In the interest of full disclosure I want to let you know that I will now be shilling promoting a little company called CrazyBricks. In many ways I already do this for the LEGO Group with every photo I post, but now I am being more upfront about it.

I have talked about Guy Himber, and his company CrazyBricks, before when I first came into contact with him a few weeks ago at Seattle BrickCon. What I didn’t mention at the time, was that we had agreed to make contact a couple of weeks after the event and talk about potentially working together. I finally had a chance to follow up on this promise this past  Friday. I was expecting an email exchange followed by a few promises about seeing what we could do down the road; what I got was an actual phone call.

After an hour of very informative conversation and a couple of virtual handshakes, I am now the official photographer for CrazyBricks. In return for CrazyBricks using my photos on social media and their web site, I get a few goodies to play with. Honestly, its probably not a very good deal for either one of us. I would have bought his product anyway and my reach on social media isn’t that great. But hey, I am thrilled to be using my skills to promote a great product.

Guy is an amazing fellow; in fact he was also featured in BrickCulture‘s first issue along with the StuckinPlastic crew. He has an extensive background in film (heck he even has his own IMDB page!), he published one of my favorite LEGO books: Steampunk LEGO and he has run several successful Kickstarter campaigns (including crazy arms and Mouse Guard). This guy is amazing!

The following passage from Steal Like an Artist has always stuck with me:

Remember “garbage in, garbage out”? You’re only going to be as good as the people you surround yourself with. In the digital space, that means following the best people online – the people who are way smarter and better than you, the people who are doing the really interesting work. Pay attention to what they’re talking about, what they’re doing, what they’re linking to.”

I see Guy as one of those people in my life. He is working with interesting people (Doktor A, David Peterson, Cape Madness and Citizen Brick); he’s created several successful Kickstarter projects (Mouse Guard, Munchkins and Crazy Arms) and he has a published a book with a press I admire greatly (No Starch Press). I look at his resume and I know I have much to learn from this man; I am thrilled to be working with him.

One thing I don’t want to be is the person talking endlessly about someone else’s products. Personally I find that off putting. My goal is to show off Guy’s amazing creations, inspiring you to add them to your own collection and point you in the right direction to purchase them. I don’t get kick backs, I don’t get a commission, heck I don’t even get paid (I told you this was a bad deal!). I know it is a fine line to be walking as an artist and I rely on you good friends to let me know if I have crossed the line of good taste.

For myself I see this as a way to get my work seen in new ways, in new places, by new people.  (Remember “The Power of Yes”?) When I post to Instagram I feel like I am preaching to the choir; Flick is even worse. What I want to do is reach beyond my core audience and create new connections and see where they could lead. I have always felt that as an artist you need to continually be making movement… somewhere, somehow. Connections, collaborations, cross pollination…it is all a part of the process.

I think this partnership with Guy Himber is one more step in what continues to be a very interesting journey.

~ xxSJC

What do you think? Have I crossed a line? Would you do the same?

If you shop at CrazyBricks, be sure and let Guy know how you found about him and his wonderful products!

Gwendolyn of Mouse Guard

Gwendolyn of Mouse Guard – created by Guy Himber, based on the books by David Peterson