Sunday, May 21, 2006

Laying Low in My Tropical Hideout

Yeah, I think Niels Bugge just went there. His new Longship, well, kind of blows away everything else in the Space Vikings subtheme. It's a sleek, mean-looking marauder looking to rape and pillage your unsuspecting Moonbase city. Sure it uses clich├ęd space wheel engines, but they're in an interesting configuration, and they fit the design of the ship. The figurehead is a little weak, but it's made up for by the profile that so strongly evokes the seagoing longships it has replaced. Also, the anime angles always score points with me. What can I say?

Noted MichLTC "trainerati" Jim Garrett recently finished a monster of a real-life Detriot skyscraper. He has pics up of the real building, and from what I can tell, it's pretty spot-on. I suppose that makes sense, as he's had a bit of practice with the Art Deco style. Indeed, he styles himself "Deco Jim", so I would expect nothing less.

"Began adding the remaining 34 stories as the Bricklink orders started to arrive," he says. I would certainly hate to be faced with his credit card bill. Anyways, is it kosher to resent this kind of ostentatious spending? I mean, I'm no anti-capitalist, but it somehow really gets my goat. Okay, okay, i'm jealous of all that dark orange brick. I mean, look at it. Even Eric Sophie doesn't have that much. At least he showed a little restraint by using black instead of buying smoke windows.

I need to blow off some steam now. Lucky for me, Piglet of Brickshelf made the cutest little tank mecha the other day. Selective compression? Check. Prehensile arms? Check. Keg? And check. The pics are sort of washed out on the diorama, which is kind of a shame. I do think that it should have something a little more substantial than a 24-tooth gear posing as a circular saw blade to cut trees, though. What about redwoods? You'll never squish the hippies camping out on low branches if you can't cut through the trunk. What this thing needs is an oversized chainsaw. I'm serious.

Our favorite picaresque Portugese, Luis Baixinho, posted a picturesque pirate citadel. Check out his Lugnet post for a rather amusing Babelfish of his originally Portugese blog post. The MOC has a really good feel to it: The wooden shack at the base of the crag is nice and ramshackle, and the rickety airship pier endears this MOC to me immeasurably. I don't mind the unlikeliness of a pillar of rock sticking out of the sea, (after all, I'm a fan of the more-ridiculous floating rocks) but it could have looked a bit more organic. Also, the building on top seems rushed. I like how it hangs off the edge, but the roof is sort of terrible. Also, boarded-up windows could be done more charmingly with something other than log bricks. I do hope Luis is cooking up an airship for the pirates. The scene seems incomplete without one.

CSF's Jerac uses some homemade sails to good effect on this Chitty-Chitty-Bang-Bang-tastic steampunk MOC. The sails-cum-wings were originally made for a charming microscale solar sailer, and give this creation an inimitable pre-Wright-Brothers look. Tan is often abused in steampunk MOCs, so he scores extra points for making it look good. It would have been perfect if the wings flapped.

Monday, May 15, 2006

I've Made a List of 375 Reasons Why I Never Ever Ever Ever Ever Want to See You Again

So continuing with Kevoh's architecture postage, here's a just-surfaced and gorgeously detailed train station by who I assume to be a European, one dagealka who has a fairly empty Brickshelf gallery. This is the sort of half-timbered Tudor look many castleheads only dream of. It uses the crossbeam technique pioneered by Didier Enjary, and loads of clever little techniques I've at least never seen before. If you look closely, you'll see that nearly the whole structure is schleim construction. It's slightly dizzying to behold. This sort of marvelous find in an anonymous Brickshelf gallery makes me realize more and more that I should really start following the train scene more closely.

Continuing with the architecture trawl, here's a sweet little nugget of old news by Keith Goldman. It's vintage of last March, but as Moonbase Mastermind Jon Palmer is considering adding some badly-needed design tips to Zemi, it's newly relevant. It's nice to see some coherent architectural style in a moonbase module, and this MOC has a sci-fi style so 70's that you wonder where all the hexagons went. This MOC has all the Goldman signature moves: repetition of parts and motifs to good effect, and also making the awful Star Wars cannons not look like ass. It's totally 'core.

Another mysterious Brickshelf surfacing, this enormous Hindenburg model is the work of (European) Carsten Wagner. It clocks in at nearly six feet, (175 cm for you non-Americans) uses about a half-dozen motors, and has enough light bricks to illuminate a train display. The swastikas were tastefully left out, but it seems like every other detail was included. Look through his amusingly-translated site for a detailed description (and animated .gifs!) of all functions. Check out the terribly lazy propellors and the dirty rainbow-warrior secret of its inner frame.

Wrapping up today's post is a little mech Fradel Gonzales posted in February. I just can't get over that half-plate gap for the eyes, which adds an incredible amount of character. Some of the black detail on the legs could stand to be color-blocked out of existence, but otherwise it's a very solid mecha MOC. I'd love to see this and some of his other mechs in an urban battle scene. Maybe he could run the idea past WamaLTC. Now if only we could dissuade Fradel of the crotch-mounted guns...