by Milo Sumner in New Art on Thursday 12 June 2014

Drew Sneddon is an artist operating in a very new field: he is the first person in the world to create a nude mosaic from LEGO! Now we know what you might be thinking, LEGO are for children, but Sneddon proves definitively that the bricks can produce some outstanding results when used in tandem with some rather nifty planning.

Sneddon doesn’t simply start building with only an image in his head, he manipulates the image and breaks it down into a pre-determined number of colours in order to allocate each one to a corresponding LEGO colour. From there Sneddon can formulate a spreadsheet that shows exactly how many blocks of each colour he will need to order and precisely where they will go.

The digital planning stage takes about 30 hours, while the actual construction can take up to about 100 hours, depending on the design. Once all the building is complete, he spends about 5 hours working freehand, that is, the spreadsheet is packed up and he designs by eye, fixing the lighting and shading as quite often what looks good on screen doesn’t always translate well to real life and there is simply no substitute for the human eye.

Sneddon has been creating LEGO images for three years, predominantly converting peoples favourite photographs to LEGO on commission. This year he began working with Sydney-based photographer Edmond Thommen to create this nude mosaic from a picture of Mea, one of Thommen’s models.

Sneddon’s piece is a new entry to the world of LEGO and something that hasn’t been seen before. We usually think of castles and spaceships but with pieces like Mea, he is showing us that LEGO isn’t just for kids. With enough pieces, time and money, you can have anyone you want hanging on your wall.

You can currently see both pieces on display at Platform 72 at Central Park Sydney RG14, Ground Floor 28 Broadway, Chippendale.