Matthew Ashton is LEGO Masters judge on Channel 4 and is head of design at the LEGO Group, where he works in Billund, Denmark designing amazing products for a living. Find out more about this LEGO design professional…
You’ll recognise Matthew Ashton from LEGO Masters, but he’s also the guy who came up with Collectible Minifigures, worked on The LEGO Movie and its sequels, created Unikitty and designed 40516 Everyone Is Awesome. Matthew is also a great ambassador for the LEGO design team, often communicating with fans on social media and bringing joy to the LEGO community. He most recently guest edited 100 Incredible LEGO Builds.
Matthew Ashton joined the LEGO Group in 2000 as part of the design team. He worked on a number of product lines, including Clikits, but had one idea that wouldn’t stop going around in his head… LEGO Collectible Minifigures. He saw something in the little figures that could push the character aspect further, which led to the beloved ongoing series of blind-bagged characters.
That theme was a huge success when it launched. Matthew’s LEGO journey continued to involve special projects like The LEGO Movie, where he and his colleagues found a way of developing a product line concurrently with the production of an animated movie. He designed Unikitty for the film and served as executive producer, embedded in the production. Following the amazing box office and critical success of The LEGO Movie, Matthew worked on The LEGO Batman Movie and The LEGO Movie 2: The Second Part.
When LEGO Masters arrived on UK screens in 2017, Matthew Ashton appeared on-screen as the regular judge, joined by a rotating cast and later Fran Scott. The show saw pairs of builders compete to see who could construct the most impressive LEGO models. His role was to set the challenges, coach the contestants and then decide on which builds were the best. This set the template for how other judges would be involved in international editions of the show as it was exported around the world.
As head of design, Matthew doesn’t often get to design models himself. In 2021 though, he designed 40516 Everyone is Awesome, a very personal model. Matthew had a version of the model sat on his desk at work – when he saw an opportunity to share it more broadly and release it as an official model to celebrate the LGBTQIA+ community, he worked with colleagues to adapt it so that it could be offered as a commercial product.
If you want to browse pages and pages of amazing LEGO creations built by the most talented fan creators in the world, then you need 100 Incredible LEGO Builds. This special one-off LEGO magazine is packed with beautiful models built using the LEGO System. Matthew kindly agreed to guest edit this magazine and brought his design colleagues with him to provide commentary on the models presented.