My Gratitude to ULI

Salesforce Tower made in LEGO by Patty Sherin

Salesforce Tower in LEGO built for ULI Fall Meeting by Patty Sherin

Urban Land Institute commissioned me to build the Salesforce Tower out of LEGO and to be their resident artist at their latest annual meeting held at the Moscone Center in San Francisco this past October. The Salesforce Tower (see link above) is a new high rise being built-in SF. It will be the tallest building on the west coast.

I am honored and grateful to be asked. A special Thank You goes to Lisa McNeil and her entire team for finding me online and making me feel welcomed. I was really impressed by all the attendees from the various backgrounds, skill set and professions. I hope to work with you all again.

ULI is a nonprofit research and education organization founded in 1936. Their mission is, “to provide leadership in the responsible use of land and in creating and sustaining thriving communities worldwide”.

I was so impressed by the attendees and the different stories people told while building with LEGO at my table.  The funny thing is I shouldn’t be surprised, LEGO fans come from all walks of life. They each design and build differently. Some attendees just sat and mindlessly built stuff, others were very thoughtful, while other simply asked questions of some of the new pieces LEGO makes.  Here are some of my favorite interactions with the attendees from the event:

Two people sat at our table and talked, when they were finished one said to the other, “I’ve noticed that I always build symmetrically”. Her companion laughed and said, “I always build asymmetrically.”

The doors to Heaven or Hell

The doors to Heaven or Hell by 2015 ULI Fall attendee

One woman sat down and said she was not creative at all. I said that was impossible, you just haven’t thought of what you do as creative. So she asked me about a few LEGO elements we had on the table and I put together a few doors with their frames and she came up with this and said, “Here are the doors of heaven and hell”. I was blown away! Simple, yet creative. I suggested she cultivate her creative side. There are so many studies lately stating the usefulness of encouraging your creative side to help you with challenges whether in your professional or personal lives.  I find that overcoming most challenges require creative thinking and sometimes all it takes is a bit of play to get those creative juices flowing. I always recommend playing with LEGO. :)

As always, Thank you for reading.

See you on the next post…

2015 Bricks by the Bay

See photos and video of the 2015 Bricks by the Bay LEGO Fan Exhibition

Thank you to everyone who volunteered and attended the 2015 Bricks by the Bay Exhibition!  It was an incredible event and I look forward to seeing you all again next year.

Bricks by the Bay

Was an amazing experience. I was honored when asked to help out with the Media. Leonard wrote the press release and I shared them with a list that was used 3 years ago.  Here are the folks who came out:

NBC Bay Area News – video coverage of the first day at Bricks by the Bay

CBC News (at 1:12 into video, you will see my art displayed)

KTSF 26 News – Chinese Channel (interviews are in English)

San Jose Mercury News (Photos only)

Thank you for coming out. We really appreciate the media coverage!

When I volunteered for Bricks by the Bay, I really didn’t know what to expect, sure I had been to all kinds of conferences including Biomedical and Anthropological conferences while in college, Network Marketing conferences like SendOutCards’ annual conferences, and smaller meetings like business trade shows but none of those compared to the awesomeness that is Bricks by the Bay!  Bricks by the Bay LEGO Fan Exhibition is put on by volunteers of BayLUG. Attendees come from all over. AFOL (Adult Fans of LEGO) exhibit their MOCs (My Own Creation).  We had folks come from all over. [Let me know how far you traveled to attend Bricks by the Bay, I would love to add the list here].

LEGO Lettering Workshop

2015 Bricks by the Bay LEGO Letting class with Dr. Li Li

I arrived at the Santa Clara Convention Center early Thursday morning for workshops; these had an extra charge for materials and instructions, but it was totally worth it. My first class was lettering with Dr. Li. He taught us 3 different techniques which I look forward to incorporating into my new sign.

It was a lot of fun learning the different techniques. Dr. Li is extremely talented and he surprised everyone after the class when he told us he had to run because he was getting married that afternoon.  Now that’s AFOL dedication! Congratulations to Dr. and Mrs. Li Li! I wish you all the best.

LEGO Creature Building

Freddy from 2015 Bricks by the Bay Creature Building Class with Megan Rothrock

Later we had scheduled Creature Building with Megan Rothrock from the LEGO Adventure Books, unfortunately there was a mix-up in scheduling and the class had to be rescheduled to Saturday. Again, unfortunately during her class media arrived and it was my job to show them around and answer any questions they had. So I missed her class but I received the parts and instructions and created Freddy the Tri-Clops.

My third class was LEGO Stressed Structures with Charles Esseltine. I was really looking forward to this class. He taught us how to make a circle, triangle and pentagon out of 1×2 LEGO elements. It was very exciting. Make sure you were safety glasses for this class! There are lots of exploding LEGO happenings going on here. Charles made a beautiful candle holder which makes amazing reflections on the walls with his use of LEGO windows and clear and translucent bricks. But my favorite has to be his star!

Stars and Flakes by Charles Esseltine

Stars and Flakes by Charles Esseltine displayed at 2015 Bricks by the Bay LEGO Fan Exhibition

Friday and Saturday there were games and talks. I attended several talks about different techniques and a workshop on Women Building a Career with LEGO and Building the FFOL (Female Fans of LEGO) Community.

But the best part has to be seeing everyone’s MOCs. There were so many themes like; Art and Scale Models, Bionicle and Hero Factory, Castle, Fantasy, and Historical, High Seas, Junior Builder, Large Displays, Military, Pop Culture, Robotics and Machines, Space and Science Fiction, Teen Builder, and Town and Train. It was incredible! The best was the light house with a boat on the waves! Then there was a 30’ ft installation of Mouse Guard by Alice Finch. Alice brought several creations but the one she created with her son, Isle of Burk from How to Train your Dragon 2, was also amazing!  See gallery below.


Here’s a video of Working Star Trek Transporter by Roger G.

Here’s a gallery of photos my daughter, Jessica, and I took during the weekend.


Overall I had a wonderful time and I look forward to next year’s Bricks by the Bay.

As of right now, we haven’t set the date for next year’s Bricks by the Bay.  If you would like to know the date as soon as it’s announced sign up below and I’ll send you a quick note letting you know the date.



As always, thank you for reading!


Bay Area LEGO User Group at Makers Faire

2015 Makers Faire

Photos of BayLUG’s booth during 2015 Makers Faire, May 16 and 17, 2015

As part of my duties as a member of BayLUG (Bay Area’s LEGO User Group), I decided to volunteer this year in 2015 Makers Faire.  It was held May 16 and 17 at the San Mateo Event Center.  Here are some pictures of the event.