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John Hancock Center, Chicago
About this creation
This model of the John Hancock Center in Chicago is about 5.5 feet (1.65m) tall and contains nearly 13,000 LEGO pieces. It is about 1:270 scale and took about 80 hours to design, build, and glue.


John Hancock Center LEGO model by artist Sean Kenney


Just like the real building, each of the four sides taper back slowly, decreasing a full third of the width by the time they reach the top. Not only do the real building's front and sides each taper at a different rate, but the diagonal "X" patterns are each at different slopes and different widths. That means there's 4 different slopes going on at any point! It's always pretty tricky to make slopes and diagonals with little rectangular LEGO pieces, so I did a lot of math and graph-paper-drawings before building anything. The easy part was making it look pretty!


John Hancock Center LEGO sculpture by artist Sean Kenney


I always love adding streets and city life to my models of buildings. It adds a lot of fun to the model and helps bring it to life! Here, you can see the busy street scene and the sunken plaza that leads the building's shopping and restaurants.


LEGO Hancock Center by Sean Kenney


Sean Kenney LEGO Architecture Hancock Center


Creating the "X" patterns across the front of the building was trickier than it looks. The sides of the building step in half-a-LEGO-brick as the building tapers... but the X pattern does not, which necessitated some tricky LEGO maneuvers. :) One of my favorite LEGO pieces is the "jumper", which lets you offset pieces by half a LEGO brick.


Chicago Skyscraper LEGO Sean Kenney


There are 4 mechanical floors in the building. Each uses over 200 tiny pieces!


John Hancock Center LEGO model by Sean Kenney


For some reason, I always love building the "roof junk". Antennas, pipes, transmitters... they're fun to build and they look cool. I was lucky to find a photo online documenting the building's various antennas and transmitters, and kept them as true-to-life as possible.


John Hancock Center Sean Kenney


LEGO John Hancock Center  Sean Kenney


John Hancock Center LEGO model by artist Sean Kenney


John Hancock Center LEGO model by artist Sean Kenney


John Hancock Center LEGO model by artist Sean Kenney


The street at the base of the building includes steps down to the sunken plaza, as well as a little street scene with a CTA bus, Chicago Police Department police car, and a cool red-and-white taxi cab.


John Hancock Center LEGO model by artist Sean Kenney


John Hancock Center LEGO Certified Professional Sean Kenney



And of course...

Blues Brothers Bluesmobile LEGO model by Sean Kenney



Comments

 I like it 
  April 14, 2012
Being from Chicago, this automaticly gets a 5 from me, it has amazing and accurette detail and gotta love da Blue Brothers scene. "I hate Illinois Nazis" P.s. Mr. Ripley, its the Sears Tower, not the Willis Tower, you'll offend quite a few Chicagoans saying that, we like our traditions (which is why I hate Macy's).
 I like it 
  December 28, 2010
Really great. I love that micro Cheesecake factory. Overall the build is just amazing!!
 I like it 
  July 2, 2010
I've been there and nice detail
 I like it 
  June 30, 2010
Can you teach me some building techniques? Please? I'm one of those people who just build with bricks and know everything basic and nothing complex. That street scen is SO realistic! At first, I thought that was a street from a different line of toys!
 I like it 
  December 27, 2009
WOW! Cool builing dude? Do you use glue as its mentioned on your info? How in God name does everyone afford to buy all the bricks needed? Its cost me a small fortune to build my creation!
 I like it 
  December 13, 2009
Wow excellent job! I was wondering if you could give me an honest opinion on this: http://www.mocpages.com/moc.php/171987 -- thanks, I would really appreciate it!
 I like it 
  September 29, 2009
o0O0oh ! ... very elegant and artistic tower ... and the base is cool also ... i especially like all the little people walking around, and the roadway looks great ... uh oh, i see a car wreck. =P
 I like it 
  September 23, 2009
I saw this at the lego store in Chicago! I never knew that it was made by the creator of Mocpages though!
 I like it 
  September 11, 2009
great use of pretty basic shaped bricks to build something quite complexly shaped. The easy way out on this really would have been SNOT, but that you did it in such a pure traditional fashion speaks volumes.
  August 8, 2009
imagin if it was minifig scale, wow. GREAT JOB!!!!!
 I like it 
  July 28, 2009
Why do you always make Microscale minifigs?
 I like it 
  July 17, 2009
Nope, this One World Trade Center. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/1_World_Trade_Center . I know you've been bombarded with people saying rebuild your old one but why not give a shot at the new and might I add georgous one?
 I made it 
  July 17, 2009
Quoting Daniel Ripley [you should build] One World Trade Center!
Like this? http://www.mocpages.com/moc.php/2
 I like it 
  July 17, 2009
Well I hated the John Hancock Center until I seen this. Very nice work here! Im pretty sure theres two buildings calling your name to build. Se--Willis Tower and One World Trade Center!
 I like it 
  July 4, 2009
It makes me feel small. How many bricks did you use? Can you please check out my speeder bike please? http://mocpages.com/moc.php/131616 ... ~Moses (Wouldn't it be nice if you made a sculpture of a goat?)
 I like it 
  July 1, 2009
WOW!!! But can you please activate the activity list again please???
 I like it 
  June 30, 2009
I just can't understand how you do this. Amazing MOC, great job!
 I like it 
  June 28, 2009
Most impressive!
 I like it 
  June 27, 2009
Ahh, who could forget the blues brothers? The actual MOC is breathtaking alone, but when you add that street scene, it goes up another notch or two. This is just spectacular.
  June 27, 2009
Why is the activity list disabled?
 I like it 
  June 27, 2009
I've also been to the top, recently too! Have you been to it Sean? Because in the bottom floor, in the line to get on the elevator to the observatory, there also is a scale model of the Hancock Center made from Lego.
 I like it 
  June 27, 2009
haha, I'm liking that roof junk. this thing is really awesome, I can't wait for more!
 I like it 
  June 26, 2009
Haha excellent! I spy with my little eye...THE BLUESMOBILE! Unfortunately I doubt that there's many people here that get the reference but that kind of made my day. It's one of my favorite movies. It's 106 miles to Chicago. We've got a full tank of gas, half a pack of cigarettes, it's dark and we're wearing sunglasses...HIT IT!
 I like it 
  June 25, 2009
Amazing work Sean! You really got the slants perfectly! I was actually at the top of that building. The express elevator takes you to the top in 45 seconds!
 I like it 
  June 24, 2009
is the last picture from the blues brothers
 I like it 
  June 24, 2009
Wonderfully built! It looks pretty dang close to the real thing. You did a great job on the tapered sides! The "roof junk" is cool too.
  June 24, 2009
hooray for the blues brothers.
 I like it 
  June 24, 2009
Excellent ! big buildings like this, thoughb they might at first seem to have a repetitve buuild; once you look closer, yo really appreciate the work and structure; and from a distance just look really amazing ! nice street scene on the bottom :)
Sean Kenney
 I like it 
Riley Santiago
  June 23, 2009
Another amazing LEGO building by Sean... I really like the plaza below ground level, and your "roof junk" is great. The last picture made me laugh (I doubt many of the younger people will get it though). ;)
 I made it 
  June 23, 2009
Quoting Lt. Col. Snow Did you make a model for the Lego Discovery Center like this or is this the one b/c i just went there today.
No, I didn't make the model that's at the Chicago LEGO Discovery Center. They are both about the same size, but theirs lights up from inside!
Sean Kenney
Commander Ult
  June 22, 2009
This is excellent.I live in chicago and it looks real life-like, keep up the good work man!
 I like it 
  June 22, 2009
cool
 I like it 
  June 22, 2009
WOW,my son loves this building.It looks very nice.
 I like it 
  June 20, 2009
Wow, that is amazing. I like how you have the microscale stuff around it. Makes it even more relistic. Amazing job. ~ J
 I like it 
  June 20, 2009
Now thats what I call a lego building. ~ Ghostman :)
 I like it 
  June 19, 2009
Did you make a model for the Lego Discovery Center like this or is this the one b/c i just went there today.
 I like it 
  June 19, 2009
..... (so good that im talkless)
 I like it 
  June 18, 2009
impressive... btw the jumper is one of my fav pieces 2
 I like it 
  June 18, 2009
Will this be on display in Brickworld? This just looks incredible!
 I like it 
  June 17, 2009
Great building technique, the mini-scenes at the bottom are a nice touch. If I had been building this I would have maybe tried to make the "X" beams straight instead of stepped for a cleaner look - It's all Kelso's fault I'm now addicted to SNOT work. In any case, another amazing build by the master!
 I like it 
  June 17, 2009
Hey! I know that little green dude! And great Blues Brother's reference there. See you in a day or so (I'll just apologize now shall I?). ~ Chris.
  June 17, 2009
I don't think I'd ever noticed that the two masts are of different heights! Ah, the teaching power of LEGO...
 I like it 
  June 17, 2009
Incredible! The ground scene is amazing and I like the roof detail.
 I like it 
  June 17, 2009
Ahhhh you finished it! Good work! Very well done. I like see the micro peepuls.
 I like it 
  June 17, 2009
I LOVE IT!!!!! Is it hollow? That is incredibly amazing!
 I like it 
  June 17, 2009
Another masterpiece. Really well executed, and lovely detailled.
 I like it 
  June 17, 2009
"It's dark, we've got half a pack of cigarettes, a full tank of gas and we're wearing sunglasses." "Hit it!" Best movie ever. God, do I love that place. Last time I was there must've been six years ago (why did I move to Europe?). Come to think of it, I haven't eaten at the Cheesecake factory since I was there. Now I'm homesick. Good day
 I like it 
  June 17, 2009
This looks so BiG~! Great work!!
Sean Kenney
 I like it 
Thomas N
  June 16, 2009
Wow that building is insane, the details make it perfect and the design of the windows is great too, But the street scene with the mini people and mini cars makes it perfect! ~T
Sean Kenney
 I like it 
George Kemper
  June 16, 2009
Wow coming from a Chicagoian this is amazing! And I'm suprised that you made the little resturaunt area. To make it short, Sean you have made an amazing build. Also great job on the "X"s on the exterior.-George
Sean Kenney
 I like it 
George Kemper
  June 16, 2009
Oh and just out of curiosity, did you just make this for "fun" or are you putting this on display somewhere?-George
Sean Kenney
 I like it 
masterchief 1
  June 16, 2009
Sweet! Now if only it was snot, how amazing that would be!
Sean Kenney
 I like it 
Jeffery Smith
  June 16, 2009
Having been ther multiple times, this really looks just like it, Sean! this is simply excellent work, like all of the things you build.
 I like it 
  June 16, 2009
Great Build, and by the way, It's HERBIE HANCOCK.
 I like it 
  June 16, 2009
I love how it slants in to the top.
 I like it 
  June 16, 2009
This is a wonderful representation. The JHC is one my favorite buildings... a perfect fusion of structural engineering and architecture.
 I like it 
  June 16, 2009
You never cease to amaze me...Hey, I heard they are going to open a lego store in Orland Park Illinois. Thats right down the street from my house! They also said that a master builder would be there. Would that be you? Oh, and maybe you could help me get a job there?
 I like it 
  June 16, 2009
Another beautiful piece! All of the activity at ground level is really fun (and the additional color adds a nice touch, too!). But, your engineering for the tapered effect is what really blows me away...SO well executed. Amazing stuff, Kenney!
 I like it 
  June 16, 2009
Wow Sean, you really captured the JHC well!!!! It looks just like the real thing!!!!! HaHa, and great job on the Blues Brothers chase scene, but you've got to add more squad cars wrecked, like in the movie(LOL!) Great job once again!!!!! Keep up the excellent work!!!!!
 I like it 
  June 16, 2009
I love you(not in that way,but a good way)
 I like it 
  June 16, 2009
Oh my. 'Side from the deflated eyeballs, melted brain, and shattered jaw, I rather like this model. 'Rather' meaning, extremely, positively, and really, and 'like' meaning love, adore, and amazed by. Amazing.
 I like it 
  June 16, 2009
It's HUGE, Nicely done, I like the cars too
 I like it 
  June 16, 2009
I was there very recently so it's awesome to see a LEGO model of the building. the 'x' pattern you use on the sides is really good, I can tell it took some work. the roof is cool with the antennae and the stuff all around it. I love the street level part of it because it looks so familiar. it looks just like the real thing, great job.
 I made it 
  June 16, 2009
Quoting Leo J Is there a special glue and a certain technique when gluing together LEGO? If this is not a trade secret, would you be willing to share it with us? Thanks!
Actually, the glue I use is really toxic, so I can't recommend using it. I'm sure it's killing my brain cells, so if I lose my mind over the years you'll know why!
 I made it 
  June 16, 2009
Quoting Nate . Was it designed for someone/or a company [...] Its cool how you did it to scale also, my buildings are so small that that the scale of a person is like 1/10th of a stud.
Actually, at this scale people would be about 1/8th of a stud. I made them 1 stud each and then "scaled up" the first few floors so that you don't notice. I do this on all my models (even minifig-scale models.) Check out my Greenwich Village http://www.mocpages.com/moc.php/147 to read why. And yes... this was commissioned by someone who has a view of the real Hancock Center from their home.
 I like it 
  June 16, 2009
As usual, this is AMAZING!
 I like it 
  June 16, 2009
Is there a special glue and a certain technique when gluing together LEGO? If this is not a trade secret, would you be willing to share it with us? Thanks!
 I like it 
  June 16, 2009
this is really cool its so awsome
 I like it 
  June 16, 2009
Very Nice design. Was it designed for someone/or a company, or was it just a free build. Its cool how you did it to scale also, my buildings are so small that that the scale of a person is like 1/10th of a stud. I like the design with the criss crosing X patterns hold any architectural significance to the building by anychance or are they decoration.
 I like it 
  June 16, 2009
Amazing. I love the texture on the building and the mini vehicles below especially. Great job, Sean.
 I like it 
  June 16, 2009
I want you to know my jaw's been on the floor for quite some time now.
 I like it 
  June 16, 2009
Nice. Great detail. I'm the same as you in the fact that I love building litle details (e.g. rooftops)! Great job.
 I like it 
  June 16, 2009
Very well done, Sean! This is great. I especially love the different colors in the windows. Awesome work.
 I like it 
  June 16, 2009
Do we really need to tell you how awesome it is? Yes, I supose we do. It's awesomely awesome.
 I like it 
  June 16, 2009
Supreme, and impressive work
 I like it 
  June 16, 2009
That's pretty cool it's people like you that make me want to go and try to out build you, and well fail miserablibly But as they Say Failure is the best Motovation 8~P ~Nicky
 I like it 
  June 16, 2009
Proportions and effect : a success. Great rendition.
 I like it 
  June 16, 2009
As a citizen of Chicago, I can say this is without a doubt the best lego model of the John Hancock Center I have ever seen. The detail is stunning, the accuracy unheard of. The presentation, flawless. I love the sunken plaza (I go there to eat quite often!), and I love the antennaes. You have something to be extremely proud of, Sean. Oh, and do you think you are going to put this in the Lego Store in Chicago? It would fit right in with the rest of the Skyline. Anyway, i will probably be drooling over this and commenting at least 5 more times today, so just giving ya a quick head's up. Now, let's see what that other notorious Chicagoan has to say about this beauty...Your move Phipson.
 I like it 
  June 16, 2009
Yay! First comment, unless someone did it before and nearly at the same time as me... anyway, great work. I have checked and it looks alike greatly. Nice job man. Keep up the good work and many more MOCs to come. Bye.
 I like it 
  June 16, 2009
Pure excellence!
 I like it 
  June 16, 2009
Nice man!!
 
By Sean Kenney
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LEGO models my own creation MOCpages toys shop John Hancock Center, ChicagoLandmarks


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