Calgary lego fanatic lands dream job in Florida
Calgary's 2015 Silver Springs Lego Competition winner credits his wife for his newfound career
It all started with a look.
Lego hobbyist Eric MacCallum was trying to convince his wife that it'd be a good idea to dedicate an entire room in their small apartment just to his Lego exploits.
"She gave me the eye, and I said, 'Okay, well, I'm going to have to make a tiny little business out of this,'" he said.
He established a small studio in Calgary and set up a Facebook page and website. From there things quickly exploded for the 2015 Silver Springs Lego Competition winner.
"The orders just started rolling in, and I just accepted anything that came in," he said, in a phone interview from Florida.
From crafting favourite cars to sculpting the family cat and casting Lego-made busts of people's heads, MacCallum has done it all.
Calgary shop paves way to Florida job
MacCallum's small business in Calgary helped him forge the networks that would eventually lead him to his dream job.
Folks at the Legoland theme park in Carlsbad, Calif., had caught on to MacCallum's work, and when an opportunity to begin working at a brand new Florida Lego shop arose, they called and asked him to submit a resume.
"I certainly did, and from there, it's just been a whirlwind adventure," he laughed.
Today, he's officially an industrial designer at Legoland Florida, working for Merlin Entertainments, the company that owns the Legoland discovery centres, hotels and themeparks.
"I never really intended for this to happen," MacCallum said. "I just thought, maybe let's see how far I can push this.
While he can't get too specific about the kinds of projects underway at Legoland, he said there's ample opportunity for him to stretch himself.
"You name it, we're designing it," he said.
The pros and cons of unlimited Lego
While MacCallum theoretically has access to all the Lego he could ever need, he says that kind of access is both "enabling," and "constraining."
"As much as every kid wants to have the very, very large collection, I think some of the best stuff I've seen comes out of the small collections," he said.
"I really do like having a limited amount of pieces, because that's where your creativity can really, really shine through," he said.
As for MacCallum's wife, she's now fully on board, MacCallum said.
"She told me over, and over, and over again that she's extremely proud of what I've accomplished, just in a short period of time."
"Her and I are the kind of people who like adventure. We're always up for moving around and whatnot," he said.
"I promised her that I'd make her adventure dreams come true, so this is part of my promise to her — for sorting all my Lego," he laughed.