The Wanderer

This is the Wanderer, a planeswalker from card game Magic the Gathering. She is a mysterious individual with a habit of planeswalking from world to world slaying monsters and enemies with her decently-sized sword. She's a new and currently quite minor character, appearing only in War of the Spark expansion with 31 other planeswalkers; I do not know much about her character; but hers is a pleasant and exciting visual design, with light turquoise cape and elegant light pink dress and large brimmed hat and everything, so once I saw the first I though I just might end up building this character... Inevitable or not, here's the Wanderer.

The Wanderer appears in three card arts, so my reference material was very exact; They are the planeswalker card, the alt-art Japanese card and the signature spell card, decent common removal Wanderer's Strike. I naturally took some liberties, as I usually do. The most challenging and probably also defining aspect of the build were the colours. I have plenty of sand green, one of my favourite LEGO colours, and it worked nicely on the robe and the hat, especially with some light blue mixed in; they're flowers from my North Sea trip in May, likely from Glasgow's LEGO Store. Even pearl gold is somewhat common these days, even though it comes in rather specific variety of pieces.

The bright pink was actual challenge. I try to buy all oddly-coloured pieces from Pii Poo's used stock when I browse them, and I grab some from PaB walls when I have a chance. But I don't have many Friends sets, so my inventory consisted mostly of 1x2 plates and tiles and 1x1 round plates, reinforced with some odd slopes, plates, SNOT bricks and few more special pieces. Could be worse, honestly - there's lot you can do with a bunch of 1x2 plates - but then again, a dress with three cheese slopes and no usual curved slopes, that was tricky. In the end, I focused the interesting parts on visible places. Gothic arches (I have two) form the loose fabric at the chest. 4x4 "wide" curved slopes angled behind them add some organic, life-like shapes to the torso behind them. The hem of the dress is made with old good 1x2 plate/1x1 round plate curve technique, allowing some, if limited, organic flow. The technique forms an interesting pattern - not exactly like the pattern on card art, but not bad nevertheless. The sides of the hem are frankly quite stepped, like a on a pixelated video game character.

The robe and the hat use similar curve technique, so there are contrasts between the flowing and jagged forms. A pre-made KK2 piece is used a lone shoulder pad. It was bit unclear if the Wanderer had one or two shoulder pads - the other might be hidden behind the hair on the main card image - but I though one looked better, as part of the robe covers the other shoulder. The shoulders use usual T-bar-joint, as does the right sleeveless elbow. The left arm has a loose-fitting sleeve, so I had to compose the elbow with bright pink parts. It doesn't have very much friction, but it allows some posing, even with the big, heavy sword. A 2x2 metallic gold dish is used as a bracelet.

The Wanderer's boots are never shown completely, so that left some room for imagination. I wanted to build the character on the pose seen in the main card -descending some stairs. This was different from anything I've build before. It is also more interesting than statically standing figure, as a dress built with bright pink would have limited the dynamic poseability to zero! Thus I built the stairs, dark bley with some dark red as in the art, and made two completely different legs. The right leg is essentially a pillar; there's a joint in the ankle, but is it not really needed; a TECHNIC axle runs through the leg, supporting the build. The other joint has a double joint behind the knee armour. The armour itself is boringly square, as I didn't have any good round opinions in sand green. The boots are mostly improvised - I wanted to use sand green to balance the colours a bit - and the left leg has a joint even at the ball of the feet, forming the stepping posture.

The head is probably the most important part of the character and the Wanderer's posses an identity-hiding white hair and cool brimmed hat with feathers and everything. I though about using some large dish as a hat, but I didn't have any in good colours, and they wouldn't have been the right shape that helps hiding the face. I ended up using the aforementioned curve technique, and light blue flowers made the colours nicely fresh, even though it created a pattern not appearing on the actual art. I wanted to use a 4x4 dish in pearl gold in the top, but found out I didn't have one (at least not here). A backup option was cast-iron ornamental cart well. It diverges again from the original, but doesn't look bad. Some minifig katanas form the feathers.

I wanted to make something special with the hair, and TECHNIC figure scuba flippers were the way. Their angular shape formed the medium-lenght flatly cut hair-do well, and their thinness helped to hide the face. The face is of usual female character type, but without the minifig hand eyes to enhance to feel of anonymousness. The wind blows the locks to the right, as it flows the robe. The sword is not-that-sharp stud-thin one, with a spiky crossguard and curved black handle. I made it white, as it seems to be white-hot with power on the card arts.

Next build will be a dwarf with a twist. My fourth university year starts on Monday, so the pace might slow down a bit. But this has been a good summer, and an active one, too.




Since the last post, that wasn't even that far ago (last week) I've taken part on one LUG event, bought eight bags of parts, built two new character builds and half of a two-module-modular. I've still got exactly one week of four-month summer holiday left, so my pace with the hobby will slow down soon. Fortunately, my studies should be interesting, too.

Glassblower is a design professional, or an artist, who makes glassware using traditional methods. This built wasn't going to be a glassblower; just something similar. You never know where you'll end up in life, or possibly in building. I was simply inspired by Alphonso Mucha's self-portrait with national costume and was inspired by such dress designs, colours and patterns. At the same time, I wanted to experiment with some beard designs, as beards are inspiring. I ended up with a long white shirt with pattern using dark red, sand green, dark tan, tan and medium blue pieces. The bushy, wide moustache formed a mouth that was whistling or surprised. It was somewhat sufficient, if odd. I also built sand green trousers. They're a bit stiff ones, but slight angle at the hips makes the posture a bit more realistic. I'm now bit unsure about the cones near the knees, but maybe that isn't such important. The shoes are basic and sensible.

After finishing the legs and some versions of the arms, I left the model stewing for couple of months. It didn't have a theme, or a purpose - it was just a bearded, surprises fellow with traditional clothes (they are not specifically national; just stylized so). After some time, I remembered the existence of glass-blowing in general, and though it was cool. And the fellow, who looked like an artist, became a glassblower, with fitting pipe and a cool trans-purple vase in its end. The mouth was perfect for this setting!

There might be bit of an self-portrait here. Not exactly - I don't have that wide moustache, nor my hair's not parted on the middle, and I have some hair on the back of my head, and I've never blown glass in my life. But hair and beard colours are quite close, and I wear glasses. Probably it could be said that a builder puts a part of themselves in every build they make. Among the various other pieces. 



Kiirus Ögonblick and Carp speeder

This build was indented to be entry for LEGO Speeder bike Flickr group's contest in late spring. However, I never had a realistic chance on making it in time. School year was just about to end with all the deadlines, and I was leaving for two-week adventure around Northern Sea with Pinja a day after the last critic. But I built it anyway, as person and a speeder felt an interesting proposal. This was mainly due to fun I had with RESIST-BOISTEROUS IV - a figure and a cycle, rewarding to compose, rewarding to pose, worth of taking dozens of pictures. Which would work in similar manner without needing some big wheels, usually rare and expensive parts? Only thing I came up with was a speeder bike, a sci-fi trope most familiar from Return of the Jedi's intensive chase scene in the forest moon of Endor. Thinking this now, maybe a traditional mount could work too, and here's bit of that too, as the speeder is carp-inspired; but there was a contest, without forced minifig scale, working as an excuse, so I started working on a speeder.

The frame began with two 4-wide rail parts and some trans-light-blue tubes inside them. I don't remember when it became a fish-themed; quite early on, probably because the unusual curved shape the rail parts gave. Orange colour block formed the fish's head and strong complimentary colour contrast with the dark blue; There is also contrast with the smooth, curved surface of the orange part and more mechanical dark areas of the speeder. The carp's whiskers where going to be the steering handles for a while, but they were bit too puny for it, so I made a larger, better-placed handles with meters, levers and all. Their grey colour and mechanical motif enhanced the contrast. The back area was more challenging, as I wanted to make the speeder aerodynamic and naturally flowing, while still keeping the curved shape. The stand is angled to keep it natural; originally the point of balance was too far back and the rider didn't stay on the saddle. Looking back now, the special trans-clear liftarm was probably a mistake; it stands out more than a black one would have.

The back of the speeder became a composition of aether supercharger (inspired by Magic the Gathering's Kaladesh world and its vehicles), trans-orange tail fins and the actual jet engine block. The supercharger was one of the first things built here. I don't really like trans-light blue colour, especially as the windows; I prefer trans-clear one over it any day. I had gotten a set of those garage door parts somewhere, and wondered where use them. They formed a nice cylinder over those dark bley hub pieces. The fit is very snug and couple of Scala bowls cap them nicely. The cylinder was placed under the speeder at first, forming internal organs of the carp, but it didn't work; It broke the flow. It finally set behind the seat. Rising the tubes from between the rails and connecting them to the supercharger was obviously a right choice, giving good profile to the bright tube section, also making sense thematically. The trans-orange tail fins balanced the colour scheme. The engine block became ultimately a composition of smoothly-shaped light-bluish grey pieces. I hope it doesn't clash too severely with the rest of the speeder; personally I like the maze of macaroni tube pieces.

The driver was built partially within the speeder. The main theme was colours, extravagant and bright. I also wanted to use lots of printed pieces to create rich and hyperactive, even commercial look, something urban and international. The leather coat of Resist-boisterous was a starting point, but with brighter colour. I began with some tight yellow trousers. The lower legs weren't going for this build at first, they were only a tablescrap hanging around. But I gave them a try and they were stylized enough; I think they're just stockings or something. They're on trousers so they don't make much sense; Or maybe they are just shorts; But hell, Batman wears underpants over his long johns and everyone thinks Batman is cool, so why not... It's not about sense, that would be bit boring at least on this build. Anyway! The footwear is some high and pink okobo platform shoes; again something bizarre and unusual.

The jacket is short-sleeved and open medium blue thing; there's some light bley as joints as you can't have everything in medium blue, but it didn't stop me using this pleasant colour. It's some light denim, probably. I'm particularly happy with the collar. Connection of aeroplane tail fins is bit messy but their shape is very sharp and striking; they frame the shirt quite naturally. I might use this trick in future builds, probably with some printed pieces. The shirt uses vibrant colour pieces. I bough handful of them from Bricks&Pieces and they have been used here; Yesterday I got my LUGBULK and some 2000 more, but that was after completing this MOC. A LEGO movie 2 heart piece forms the bust, while other one is used as such, giving the shirt aggressively cheery feel. It's a tad bold composition, but I think it works just fine. Printed pieces are used on the jacket's shoulders (some old Racers prints) and sleeves as badges (and upper legs, too; the dark purple Nexo Knights ones reminded me of those badges student's sew into their overall, at least in Finland, and their energizing grinning fit the theme nicely). There is a spiky stud belt between the shirt and the trousers, as an another underculture nod. The driver also sports yellow fingerless gloves with vibrant coral ribbon-like add-ons. Why not.

Lime green hair had been on my shortlist for a while, as I had gathered plenty of dinosaur tails and curved slopes in that colour. It's unnatural and striking hair colour, often seen on plastic anime conventions wigs, and as such was perfect idea for the build. The hair is big and wild and has one, huge pigtail on side. As if it wouldn't been rad enough, I adorned it with goggles, hairpins and earrings - later two using very angry-looking printed red balls from Nexo Knight line. Thus Kiirus Ögonblick was born. Kiirus means speed in Estonian, and is also sometimes used as unofficial Finnish to mean haste or being busy; Ögonblick is blink of an eye in Swedish, a word familiar from Swedish lessons ten years back.

The next build will be an elderly professional of arts and design, an after that, a mysterious warrior. I've been catching up a bit, with only five builds in line. The last one, finished (probably) today, is another part of this "series" of person and a speeder; more of it later on.