MANILA -- Ivan Guerrero is bouncing off the satellites and is probably over the moon.
The young entrepreneur and hobbyist has seen his design of the USS Cardboard, an idea that harkens back to his childhood days, approved for production by building toy giant LEGO.
This was Guerrero’s second design to be approved after his Sesame Street was produced.
LEGO made the announcement of the 15 finalists out of the 2,000-plus entries that have been approved for production.
“When LEGO Ideas announced their ‘Out of This World’ space builds contest, I immediately started thinking about unexpected ways to realize the concept of space travel in a LEGO set,” related Guerrero of the origin for his design. “I knew from previous experience that there would be thousands of entries so I had to find a way to set myself apart from all the other designers.”
Guerrero toyed with several ideas -- a telescope-kaleidoscope, a 1950s-style tin toy rocket, and several others before he decided on taking something straight out of his childhood -- a cardboard rocket ship that his sibling and himself used to play in and imagine all these adventures.
“My siblings and I would oft play with cardboard boxes and we made all sorts of things with them -- trains, rocket ships, and doll houses to name a few.”
“I felt that playing with cardboard boxes was a universal experience for many kids,” reflected Guerrero. “The idea of space travel can be a very broad and abstract concept for many people, and I figured that a cardboard rocket ship would be simple, nostalgic, and a tangible approach that many could relate with (in terms of their childhood).”
For the mock up, Guerrero used LEGO software with the challenge on how to make it the set look like it was built from cardboard, duct tape, paint, pizza boxes, plungers, and everyday household items.
“I was very particular about my color palette as it had to have a DIY feel, something a child could realistically build at home,” observed Guerrero of his design.
Among all the designs submitted for this contest, Guerrero’s USS Cardboard won the popular vote.
“I was ecstatic,” enthused Guerrero when learning of the voting results. “This set was very personal to me because of its connections to my childhood. To have so many people connect with me and tell me that it reminded them own their own growing up years has been an unexpected joy.”
LEGO has yet to announce a release date for USS Cardboard and other winner of their space design contest.