at keeping the Blog/Site of the Month going. In fact we had to trawl the TLCB Archives to find the last time we featured a rival blog or website, and that’s no fun at all; TLCB Archives are very dark, very creepy, and most unnervingly they occasionally reverberate from the cackle of a long lost, and by now probably quite feral, TLCB Elf.
Anyway, after braving the Archives today we’ve corrected months (possibly even years) of neglect to resurrect Blog of the Month, so that we can share with you one the best new Lego blogs to come about in ages.
Sharing its initials with some other Lego blog, The Brick Bucket is a tidy looking fan-run Lego site featuring the best Lego creations from around the world, set reviews and Lego news. Created and staffed by Teen Fans of Lego (TFOLs), The Brick Bucket features a youthful exuberance that can be found wanting at some of the more po-faced Lego establishments, and yet is also thoroughly professional looking too. More so than the cobbled-together nonsense on this blog anyway.
First up (above) is Sam the First (aka Sir. Manperson)’s digital ‘Prowler’. We don’t often feature digital creations here, and Sam immediately put himself at a disadvantage in the competition by choosing to build in virtual reality. But Sam must really want the awesome prizes up for grabs and has gone all out to tick as many boxes on the Elves’ wishlist as possible. Bright colour? Check. Racing stripes? Check. Violence potential? Big check. He’s even added a pair of Elves to the build to score himself some bonus points. You can see more of Sam’s entry on Flickr at the link above.
The second creation in today’s post comes from fellow Flickr builder and previous bloggee Calvin Sun. Calvin’s ‘Elves of Hazard’ model also ticks many of the Elves’ boxes, being brightly coloured, big engined and also featuring a rather suave-looking Elf (they really don’t look that good in reality). You can see more of Calvin’s competition entry on Flickr at the link above.
Prizes to be Won!
There are still several weeks to go in the competition, which closes on August 31st 2015. No-one has yet scored full marks, and we’re yet to see a Power Functions RC vehicle capable of Elf smushery entered – a remote control monster truck with racing stripes and an Elf at the wheel would stand a very good chance indeed.
All entries will be judged by TLCB Staff at the end of the competition and the winner will receive two of the brilliant Lego books pictured above from the awesome guys over at No Starch Press, plus the runner-up will also get their hands a top Lego publication too.
How to Enter
You can enter your creation for TLCB Summer Building competition in a number of ways, either here at TLCB, or via our partners on Flickr; LUGnuts and Headturnerz, where each has a discussion thread in which you can post your entry. Good luck!
The very best Lego vehicles in the world feature here at The Lego Car Blog. But the quality isn’t limited to just the build – the standard of presentation must be exceptional too. If you’re here wondering ‘How do I get my stuff to look that good?’, Flickr’s Konajra gives us an insight into the easiest and most accessible way to make your creations look the business.
Konajra’s behind-the-scenes shot above reveals the secret. Simple huh? A plain coloured background – often white but any contrasting colour will do – and curved to remove the shadows in the corners, is all you need to make your Lego creation look like something from The LEGO Group themselves.
Some builders add proper photography lighting to their set-up, but natural light is actually the best way to illuminate your model – so wait for sunny day!
Once you’ve got your shots upload them into any one of the variety of image editing tools, such as Gimp, Photoshop, iPhoto and even Microsoft Paint. Many builders will spend days perfecting their images, but a quick crop, auto-enhance and watermark (if you’re protective) is all that it takes to make a big difference.
Once you’re happy with how your images look you’re ready to upload them to your chosen creation-sharing website, however it’s worth noting that the quality of your images can be constrained by the site uploader. As such we recommend uploading to Flickr, and then using the embed function to transfer your images to your other online accounts.
Follow the above steps and you should end up with photos like Konajra’s ‘Zwarte Zee’ below, and they’ll be good enough to appear on one of the major Lego blogs, maybe even this one!
If you’ve discovered a creation that you think qualifies to appear here at The Lego Car Blog you can check its suitability by visiting our Submission Guidelines page – if it meets our requirements then let us know!
We’re not a trendy Lego blog here at TLCB. There are no famous builders residing at TLCB Towers*. We don’t blog our own stuff. We don’t make any money. And you won’t find us at a Lego show discussing how the latest sci-fi build pushes the boundaries of the Lego medium as an art form or some such guff.
We’re also pretty lazy, fairly incompetent and quite often drunk. But somehow, and we’re as surprised by this as you probably are, this blog seems to have worked out. In fact, as given away by the less-than-subtle title, we’re about to hit quite a special number. Best of all, we’ll hit it again with a ‘2’ instead of a ‘1’ at the front in no time at all.
So as we countdown to seven-digits we’d like to say a big thank you to each of you for joining us on this Lego journey. We don’t know how long it’ll last, but we’ll have a blast whilst it does.
As always, you can let us know what you think of the content you read here via the comments or the Feedback Page, and protected by the dark cloak of anonymity we may even respond! Onwards to a million…
With one of the web’s best Lego Blogs currently undertaking a donation drive here at TLCB we thought we’d put our own request out to the awesome online Lego Community (that’s you guys!). Nope, we don’t want your money, but we’d love your shares, likes and subscriptions!
Here at The Lego Car Blog we’re a not-for-profit unbiased Lego blog. Our site administration costs are paid for by the limited advertising we allow to appear, whilst everything else generated is donated to good causes.
This means that every time you visit us you’re doing a bit of good. How neat is that! As we approach one million views we would like to ask you (if you like what you read here!) to help us to do more. The more views we receive, the more advertising revenue we earn, and the more we have to give!
You can help us help others in a number of easy ways;
Subscribe to TLCB! This is free and allows you to receive alerts when new content is posted.
Share TLCB! Either individual posts (by clicking on the Share options underneath each one), or by linking to us from your MOCpages, Flickr or other account. If you’re a group administrator you could also become a partner by adding a link to TLCB on your group’s homepage.
Like TLCB! If you like what we post you can, er… ‘Like’ what we post! Just use the handy links underneath each article.
Easy huh? Make your good deed for the day a Lego deed – you’ll make us, TLCB Elves, and the charities we sponsor very happy : ) Thank you for your continued readership, we hope to bring you even more MOCs, News and Reviews throughout 2014.
It’s been two and half years since the Elves were first released from their cages in TLCB Towers basement, and yesterday The Lego Car Blog’s one thousandth article was published! The Elves can’t take all the credit though, as around 100 blog posts are attributed to you our readers, or to the several guest bloggers who have written for the blog since its inception.
All one thousand of our articles are available to view in The Lego Car Blog Archives, just scroll down to the bottom of the page and pick a month, or enter a term into the Search function to see your chosen content.
A huge thank you to each of you for your readership, without you this blog would just be the mutterings of some madmen. As always you can let us know what you think and you can suggest creations that might be of interest via the Feedback and Submission Suggestions page.
After one year of advertisements we thought it was only right to give you, our readers, the opportunity to feed back on whether these affect your user experience. Typically the advertisements on this site appear as a silent video underneath the first post, or as a bar on the bottom of each picture should you hover your mouse pointer over one. So far we’ve not seen anything unsavoury appear, although we have turned down offers from advertisers whose products haven’t fitted with our responsibility as a blogger of what is ultimately a children’s toy.
The revenue generated from the WordAds programme currently surpasses the costs of running this site (and TLCB executive washroom and sauna), although this is mostly because our labour is very cheap. This means that we are in a fortunate position of financial surplus, and we’d like to pass this on where we can.
Let’s do some good!
If you our readers are happy to see advertisements continuing to appear here on The Lego Car Blog we will continue to participate in the WordPress WordAds programme, and our aim is to donate the all of profits generated to suitable charitable causes (suggestions welcomed). This means that every time you visit us you’re doing a little bit of good in the world too! As always you can let us know what you think in the usual way, either by commenting on our posts or by visiting the Feedback Page.
Thank you for your continued readership and support,
*To the countless bloggers who spam TLCB with promises that with your (chargeable) help we can ‘get rich’ by internet blogging, you can go suck on it.
One of our regular readers is tbzz2013, who often leaves comments on our posts. When we clicked on his Gravatar Profile, it turned out that he writes a blog too. Lego’s Soul is written in Polish but we know that The Lego Car Blog has a lot of Polish readers and we think that they will enjoy it. Unfortunately we’re a pretty monoglot lot at TLCB Towers. At the last survey we could order beer in 37 different languages but that’s about it. We don’t actually speak Elvish, as shouting at the Elves (plus a mixture of the airhorn and Smarties) generally gets the required results.
Regardless of what language you speak, Lego’s Soul is packed with photos of Lego sets from years gone by, with a good mix of Space, Town and Technic from the eighties and nineties in particular. We particularly enjoyed this article on Lego Town cranes, which has some great photos and interesting critiques (thank you Bing Translate!). The photos of the 6524 “Blizzard Blazer” from 1988 in real snow looked excellent too. It’s well worth visiting Lego’s Soul to enjoy the nostalgia of sets from your childhood or if you’re younger, perhaps to discover some new ideas.
We’ve been a bit cautious about posting this blog update, as we can scarcely believe it, but here goes…
The Lego Car Blog is reaching Half-a-Million people annually.
No, we don’t know how either, and honestly it’s more than a little bit scary. We don’t know how long we’re going to keep TLCB in operation, but it definitely feels bigger than us now. So, how would you, yes you reading this very sentence, like to be writing these words rather than reading them?
We would like to open the TLCB up to guest posts so that we can share the responsibility… er, we mean, offer an opportunity, to aspiring writers and bloggers with a passion for little plastic bricks to reach half-a-million worldwide readers.
Maybe you’re at school or college and would like to try writing for a large audience for the first time. Perhaps you’re an adult builder and you know of a Lego community or event that’s been overlooked that you’d like to share. Or maybe you’ve just bought an official LEGO set and would like to review it to help others make a purchase.
If this sounds like you then please get in touch with us through the Feedback and Submission Suggestions page, telling us a little bit about yourself (age, occupation, where you’re from, and include a contact email or Flickr account) and what you would like to write. You can remind yourself of what we look for by visiting our Submission Guidelines page. The team will then get in contact with you directly (and we’ll remove your contact details from your message for security).
It seems some of The Lego Car Blog Elves got into the paint cupboard and had some fun with the blue paint. Apologies to those of you who struggled to read the text against the background hue.
Normal service is, we think, resumed. Please let us know if you’re not seeing a return to our usual white and turquoise scheme. The offending Elves have been identified (they got most of the paint on themselves) and are due a date with Mr. Air-horn.
When the weather is very, very bad we have to keep the Elves locked up at TLCB Towers in case they blow away. To prevent fights from breaking out we have to find ways of entertaining them and drawing pictures of cars is a natural favourite. There are also prizes of green Smarties (they’re the best kind) for the best efforts. You can therefore imagine the delighted grin on the face of the Elf who came into the office this morning, clutching handfuls of brightly coloured artwork of Lego cars and spaceships. Unfortunately for him, we quickly spotted the signatures of Polish brothers Marcin and Przemek Surma and so he was rewarded with a sharp blast from the airhorn.
The Surma brothers have been posting their colourful re-interpretations of classic Lego sets on their blog since January 2012. They have sustained an impressive rate of one a week. Marcin (Xulm) and Przemek’s (Surpiko) work covers two decades, with Xulm mainly covering the ’90s and Surpiko mostly doing the ’80s. Their art is a wonderful way to revisit the Lego of your childhood and see it through new eyes. Perhaps you might spot something that you missed the first time round, such as the beautiful ladies of Classic Space, as in Surpiko’s version of the 6870 Space Probe Launcher below. We bet you thought that they were all blokes! Younger builders will find inspiration in the fantasy shapes and colours too. Whatever your age, this fun and creative blog is well worth visiting at this link. The Elves have been busy printing out more pictures and sticking them to the fridge with magnets, along with their cheating colleague. Don’t worry: we’ll let him down before bedtime.
Here at The Lego Car Blog we like to showcase up-and-coming builders, and now there’s a new blog that just showcases up-and-coming builders. So as a Special today we’re going to showcase the up-and-coming blog that showcases up-and-coming builders, TFOL World.
Over to the guys from TFOL World to explain their picks for the best young vehicle builders of 2013.
Who are the top five car building TFOLs to follow in 2013? The teenaged staff of TFOL World have brought you their top picks, so read on and find out!
We’ll start off with frequent bloggee of both TFOLWorld and The LEGO Car Blog – Jonas (Legopard). A German TFOL who has recently begun posting vehicle models, he’s created everything from Steampunk Bat Tumblers to classic little mopeds. And don’t worry, if you’re into futuristic vehicles he’s got you covered too.
Rounding out the middle of this feature is Raphael Granas (r a p h y), who is creating some of the best tiny turbos of the year. Dedicated to building the best looking replica possible, Raphael does not shy from shaving unnecessary pieces away – literally. His occasional slash and hack may turn the stomachs of purists, but it’s hard to argue with the results.
Next up we have veteran Featured TFOL Harry Gravett. This guy really knows how to shape a car, and his use of a myriad of techniques (including the classic cylinder+brick round tower technique) allows him to form top-notch eye candy. Our favourite of his MOCs is the Gravity GZ3 Tornado (featured below) for just that reason.
Last but not least, Alexander Paschoaletto is our fifth and final builder. As far as we can tell, he doesn’t pack his models with NPU, textures, rare bricks, or all that stuff we’ve come to know and love. No, Alex instead produces builds which are refreshingly simple at first glance, though subtly complex as you look deeper. His MOCs are built to look good, and few car builders can match the sheer beauty of his vehicles.
And that wraps up the TFOL World list of the top five TFOLs of the year! Thanks for reading, and don’t forget to check each of these talented teens out, they’ll definitely be building even more top-tier motors as 2013 rolls on.
TLCB would like to extend a heartfelt thank you and best wishes to all the staff at TFOL World. If you’re a Teen Fan Of Lego make sure you check them out at the new TFOL World blog.