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The Singing Butler
A Lego silnouette/mosaic.
About this creation
My recreation of Jack Vettriano's painting The Singing Butler, in Lego mosaic form. It is by far his most famous and most commerically successful work. The original was sold at auction for nearly £750,000 in 2004, and since then, its repoductions have had a record-setting print run in the UK. The painting has become so popular that it has almost ascended to the level of Grant Wood's American Gothic as a cultural icon.

Despite its popularity and commercial success (or perhaps because of it), The Singing Butler has generally been treated rather harshly by art critics, especially when it was revealed that Vettriano had based the painting on illustrations from an artist's reference manual, rather than on live models. Aside from that, some have criticized the unusual pose of the dancers, in which the man is leading with his right hand rather than his left.

The full resolution version of the mosaic can be found here.

UPDATE: Based on the comments I received, I added a little bit of the man's right hand, holding the woman's left hand. I think the scene looks a little more natural now.




Comments

 I made it 
  June 17, 2017
Quoting Ryan Link This thing is spectacular! great combination of color and mosaic techniques with the flat background and the layered figures. The result is stunning, both aesthetically and technically. Love it!
Thanks. While my techniques are a little different, I drew some inspiration for this work from Joe Perez's (Mortal Swordsman) mosaic of the Statue of Liberty : https://www.flickr.com/photos/mortalswordsman/30624351416/in/dateposted/
 I like it 
  June 17, 2017
This thing is spectacular! great combination of color and mosaic techniques with the flat background and the layered figures. The result is stunning, both aesthetically and technically. Love it!
 I made it 
  June 14, 2017
Quoting Marc dZ that is so beautiful!!! Stunning work!!
Thanks. I just did my best not to mess up the beauty in the original.
 I like it 
  June 14, 2017
that is so beautiful!!! Stunning work!!
 I made it 
  June 13, 2017
Quoting Sven ;o) Absolutely fantastic Lego recreation of the original my friend! I like it a lot! Keep up your great work.
Thanks. I'd like to continue doing recreations like this one, but they are very effort-intensive, so it's likely that I'll take on a few smaller projects before attempting something of this magnitude again.
 I like it 
  June 13, 2017
Absolutely fantastic Lego recreation of the original my friend! I like it a lot! Keep up your great work.
 I made it 
  June 12, 2017
Quoting Cab ~ Wow. What an excellent depiction. I daresay I like the lego version better.
Thanks. One thing that differentiates my Lego renditions of famous paintings from the originals is that the limited Lego palette tends to make the colors "pop" a little more. I suspect that many find that effect more appealing.
 I like it 
  June 11, 2017
Wow. What an excellent depiction. I daresay I like the lego version better.
 I made it 
  June 10, 2017
Quoting El Barto ! Extraordinary work, Dude! And I can see the whole cultural icon thing. Does that mean it's being used in advertising?
Thanks. I don't know whether it's been used in advertising, but I have seen it printed on all kinds of things, including, most appropriately, umbrellas.
 I made it 
  June 10, 2017
Quoting Ben Cossy The sky background is probably my favourite part, looks awesome!
Thanks. With the sky, I definitely took a few liberties with respect to representing the original, but I tried to keep the same "look and feel."
 I made it 
  June 10, 2017
Quoting Clayton Marchetti This is spectacular! As a amazing as the way you made the figures I'm floored by their reflections in the puddles. Most impressive!
Thanks. The few times that I have tried to something with reflections, I have always had doubts about how it would look, but by the time I finish, I'm usual surprised by how convincing the effect can be.
 I made it 
  June 10, 2017
Quoting Ron L. Mitchell Okay, now for some Salvador Dali! ...The Persistence of Memory!!!
Dali? I don't know. I'd have to think about it. While I respect his work, his style is somewhat counter to one of my primary goals, which is to portray human figures as accurately as possible.
 I like it 
  June 10, 2017
Extraordinary work, Dude! And I can see the whole cultural icon thing. Does that mean it's being used in advertising?
 I like it 
  June 10, 2017
The sky background is probably my favourite part, looks awesome!
 I like it 
  June 10, 2017
This is spectacular! As a amazing as the way you made the figures I'm floored by their reflections in the puddles. Most impressive!
 I like it 
  June 10, 2017
Okay, now for some Salvador Dali! ...The Persistence of Memory!!!
 I made it 
  June 9, 2017
Quoting Changru Chen Beautiful art
Thanks. But most of the credit should go to Vettriano for creating the original painting.
 I like it 
  June 9, 2017
Beautiful art
 I made it 
  June 9, 2017
Quoting Gabor Pauler I like the reflections in water, that's a fine detail.
Thanks. The reflections are something that takes some tinkering to get the right look. I've found that just trying to directly duplicate the original (as, say, a posterizing program would do) does not yield the right texture. So I start by attempting to follow the original as much as I can, but then adjust the result to get the right feel.
 I made it 
  June 9, 2017
Quoting LEGO Master Always amazed what you can do with LEGO bricks. You raise the LEGO bar with your creations. Do you keep your creations or take it apart for your next project or do you use a LEGO design program?
Thanks. These creations are all virtual, but I am hoping that at some point, I'll be able to acquire the bricks necessary to build at least some my more modestly-sized mosaics.
 I like it 
  June 9, 2017
I like the reflections in water, that's a fine detail.
  June 8, 2017
Always amazed what you can do with LEGO bricks. You raise the LEGO bar with your creations. Do you keep your creations or take it apart for your next project or do you use a LEGO design program?
 I made it 
  June 8, 2017
Quoting Ian Spacek Oh my goodness, that's so beautifully done. Eye-catching.
Thanks. It's amazing what a little effort (well, a lot, actually) spent manually dithering large numbers of small plates can do. :-)
 I like it 
  June 8, 2017
Oh my goodness, that's so beautifully done. Eye-catching.
 I made it 
  June 8, 2017
Quoting Werewolff . Fantastic!
Thanks.
 I like it 
  June 8, 2017
Fantastic!
 I made it 
  June 8, 2017
Quoting Elk Guard Beautiful!
Thanks.
 I made it 
  June 8, 2017
Quoting Doug Hughes Wow! This is definitely my favorite work of yours to date. The detailed background plate work, the reflection technique, and the perfect poses of the figures really adds up. Bravo!
Thanks. I do like how the plate-built background turned out, but I don't know how often I'll attempt something like this -- it is lot of tedious work to get through something like that. The figure poses also seemed to work out pretty well, but if you take a not-so-close look, you'll see that I had to change both the figures and the background relative to the original so that it would be possible to represent them with Lego bricks.
 I like it 
  June 8, 2017
Beautiful!
 I like it 
  June 8, 2017
Wow! This is definitely my favorite work of yours to date. The detailed background plate work, the reflection technique, and the perfect poses of the figures really adds up. Bravo!
 I made it 
  June 8, 2017
Quoting Marty Fields A great recreation of this well-known modern classic artwork.
Thanks. Based on the response that this work has been getting, I am likely to try something like this again soon. Perhaps I might even try to tackle one of my personal favorites, Hopper's Nighthawks, despite the fact that I know it poses some very difficult technical hurdles.
 I like it 
  June 8, 2017
A great recreation of this well-known modern classic artwork.
 I made it 
  June 8, 2017
Quoting Builder Allan Awesome! Great work on the figures and background sky. I also very much like the reflection in the puddles on the ground :-)
Thanks. The sky and puddles took a lot of effort, but they definitely help to bring the scene to life, much better than a flat background would.
 I like it 
  June 8, 2017
Awesome! Great work on the figures and background sky. I also very much like the reflection in the puddles on the ground :-)
 I made it 
  June 8, 2017
Quoting Daniel H. Wow! Stunning work!
Thanks. While I obviously had to make a number of "adjustments" in terms of the color representation due to the rather limited Lego palette, one nice side effect is that my mosaics tend to be "bolder" than the originals.
 I like it 
  June 8, 2017
Wow! Stunning work!
 I made it 
  June 8, 2017
Quoting Jonathan Demers Wow Bricks, this is absolutely amazing! You have captured the human form in Lego quite well! Beautiful scene!
Thanks. The human forms in this mosaic actually posed a more difficult challenge than most of my other mosaics. The figures here are much smaller than my typical ones, which leaves fewer options for capturing the details and following the contours.
 I like it 
  June 8, 2017
Wow Bricks, this is absolutely amazing! You have captured the human form in Lego quite well! Beautiful scene!
 I made it 
  June 8, 2017
Quoting Nick Barrett Vettriano is almost a victim of his own success - Art critics don't like that at all.... Art lovers, on the other hand, appreciate his work for what it is. This is masterfully done; you've achieved as close to perfection as Lego bricks will allow.
Thanks. I agree, Vettriano undoubtedly suffered at the hands of critics for no reason other than his commercial success. Its'safe to say that the world of fine art is no more immune to jealous behavior than any other established group.
 I like it 
  June 8, 2017
Vettriano is almost a victim of his own success - Art critics don't like that at all.... Art lovers, on the other hand, appreciate his work for what it is. This is masterfully done; you've achieved as close to perfection as Lego bricks will allow.
 I made it 
  June 8, 2017
Quoting Philippe Moisan Excellent work.
Thanks. This one actually was quite a bit of "work" -- I used almost 5,000 parts (mostly plates in the background), much more than in any of my other works.
 I made it 
  June 8, 2017
Quoting Oliver Becker Wonderful, Bricks! So much atmosphere here to get in the mood... :)
Thanks. The "atmosphere" is one of the things I like about the original work. I did my best to try to capture it.
 I made it 
  June 8, 2017
Quoting Justin Li Oh wow. The figures are spot on as usual, but those reflections are a whole new level of awesome.
Thanks. As I was working on this mosaic, I began to have some doubts about how the reflections would work. But, as is often the case, as I pushed on and added more the details, the reflections started to look better, especially when viewed in the context of the entire picture.
 I like it 
  June 8, 2017
Excellent work.
 I like it 
  June 8, 2017
Wonderful, Bricks! So much atmosphere here to get in the mood... :)
 I like it 
  June 8, 2017
Oh wow. The figures are spot on as usual, but those reflections are a whole new level of awesome.
 I made it 
  June 8, 2017
Quoting Seaman SPb Excellent!
Thanks.
 I made it 
  June 8, 2017
Quoting Mark McPeek Perfection! Love how you captured the shading and reflections.
Thanks. The technique for the reflections is similar to what I used for "Leaving the City," so I had some confidence that it would work fairly well.
 I like it 
  June 8, 2017
Excellent!
 I like it 
  June 8, 2017
Perfection! Love how you captured the shading and reflections.
 I made it 
  June 8, 2017
Quoting --R.K. Blast-- Wow! Great work on this one! Instantly recognizable! My Nan has a print of this in her bathroom! haha! --Blast--
Thanks. I'm glad you recognized it. The popularity of this painting is one of the reasons I decided to go ahead with it.
 I made it 
  June 8, 2017
Quoting Nirds forprez Usually not much of a commentator on builds other than Technic.... but this is truly stunning. The people, background, emulation of the weather..... everything. Really, IMO, one of your most notable works....
Thanks. The "weather" was definitely an important part of the overall scene, so I devoted quite a bit of effort to it. In order to maintain my sanity, I didn't really try to exactly duplicate the original with respect to the background, but instead attempted to get the same "look and feel." The limited Lego palette made things challenging.
 I made it 
  June 8, 2017
Quoting Sir Flexalot Very impressive!
Thanks.
 I made it 
  June 8, 2017
Quoting Didier B Splendid ! Really superb. Bravo !
Thanks. This one certainly took me a lot longer than most, so it's good to know that it is appreciated.
 I like it 
  June 8, 2017
Wow! Great work on this one! Instantly recognizable! My Nan has a print of this in her bathroom! haha! --Blast--
 I like it 
  June 8, 2017
Usually not much of a commentator on builds other than Technic.... but this is truly stunning. The people, background, emulation of the weather..... everything. Really, IMO, one of your most notable works....
 I like it 
  June 8, 2017
Very impressive!
 I like it 
  June 8, 2017
Splendid ! Really superb. Bravo !
 
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LEGO models my own creation MOCpages toys shop The Singing Butler


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