Gypsy Wagons

Gypsy Wagons

Gypsy wagons have been around for a very long time, having primarily been seen with travelling circuses, before being adopted by gypsies.
The “Horse drawn, painted, one roomed house on wheels with a stove” is believed to originate in France in the early 19th Century. Gypsies themselves adopted them around 170 years ago.

Its Romanesque characteristics, its baroque carvings and bright colours are likely to have been picked up from wanderings in Central and Eastern Europe. The Gypsyes’ name for their wagons is a “Vardo”, from the Iranian name vurton, that means cart.
There were different types of wagons and they were made of oak, ash, elm, walnut and pine. Most caravans were pulled by draft horses.

I’ve always been intrigued by Gypsies Wagons and in the past few weeks I built a couple of them. Inspiration come mainly from a coffee table book my wife gifted me, “Les Roulottes, une invitation au voyage”, a big source of colourful and funny caravans. It was very funny designing and building these caravans and also choose the right Minifigures from old sets and Collectionable Series. If you are wondering why Jack Sparrow is in the MOC the answer is that I think he has the perfect look of a yesteryear Gypsy.

LATCHO DROM!

“Two brightly-coloured wagons are home to a band of travelling folk in Andrea Lattanzio‘s latest LEGO model. Life on the road has never looked so inviting, with the bold colors of the mobile homes enhanced with bursts of flowers, and the scene stuffed with functional-looking details. I love the hanging tassels, the little chimney stacks, and the clutter of bags and lanterns and buckets. Don’t miss the use of minifigure hats as flower-pots, and the catapults used for the legs on the fortune teller’s table.” 

(“Life on the road”  The Brothers Brick – March 29, 2020)

Behind the scenes of "Into the Wild"

Behind the scenes of "Into the Wild"

Let’s take a look at some unreleased work in progress snapshots of my latest creation, the Magic Bus from Into the Wild. The first prototype of the Bus I built was yellow; ironically before building this MOC I hadn’t sand green bricks at all. Foliage and trees are probably the main features of this MOC and you can see how the base is made, with a lot of dark tan wedges.

Coffee Stand: INSTRUCTIONS AVAILABLE!

Coffee Stand: INSTRUCTIONS AVAILABLE!

I’m happy to announce the Coffee Stand (48x48studs) and Truck instructions are now available on Brick Vault website!

You can buy the instructions right now using this handy link.

Main features:
✅ Step by step Hi-Quality instructions made by Simone Bissi, one of the most capable instructions maker all around;
✅ Instructions for Coffee Stand and Pick-up truck;
✅ Part count (48x48studs): 1482 pieces; 
✅ Part count (32×32 studs): 988 pieces; 
✅ A modular version of the stand that fits in a 32×32 baseplate is also included;
✅ PDF for sticker printing included.

The Coffee Stand is the second classic food stand designed by Norton74 and it follows the well known Hot Dog Stand (February 2018) and precedes the Hamburger Stand built few months after in June 2019.

Below some pages extracted from the instructions as an example.

If you are wondering if the Coffee Stand fits between your Modular Buildings, the answer is YES it fits! Look at the photo below to realize it.

So if you like coffee don’t miss the chance to build the iconic mid-20th century Americana culture Coffee Stand designed by Norton74. You won’t be disappointed!

This is the video presentation by the guys from Brick Vault…so cool!

Into the Wild and the Magic Bus

Into the Wild and the Magic Bus

A couple of months ago I built the Walden Cabin inspired by the the book “Walden; or life in the woods” written by Henry David Thoreau.
Walden and others books of authors like Leo Tolstoy and Jack London were the inspiration for Chris McCandless‘s journey back in early nineties.
My latest work is the most rapresentative scene of the movie Into the Wild that is an adaptation of the book of the same name written by Jon Krakauer, and tells the story of Christopher McCandless indeed, a man who hiked across North America into the Alaskan wilderness in the early 1990s.
McCandless’s intention was to live in harmony with nature, being self-sufficient, and rejecting the excess of material wealth and societal pressure. Unluckily his story ended differently than that of his predecessor Thoreau…
I saw the movie many years ago and recently I saw it again and I found it very inspirational and a little bit sad.
I recreated the “Magic Bus” that became the home for Alexander Supertramp, that’s the new name of Chris, in the middle of the wild nature, as you can see in the movie and as it really was back in those years. The bus is an old 1946 International Harvester K-5 used by the Yutan Construction Company to provide remote accommodations for the construction crew from Fairbanks that worked on road upgrades in 1960–1961. It contained beds and a wood-burning stove, which still remain today. 
I could tell you many stories related to the film but I don’t want to reveal anything to you, since maybe you haven’t seen the film or read the book yet…
Today would be Chris’s 52nd birthday and I think it’s the right day to share my Magic Bus. Happy birthday Chris!

“In honour of Chris McCandless’ 52nd birthday earlier this week, 2019 TBB LEGO Builder of the Year Andrea Lattanzio build a stunning recreation of the “Magic Bus” from the end of McCandless’ life, as documented in the book and film Into the Wild. This creation is a fitting tribute. The landscape looks like the clearing on the rugged Stampede Trail, featuring various elements representing rocks, plants, and mushrooms. My favourites are the tree built out of brown stud shooters and the grey homemaker hairpiece as a large rock. Framed inside its wild Alaskan surroundings, is the bus itself. The design is spot on and includes clever use of a dish with a spider web pattern as old and aged headlights and a stack of 3×3 dishes as the bus’s grill.” 

(“Go into the wild on the magic bus”  The Brothers Brick – February 16, 2020)

A classic FORD MUSTANG is perfect for celebrating Xmas holidays

A classic FORD MUSTANG is perfect for celebrating Xmas holidays

December 25th Santa carried a very welcomed gift to my house, the well known Mustang from LEGO Creator Expert series.

It was funny building this big (yes, BIG!) piece of Americana and even more stimulating taking good pictures on my work station. I think this is the best Creator Expert vehicle yet and even I’m not a collector this wild horse will be displayed on the shelf in my LEGO room.

In the same hours I was building my Mustang a piece of Hollywood history went for a record price, when the green 1968 Ford Mustang GT used in the Steve McQueen movie “Bullitt” sold for $ 3.74 million at a Florida auction house. Take a look below.

It’s been a long and winding road for one particular 1968 Ford Mustang GT. You first saw the car slam dancing through the streets of San Francisco as one of two Highland Green fastbacks purchased by Warner Bros for use in the detective movie Bullitt, starring car-obsessed actor Steve McQueen. After Bullitt ended filming, the famous Mustang was sold to Warner Bros employee Robert Ross, before it spent several years with an actual detective, then went into hiding by 1974 with its fourth owner, Robert Kiernan, in New Jersey. It resurfaced by surprise decades later, trotted out by Ford at the 2018 Detroit auto show—and its whirlwind celebrity didn’t end there. The car just sold at Mecum auctions, bringing in the highest sale price of any Mustang ever at public auction.