The Brickvention 2018 weekend has come and gone, with the best LEGO designs and models on display that Australia has to offer. In case you were unaware, Brickvention is Australia’s largest LEGO fan convention.
It runs in January every year here in Melbourne, and attracts hundreds of builders from across the country, eager to dazzle visitors with incredible LEGO designs and MOCs.
I had the amazing opportunity to attend for the 5th year running now, and I got to visit on Friday during the Convention Day to avoid the crowds on Saturdays and Sundays. It took me awhile, but I’ve finally sorted out all the photos and videos I took over the weekend to bring you my write-up of Brickvention 2o18!
I must say, Brickvention is THE premier LEGO event to attend in Australia, and it has never disappointed. The level of creativity, talent and effort put into the designs and displays blow my mind each year, and 2018 is no exception. I spent about 3 hours at Brickvention, frantically trying to enjoy all the builds and snap photo to document all the builds on show.
I must’ve taken like over a thousand photos, so here are my favourites this year! For the complete album, be sure to check out my Facebook page for all the photos I snapped, which include hundreds more not featured here. There’s also a Youtube playlist with videos I took. More to be added soon!
Oh and as a bonus, I tried shooting more video content, which I felt was a much better way to convey the scale and detail of the builds – my camera is great for photos, but not so good for videos, so excuse the shakiness and grainy quality!
I remember when I first turned around and caught a glimpse of this gargantuan Minas Tirith diorama by Nikolaus & Dimitri Fouras, I instantly let out an expletive, clearly taken aback by how big it was. I’m a big Lord of the Rings fan, and this model just made me go giddy with excitement due to the sheer scale of the battle AND walls of Minas Tirith.
Let the video show you just how crazy huge this is.
Fantasy LEGO MOCs and displays are always a staple at conventions like this, and Brickvention 2018 didn’t disappont at all in this department. I really enjoyed this build – Sky Islands by Gabriel Thomson, Henry Alekna & Ben Andrews.
The model contains a few floating islands, some airships and some really stunning & intricate builds on the islands. I especially like the colours used for the foliage and the buildings – there’s just something awesome about Medium Azure elements against tan.
These are probably my worst photos as the lighting in this area was just horrendous, so apologies for that. It looked way better in person.
This is The Summerset Isles by Tristan Chatton, which gives off heavy Elven-Rivendell & Norse vibes. The waterfall is just gorgeous, and I especially like the height achieved on the vertical structures. The big tree built atop one of the buildings was also incredible eye-catching.
On the fantasy front, I was also very impressed by Covenant of Arcane by Sam B and Alex C. It also won 2nd Best In Show, and I have to say that it’s incredibly well-deserved. I really admire the rich colour palette employed so seamlessly, as well as all the little foliage and subtle architectural patterns across the structures.
Another incredible build was Volsung Hall by Ben Cossy & Eli Brinsmead which eschewed leafy aesthetics for an amazing subterranean design. Carved into the mountain, employing a clever cross-section look, we get to delve into the intricacies of Volsung Hall.
Builds at Brickvention are usually pimped up with lights and motorised movements, but I really, really liked the subtle orange glow employed in the library section of Volsung Hall. It just cast a warm vibe into one of the corners of the build, which worked so well visually.
There’s so much going on in Volsung Hall, so check out this video showing off all the different sections of the model – photos just don’t do it justice at all!
The Ancient Eyrie won Best In Show, and it’s not hard to see why. The intricate greebling detail across the entire structure looks absolutely terrific and is mesmerising to look at. As an added bonus, the build also slowly rotate to really take the visual effect of the model to a whole other level.
Youth builders often bring some of the most creative models to Brickvention, and one such MOC was Temple of Bing Lee by Hannigan Heycox with its gorgeous oriental influencs
My favourite part of the build was this dragon-shaped bridge that fits so seamlessly into the landscape.
Not content with one spectacular build, Hannigan Heycox once again delights with this whimsical build entitled The Party at Beaver Dam. It depicts a sleepy scene where anthropomorphic woodland critters relax against heavy snowfall on a beaver dam.
What I love most about this build is how much it evokes feelings and memories of flipping through an illustrated children’s books. It also helps that the model is overrun with some fantastic details and charming characters which makes this MOC one to remember.
There are 3 things in life that are certain – death, taxes and LEGO Classic Space MOCs at Fan Conventions. This year, a trio of builders displayed Galactic Divides, an eclectic curation of some seriously futuristic Classic Space-theme builds, spanning several small, medium and large dioramas.
Gavin Rich, Josh Morris and Rob Fiford featured everyone’s favourite factions from Classic Space, which includes the likes of Blacktron, Space Police and Classic Space astronauts clashing with one another.
I really liked how the modern and sleek designs of the ships, crafts and space buggies, culminating in this sick Blacktron I (best Blacktron btw. Fight me) base which has a orbital laser cannon as some sort of base defence. Be sure to check out more photos on in my Brickvention 2018 Album as the builds are absolute treats for any fan of classic space.
On to more unique displays, Sue Ann Barber showed off a fully kitted out Scala Doll House. Yes, it’s totally LEGO. Scala was a theme aimed at girls, featuring dolls and dollhouses, which were clearly designed to take a slice out of Barbie’s market share.
I’ve never seen a full Scala dollhouse in the flesh, so this was absolutely fascinating being able to see the pieces up close and marvel at one of the more bizarre chapters in LEGO’s storied history.
A giant Fairy Batman made an appearance too, which I highly approve of!
Tamara Dadswell’s Beauty & The Beast was also another highlight for me. The eye-catching builds, featuring highly detailed sculptures of Cogsworth and Lumiere were an absolute treat for the senses.
The coolest piece had to be this mosaic mirror, which featured the faces of Belle and Beast on opposing ends. For such a small area, I was astounded by how well the bricks managed to capture both their faces without losing too much detail.
I was also floored by the ornate details and ingenious use of pearl gold elements to bring Cogsworth to life. One of the highlights for me, and Tamara’s build also netted her a Commendation Trophy, which was very deserving for such a great MOC.
Oh I also got to meet Tamara briefly which was great!
Yet another fixture of Brickvention, and something I secretly look forward to seeing each year are Jamie and Nancye Hanson’s Duplo models. Every year, they do with Duplo what everyone does with LEGO with fantastic results.
I don’t typically follow Duplo developments closely, so I had a really good time checking out the pirate ship and the Duplo Skull Cave Island which looked fantastic. Love the giant sharks too.
Dragon’s Tranquility by Timothy Jones & Danii Brighton has to be a Top-5 build for me. I went “whoa” the first time I saw it, and instantly fell in love with the brilliant concept and design. For me, this was one of the most incredible LEGO Dragon sculptures I’ve personally seen. I liked it so much that I made it the feature photo of this Brickvention album.
I loved just how well its designed, and the juxtaposition of a fierce dragon allowing a butterfly (fairy wings from Butterfly Girl minifigure) to peacefully rest on its talons. I also found out that the model was inspired by their daughter, Karliah Grace Brighton-Jones.
There’s a heartwarming story behind the build as the couple had challenges conceiving and thought they would never bear a child till Karliah came about, which just added so much meaning to the model and endeared me greatly to it.
Here’s a video of the Great Ball Contraption from Brickvention 2018. Ever year, it gets bigger and bigger!
Every year at Brickvention there are “themes” and this year, the theme was theme parks and carnivals. I really liked Retro Carnival by Ollie W who is 11! He’s more than half my age and twice as talented as I will ever be.
Really fantastic work from such a young talented builder, and I hope he’ll be building more which I’m looking forward to see at future Brickventions.
This was another outstanding youth build – I loved just how vibrant, colourful and whimsical the Pluck A Duck Pond is. It was build by the Corryong LEGO Artist Girls (CLAG) made up of Delany Dryden (aged 6), Erin Miles (aged 13), Adele Miles (aged 16) and Kimb Heycox.
Fun, colourful builds like these never fail to put a smile on my face.
Another great theme park was designed by Frostbricks, featuring a really neat, compact but detail-filled LEGO theme park with plenty of neat attractions like a Pacman arcade, Classic Space carousel, a wonderful mini Disney Castle and some neat Food Stand Diners which you can support on LEGO Ideas if you’d like to see them as a LEGO set.
Imperial Fairground by Handoko Setyawan
That said, they all paled in comparison with Handoko Setyawan’s marvelous Imperial Fairground. The connection of Disney who run the world’s best theme parks wasn’t lost on me, and Handoko lugged this gigantic Star Wars fairground all the way from Sydney to display at his first Brickvention, deservedly winning a Commendation trophy from the judges.
It’s packed to the brim with Star Wars-themed rides and attractions, and chock full of hilarious scenes by theme park-goers, most of which belong to Star Wars, Disney or Marvel.
My favourite Easter Egg in the build – a Porg rotisserie manned by Chewie.
Oh and did I mention all the rides are motorised? Photos don’t do it justice at all, so check out this video tour of Handoko’s Imperial Fairground. I’m so glad I got to see this (and meet Handoko!) in person, it was honestly one of the most fun builds I’ve ever seen at Brickvention.
I expected to see a lot more Star Wars at Brickvention but there seemed to be a dearth of builds. I did like Assault on Teth by Ben Pountney & Simon Coleman which was one of the most eye-catching displays thanks to the generous use of pink bricks and its sheer size. I’m a big fan of all things Ahsoka Tano, so this was straight up my alley.
I’m a big fan of historical builds, so I was naturally taken by Kai Fitzpatrick’s Noah’s Ark model. I love LEGO animals, so it was cool to see a couple of them heading into the big boat. I bet Kai would’ve been flooded by compliments for his design. Okay, I’ll stop with the puns, lest I trigger an Exodus of readers from my site.
Another neat Star Wars build that I really liked was the Carida Stormtrooper Factory, a mechanical assembly line churning out the Empire’s finest soldiers.
Of course, you have to see it in motion for best results.
There were plenty of superheroes themed builds scattered throughout the hall. This X-Men Mansion was really dope and impressively large.
Frostbricks’s Daily Bugle was also really neat.
This build by Jason Perry combined my two loves of DC Super Heroes and the NBA with a 5 on 5 game between The Joker and Batman’s teams in front of a massive audience of DC heroes and villains. Don’t miss The Flash’s cool speed-effect on-court, the characters from The LEGO Movie as commentators, and Iron Man hidden in Batman’s suit collection.
Not to be outdone, Harrison Reynolds also put together a similar concept, which pits the Avengers vs the Justice League in a game of football. Clearly, the Justice League wins this match. Don’t miss Harley Quinn and Deadpool in the commentator box.
My favourite Super Heroes-themed build in all of Brickvention has to be Steve Reynold’s Rogues Gallery dioramas featuring scenes and characters from the classic 1960s Batman TV Series.
I’m a simple guy. I see LEGO Transformers MOCs and I feature them on the blog. This excellent model features some amazing brickbuilt Autobots squaring up against Decepticons against a backdrop of modular buildings.
These look so much better than the crap Hasbro Kreo ones. Shoutout to the G1 Wheeljack!
I would totally let this massive LEGO Trojan Horse into my city.
Forgot to grab the builders’ details (if anyone could point it out, that’d be super!), but I really liked this display of all things Netherlands.
Japan 2089 was a cool block capturing what seems to be a futuristic militaristic slice of Japan. Love the train station up there.
This massive Ninjago model was also pretty cool.
For designs that celebrate real-life architectural marvels, it was hard not to be blown away by Graham Draper’s take on the Hungarian State Opera.
The level of detail that went into the facade and interiors was just astounding and this was one of the more technically impressive builds at Brickvention 2018. The tropy was well deserved.
Here’s a look at Micropolis, a Brickvention mainstay.
For fans of LEGO’s expansive history, this curation featuring 40 years of Minifigures by Frances and Martin Schroeter was a great walk down memory lane.
Anthony Wilson’s builds were some of my absolute favourites this year. No idea what the name is as it used the “Cthulhu text” with wonky bleedy characters, so I’m just going to call it l̗̯̯é͙͎̟͎͚̳͈g̷̜͚̰͈͎o̼̙͈͇ ̥̗͉͚͎h͘o̼̼r͏̻͎r̙͔̙̣̮͕̲͡o͜r̸͉̟͕.
Really cool, stylish, slightly scary take on Lovecraftian/Apocalyptic/Book of Relevations beings.
The Tea Dragon by Anthony Wilson was another superb build that shows just what you can do with Bionicle parts in the hands of a talented and creative builder. Calling the Tea Dragon the most beautiful LEGO build at Brickvention wouldn’t be an understatement at all.
Lastly, we had a few builds celebrating Nexo Knights, which let’s face it, isn’t doing well from a sales perspective and is most likely going to be killed off later this year.
Richard Jones of The Rambling Brick fame brought us this delightful mashup of Classic Space and Nexo Space, complete with lights! God, I love that orange on blue colour-scheme.
If you had told me last year that a Nexo Knights build would be my numero uno pick of Brickvention 2018, I’d have called you crazy. But here we are. Jeff Carroll from Catpipe Creations blew me the *bleep away* with some of the most brilliant mechs I have ever seen.
Knighton’s Finest takes what is clearly some Mechwarrior-influenced mechas, and deftly augments it with Nexo Knights designs.
The hulking castle-mech piloted by the king just oozed style and bad-assery.
Seriously, look at these incredible mech designs. Nexo Knights doesn’t get the respect it deserves from Adult LEGO fans, but you cannot see this incredible collection of mechs and not be seriously impressed.
Here’s a video showing Knighton’s Finest up-close. Jaw-dropping and I have no qualms crowning this build as my favourite build of Brickvention 2018.
Phew, that’s it JUST for some of the highlights of Brickvention 2018! I have an entire album of more photos I took at Brickvention, which you can check out on my Facebook page. I don’t think I captured everything (I don’t know how I missed the Falkor sculpture) but it’s got most of the builds and displays. There were also so many builds and models I’d love to have featured but with almost 70 photos in this post and 3000 words… I had to draw the line somewhere.
I also have a few more videos which I’ll have to edit when I have time, but in the meantime, enjoy the rest of the photos from Brickvention 2018!
Did you manage to attend Brickvention 2018? Let me know in the comments what were some of your favourite builds and models from the exhibition!
A huge thanks to the Brickvention team for putting another fantastic show together and for the media pass to attend Convention Day. Can’t wait for next year’s!
Impressive show! I especially like the large number of impressive medieval fantasy builds.
Btw, I think the Nexo mecha are more Warhammer 40K inspired. Check out 40k Titans to see what I mean.
Great writing, great photos. Thanks!
Ah yes, Jeff did mention they were inspired by Warhammer! Unfortunately, I’m not that familiar with Warhammer, other than the fact that it’s a pretty expensive hobby!
Oliver C says
these builds are so cool i really like the dragon but they are all really good
Which dragon? Tea or Tranquility? 🙂
Great summary Jay. My favourite was the Imperial Fairground. I love builds that have so many details and jokes that you can literally spend a hour looking at it and still discover more. Some very clever techniques and subtle humour used to great effect too. And for the literal icing on the cake, this guy made his friends amazing wedding cake out of LEGO! I need to get better friends ?
Yeah, I always enjoy builds that incorporate humour in them. Haha, wedding cakes are already expensive enough- I’d hate to know how much that LEGO one cost!
Alec Mead says
Marcel van Lankveld is the guy who built the all things Netherlands set.
I went and really enjoyed it. My favourite build was the Batman/Superman mosaic. My favourite part was all the rare minifigures available for purchase at the shops.
Awesome! I totally missed that section with the mosaics. Kicking myself now.
Did you pick up any rare minifigs? Prices are usually quite steep and you’re always better off getting stuff from Bricklink.
Thank you for showing these amazing things, I couldn’t go this year, plz show us your favourite set at the store
Sorry, I don’t understand you. Do you mean my current favourite set on sale?
Great report Jay and some incredible builds but no shots of any Technic models? No cars or vehicles for the blog? Or is Brickvention not really a big technic event?
Yeah, Technic isn’t really a huge fixture at Brickvention. Last year, there was a really awesome Motorcycle which won best in show: https://jaysbrickblog.com/wp-content/uploads/2017/01/Brickvention-2017-Technic-Motorcycle.jpg
This year, there was one really impressive Technic build: a massive Bucket Wheel Excavator: https://www.facebook.com/jaysbrickblog/photos/a.1407689222694047.1073741904.168185439977771/1407700182692951/?type=3&theater
There was also a bunch of B Models to commemorate the 40th anniversary
Thank you very much for posting your highly detailed report. It was a pleasure to read.
I will have to make my way to Melbourne someday.
Thank you again.
Glad you enjoyed it, James! Definitely need to drop by Melbourne. I’d say it’s the best city in Australia for LEGO fans 😉
Haha, I love that Chewie Porg thing!
Can you blame Chewie though? Porgs look so delicious.
My goodness, so many of these are amazing. I’m sorry to not be able to attend in person this year!
The Minas Tirith model is really pretty amazing in its scale and size. I also really enjoy the look of many of the very detailed and intricate historical-inspired dioramas, like the Summerset Isles, Vosung Hall, and the Ancient Eyrie. Assault on Teth is a really interesting and unique Star Wars build – I love the effect of all that pink on the grey stone.
Thanks for sharing these pictures and thoughts!
I thought you’d appreciate the Minas Tirith model! How good were the Mumakil? First emotion that overcome with me was pure jealousy at the giant army of minifigs.
Sadly the photos don’t do these builds justice at all. Hope you’re able to make it next year!
David Smith says
Hi Thanks for giving us the chance to see these great creations at this showcase.
You’re welcome! Love showcasing the best of Australian LEGO builders. Glad you appreciate the photos!