The LEGO® Botanical Collection burst onto the scene in 2021, but they began life long before that thanks to a LEGO employee who wasn’t even a designer. Astrid Sundorf Christensen wanted to cheer up their workspace with brick-brick blooms. The idea of flowers created from LEGO elements soon spread throughout the LEGO offices and it wouldn’t be long before the idea would inspire a product line. This is just one of the stories featured in this new book from Chronicle Books. Ahead of its publication next month, here’s an early at the LEGO Botanical Almanac: A Field Guide to Brick-Built Blooms.
Book Title: LEGO Botanical Almanac: A Field Guide to Brick-Built Blooms | Publisher: Chronicle Books | Pages: 112 | RRP: £14.99/$19.99 | ISBN: 9781797227801
Illustrations: Nina Pace | Availability: March 28th (UK/EU) & March 19th (US)
Similar to LEGO Games, the LEGO book licence was opened up to more publishers with the introduction of the LEGO Books imprint. This has seen many more LEGO titles released and some of the more unique offerings have come from Chronicle Books. Their latest offering is inspired by the LEGO Botanical Collection. It’s billed as an illustrated guide to LEGO flowers but it’s not merely a look at all the sets. Instead, it’s a combination of a vintage field guide detailing the real-world blooms and plants along with in-depth chats with some of the LEGO designers who have worked on the various sets. This is what makes the book a highlight for those interested in how sets are created. Several LEGO employees offer their insight into how the products they worked on, came to be. They include the aforementioned Astrid, who was the original architect of LEGO flowers, along with Michael Psiaki, Milan Madge, Anderson Wars Grubb and Nicolaas Vás.
The field guide aspect of the book doesn’t just feature product images, instead, unique illustrations have been commissioned and created by Nina Pace. These are wonderful and hark back to the days when the natural world was charted through similar drawings. Each plant or flower created in LEGO form has its own page and illustration. The information which accompanies the imagery offers details about the real plants along with facts about the LEGO versions. The same illustration style is used to create a special art print included with every book. Chronicle Books should create a set of bigger-sized prints using the same images as they would look great framed.
Although much of the Botanical Collection is tied to the Icons theme, the book also features other LEGO sets which feature plants. These include a couple of Christmas, Creator and seasonal sets. You wouldn’t necessary class sets such as the Christmas Tree and 2-in-1 Wreath or the recent Chinese New Year Money Tree as part of the Botanical Collection, but they are sets which replicate plants or plant-based items.
The LEGO Botanical Almanac is another interesting LEGO title from Chronicle Books. It’s a great gift idea for both LEGO fans but also those interested in the natural world and plant life. The book will be available from March 19th in North America and March 28th in the UK and Europe.