Ladies and gentlemen, thank you for joining us as we continue our newest series: Interview with an AFOL. In the following weeks, every Tuesday and Friday, we will be having interviews with AFOLs of different kinds. There will be photographers, collectors, builders, animators, and even bloggers! We’ll try to learn a little more about them and see how they came to love the plastic brick (or people) we all love. Some of these AFOLs are well known throughout the community, while others, not so much. No matter who they are, they are all incredible people who have at least one thing in common: Love for LEGO.
Today we have Lucius, a.k.a. lucwenz on Instagram.
Can you tell us a little bit about yourself?
I am an AFOL, actually from Indonesia, currently living in Taiwan for over 20 years now.
How did your journey with LEGO begin?
The journey was not long, I can say I am still a beginner. It was just about 4 years ago when I first joined Instagram. I didn’t know what to post in the beginning, and then my young nephew visited and brought his LEGO to play with me. A light bulb went on in my mind: “Hey, this could be a fun theme to begin with!”
What about your journey with photography/ collecting?
The black hole of collecting minifigures started back then, but I only prefer minifigures, not sets. As for photography, I have always liked taking pictures ever since I was young. I remember making my own self-mix-tape-cover using printed photos. (Ha, you know my age now!)
Smart phones make everything easier, WYSIWYG (What You See is What You Get) lets us do lots of trial and errors to take better photos.
What do the people around you (friends/family/spouse/children) think about your obsession?
Most of them are okay and quite supportive with this specific hobby. (Although, I think my mom doesn’t really quite get it, haha.)
My child (as you may know, I just had a cute little newborn recently), well, I predict that he will very, VERY happy to play with my collection in the near distant future. Hahaha!
What is your favorite theme?
As a comics fan since childhood, I am a huge fan of the superheroes universe. No doubt, that expands to my fave theme of toys and LEGO.
Who has been an inspiration to you?
What kind of gear do you use when taking pictures?
Most of my pics are shot with my iPhone 6 Plus (early) and later with iPhone XR. I don’t really have a studio for shooting, all my pictures take place at a corner of my working room.
Would you say you’re more of an indoor or outdoor kinda person when it comes to photography?
I think I am more of an indoor shooter, but of course, I always take my toys every time I travel. Never leave home without it. ^^
What kind of preparations do you make before taking a picture?
Since most of my time is spent working-from-home, I can easily arrange my time to do some shooting. The gear I use is a backdrop, small led lights, and other stuff like cookies and drinks, for shooting and for myself to eat. Hahaha.
How much do you edit afterwards? Do you have a favorite software or app?
For editing, I highly recommend these apps: Snapseed, LensDistortion, Typorama, Mix, Foodie, and sometimes when it is too complicated, I finish editing on my laptop. It depends of how complicated the concept is. Editing can take from 15 minutes to 1 hour.
What is your biggest challenge when photographing?
The idea and/or the twist.
Where do you get your ideas?
Everywhere! From TV, books, comics, websites, conversations with anybody, or even when I am having lunch or snacks! (Lots of my photo series are about snacks and food. LOL)
I always take notes. You may not know when or where an idea may pop up. Therefore, every time I think of something, I write them in my phone. They might be only a rough scene at first, but surely details will grow and add up eventually.
Any advice or tips you’d like to share? A secret of yours, perhaps?
Blu tack. It is a very useful stuff, and easy to remove afterwards.
You may be in this game for only 4 short (!) years, but from your pictures it’s easy to say you have a great collection. So what do you collect? Sets? Minifigures? Rare parts?
I am not a “master builder”, so that’s why I only prefer collecting minifigures. Superheroes are my first choice. As for the other themes, I will think first, whether its parts will be useful for my future stories/ideas.
Of course, who doesn’t love rare minifigures, but they are way beyond my budget for now. Haha.
Are you a purist? Or do you collect custom figures as well?
I think I am NOT a purist. Customs are good, too, as long as they are pretty cool and/or useful for my ideas.
What has been your biggest challenge in acquiring something you want?
Hunting and searching for specific minifigs! Haha. Since I don’t buy sets, some of the minifigures are not that easy to obtain, especially at a reasonable price.
And that’s it, folks! Thank you, Lucius, for having this interview with us and letting us take a sneak peek into your world. As for everyone else, don’t forget to check out Lucius’ Instagram page. His images will surely make you smile!
All images belong to lucwenz