Okay, this site is not in English. But this page is 🙂
I am Marc-André Caron, aslo know as MonsieurCaron on my YouTube channel were I show all my brickfilms.
What can I tell you about me? My AFOL journey.
As everybody, my parents gave me LEGO sets when I was young. I was a fan of space sets, always building new spaceships with smaller vehicles that came out of them for exploration. And when my brother and I wanted to build new ones, we were trashing our creations down the stairs to destroy « unbuild » them. My father was always asking me if I had finished my homework before playing with LEGO, because « you won’t make a living out of LEGO ». Later, when I was a teen in my dark ages, I found out that my mother had sold all our LEGO collection in a yard sale. We were sad about it for a long time and teasing her with it.
Then, one day, I woke up being a married man, a father of a young boy (now two boys) and a history teacher. I saw on YouTube those crazy movies made in stopmotion using all kind of toys, including LEGO minifigs and Bionicles . I started to try to do the same and bought a lot of Hero Factory (the « new » Bionicles) because they were more posable than minifigs. In the following year and half, I tested a lot of as my technique was not so good. I then took on our basement to « do my movie ». And I made Team Norac: A mix of Star Wars, Matrix and Iron Man… because that is what LEGO is about, doing what you want.
I was very proud of it, putting it on YouTube, dreaming of one day getting some money from Google AdSense and telling my friends about being paid to play with LEGO… I started to do movies with minifigs and found out it was easier and more fun to work with. I could build the set I dreamed of and tell any story I wanted, no limits (besides time, because stopmotion takes forever). As soon as my kids fall asleep, I go down in my makeshift studio and start building Santa’s flying ship and a winter log cabin and… well, see by yourself.
Then, someone called me and asked if I could do a movie for them. I said yes, even tough I haven’t work a lot with minifigs before. And I didn’t have all the LEGO sets I needed to do that movie. They asked me: What do you need? (Big smile on my face) I made them a list and they bought me all of it. I made this for my teachers union. I got to keep all the LEGO sets and they commissioned me for another one. Then, the FSE (Teachers union federation) ask me to do even more. One of them even got on the TV show it was imitating (the biggest show in Quebec television).
That got me started to making my own movies and building my YouTube channel. I joined QuéLUG (Québec LEGO User Group) and made presentations for them. The LEGO Group asked us what we would do if they gave us all the DINO sets. We said we were going to use them to do a display and do a brickfilm class with it. In this class, we made JuraBrick Park, and that movie will soon reach 2 000 000 views on YouTube. It’s also that movie that got me my first check from Google AdSense! It never stopped since.
The Palais des Congrès de Montréal asked me to do a scale model of the building in LEGO bricks… in a month! Witch I did!
I now have more commissioned brickfilm to do than time to do them. I work with YouTube chanels like The Brick Show and ArtiFex and I’m a guest writer for the brickfilm blog SetBump.com . I no longer pay for my LEGO as my brickfilms pay for them. I’m still a part-time teacher, but I’m now also a part-time brickfilmer.
In my class, I show my brickfilms to my students and tell them about my journey. I saw in their eyes that they dream of working with LEGO. I tell them that is not as easy as it looks. This is my way to teach them that they can follow their dream, but they still have to work hard, do some « not so fun « stuff , study and keep dreaming. When you do something you love, you do it well. When you do something well, you do a good job and people will see that. If you’re passionate enough about what you do (LEGOing, singing, dancing, writing…) someday someone will ask you for help and you may end up not working anymore, as you do what you love for a living. LEGO is the door I use to teach my student about passion and persevering.
My mother is my number 1 fan on the Internet (as all mothers are with their sons). She told me she had to sell our LEGO to buy food as it was not easy for our family that year. I promised her not to tease her with that again, ever.
I called my father not so long ago to tell him that « I’m (almost) making a living out of LEGO ». He smiled and was proud.
Now, how to explain to my kids that « dad is working with toys » ?…