As usual, captions refer to the pictures above them:
Up and at 'em Friday morning for a flight out of John Wayne...
...which is an adorable little airport.
On the plane I sit near an old man who clearly hates me.
Downtown Seattle from above.
En route to the con, we pass by Bill Ward (in the minivan on the right). Hi Bill!
And then boom: welcome home.
First things first: the showstoppers. The Nannan/Legohaulic collaboration sensation that's the sweeping the nation.
Nannan's Iron Maiden
Vexillum goes down in flames on the last day of the con; more on that later.
And look, in the left corner: there's Aaron, who I managed to say a few words to at the LEGO store. Cool dude.
Speaking of Nannan, here's a clandestine shot of him checking out Heather LEGOgirl's dollhouse, which is as heavy as it looks.
My nano-Containment made it into the dollhouse at one point...
...as did a flurry of ninjas.
Legohaulic laid a lovely turd in the toilet one night.
I don't hate all spiders, but I hate big spiders. If there's a daddy-long-legs crawling up the wall, I will snuff the life out of it without blinking, but put me in the same room as a tarantula and I will maintain a hearty distance from it at all times. Creeps me out.
The Bricks of Character table, where my stuff found its home.
Arkov's six-shooter. The kid has some serious talent; he's definitely going places.
Nibbler hiding behind Ochre Jelly's Inception.
V&A Steamworks' wicked gun...
...and Wunderkammer, which contains a little black-and-white jack-in-the-box; that's my handiwork!
Hillel Cooperman's awesome thing-I-don't-remember-what-he-named-it. Space Hotel, pretty much. He also had a great speech one night that gave the collectible minifigs a nickname for the ages.
Time for the LEGO store run. From left to right: Dave Sterling, Mariann Asanuma, Tadashistate, Ranger of Awesomeness, Stacy Sterling, Heather LEGOgirl. The cool kids all ride together.
LEGO store in Bellevue. I came very close to an Academy Award winner that night; walked right past Michael Giacchino, who won the Best Original Score Oscar for Pixar's Up. Throughout the whole con, I wanted to come up and tell him The Ellie Badge makes me teary-eyed like a little girl every time, but that would seem weird.
But seriously: like a little girl.
This is the kind of selection you can expect at a LEGO store run.
The next morning: public day #1. This is the line a few hours before the doors opened; nothing compared to what it would become.
Paul Hetherington's Mardi Gras Madness, which won Best in Show.
The whirlpool actually spins; it was awesome. The whole piece won the People's Choice Award. I didn't get a shot of the underside, but there's a whole Atlantis setup under the table.
One of my favorite pieces from the con: this incredibly detailed little island. That's the kind of thing I adore.
Heather allowed me one shot of her; it took some deliberation before she gave the green light. You can almost see the contempt on her face.
Steve Barile's train layout; the color of the water is my favorite touch.
Nathan Proudlove's castle, which was brought in a suitcase. There are two methods to transporting LEGO to a con: the diligent method (a la Nannan; you'll see later) and the Eylar method, which is put it all in one box and hope for the best.
A bit of Katie Walker's genius mosaic designs; didn't get a chance to meet her, unfortunately. But apparently she was sitting just one row behind me during the keynote speaker.
Tormod Askildsen chatting with another LEGO exec, hopefully unaware of the picture behind him.
Blurry shot of the marquee, but it was kind of artsy, so I kept it.
And then the real shot.
Time for a draft.
Clandestine shot of V&A Steamworks, who is a lovely chap but won two awards and for that deserves all of your scorn.
More clandestine shots of Abner Finley (right) and Nannan partially hidden by Abner's hand.
Then I shoot over my shoulder at Legohaulic (in green), Fradel Gonzales (in brown and yellow), and Master Jedi Rob (in ponytail).
Look at that; ping pong balls next to the beer. It's like they can read our minds.
Stacy Sterling and Heather LEGOgirl boozing up for an afterparty later that night.
I don't know how sensitive people are to pictures of themselves partying, so instead of posting those shots, I'll share 5 blurry, heavily-cropped edits, completely out of context:
Those dogs were the sweetest.
The next day, everyone wears sunglasses.
And it's public day again.
About 6,000 more people than the previous public day.
Look at the lads, tuckered out. From left to right: Legohaulic's elbow, Sven Junga, JD Luse, and Nannan.
Another one of my favorites. Greebling is a talent I really wish I had.
Ochre Jelly's Stephen Hawking.
Miniland Gary McIntyre and the Mythbusters LEGO ball.
And after that, I had to take Gary from behind, so to speak.
Dismantling the Torii gate.
But then, through the magic of editing, rebuilding it.
And then tearing it down again.
Now, about Legohaulic's Vexillum. He destroyed it in what Dave Sterling and Ochre Jelly have both called the Eylar method: drop it from arm-height, care and tenderness be damned. The thing was a SHOWER of dark blue and gray, crumbling like a house of cards into a suitcase on the floor. I got a video of it, but I accidentally deleted it after uploading my pictures, forgetting that my computer doesn't accept videos. So... shit. Luckily, I wasn't the only one taping that show, so you're in luck: here's Nannan's video.
After the crash and the applause, Tyler was kind enough to let me and a charming New Zealander named Jim help ourselves to some dark blue panels, since he had about 200 of them. I owe you one, sir. If I bring something big to Brickworld, you can have your pick of the litter.
On a sadder note, Dave and Ochre also disposed of their pieces the same, cathartic gravity method, and I got videos of those too, but they'll never see the light of day now.
Sorry, guys. Maybe next year?
Nannan didn't follow suit; he packed everything away with the care and devotion you'd give a small child. He is a very meticulous soul.
Nannan's ship in slices, ready for the trip home.
The LEGO co. packed up their products in a big, David Copperfield-style crate.
Proudlove chose the Rubbermaid method.
And then it was time to go.
Touching down at John Wayne late Sunday night.
Can't wait for next time.
With all those dark blue panels from Tyler's ship, there's only one thing I want to do with them: recreate the ship, microscale.
There's something weirdly poetic about using the same pieces to build the same creation. It's like wiping a Jackson Pollock painting clean with a dishrag and then wringing it dry over a blank canvas.
Through the wonders of googling my name, I found this entry. First: you really noticed some neat details that I totally missed when I was actually at the convention. And second: all the cool kids sit in the back. ;-)
I really wish I could have made it this year. Seeing those SHIPS in person must have been incredibly aspiring....something that your mini version can attest to. Excellent job, and thanks for the coverage!!
Nice pictures and good commentary!
Another good Brickcon post by you...
Heh, JD Luse, Sven Junga, and Nannan Z, sat in the same spot JD Luse, Sven Junga, and I sat on Public Day one...
Unfortunately, you didn’t take a picture then… Oh, well…