10K Club Interview: Hocus Pocus - Sanderson Sisters' Cottage by TheAmbrinator

This week, Belgian 10K Club Member Amber Veyt, aka. TheAmbrinator is our interviewee! Amber is the bright mind behind The Hocus Pocus - Sanderson Sisters' Cottage.

Be sure to congratulate Amber in the comments as always, down below!
 

About Yourself

  1. Who are you?
    Amber Veyt



     
  2. Where are you from?
    I'm from Belgium.
     
  3. How old are you?
    I’m 23 years old.
     
  4. What do you do for a living? 
    I go to an art-school called Luca school of arts, that’s where I study digital design.
     
  5. What hobbies do you have?
    My hobbies are gaming, experimenting in the kitchen, baking, hanging out with my friends, binging series, designing on my computer and of course sleeping.
     
  6. Do you have a personal LEGO portfolio website that you can share with us?
    I have an Instagram dedicated to my LEGO designs, it’s called theambrinator.
     
  7. Have you created any LEGO MOCs (my own creations) that you’re particularly proud of? What is it, why are you proud it and do you have a photo of it?
    My sister and I invented a fantasy creature a few years ago and I built it in LEGO afterwards. The creatures are called Crawlies. They are playful but shy and only 5 cm tall. They live in treetops in the forest, and feed on the leaves that can be found there. A Crawly hibernates and prepares this hibernation by collecting leaves in its mouth all summer long. When winter arrives and leaves are no longer on the trees, he clings to a sturdy branch and takes his nap there. I’m proud of this LEGO MOC because I personally think it is very cute, and I would love to have it in my room!



     
  8. How and when did your interest for LEGO come about?
    I can’t remember a time without LEGO, I grew up with it. My parents got me a giant box filled with random bricks when I was little. That way I could make anything I wanted, that was really great.
     
  9. What is LEGO for you? What does it mean for you? How does it fit in your life? E.g. build, display, meetups, play the games.. or 'just' watch the cartoons.
    LEGO is a big part of my life. Besides always building with random LEGO bricks from my LEGO box (previous question), I also collect Harry Potter sets. I have been collecting them since I was 13. I’ve also played a lot of the Lego games (Harry Potter, Pirates of the Caribbean, Star Wars,…), they are so cool and it’s awesome that you can play them with friends or siblings. I also really love The Lego Movies, they’re hilarious.
     
  10. What is your favourite LEGO theme (current or past)? Why? And has any theme inspired your building style or preference in any particular way?
    As I mentioned before, it’s definitely the Harry Potter theme! I loved the books and Harry Potter films. I’ve always been a fan of magic and mystery and those sets are truly filed with that. The first set I’ve ever bought was the first Hogwarts Castle. I just absolutely love the Harry Potter sets because they have little secrets in them, movable objects and it just looks so beautiful. I couldn’t stop with just the Hogwarts Castle of course, so I kept collecting the Harry Potter sets. I think I have most of the old sets now but also a few of the newer ones. The Harry Potters sets have inspired my building style when it comes to detail. All the sets are very detailed (which I love), so I tried to add a lot of details to my Hocus Pocus set too!
     
  11. What is your favourite official LEGO set? Why?
    My favorite one is the Micro Hogwarts Castle, it’s in a display in my room. I love it because it’s huge, it was amazingly fun to build, I love micro scale in general and all the little details in there are just perfect. This set is really beautiful!
     
  12. What is your favourite LEGO element? Why?
    Definitely the brick separator!!! It’s so helpful! 


     
  13. Is there one or more particular LEGO related websites (not official LEGO websites) that you visit often and/or are inspired by?
    I follow many Lego accounts on Instagram and Facebook. I just love to see what other people make and how they use the bricks.

 

About Your Project

  1. Where did your interest in this particular model come from?
    I’ve loved this movie ever since I first saw it as a little girl. I watch it every year around Halloween with my sister and sometimes just on random occasions. When I watched it a few months ago and got a glimpse of the Sanderson sister’s cottage, there was just one question popping in my mind. ‘Why is there no LEGO set of this yet? I would totally buy it!’ So I grabbed my computer and started right away. I couldn’t stop designing for the first few hours, it was so much fun.
     
  2. How long was the process of making the project did, and what did you have to research as well. What kind of prep, research and design phases did you go through to produce your creation?
    I think that the built of the house itself would be around 18 hours. After I finished the main building I kept adjusting and adding things, so maybe around 26 hours in total (without the render and editing time). For my inspiration I did some research on the cottage itself and how houses were built during that time so I could do it right. I took many screenshots of scenes in the movie where you can see the interior so I could piece them together, because you never get the see the full view which makes it hard to imagine what it looks like.
     
  3. What special challenges did you face creating the model? What was the most difficult part to recreate?
    Mostly the proportions of the house, and like I said previously, figuring out what the inside looks like. At first, designing the minifigures was really hard because you have to draw the designs and add them to the brick you want. But now it’s one of my most favorite things to do!
     
  4. If you could talk to yourself before you started on this project, what would you tell her? What do you know now that you wish you knew then? 
    Finish your design first! Make sure that what you’re uploading is your finished product. When I uploaded it first, I thought I could update my changes the next day, but you can’t because of the 30 days of waiting. So keep that in mind. Also make a good thumbnail so fans recognize your work and what it is about.
     
  5. How long did it take to complete the model? Did you finish it fairly quickly, or did it take a long time? And how did the build time compare to the time you spent promoting your Product Idea to reach 10,000 supporters?
    I think the total time would be around 26 hours. I think I spend about the same amount of time promoting my idea. I shared it on every platform I know and asked people to share. 
     
  6. How did it feel when you reached the magic 10,000 votes and how long did it take?
    OVERWHELMED! The first thing I did was dance on the ‘Everything is Awesome’ song from the Lego Movie with my sister (who was also very happy). Reaching the 10,000 only took 35 days, that’s so crazy! 
     
  7. Approximately how many LEGO bricks did you use to create your model?
    2761 parts.



     
  8. What is your favourite building technique or part/section that you’ve incorporated into your Product Idea?
    I loved creating the cages the most.
     
  9. If you built your model digitally, what software did you use to build and render your model?
    I used Stud.io to build and render my design.
     
  10. If you used custom stickers or prints for your design, how did you create them or where did you get them?
    I used PartDesigner for my custom parts and minifigures. I made the designs in Adobe Illustrator.

About LEGO Ideas

  1. Do you have any useful advice about creating a successful LEGO Ideas project?
    Think of what you want to make and make sure you would want to buy the set yourself.
     
  2. What (if any) methods did you use to advertise and attract support to your Product Idea?
    I mostly used Facebook. I shared my post in multiple groups and on Facebook groups related to Hocus Pocus, Disney, Lego and Halloween. A lot of people gave me really positive feedback. Many of them shared my post too. I also used Instagram to share my idea. A lot of Halloween related pages shared my post on their stories.

    A fun fact about my Instagram post; some of the Hocus Pocus creators, actors and actresses liked it!

    Doug Jones (Billy Butcherson), Larry Bagby (Ice), Vinessa Shaw (Allison), Tobias Jelinek (Jay), Jason Marsden (voice of Binx the cat), William Sandell (art designer), Mick Garris (film director), Amanda Shepherd (Emily Binx) and Thora Birch (Dani) liked the post. Some of them even shared it! I’m so grateful for their support, it meant the world to me! 
     
  3. What is your favourite LEGO Ideas Product Idea (besides your own of course)? Are there any Product Ideas you think have been overlooked?
    I’m absolutely in love with the Avatar: The Illuminated world of Pandora design by bulldoozer! It’s so well designed, I love the way the designer used so much color and glow in the dark bricks. The presentation is also on point, have you checked out the video in the description yet??? Absolutely stunning.
     
  4. What is it about the platform that attracts you? What tips would you give to anyone who is thinking about uploading an idea?
    How open and accessible it is. It’s easy to create an account. What I love the most about the website is when you make changes to your design, you can save them to continue editing it another time.
     
  5. Do you have plans to submit any other Product Ideas in the future? If yes, can you give us a hint what that might be
    I definitely will, but right now I don’t know what yet. If I’m making something, I need to love the theme and really want it myself, I think that is very important.
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