MILWAUKEE — Generations upon generations of children have played with LEGO sets. Many end up in large containers that are passed from older sibling to younger sibling and family to family.
But few people's passion for LEGO has taken them as far as it has for Paul Wellington.
He has been building LEGO creations for 30 years. He specializes in making city-scapes and individual buildings like the U.S. Bank Building, Milwaukee Central Library and Fiserv Forum.
“For me the best part about LEGO is the creativity," Paul Wellington, a LEGO builder said.
Now, his skills are really being put to the test. He has $100,000 and the title of LEGO Master on the line. It's a title that only three other two-person teams in the United States have.
Wellington is on the game reality TV game show LEGO Masters. Alongside his sister, they have to build different themed LEGO creations in a competition format.
“So there’s only 4 teams left at this point. so we have a pretty good chance to make it to the finals and actually win," he said on Nov. 24, 2023.
There are a few episodes left of season four. Technically, the show has finished filming and Wellington knows the results. He wouldn't tell me, and that's just how it goes with reality shows.
Wellington's creations stand out thanks to his attention to detail. He has a master's degree in architecture from UW-Milwaukee which gives him a keen eye for design. Wellington includes window sills, awnings, trash cans, lights, flowers, outdoor tables, and even sidewalks and bike lanes.
“Thousands of types of pieces and thousands of colors. You could build whatever you want to whether it’s a city or a figure," he said.
His dreams go beyond just the reality game show. He wants to build an entire LEGO city. Each part of his city is built on what are called plates. Those can include one large building or multiple smaller buildings. Wellington hopes to have 1,000 plates.
“I think at that point I want to start my own traveling show with my city, so maybe in 10 years I’ll get there. But that’s my dream," he said.
A dream that seems likely since he has already built beautiful cityscapes.