Thursday, October 30, 2014

Day 303 - 365/2014

Day Three Hundred Three

I wanted to make the rabbit guy's fingers stronger and more rigid so that they would be less likely to snap off sometime down the road after he is pretty much all done...or if he is ever on display somewhere.  I also checked for the squishy areas on his torso and hips/haunches that might still be there from yesterday.

First I needed to cut a bunch of smaller plaster cloth triangles.
The hands "before".
The hands "after" -- and switched in position on the drying contraption.
I was pleased to find there were less squishy areas today as there were last night.  I marked where I needed to plaster cloth and then I did it.

A little later on I figured I better stop avoiding giving the bowling pin cat-creature eyes.  That deadline will be upon me before I realize it, too.

Those beads I was thinking might make decent eyes.
But you know what, that mark on is hard to tell if it is a scratched area or if it is leftover sticky stuff from a price sticker...but they all have an area like that.
What the heck...I put a dot of black acrylic paint on both beads and waited for them to dry. can see the scratched/residue-y part.  I need to find the taxidermy eyes.
YAY -- I found them!
I have several pairs of eyes in different sizes.  I will try a couple on the cat-creature.

So I tried out some of the eyes just to get an idea of what might or might not work.  In any case I will need to build up the face on one side just a bit.

These are the beads with the acrylic paint pupils...close set...
...and wide set...nope...not for this project.
These are largish predator eyes (I don't recall right now...wolf or lion)...nope, not for this project.
These are the yellow cat eyes that I am just not that fond of in general...wide set.
...another view, wide set...
...another view, wide set.
And same eyes, closer together, view #1.
View # 2 -- I guess I will go with these.

I finally bit the bullet and got started on adding the yellow taxidermy cat eyes.

Gah -- NOT happy with this...the side to my right is awful...that is the side that needs to be built up slightly. 
So I pulled off the still-wet plaster cloth and tried again.
GAH -- no...this is getting too built up and I just really don't like this pair of glass eyes.  I hope I can still pull ALL of the fresh plaster cloth back off without wrecking the face too much.
Whew -- I laid the cat creature on its side and kept wetting the area(s) -- finally I was able to dig out around the eyes -- and without too much damage. still looks okay.
Oh thank goodness...he didn't get too wrecked.  I guess I will either paint eyes for him or he'll get collaged eyes if I end up papering him rather than painting...still dunno.

Wednesday, October 29, 2014

Day 302 - 365/2014

Day Three Hundred Two

Tonight I covered over all of the Scott paper rags and masking tape that I added to the rabbit guy last night.  I wanted to get the first few hardening layers of plaster cloth on and drying.  I knew there would be areas that would sag in a bit because some areas were more tightly packed in than others.  

How he looked when I sat down to work tonight.
Some areas were more tightly packed with the Scott paper rags and tape than others...they will sag a bit tonight.
There -- not too bad. 
There was less sagging than I was expecting but it might show up again later on.
His hips/haunches are looking a little more hippier/haunchier and his belly is a bit round.  He will still need lots of shaping.

I also took a look at the hands that I made for the rabbit guy a while back.  I needed to see if they were still going to fit into his sleeves.  I also needed to wiggle-test the fingers and yep, they do need more plaster cloth reinforcement to make them more rigid.  I don't want them to snap off accidentally  after he is all built.  That will be another night's work, though...that is tighter, closer, fussier work than I have in me right now.  For now -- here is how he looks overall.

The hands I made for the rabbit guy a while back.  The fingers need more thinly applied layers of plaster cloth for strength.
The hands still fit into the ends of his sleeves -- yay!  
He's got a more "I'm gonna git ya" look.
I think he is shaping up pretty nicely, all in all.

Tuesday, October 28, 2014

Day 301 - 365/2014

Day Three Hundred One

Tonight I worked on shaping the rabbit guy.  I have been putting it off because I couldn't figure out how to get his hips/haunches to fill out.  I also couldn't decided how to incorporate his overall shape into his clothes.  When I first started with him I was thinking of making him a vest and coat from oatmeal box-thin cardboard covered with plaster cloth that would extend over the sticky-out plaque section where his legs join his torso.  But tonight when I went in and sat down with him my Universal helpers dropped in and suggested using Scott paper rags to plump up the voids.  Later they suggested pulling off yardage of the Scott rags and just wrapping the upper half of him and it all started to pull together.  At least he has more shape now -- he still needs work -- but I can see him a little more clearly now.

before -- ready to get started
before - closer view
The first wad of Scott paper rags is shoved into place.
Doesn't look like it, but I can sort of see it filling out.
Yeah...a long way to go yet, but...yeah.
And then they suggested just wrapping him in yardage of the Scott paper rags.
More...and shaping with the tape...
I can see where more needs to go.
His tummy is taking shape.
I evened out his hips/haunches.
Not too bad of a stopping place for tonight.
Yeah...I think they were pretty helpful.
Next I will probably do a couple of layers of plaster cloth to see where he needs more work...and maybe from this point I can just keep building with the plaster cloth.  I need to look at standing rabbits and hares and see what a tail looks like.  I am not sure if I will use one or not.

Monday, October 27, 2014

Day 300 - 365/2014

Day Three Hundred

Today my most wonderful friend Andi came over to help me in the studio and move things around for me.  I can't get up on a ladder (or even step stool) or climb the ladder/stairs to the loft anymore.  It is also getting hard to make a lot of repeated trips to the basement and Andi is eager to help me.  I cannot express my deep, deep appreciation enough.

Andi started bringing the stuff up from the basement that was going into the studio.

This is where I left off last night...I managed to drag the table into the studio but I couldn't stand it up by myself...too tight of a space.

Andi and I stood the table up -- just enough room!

Then I started handing the stuff up to Andi and she moved the things up to the loft and then moved the clock.

Next we brought in the white cubby cabinet...some of the plaster cloth boxes fit into the cubbies!

Ta-daaaaaaa -- I can't believe it!  I've got my studio back again!

Now it was time to get to work on the mannequin.
Sizing up the situation.
Andi held the head in position for me so I could see how it needed to be adjusted/where the neck needed to be added to.
This mannequin is one of the headless ones and if we put the goatish head directly on it, it was looking down too far.
There was about this much of a gap to fill.
Another view.
I quickly sawed a chunk of a pool noodle and it did the trick.
Andi held the head in place as I taped all around it until it was secure enough to let go.

At this point the head was pretty secure and Andi stayed on the step stool and I cut tape strips and she put them on.
Wow -- a job well done (with MUCH help).
How he looks with the arms and head on.
Yep -- this is going to be the biggest project I have made so far.
We took the goatish guy into the studio and now Andi takes the arms in and puts them under the table.

Whoa -- I felt SO relieved -- like a giant weight had been lifted off of me.  I am so very lucky to have such a wonderful friend as Andi.  THANK YOU SO MUCH!!!

I was able to cross all of the stuff off of the to-do list!

After Andi left I moved the Walking Chair and wall art around a bit.
This is where the white cubby cabinet was.
I want to have the chair be down at this end of the room so I can see it all the time.
I moved that wall art to the other space.
Protecting the chair with bins full of magazines until the cats get used to it being in this spot.
All done!
 And then I went into the wet studio and put a few things into the cubby cabinet and then just sat there and admired our hard I can really start to get back to working on plaster cloth guys.

Ha ha ha -- it kind of looks like the goatish guy is set up as an autopsy.
Wow -- it is SO good to have a work space again! 

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