Lego Photography Is Harder Than You Think


Are these sets you’re making off the top of your head, or are they scenes from Lego? Are there building instructions like normal Lego sets? 

My MOCs are usually a result of me wanting to free up more space in a Lego bricks bin: “Oh, I can’t close this white bricks bin anymore. What can I build that will use up a lot of that color?” That’s probably not the typical approach, but it works for me. 

I’m just digging through the bins to see what I can use, so I don’t have instructions. I wanted to make instructions for this medieval alley MOC I made, which I started physically (to use up bricks in another overflowing bin of light bluish gray) and then recreated digitally with Lego’s digital builder called I don’t have a lot of experience in the software, though, and I find it distracts me a lot. It also makes my wish list bloat.

One day, I’ll learn how to make instructions, but I have to set aside time to learn how to do it, and right now, it’s not a priority. Especially since all my file names are

How do you decide which scene you’re photographing? 

Most of my photos are focused on a character — ideally, one that I’ve created. New muses and interesting minifigures always get me pumped to shoot. I think about where this character might be found and when: indoors or outdoors, in the forest or underwater, in the morning or late at night, and so on. Then I’ll decide what I need to build or bring with me to support the concept.

How long does it usually take to photograph a scene? What equipment are you using? 

I take photos indoors and outdoors from simple minifig portraits to complicated interior shots, so the time and effort I spend on a photo can be anywhere between 20 minutes and three hours. I usually shoot with either my Sony a6500 or a7iii with a macro lens and CPL filter. I have a bunch of macro lenses, but I tend to shoot with a 30mm or 40mm to get more of the environment in the frame. 

I lean more on flash for lighting, even when I’m outdoors during the day. I can’t always get the sunlight I want where I want it to be because of trees blocking it or clouds passing, so I take a little flash attached to a selfie stick. It’s my sun-on-a-stick.

Artistically, I like to backlight my models and create shadows in my Lego photos too, and flash helps me do that. I like to bring out the form rather than flatten everything. 

What would you like people to take away from your Lego scenes? 

I would like people to look at my Lego photos and think how fun it is to bring Lego to life in a photo. I want them to try to do the same because it’s a different way to play and create with Lego. 


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