Following our smashing success with KimT, we Rebel Bloggers are proud to present our second interview for the Eurobricks Star Wars Forum Blog! This time, we decided to look toward the creative side of the community for a glimpse into the method of the MOCing madness, finally settling on a member who had contributed regularly to our boards and earned the ‘MOC expert!’ tag in the relatively brief space of one year – Kevin Ryhal, aka MOODSWIM!
How did you start with the LEGO hobby and why Star Wars?
Ever since I was a wee Padawan, I played with Legos, building chunky-looking Transformers and things, but, years later, I “grew up”; or so I thought. One day, in 1999, Lego started their Star Wars theme, combining 2 of my favorite things from my childhood! I watched all the original movies in the theaters as a kid (yes, I’m THAT old), and the theme really clicked for me. Later, I thought it would be fun to take some of the official mini sets and modify them. I went online looking for ideas and stumbled upon a whole community of builders who not only modded sets, but built their own from scratch. That’s how my moccing “career” started.
How much time do you spend on LEGO? What do people around you think of your being an AFOL?
I spend a really unhealthy amount of time building with Lego. Since I have no family, no friends, and no life to speak of, I tend to have a TON of time for moccing! When I finally get to the point where I trust someone enough to tell them my hobby, they usually bust out laughing, pointing at me and throwing random objects at me.
How did you discover Eurobricks and what made you decide to join?
I believe I found out about the Eurobricks Forum through Brickdoctor (so you can blame him, if I end up wrecking the place). From there, I think I got an invite from KimT, and started posting some builds. I always thouroughly investigate a site before I share my madness with a bunch of strangers, but Eurobricks seemed like a really warm, active place with a very supportive community, so I knew I belonged here (oh, and most of the builders seem as crazily obsessed with Star Wars Lego as me)!
Where do you get inspiration for your MOCs?
I think about what’s been built by other moccers in this theme (and others) and wonder about what HASN’T been done yet. I’ll always look to the inspiration of the movies and TV show as well as official Star Wars toy and collectibles galleries, which I usually end up using as reference when I decide to build something.
How did you come up with your patented “Moodland” scale?
Moodland Scale figs came about from my need to build action-figure scaled Lego characters. When I started the theme, I actually had never heard of Miniland scale. i posted some figs and people kept saying “nice Miniland figs”. And I wondered what that was, so I checked out some of the official figs. I thought they looked cool, but lacked any sort of poseability. Plus, they were a bit blocky and didn’t depict alot of detail. I thought I could improve on those aspects. I posted some figs with the new design and got a comment from Brickdoctor saying “these are way different from Miniland scale. Why now call them Mood Scale.” Then I replied: “why not call them Moodland Scale, since it’s more of a play-on-words.”
How long does it usually take you to complete one of your MOCs? Do you plan ahead or do you figure it out as you build?
It depends on the size of the build, but I try to post something new about every week-and-a-half. I usually have a general idea of how I will start my build and the finished product, but I pretty much make it up as I go, which makes for a TON of building, rebuilding, smashing against the wall, and building again.
Do you keep all your MOCs for display or you re-use the parts for future builds?
What do you think I am? Made of Lego bricks? Do you think I have a magical Lego tree in my backyard where I pick an endless suppy of parts? Ahem…sorry. Lost my head there. Since I don’t have alot of room or money, I take pics of my builds, then tear them apart and recycle them.
Amongst all of your creations, which one is your most favorite? And any favorite MOC from other MOCers?
I think I’m still really proud of my Moodland Scale General Greivous. As far as other builders, I love Arthur Gugick’s stuff as well as that Thomas (can’t remember his last name) who builds old houses in Lego. His stuff is amazing!
Who’s your favorite SW character?
Han Solo! Hands down! He’s bad while still being good AND he gets the girl in the end.
Aside from LEGO, what other hobbies do you have?
Well, I have a Bachelor’s degree in Fine Arts from Kent State, so I enjoy, photography, filmmaking, drawing and painting, as well as sculpture (Lego, duh). I also sing and play multiple instruments and that I write and record my own music. D’oh! Moodswim is actually the name of my one-man band. I have a band page on Myspace, too.
What’s the reason behind your online monicker MOODSWIM (and why all those hard-to-type bracket signs in there =P)?
Well, above all else, I really want to stand out! So, I thought of ways to write my name so it just wasn’t Moodswim, and that’s what I came up with. You guys can just type it Moodswim, really. I don’t mind.
What kind of MOCs can we expect from you in the future? Do you have anything special planned?
Well, one of my New Year’s Resolutions (besides gettin off the sauce) was to build in different themes. I’ve already built some super-hero and sci-fi figs and plan to do more. You can look forward to something for the Community Build as well as Batman’s Batpod (Moodland Scale) and a few other things…
“Well, now that the interview is over, it’s time for… NO-PANTS PARTY!!”
We hope that everyone enjoyed this interview and will join us again next time. Feel free to leave any comments or additional questions you might have!