Fourteen-year-old Brynjar Karl Birgisson was five years old when he started playing with blocks of Lego. At ten years old, on a trip to Denmark with his mother Bjarney Sigrun Ludviksdottir, the larger-than-life models of famous houses and planes amazed him. He knew then he would one day build his own version or replica of the famous Titanic, using blocks of Lego.
Getting Started On The Project
Brynjar's grandfather "Lulli" helped him start the project. Grandfather Ludvik Baldur Ogsmundsson made the necessary measurements to determine how big the Lego Titanic should be with a 4 cm Lego man. He even used the original blueprints of the Titanic and built the platform for the replica. Using Ludvik's calculations, they scaled down the measurements. They were able to determine how many Lego blocks were needed to build Brynjar's model.
Bjarney, Brynjar's mother, provided him with all the inspiration, coaching, and mentoring that he needed to make his dream a reality. His mother also tended to the practical details of the project. She hosted online crowdfunding, ordered the Lego bricks from Denmark, and found a location to build the model. She also bought the necessary tools to use to finish the project.
Finishing The Lego Titanic Replica
It took Brynjar about 700 hours in a span of 11 months to finish the project. He experienced some difficulties, too, and had attempted to give up on the project when the stern collapsed twice. Originally, he had used 56,000 Lego bricks. The total increased to 65,000 bricks when he fixed the front part of the model ship. Brynjar quipped that he used 120 tubes of glue on the 5 feet tall and 24 feet long finished Lego replica of the Titanic.
Overcoming Autism One Lego Brick At A Time
All over the world, Brynjar is the ultimate "Lego Boy". He has given a TED Talk regarding his project and the challenges he overcame before its completion and success. Also, he wrote a book, "My Autistic X Factor", defining the "x-factor" as any special talent or skill a person has. He believes that everyone has their own "x-factor", which for some people takes time to discover.
Brynjar described his journey and project in a documentary, "How the Titanic Became My Lifeboat. He tells about the project and how much it has helped him adjust to Autism. It premiered at a local movie theater in Pigeon Forge, Tennessee in March 2020. Brynjar has hopes that the documentary will help promote awareness. He wants to encourage schools and establishments to be more open to and respectful of the needs of people with Autism.