We always research and develop to do it in our own so that there's many way to build up as you say, totally. [link] [link] These are the official sets in case you need faster methods to build up some robots or mecha. And this is my own basic frame archive. [link]
I always collect and pick up such these references, (see link [link] Normally I'm not looking for the theme from someone's LEGO works or mech designs, to put it another way, in recent I always take designs and silhouettes from monster, creatures and their bones.
Less than 10 years since I try to / play with LEGO. Gundam and Star Wars are the first chance to do, maybe. It will be just my hobby, also not to concern with my job. Hope I could answer you.