Wednesday, March 26, 2014

Workspace Wednesday: Sculpting the Monster High Custom Clicker Zombie from The Last of Us

It's no secret that I'm a huge fan of videogames.  I'm actually taking a brief pause from hoarding gold in Diablo III to post this >_>.  The Last of Us from Naughty Dog absolutely captured my heart.  Then it stomped on it, set it on fire, and then tossed it in a pile of excrement.  I don't think I've ever seen a game that was quite so completely, unbearably awful to its characters.  Tragedies aside, it's one of the greatest (and most terrifying) stories ever told.

I've been talking about creating a custom Clicker and Ellie custom Monster High set for months and I finally got the kick in the pants to proceed thanks to watching Feral Works' breathtaking progress on her Clicker mask.

Custom Sculpted Monster High Clicker Zombie
Sculpting to the sounds of the Yogscast.
I started off by lopping the face off (and a few fingers) of a Dragon Girl Create a Monster.  Instead of just sculpting the cordyceps on top of the head, I really wanted it to look like it was exploding from inside the cranial cavity.  I laid down a base layer of air drying foam clay for added texture.  Once dry, it's actually a bit squishy and flexible to the touch.  A few days of drying later, I began to add more details using Super Sculpey.  The foam clay is nice, but it's nearly impossible to create little details.

Custom Sculpted Monster High Clicker Zombie
Adding texture and stability to the Clicker using Super Sculpey.
I also wanted to be able to paint these smaller details more efficiently, since the foam clay tends to soak up paint.  It has the added benefit of creating more stability for the foam clay as well.

Custom Sculpted Monster High Clicker ZombieCustom Sculpted Monster High Clicker Zombie

As with most of my Sculpey use, the layers are kept thin enough to be hand cured with a heat gun.  Tufts of hair will be added between the cordyceps fungus.  I'm playing around with a few different ideas for adding 'decay' to the body, but I haven't decided on which looks best yet.

There's still a lot more progress to go, including creating an outfit, but I'm really liking how the custom looks right now :).  Thanks for reading!

Saturday, March 22, 2014

Monster High Commissions: Honey Swamp and Jane Boolittle for Machelle

These two girls were created for Machelle :).  I can't even express how much I love painting Honey.  I really need to get my hands on another of my own so I can really get at that amazing body detailing.

She's one of the most amazing dolls I've ever seen from a playline release.  Pink and green is one of my favorite color combinations, so getting a chance to use these colors on her was so fun.

Jane is quickly becoming another favorite of mine.  I really love her dark lavender skin tone.  She has very nicely sculpted lips and eyewells.

Monster High Repaint Custom Jane Boolittle DollMonster High Repaint Custom Jane Boolittle Doll

 I'm very glad I have my own still left to work on!

Monster High Repaint Custom Jane Boolittle Honey Swamp Doll
Jane Boolittle and Honey Swamp Custom Monster High Repaints
Thanks so much for reading :).  I hope you enjoyed them as much as I did!

Thursday, March 13, 2014

Belated Workspace Wednesday! Eleanor's Faceup (Fallindoll Rabi)

Fallindoll Rabi BJD Faceup
Eleanor, a Fallindoll 27cm Rabi

So, this is what I worked on most of yesterday :D.  I knew I wanted to try something a little over the top with both Rabi (newly named Eleanor) and Force, but I waffled a bit over which direction to take.

Eleanor here isn't completely finished, she'll be getting some custom made eyes, a new outfit, and still needs lashes, but the majority of the work is complete :).  I airbrushed her body in a flecked agouti coloration with little black spots and gradient hands, legs, and ears.

Fallindoll Rabi BJD Faceup
Die cut vinyl detail, drawn in Adobe Illustrator.
I designed the vinyl appliques using Illustrator and exported them to my die cutting machine's program.  Drawing these designs would have taken forever, wreaked havoc on my poor hands, and still wouldn't have been the effect I wanted.  I measured the different areas of her face to get the spacing and layout correct.

Her hands and feet have already chipped a bit of the paint with movement, which is to be expected.  I'm thinking about going back over them with my black Plasti-dip spray since it worked so well the last time I used it on a doll.

Fallindoll Rabi BJD Faceup

Fallindoll Rabi BJD Faceup

I'm super happy with how she turned out :).  Force (yet to be named) will be completed in the same fashion with different designs (more lace like, in cream or white), which I'm still working on.  I hope you guys enjoyed!  Thanks for reading :D.

Friday, March 7, 2014

Fallindoll Rabi and Force Ball Jointed Doll Review

Emory over at recently got Fallindoll's new Rabi and Force (27cm) in stock and I nearly broke my neck ordering these two.  I missed out on Hujoo's fennec fox, Penny, a long time ago and I wasn't about to let another slip through my fingers!  I couldn't resist Rabi, either, I seem to be amassing a collection of bunny themed dolls.

Fallindoll Ball Jointed Doll Rabi and Force
Adorable little boxes!

Honestly, I don't keep up with the BJD community as much as I used to.  I only get snippets and photos from those few I follow on Tumblr who also collect and customize.  I'd never even heard of Fallindoll until I got the newsletter from Junkyspot saying they'd come in stock.  If you get a second, definitely check out their site.  They have quite a few ridiculously cute offerings.  I've also got my eye on their vinyl Panda, which is akin to dolls like Wonder Frog and Tokissi.

Anyway!  On to the review!

I ordered Rabi in Light Grey.  The information for Rabi is conflicting on the page, the first notice says they take 16mm eyes, which is likely just a typo.  They actually take something more like 12 or 10mm depending on the dome.  High domed eyes would look awkward in Rabi, her eye wells are not very deep or rounded.  I have plenty of other girls who can use the pink eyes I ordered so I just gave her a pair of brown glass eyes I had on hand.

Fallindoll Ball Jointed Doll Rabi and Force
Holy crap, that's cute.
I -instantly- fell in love.  I mean, jeez, look at that face *_*.  Feel free to use either of these headshot photos for your own mock faceups, if you'd like!  I haven't decided exactly how I'll paint her yet, but it'll have to wait until we get over the flu epidemic going on in our house right now T_T.

Force is equally adorable.  I love how mischievous she looks!  The 16mm eyes fit Force perfectly and I'm glad, I really wanted a golden color for her :3.

Fallindoll Ball Jointed Doll Rabi and Force
Ready for all kinds of shenanigans.
So yeah, they're friggin' adorable, but what about their function?  Both of these dolls are constructed from super durable ABS plastic.  I prefer it in my BJD's because I'm not exactly the most graceful creature on the planet.  The one thing you might be astounded to know is that these cuties pose like pros.  I've owned a ridiculous amount of BJD's over the years from pretty much every brand you can think of and I've never, ever seen dolls pose like these two before.

Fallindoll Ball Jointed Doll Rabi and ForceFallindoll Ball Jointed Doll Rabi and ForceFallindoll Ball Jointed Doll Rabi and ForceFallindoll Ball Jointed Doll Rabi and Force

The roombox their standing on isn't even remotely level.  It's propped up on my quilting arm for my sewing machine lopsidedly.  It took about five seconds to get the one legged poses level and sturdy.  There are notches on the inside of their ball joints which 'click' into place for different poses.  You pose them and they... just -stay- that way.  It's crazy and I wasn't expecting it at all.

Fallindoll Ball Jointed Doll Rabi and ForceFallindoll Ball Jointed Doll Rabi and Force

Fallindoll Ball Jointed Doll Rabi and ForceFallindoll Ball Jointed Doll Rabi and Force

I mean, holy smokes, that's ridiculous.  Their legs are able to fold up flat against their thighs or out to the side suwarikko style.  Their torso can be moved forward, backward, side to side, and it just holds in place like it doesn't even care.  Their joints don't jerk or slip out of place and that just boggles my mind.  I have several other ABS dolls so I was expecting them to perform in a similar fashion, but no, these are hands down the sturdiest BJD's I've ever owned.

My complaints are few and won't matter after I'm finished customizing them.  The headcap was a complete pain to remove.  I had to insert a butterknife between the gap and gently wiggle it out.  I don't expect to be removing it very much once I finish painting them, but it's something to be aware of if you like to reposition your eyes more than I do.  It's also virtually impossible to position the eyes inside the head with wax or tack while the strings are around the pegs which connect the head to the body.  If you have a full stem eye that extends too far, you also might run into issues with the strings knocking your eyes out of place, so stick to half round or acrylic stems that can be popped off.

I'm incredibly happy with these guys, they're so completely adorable.  I'm really looking forward to finishing them and taking photos, especially now that I know they pose so incredibly well.  Thanks for reading!