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Bionicle is a unique LEGO theme. While the parts interchange with System LEGO they are oddly shaped, difficult to connect, and generally frowned upon by the adult LEGO community.

In Bionicle I saw an untapped medium. The parts themselves are rounded, often lacking the angular look of traditional LEGO. At the time that I made Agiel I was looking at many Bionicle creations and thinking that with enough parts one could make some very organic, very non-Lego looking creations. In fact I included some Bionicle parts in Agiel.Jumps to "The Rack" Brickshelf folder However I realized that I was Bionicle ignorant. In short I had little experience actually building with the parts. It is quite technical work really, it's not like playing a game of foxy bingo online or playing War Hammer. I decided to build purely with Bionicle parts for a short time with the intent of learning a new building discipline. Then I planned to combine my mecha knowledge bringing it all full circle. During the journey I hoped to come up with some new techniques and chart some new territory.

Both because I only wanted to show finished models to the mecha guys and because I love secrets and inside jokes I decided to create a ghost builder for my Bionicle creations. The idea was to take the pressure off me to create fully formed, fully polished models and give me the freedom to post essentially works in progress or WIPs in Bionicle. I created "Cajun Vayland": Cajun being my chocolate lab and Vayland being my dad's name.

I spent about the next year mostly on BZPower ( BZP) as "Cajun" building many models both small and large, Bionicle and System. Over time Lots of Lego Bionicle toilets! Who could ask for more?this project became known as "The Cajun Vayland Project" or CVP by some of my close Mecha friends. The models are clumped in various series only to organize them. In reality they don't really fit into any particular category. Many of the models were made simply to try one particular technique or part. Other models were created to push what was thought possible, in some ways to go overkill. Sometimes I was simply adding elements to see how different a few fast changes could completely switch the feel of a model. Then I made a few series as an answer to comments I read online about Bionicle.

While I'm commenting on Cajun and the models I'll share a few funny facts. You may notice that the series have names running from A to Z. These are only so that the most recent model would show up on Brickshelf's recent folder. I would build the Brickshelf folders from Z to A and then start another folder. Also the names are completely arbitrary. I used various sources and simply took names from A-Z: D&D monster compendium, the Bible glossary, my daughter's ABC book.

The Cajun Vayland Project unofficially ended with Torment which brought my building techniques full circle. However, I had developed many techniques using Technic straws. Using Technic straws opened a whole different world of possibilities, a whole new kind of building. I have started going in this direction with my building. It is a super organic, very heavily layered, somewhat messy looking type of building. Another Bionicle builder, Jeff Ranjo, once said that building with Bionicle was similar to weaving. I liked the comparison and dubbed this style of building "weave style" for lack of a better term.

Weaving is a time consuming sometimes agonizing way to build. Nothing connects at 90 degrees, everything has "give", and generally I never know if something will work until I build it. There really is no way to make mock ups, and even when I can those still take hours. The results though are deceivingly  light, strong models. The "trick" if you will is that the models are hollow. I don't build up around a central structure. I'm building the outer layer only. I still have several design ideas I'd like to explore using this technique: bending spines, wagging tails, springy legs, and big wings.

 

To the Demons Folder on Brickshelf

To the Demonites folder on Brickshelf

Oddels are lil' funny creatures

I made several so we could flush Purple Dave's big ego...it kept cloggin just the one toilet.

I made some swords just for fun.

 

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