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Archive for December, 2010

Baking the master mask

December 28th, 2010 admin No comments

The best it ever looked.

Yesterday, after printing out my new reference images, I finished up the detail work on the mask. Now it was time to bake. I did a ton of reading on how to best harden the sculpey without cracking it, and popped it in the oven at 225F for 1 hr, then 170F for another hour. After that, I turned off the oven and let it cool down with the mask still inside. This was all supposed to minimize cracking. No such luck, it turns out. I am going to chalk this one up to the fact that the plaster base is still inside there, and there’s probably a difference in the amount of expansion/contraction that happens in the plaster and the sculpey. Anyway, I got a big nasty crack across the nose, cracks from the corners of the eyes going outward, a crack down the center of the nose, and a crack from the nose down through the mouth. You can see the one across the nose in the pic – the others hadn’t formed yet.

Visible crack across the nose.

It is possible I pulled it out of the cool oven too soon, but I honestly think there’s probably not much I could have done to avoid this besides just molding the uncured sculpey instead of trying to bake it. Either way, I’m fairly sure I’ll still be able to salvage a good mask from this by patching the cracks before molding/casting.

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Clockwork Droid Reference Pics

December 22nd, 2010 admin No comments

Screen-used Clockwork Droid masks

Lynette found an amazing source for images of screen-used masks, as well as great reproductions:

http://www.aqpa87.dsl.pipex.com/scifihelmets/millennium_fx_clockwork_droid_ma.htm

This is INVALUABLE to getting this mask right, and I’m seriously freaking out right now. Looking forward to figuring out how to get that craquelure effect.

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Sculpting a new master

December 20th, 2010 admin No comments

First things first, be sure to check out the new movie forum.

Now for some mask progress. I took a few hours yesterday to sculpt a new, larger master out of Super Sculpey. It’s built on the same plaster cast of Lynette’s face, but I built up the base another inch or so, and used a thicker layer of clay as the mask (to try to account for shrinkage). Work-in-progress photos follow:

Looking pretty creepy.

Still a little lumpy.

Need to make some of the detail lines thicker.

Hipster photo filter.

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Second Pull – Droid Mask

December 16th, 2010 admin No comments

First real pull. Some distortion due to camera, some due to poor casting.

After picking up some white casting resin, I cleaned up the mold from our first disastrous pull (with the wrong type of resin) and tried again.

Success!

Lessons learned:

  1. Use thinner silicone for the first coat of the mold, to avoid bubbles/pits. We have some nasty ones, as you can see around the mouth and chin in the image.
  2. Use different tints for different layers of silicone to avoid thin spots.
  3. Make the master bigger to account for shrinkage. It seems like the plaster probably shrunk a little, the silicone shrunk a little, and so on. It’s not obscenely small, but it is noticeable.
  4. Make the sides of the master higher/deeper to allow trimming of final product to where we need it. Also, create some walls around the sides so we can slush the resin right up to the edges without worrying about pouring it out.
  5. Sculpt the master in super sculpey and harden it before taking a mold.
  6. These are probably all things we could have read in any casting book/tutorial, but doing it yourself is way more fun.

From here, I think our next move is to sculpt a new master, as painful as that might be. Overall, I’m very happy with how this is going, mostly because I don’t have a deadline forcing me to cut corners or live with things I’m not completely satisfied with.

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