I have a confession to make: I often find myself going back to that page that reminds me how turning your passion for the brick can become a very meaningful full-time profession. I’m talking about the elite roster of 13 LEGO Certified Professionals who advocates the hobby all over the world. Whether they’re working on a commissioned project or simply building things for the love of the craft, you’ll simply find the enthusiasm of these LEGO Certified Professionals inspiring. Situated all over the world, our LCPs are known for their extraordinary LEGO design and building skills, exciting level of interest in the LEGO brick building system, and their professional influence among LEGO fans and the larger community
For this week, I would like to begin with someone who is very close to where I am geographically. When I saw the video of his commissioned work over the streets of Singapore back in 2011, I was immediately captured by the depth of his creativity. Meet Nicholas Foo – the only Asian, and fifth Lego Certified Professional who was awarded with the prestigious title in 2006.
Nicholas did not aspire to be a LEGO Certified Professional at first. According to an interview with Yahoo Singapore correspondent Fann Sim, Nicholas understands very well the difficulty of being honored with such a title. “There are some Lego fans that can build really well, even better than me, but don’t get accepted into the program,” Nicholas said. “Other than having good building skills, you also have to show that you are creative, demonstrate that you’re a people person, carry yourself well and have a good business plan. It’s a big step apart from a hobby because you’re running a business.” Nevertheless, it is quite difficult not to notice his works. Once commissioned to build a three-dimensional version of the Singapore map, his team over at Blackbulb Creations used 250,000 pieces of LEGO bricks to complete it, making it the biggest project that Nicholas created to date.
He and his team have gone a long way since then – and as a way of paying it forward to the community, he never had second thoughts in embarking on a project commissioned to him by Ogilvy and Mather. This time he knows that he will be leaving a legacy that will somehow inspire his fellow Singaporeans to think and imagine big. Commissioned to make three sidewalk murals, Nicholas came up with a theme that is so synonymous with the LEGO name. ‘IMAGINE’ features a very clever take on how three fictional characters – a rainbow-colored caterpillar, a red giant monster, and a distressed whale – may come to life if ever you meet them along the street. Take a look at these photos.
These murals were mounted in 3 bus stop ad shells at different locations in Singapore. When viewed from the front, these murals would blend with the background, even in their illustrative and studs-out form. It has fun, dreamlike characteristic that will make you blink twice, thinking that you might be actually imagining things. Working with his creative team at Blackbulb Creations, they managed to work out the technical details and dimensions before based on photo collages that they sketched and dot inked. Each mural measures around 1.2m x 1.8m and used a total of over 97,000 pieces of 1×1 plates. Nicholas’ murals were eventually recognized and awarded by various award-giving bodies in advertising both local and abroad. Here’s a short promotional video on the making of these murals and how people responded to them. I find it inspiring to see those little kids simply being amazed by what they see.
Nicholas probably couldn’t help but smile each time he passes by those bus stops. Those murals will continue to remind him of how far his imagination has carried him throughout his journey as a fan of the craft and more so, a LEGO Certified Professional. Listen to him as he shares his thoughts about his work and on pressing on towards the direction of your dreams, as seen in this promotional video from HP Asia. Visit Nicholas’ blogsite for more examples of his work and involvement in the larger LEGO community.