Jump to content
The Flagship Eclipse Forums
Sign in to follow this  
Twi'lek Pam

Sculpting "Manufactured" Pieces

Recommended Posts

.

 

 

Take a look at the manufactured items around your house. Professionally machined objects have perfectly level surfaces, straight lines, and even curves. Their angles are sharp and exact. When you make costume pieces that need to have a manufactured look, always remember that the lines, curves, and angles are the key features. Good lines and angles can make your armor or blaster look like it really was made in a factory on Corellia... while uneven lines, sloping surfaces and sloppy angles will make your costume look homemade and less than professional.

 

So, what's a good way to start when you want to make something look professionally manufactured? Start with something that was made by a professional manufacturer!

 

Take it from the queen of recycled shapes.... there is a huge variety of objects around every house that can be used as the base for costume pieces. Keep a cardboard box handy somewhere, and throw things that might be useful in it instead of just throwing everything away. One of my favorite things to keep are the vacuformed plastic covers that many store items come in. You know, the clear cover that's glued to a piece of cardboard backing. They're small, they're lightweight, they're free... and you never know when the clear plastic shell that once held a set of Sharpies might be the perfect shape you need for a sculpting project!

 

 

PlasticMolds.jpg

 

 

 

Sometimes a 'recycled' item can be added directly to a prop or costume piece. More often, though, you will need to modify it to make it fit correctly. Or, it might need a bit more detail. It is very hard to change the shape or add things to a piece of thin plastic... but that piece of plastic can easily be used as a mold. All you need to do is cast the shape in a material that is easier to work with.

 

 

Here's an example. I took the plastic vacuformed wrapper that once covered a jar of powdered Covergirl makeup, I sprayed in some mold release, and then I poured in some resin. A few minutes later I popped the resin out, and I had a perfectly round disk with a professional curve on the top. Since it was resin, that disk could be sanded, carved, and modified in any other way I might need. Then I took the plastic lid that once covered a roll of electrical tape and did the same thing. I ended up with a resin disk that was slightly larger than the first disk, and perfectly flat.

 

 

I glued the two pieces together, added a bit of detail with a dremel, then added some scraps of melamine to the outer edges. I cut the tops off some rivets and glued them on, and the whole thing was glued to a piece of scrap styrene to keep it all perfectly alligned. Once the glue was set, I built a retaining wall and made a silicone mold. From that mold, I used fiberglass to cast the back piece for my Mara Jade shoulder harness. Can you imagine how long it would have taken me to perfectly shape those round disks by hand? Recycling a couple pieces of plastic saved me hours of work, and gave a more professional look to my finished product.

 

 

MaraHolster.jpg

 

 

 

So, the next time you finish off a box of rivets or open up a package of elastic... before you throw away the packaging, take a look at the shape. Is it in good condition? Might that shape come in handy someday? If your answer is yes, then toss it in a box and save it. The bigger the assortment of shapes you collect, the more likely it will be that the next time you need something, your box 'o stuff might contain exactly the shape you need!

 

 

Pam :-)

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Guest Anonymous

now if I only had a large enough iguana around my house my bossk face sculpting problems would be over...

 

great tutorial pam! definitely true!

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
now if I only had a large enough iguana around my house my bossk face sculpting problems would be over...

 

 

LOL!!! Thanks... I needed a good laugh! :-D

 

 

 

Pam :-)

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.

Guest
Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Restore formatting

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.

Loading...
Sign in to follow this  

×
×
  • Create New...