(Credit: Mark Kelso)
A Lego builder has just completed a four-year project to recreate a two-metre long Lego model of Halo colony ship UNSC Spirit of Fire.
Mark Kelso is no stranger to Lego titans. In 2008, he spent nine months building, brick by brick, a 1.8-metre (six-foot) model of Star Wars destroyer Invisible Hand. We would have thought that was hardcore enough, but not for Kelso: not long after, he embarked on a new project: to build a gigantic model of a ship inspired by Halo Wars.
The project, started in January 2010, was originally called The Eye of Chaos, and the ship itself was intended to be a "sister" ship to Spirit of Fire. This was because, while Kelso wanted to build Spirit of Fire, he didn't feel there were enough reference images floating around to do a completely accurate job. This changed in late 2009 when he reached out to the MOC Pages community for assistance, and he conceived a workable solution.
"With the heaven-sent help of Heikki Anttila, who was involved with the original ship's design and 3D modelling, I was able to render a Lego version of the ship that was far closer to the original design than I ever expected," he wrote in his final blog post. "There are, of course, variations which we'll lovingly call artistic license. Nevertheless, upon completion, it seemed to me the overall look of the ship really WAS that of the SOF, and I felt it should be referred to as such."
The final brick was placed on 27 January this year, and the completed model is a beast. "Oddly enough, it wasn't the construction of the ship that turned out to be the biggest challenge, but life itself," Kelso wrote. "I won't bore you with the details, but suffice to say the moment I finally locked the final brick in place was an accomplishment that I'll never be able to fully put into words."
Even Kelso can't say for sure how many pieces are in the model ("more than six"), but it measures, he said, 85 studs high, 70 studs wide and 297 studs long — just over seven feet, or 2.13 metres. And it's magnificent. We haven't examined every inch to look for inconsistencies, but it looks pretty accurate from what we've seen, and the construction is breathtaking, even if Kelso himself doesn't necessarily think so.
"Yes, it's just Lego. And to others, it's just another Lego SHIP among a sea of mind-blowing creations," he wrote. "But, for me it was about having the tenacity to keep getting back up, no matter how many times life knocked me down, to see this bloody project through to its completion...This really was my own personal There and Back Again."