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Building my life away
by James Y.
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Welcome to my creations page, Iím glad you could stop by. Please look around, I enjoy getting feedback on my builds here in my little corner of the LEGO community. If youíve got suggestions, let me know. You arenít going to hurt my feelings if you offer fair critiques of my builds. I try to get around and view lot of other folks MOCs as well.

-James (April 15, 2017)
My Brickset Profile
Member of the Tennessee Valley Lego Club, Nashville Chapter, a Registered Lego User Group.



My Recent Page News:

May 22, 2017 - Started the process to fix a lot of my digital images to remove the grids from the background. Space, Sculpture, and a Town & City LDD files should be mostly corrected.

May 21, 2017 - Reached 100 comments on my creations! Thank you for commenting!

May 18, 2017 - Reached 10 people who list me as a favorite builder! Thank you for following!

May 17, 2017 - Thank you for 10,000 views of my creations over the last 3 years!

March 30, 2017 - I've gone back through and updated all my pictures to the larger format on ALL of my old posts. If you've not seen some of my older stuff or couldn't get good detail, now is the time to check again! The conversion was completed on March 30th, 2017. I even found a few more of my older pictures so a couple of MOCs have some new photos. I've also resorted my folders so if you've got a particular interest it should be easier to find things you might like.

A Bit About Me

I'm a late-30's AFOL in Tennessee, a big bearded bloke at 6'2" and 345+315. I'm married to my wonderful wife, who also builds, though she prefers to put together sets over custom MOCs. She does have a habitat, and ideas for two more MOCs that I'm hoping she'll put together this year. We have three furballs roaming the house; two elderly cats and a very dopey dog.

Interest wise, I'm an all around geek. I'm into Fantasy and Sci-Fi, though I prefer literature to movies or television. I'm a huge fan of J.R.R. Tolkien, but I'll warn you, I hate Peter Jackson with a fiery passion. I am a Trekkie, not a big fan of Lucas' soap opera. I grew up playing D&D, 1st and 2nd editions. I've got a long history with Anime, preferring cinematic to manga, with a fondness for Miyazaki's movies over long running series, though I'm very fond of Attack on Titan. My collection of video games is in the hundreds of games between Nintendo, Super Nintendo, Sega Genesis, PS1, an my computer. Now days I mostly stick to computer RPG and Strategy games. I enjoy brit-coms, particularly Monty Python, Are you being served, and Red Dwarf. Oddly, while I watched some Dr. Who as a kid, I don't really follow it now, though my wife and a lot of my friends are big fans. I'm not a huge Marvel or DC fan, but I'm savvy with the history of the various main series universes and can discuss them.

I'm also an autodidact, and you can look that one up. While I have multiple college degrees, I will look up and learn about nearly anything and everything. Knowledge for the sake of knowledge. I have particular passions for biology, geography, geology (specifically volcanology and tectonics), history, and social psychology.

My History with LEGO

Like most LEGO users I grew up with LEGO, as well as several knockoffs like Tyco, Laramie, and MegaBlocks, but it's been LEGO's brand I've stuck with. As with most family toys, the LEGOs were as much my siblings as they were mine. Starting around 1994 my brother took over the collection for several years, and I entered my rather lengthy dark ages. It wasn't until I got married and moved out on my own in 2004 that I swapped my claims on several other family toys to get the family collection which I snagged from my parents place in 2005. At the time it was kept in two large 40 gallon blue tubs, each about 2/3rds full. That's the basis for the collection I have now, and it is sizable in its own right.

I spent most of the middle oughts and early teens of the 21st century just occasionally digging the boxes out and building a few things with what I had. So while I was back, my set purchasing and interaction was still pretty limited for a lot of years. My most notable creations were a couple of galleons, a dragon-maw gateway, and a couple of castles. Sadly all are lost to history. After I moved to Tennessee in 2011, having gotten a better paying job and a house, I started to finally expand the collection again. This became easier with the opening of the Nashville Lego Store in the Opry Mills Mall. 2012 marks the point at which I went from just tinkering occasionally to intentionally building. It also marks the point at which I started cataloging my creations, though it would be several years before I felt comfortable sharing most of them. 2015 was a bit of a watershed year for me. I started posting here, I entered the Nashville Public Library Lego Contest for the first time, and my soon-to-be sister in law gave me her entire collection which filled most of a book box. In 2016, I joined the local Tennessee Valley Lego Club, started attending LUG shows and Conventions, and the rest is now history.

My Themes

I donít have a single theme that is ďmy themeĒ, rather I like to dabble in a number of them including Architecture, Castle/Kingdom, Creator, Elves, Pirates, Space, and Town/City. I typically donít go in for much of the pop-culture tie-in themes like Star Wars, LotR/Hobbit, or Superheroes. You're unlikely to see any builds from me in the Ninjago, Chima, Nexo Knight, Bionicle, or Friends series either as I mostly get those sets for parts. Technic amuses me, but I lack any real ability to do more than basic gear works and so don't spend much time attempting complex mechanisms.

In the end, Fantasy/Medieval and Greco-Roman MOCs are where the bulk of my effort tends to go, but I enjoy all kinds of things mentioned including Sculptures, Mosaics, Micropolis, Steampunk, and Habitats. I tend to build small space stuff when I'm looking to do something quick or am bored while watching TV, though every so often I'll try something bigger with space. Typically, I avoid playing in other peopleís worlds, preferring my own imagination. My ideas list for things to build runs all over the place.

Most of my builds are what I term free-form organic, meaning I just sit down and something happens. I tend not to draw out much other than an occasional sketch. I generally only jot down the gist of an idea, so itís not uncommon for my ideas to morph rather dramatically between concept and execution. For really large builds with repetitive features I will occasionally graph out a few sections using Excel or LDD (Lego Digital Designer) just to make sure I have the parts I need on hand. Once in a while Iíll fire up LDD for a real design build that I know I donít have the parts on hand for. I really do prefer the real deal over the digital. Iím pretty good with structural load, and like building bigger when I can, and I love hinges, hatches, and secret compartments. Unfortunately, as mentioned before, Iím not terribly good with gears.

My Personal Favorite Creations:

Everyone has things they're proud of in their collections. This is a listing of my personal favorite builds. I'm going to try to keep it to a top 10, but it should help if you're just stopping by for the first time and want to see the best of, not every single post I've ever made. I'm excluding my Nashville Public Library LEGO Contest builds from this list because they've got their own list a little farther down the page.

1. The Greek Temple Complex - At six base plates this is the biggest, and probably best, build I've ever made. It's complex, pun not intended, and it shows off a mixture of my skills. If you see nothing else of mine, see this one.
2. Totoro, Version 2
3. Cleatus the Brick-Separator Centipede
4. Dragon Head Bust
5. Illudium PU-36 Explosive Space Modulator, Marvin the Martian, a digital creation
6. Rat Maze 3D
7. Dragon Window
8. Micropolis 2016
9. Shipwrecked Sailor's Island
10. Micro Spaceport Launch, a digital creation

Nashville Public Library Contest:

My entries into the Nashville Public Library Lego Contest are usually my biggest and best creations each year. I often work on them for weeks or months depending on the scale and complexity, and they're all chalked full of references to history, mythology, and literature. I also like to vary my theme for the event and have so far included Castle, Ancient World, and Steampunk themes.

2015: Dragon Tooth Keep, Best Hidden Feature Award
2016: Temple of Hephaestus, Best Hidden Compartment Award
2017: The Pharos of the Sun
2018: Pending...

Upcoming Builds:

I've always got something in the works. There's a host of smaller builds, micropolis buildings, and habitats always on my radar, plus my random builds like "Simple Space". These just happen when I find the parts and the impetus. As for the bigger builds? I always have a few on the docket as it were. Right now I have four big builds in the works:

1. The Castle of Nightmares (see a sneak preview here)
2. Tall Ship (see a sneak preview here)
3. Gnomish Tree House (see the mini-figures here)
4. Norman Keep and Curtain Wall (This is going to take a long time, maybe as long as 10 years, as it's slated to be my biggest build ever. Current plans for when it is completed measure 192 x 192 studs. That's 6 x 6 green base plates and should take upwards of 100,000 pieces.)












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Regarding Group Invitations:

I am interested in groups, but I am not interested in all groups universally. I am unlikely to join groups for themes I do not build in, or groups dedicated to contests or role playing. As I stated above, I build in worlds mostly of my own imagination, from a long list of my own ideas, and using my own stories. Anyway, getting competitive is not something I handle well on a personal level. I'm not exactly the most gracious of people when I'm in a competition.


LEGO creations
Ancient World
Ancient World
4 LEGO creations
Castle, Kingdom, & Fantasy
Castle, Kingdom, & Fantasy
6 LEGO creations
Pirates
Pirates
2 LEGO creations
Sculpture, Mosaic, and Art
Sculpture, Mosaic, and Art
10 LEGO creations
Space
Space
9 LEGO creations
Steampunk
Steampunk
2 LEGO creations
Micro Scale
Micro Scale
7 LEGO creations
Lego Digital Designer Creations
Lego Digital Designer Creations
19 LEGO creations
Collection - (4x4) Creations
Collection - (4x4) Creations
18 LEGO creations
Collection - Brick Separator Art
Collection - Brick Separator Art
2 LEGO creations
Collection - Dragon Tooth Keep
Collection - Dragon Tooth Keep
6 LEGO creations
Collection - Simple Space
Collection - Simple Space
7 LEGO creations
Brickfair Standard - Habitats
Brickfair Standard - Habitats
5 LEGO creations
TwinLUG Standard - Micropolis
TwinLUG Standard - Micropolis
6 LEGO creations
LEGO Standard - Mini-Modular
LEGO Standard - Mini-Modular
2 LEGO creations
Other
Other
5 LEGO creations


Latest creations
Micro Steam Locomotive
  36 views
Micro Steam Locomotive A small single steam locomotive chugs its way across the dusty desert in the American Southwest.
(4x4) Conestoga Wagon
1
  35 views
(4x4) Conestoga Wagon The ship of the prairie, the Conestoga Wagon in Micro. (Bonus: Wainwright added)
(4x4) 24-Part Micro City
2
  76 views
(4x4) 24-Part Micro City A (4x4) City in twenty-four parts to show the versatility of micro-building and the (4x4) building.
Gray Micro Castle
9
  129 views
Gray Micro Castle Something to prove that I still have bricks and not just a computer. ... A small micro fantasy style castle built in about 4...
(4x4) Wind under the Willow Tree
7
  217 views
(4x4) Wind under the Willow Tree Can you hear the call of the wind, it's voice fluttering by, whispering of its many travels and warning of things to ...
(4x4) Micro Fortresses
1
  65 views
(4x4) Micro Fortresses A pair of micro-fortresses. Water Fort vs. Mountain Tower. ... It's medieval week at the 4x4 group.


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