The Love mosaic we built for the Hope Gala was our second mosaic to build. We saw this idea of a Lego mosaic last summer, and started with a different Chinese character, “Fu”.
This Chinese word has the meaning of good fortune, good luck or blessing. Traditionally, this is given to newly married couples and others who you wish to bless. It is often woven into a hanging using knots and red and yellow yarn. There is an old story that tells why it is hung upside down; we do something similar with a horseshoe!
When displayed as a Chinese ideograph, Fú is often displayed upside-down on diagonal red squares. The reasoning is based on a wordplay: in nearly all varieties of Chinese: the words for “upside-down” (倒, Pinyin: dào) and “to arrive” (到, Pinyin: dào) are homophonous. Therefore, the phrase an “upside-down Fú” sounds nearly identical to the phrase “Good luck arrives”. Pasting the character upside-down on a door or doorpost thus translates into a wish for prosperity to descend upon a dwelling.
I spent more time on the design of this mosaic, since it was my first. I cropped it down, then cropped it some more. When we realized how much red was going to be used, I adjusted the character more so that it filled the area more. I knew we wanted it to be in a diamond shape, which meant putting the design on its side and hanging the final product 45° off.
Then, Mosaik had us using a slew of 6×24 red plates, which was an expensive option. So, we changed the design to use more 2×6 red plates and other smaller sizes. Mosaik also had us using 1×1 medium orange tiles, which were extremely rare and over a $1 each! So, we built it without those first, leaving those spots blank. Then, we could try other colors in those places to see what looked best.
This was the design we started with
And we finished with (image will link to the design on bricklink.com)
Unlike the Love mosaic, this one we built to sell! We’ve got it up on etsy, so check it out and see what you think.
Have another character or word you’d like to see in mosaic form? Please ask.
We’ve had ideas of using the Chinese characters for water, fire, and earth in a single design…. Oh, I’ve got ideas for sure!
Share your ideas in the comments or use the contact form that is also linked in the upper right-hand side bar.