Time for another Builder Spotlight – it’s been ages! The LEGO community is full of people doing amazing things with LEGO, and it’s really hard to keep up with it all. The Builder Spotlight series aims to highlight not only some incredible MOCs, but the builders themselves, and their inspirations.
Many LEGO fans would have heard of Full Plate. He’s very well known as the explorer of different techniques, which end up being stunning creations. Needless to say, I was pretty excited to do an interview!
Tell me a bit about yourself!
My name is Emil Lidé, I’m 39 years old and live in Sweden. I’m a member of Swebrick, a Swedish LUG.
How did your love of LEGO come about, and how long have you been a fan?
I played with LEGO as a child, probably around the age of 5, and I remember trying to build Transformers, which I was quite into then as well. Don’t think I did very well though 🙂 I also had some castle sets that I liked to build and play with a lot.
Did you go through the dreaded Dark Ages, and if so, what brought you out?
Yes, I did. By the age of 9 I was not really building LEGO anymore. 25 years later, my son got his first LEGO set for Christmas.
Oh, exciting! What was it?
It was 31025 Mountain Hut! We sat down to build it together, and it all came back to me while flipping through the instructions. After that I started to check out what others had done with LEGO on the internet and it kind of blew my mind. I then started to try building my own creations, and that’s what I’m currently doing.
Do you have a favourite LEGO theme or MOC subject matter?
I love to build nature scenes, making things look as realistic as possible. While building nature scenes I generally find trees to be the hardest part of the builds, which why I have been focusing a lot on how to make better looking trees. When it comes to LEGO themes, I like sets with a lot of natural colors, with much greens and browns. The Lord of the Rings and Hobbit themes were perfect, unfortunately I joined the scene a bit too late to be able to get many of them.
Do you have a favourite MOC (of your own)?
One my favourite builds is probably the “Avalonian Countryside” which I built back in 2016.
It was my first attempt at building a microscale landscape, rather than minifig scale nature. I had realised that microscale was pretty much the only way I could build a proper LEGO landscape without going bankrupt 😉 I had experimented a bit with making cheap but realistic looking microscale trees, and was keen to try putting it all together into a forest, mixed some other rural landscape types, like meadows, grain fields, moors and a lake. I was really happy with it and I think it captured the feel of a real forest quite well. Though it wasn’t perfect, and would have done a lot of things differently if I was to build it today, it was kind of a point where I realised that realistic LEGO landscapes can be built.
Any challenges in building it?
The Avalonian Countryside was a build where I sort of had to put my current way of building, which was a bit more perfectionistic, aside and instead adopt a more organic flow of building. Using pieces optimally was not really possible, because the landscape kind of developed as I went along with the building. I had a rough idea of what I wanted and where, but I wouldn’t know exactly how to build it until I got there. It kind of bugged me at first, to use a lot of small plates stacked on each other, rather than building a proper base for everything, but in the end that was the better way to build as it gave me freedom to let the build develop organically. This is the way I build all my nature builds since then, and it consumes a lot of small pieces, but I feel its a method that works for me.
How long did it take to build?
It went quite fast actually. I finished it in about 2 weeks and probably put about 25 hours on it.
How many elements are there in it?
I never count pieces actually, and in an organic build, built with the organic method I use it’s quite hard to guess, as I use many small pieces where a few big ones would have sufficed. A rough estimate would be about 4000 though.
Any favourites from other builders?
Favourite builds or builders? I’ve got loads of both! One of the first builds I saw after coming out of my dark age was the ‘AMORTUG‘ by Ecclesiastes and Tijger-San.
It was really awe inspiring and it really got me wanting to build my own builds. Equally inspiring when first looking at other people’s creations was the wonderful builds of Cesbrick, which were also very nature and castle themed, with a bit of fantasy to it. There are loads of talented builders out there, all with their own style. If I had to pick one though, I’d say Jonas Kramm, who to me is the best all-round builder in the LEGO scene. Whatever theme he tackles, his builds are very inspiring with an eye for details, but still making sure to maintain the right feel and atmosphere of the build.
What are you working on next?
I am actually in the process of building a commissioned build, which is why my output of builds haven’t been so great lately. I was asked to build it in connection with the arrival of two pandas coming to the Copenhagen Zoo. It was quite a challenging build due to all the round shapes, but I’m happy with how it turned out.
How can we keep up to date with what you’re working on and what you’ve done?
There are a number of ways:
Any advice for fellow LEGO fans?
If you know what you want to build, build it. If you don’t know, then check out what others have built until you know. The LEGO community is an awesome community and we all help inspire each other 🙂
Thanks very much to Emil for the interview!