There Be Dragons...

I often contend that three of the most significant influences on my adolescent years were: LEGO building, computer programming, and playing Dungeons & Dragons. With this latest mosaic project, I more or less bring all of those things together (the LEGO and D&D are obvious, while behind the scenes I have the software program I wrote to help me map out the whole mural).

For those not quite as nerdy as myself, here's the background on this image. It is the cover to the boxed set of the 1977 version on the game Dungeons & Dragons. This was the first version of the game released as the "Basic" set. It was the first set that my brother and I owned and played with. Obviously, the countless hours I spent reading the rulebook and perusing the illustrations made a pretty big impression on me. In fact, I still run a Basic D&D campaign semi-regularly using this very set.

The original art was painted by David Sutherland. The color version graced the box lid while a blue and white version was used as the cover of the rulebook within. More information about the work can be found at this blog where an article talks about how the original painting was recently discovered in a warehouse of Wizards of the Coast (the company that now owns the rights to D&D).

I had been toying with the idea of creating a mosaic of this image for a long time, and when I finally bit the bullet, I decided to GO BIG. The final mural is 75" wide by 90" tall. It uses over 50,000 pieces (clicked onto 30 extra large gray LEGO baseplates). Twenty different colors of bricks are used. This was actually the first personal LEGO project I had worked on in about four years (not since the Samford Hall sculpture). It took me about two months from start to finish (let's not talk about how much the materials actually cost...)

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