• thebrickguy

The LEGO Art of Knolling

Knolling is the act (or art perhaps) of laying the items in an organised manner on a flat surface and photographing it from above. Many LEGO fans do this without knowing the word existed, and many times, they learn this new word as they join this hobby. Marketing and advertisers have been using this technique for decades. For the viewer, it's quite an eye candy that makes one go a bit into a dazed and hypnotic mode when looking at. The eyes wander trying to figure out how neat things are and if there are any odds and end looking for imperfections.


LEGO 75030 Millennium Falcon Microfighter / 94 pcs / by the author


For the knoller (the person who does the knolling), it can be quite therapeutic, and some say it's plain ol' OCD (Obsessive Compulsive Disorder) to just get things arranged before starting a build. And as one tries to start knolling, you'll find yourself fixing the items that you've already placed and ever so adjusting them again and again so it all "just looks right". It's a strange but satisfying feeling.


We picked a few of the best and interesting knolling in LEGO for your enjoyment below.

LEGO 75192 Star Wars Millennium Falcon Ultimate Collector Series

Number of Pieces: 7541

Reddit User: -Tish

Source: Reddit

This is the LARGEST LEGO SET to date with 7541 pieces. To actually lay this out all at one go is really an amazing feat. While it all manages to seem like it fits, I spy a large number of parts that are not gathered with their actual parts, but just a spread of parts (look at the light grey and dark grey parts). It's still nonetheless a knoll!

LEGO 42096 Technic Porsche 911 RSR

Number of Pieces: 1580

Credit: Jaron Kelley

Source: Facebook


The only part that gets to me is that the knolling is ALL AROUND! And not in a squared-off area. Having said that, I do understand that the middle area is where the builder is going to start work and picking off the sides. This is true functionality with space!

LEGO 21309 Ideas Saturn V

Number of Pieces: 1969

Credit: Cloudlicker_me

Source: Reddit


This is next level knolling as the builder bought another set just to frame up the knolling separately from the build below! Super level commitment and the love of knolling. I give a 10/10! You can watch the video he made here: Knolling and Encasing The Lego Saturn V

LEGO 21030 Architecture United States Capitol Building

Number of Pieces: 1032

Credit: ruggiero920

Source: Reddit

I spot a bit of the build already completed right at the back! But other than that, I say a great job in colour separation and LEGO element type separation.

LEGO 21303 IDEAS WALL-E

Number of Pieces: 677

Credit: cylerparent

Source: Reddit

Separation by parts and colour not all in a single location to give it a nice even distributed look. Almost perfect but I see so many areas that are just itching for me to tweak and fix!

LEGO 75138 Hoth Attack

Number of Pieces: 253

Credit: Legogasm

Source: Twitter


When life gives you lemons, you make lemonade. When life gives you a round table, you knoll in a rounded-off shape!

LEGO 75105 Millennium Falcon

Number of Pieces: 1320

Credit: AndyValentine

Source: Reddit


This is one of my favourites, as you can see that there's been a tremendous effort to fit everything as straight and aligned as possible. Even the bottom left corner, you have the triangles all shaped up to fit in a square! 9/10!

LEGO Ideas 21315 Steamboat Willie

Number of Pieces: 751

Credit: graphically_inclined

Source: Reddit


Great colour separation, piece separation and even distribution and alignment. Photography angle failed! What a missed opportunity.

LEGO 10226 Sopwith Camel

Number of Pieces: 883

Credit: mattymadd81

Source: Reddit


I personally feel that this is one of those that went "I need to finish it now so I can start building it quick"! I could be wrong, but, a great attempt here as well! The stringy bits are always hard.

LEGO 75221 Star Wars Imperial Landing Craft

Number of Pieces:

Credit: Prometheus6R

Source: Reddit


I love this as this builder even went for a symmetrical look including the manual being central with a balance of the force. Definitely a Star Wars Jedi master in the making.

I personally learnt about the word knoll(ing) from Adam Savage of Mythbusters / Tested. Here he is building a custom-designed LEGO kit and knolling it before the build. He does explain the process of knolling as he goes along. It's worth a watch!



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