Author Topic: Re: Work In Progress--Deryni Action Figure Project (was Duncan Action Figure)  (Read 314455 times)

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Offline Evie

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Re: Work In Progress--Duncan McLain Action Figure
« Reply #150 on: April 18, 2012, 09:20:22 pm »
http://www.wantedactionfigure.com/shop.asp?cId=1

Why, look, it's a much better than average collection of male head sculpts, and even a bigger assortment of female head sculpts than I usually find on a site catering to the customized action figure market!  I swear, if I see yet one more bad attempt at modeling Angelina Jolie's features, I shall scream.   :D

(It helps to click on the individual pictures in the Galleries, as on the pages where you see ten heads at one time, they look a bit squished on the sides, but you can see each head's true proportions when you click to see the individual listings.  And it also helps if you just look at the features themselves completely divorced from such considerations as who the actor/character the head is modeled on happens to be, their actual hair/eye colors, etc., because sometimes that brown-haired-green-eyed actor you can't stand might still happen to have a pleasing enough set of features when viewed simply as sculpture, and he could end up looking like a completely different person with blond hair and blue eyes.)

So...does anyone have any thoughts on which head(s) might transform into a decent looking Alaric?   :D

(Bracing myself in case this is one of those times when asking 20 people is going to result in 25-30 different answers!   ;D )
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Offline Alkari

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Re: Work In Progress--Duncan McLain Action Figure
« Reply #151 on: April 18, 2012, 09:30:50 pm »
ROFL - what a choice!!   Hitchcock or the Mad Hatter of course   :P

I am going through them slowly, trying to see them against the description of adult Alaric in DC - wide grey eyes in an oval face, etc.   Christian Bale could be a 'possible'.
 
For a Young Alaric, Tom Welling on page 6 mightn't be too bad.  
« Last Edit: April 18, 2012, 09:33:26 pm by Alkari »

Offline Evie

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Re: Work In Progress--Duncan McLain Action Figure
« Reply #152 on: April 18, 2012, 09:41:13 pm »
LOL!  I looked at a Tom Welling sculpt (although by a different sculptor) for Duncan once upon a time.

My main problem with using a Christian Bale sculpt for Alaric is that he's the actor whose photo I used for inspiration when I was creating Walter Branigan.  Though of course he could become a totally different person with blond hair and gray eyes, yadda yadda yadda, especially since I am NOT feeling particularly inspired to create a Walter action figure....  ;)  ("But look, there's more!  With Alaric and Duncan, you get this Walter Branigan figure, complete with twisted sidekick, kidnapping equipment, and a stash of ravaged bodies!  Summoned demons sold separately.")
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Offline Evie

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Re: Work In Progress--Duncan McLain Action Figure
« Reply #153 on: April 22, 2012, 12:53:18 am »
Not much time to work on projects this weekend--I've been buried alive under Spring Cleaning--but here's a brief update since there is a bit of news, though no pictures (yet).  On Friday afternoon, I was pleasantly surprised to receive three packages at my office.  One contained a used Irish Princess Barbie with lovely dark auburn tresses down to the backs of her knees, the perfect length and shade for Helena's once her body gets swapped out for an articulated one.  She'd obviously been someone's toy in her previous life, but still in good shape despite that, aside from her hair being a bit tangled and starting to get frizzy at the ends.  So she got a shampoo as soon as we got home Friday night, and then I slathered her hair with conditioner and wrapped it in Saran Wrap to deep-condition her hair.  It came out sleek and detangled after a little bit of combing with a hair pick, and there is only the very slightest bit of frizz left at the very ends, mostly on one side, and could be easily trimmed off if need be.  (Not sure if that bit just didn't get enough conditioner or was in worse shape than the rest and beyond help.)

Once I have more free time again, I plan to pop the contents of Package #2 into the DVD player and start customizing Helena's face.  The second package contained a DVD tutorial on how to use acrylic paint and soft pastel to enhance doll features without having to strip off the original paint.  At present, the new head has green eyes and very dark burgundy lipstick, but Helena needs blue eyes and more natural lipcolor.  The beauty of this technique the tutorial teaches is that, if I'm unhappy with my attempt to change the doll's features, the new paint is fully erasable with rubbing alcohol, and the original paint beneath will still remain so I can decide to leave her as-is or have another try at customizing her.  Once I'm happy with the results, I can seal the new paint with some clear sealer.  So it seems like a more "noob"-friendly way to start out customizing faces than stripping off all the old paint and having to start on blank vinyl.

But then there was Package #3, and that was the biggest surprise of all.  Literally the biggest!  Oh, I was expecting it--I'd been told to look for it around the end of the week--but when KK mentioned in last Sunday's chat that she had "a couple of remnants of fabric" for me, she understated a bit.  Like roughly five pounds worth of understatement.   :D  Instead I got a rather hefty parcel stuffed full of fabrics, trims, needlepoint canvas and black embroidery thread for blackwork, a catalog for nifty metal jewelry findings or some such (only had time for a brief glimpse)...I've still not managed to check out all the contents!  Duncan is still quite overwhelmed, about as you might expect if the Apostle Paul had his Creator stop him on the Damascus Road to say, "Here, you're about to go on three missionary journeys and you'll be needing clothes," and dumped a parcel of cloth goods on him the size of his tent.   ;D

So there's the weekend's update, and I'll post more pictures once life gets a little bit less hectic again.
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Offline tenworld

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Re: Work In Progress--Duncan McLain Action Figure
« Reply #154 on: April 23, 2012, 02:15:50 pm »
shouldnt the green light coming out of the package been a hint?

Offline Evie

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Re: Work In Progress--Duncan McLain Action Figure
« Reply #155 on: April 23, 2012, 02:38:13 pm »
Decisions, decisions....

I have access to a lovely fully-jointed body for Helena's new head (I've decided not to use the one I've already got because I think that head/body are going to end up becoming Richenda instead), but there's only one problem: the "Irish Princess Barbie" head has extremely fair skin, and most Barbie bodies either have a more medium-fair complexion to a dark tan.  So if I were to switch heads, Helena's face would be a shade or two lighter than the rest of her body.  Granted, she'll be wearing fairly concealing clothes most of the time, but the join would show just above the neckline of most clothes.  The bodies can't be repainted, and I'm not sure I'm skilled enough at blending paint colors to try matching the entire face's flesh tone to a body, so I've considered looking for another articulated body with a closer skintone match.  There are a few out there that aren't Barbie bodies but that would be compatible with a Barbie head.  For instance, one of the Obitsu bodies in their "White" line would be a fairly close match with Helena's facial tones:

http://www.parabox.jp/eng_new/27f_body.html

(One of the small to medium bust-sized models; I'm building a Schola magistra, not a fertility goddess!  :D )  Even their Fleshtone series might be a fairly close match, as it also seems paler than the current Helena/future Richenda skin.  But I'll let you judge that for yourselves:


New Helena, prior to her hair treatment.  Her skin looks a little fairer than this in actual room lighting.  I was going to post a picture of the Richenda doll too, but her skin in the best photo I have of her looks even lighter than Helena's due to the camera flash, when in room lighting it's actually a bit more tan.  Go figure.

BUT, on the other hand, I have also discovered this treasure trove of medieval and/or fantasy (but close enough to historical period garments to adapt easily) patterns especially designed for the current line of Barbie bodies, which means I wouldn't have to figure out how to created fitted gown patterns completely from scratch for a different set of body measurements. 

http://www.molendrix.com/galerie1.html

So, can I live with having a slightly two-toned Helena in order to be able to use these wonderful patterns to make Court clothing?  (They're also usable for the Richenda body I already have, and I'd really prefer not to have to make two totally separate wardrobes for my ladies if they can mix and match!)  Or would the join be so visually jarring that it would detract from the lovely clothing, making it preferable to go ahead and get the better matched body, even if I end up having to figure out how to adapt patterns for it later?

As I said, decisions, decisions....   :-\

And LOL, Tenworld!  Yeah, you'd think that green light might have been a clue.  Not to mention the angelic choir and that beaming vision of Saint Camber.... ;)
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Offline Evie

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Re: Work In Progress--Duncan McLain Action Figure
« Reply #156 on: April 24, 2012, 09:37:59 am »
A few more pictures....



Here you can see the contrast in Richenda's and Helena's skintones.  I thought Richenda's flesh was fair (and compared to many Barbies, it is, especially when seen in full sunlight rather than in a fairly dimly lit room at night, when this photo was taken), but Helena's is even paler.  Richenda has more golden undertones to her flesh color while Helena's are pinker.



After Helena's shampoo and deep conditioning hair treatment to defrizz the ends, while the hair was mostly dry but still slightly damp to the touch, I twisted it into this loose rope braid and left it like that for a few days to be sure it had time to fully dry all the way through, hoping it would dry with a few waves or loose curls that would still remain smooth enough to braid properly.



This was how her hair turned out several days later once I untwisted it.  I think it sort of gets across the idea of naturally curly hair whose curl is reduced to waviness by its length and weight.  Once it's mostly braided up in whatever ends up being its everyday style (something that will tuck neatly under wimples and/or veils), I may clip a few stray tendrils to frame her face and curl those on small rollers to create a few escaped ringlets.  I think I'll try that on the test head first, though, to make sure it comes out looking like I hope before I risk messing up this one.



The eyes will need to turn blue and her lips need to lose the dark burgundy lipstick and turn a more natural shade of rose or coral.  If I can manage a few tiny freckles around that little nose without them turning out looking like smudges of dirt, so much the better.  My magnifying visor is on its way and I already have the paints and brushes, so hopefully I can get around to trying this before too long.  Though again, I may experiment on the test head first, even though I'm going to be using a technique that's supposed to be fully reversible if I don't like how it turns out.



Luke enjoys this hobby.  It gives him more people to love.  And Helena loves the kittehs, even huge ones!



My husband decided my bishops needed tiny cowboy hats.  He may be weirder than I am!   :D







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Offline Evie

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Re: Work In Progress--Duncan McLain Action Figure
« Reply #157 on: April 24, 2012, 03:00:20 pm »
Look who showed up today at my office bearing a gift!



 Hint: the rampant gold lion on his crimson tunic should be a clue.   :D



Here's a closer view.  Surely he wouldn't have such pronounced wrinkles by age 21, or even at 30, despite the tough responsibilities of being King, would he?  I may have to dab a few premature age lines away when I change his eye color.  His lips might need lightening just a tad too.  He's meant to have a healthy color, not look cyanotic, but the vaguely purplish tinge makes me worried he was oxygen deprived in that bubble wrap mailer.



I'm thinking of replacing a row or two of the extra short hair at the nape of his neck with longer hair to make a proper Border braid. If it doesn't look right, I can always cut it short again. Again, I'll probably practice first with a test head to make sure I can get the rerooting technique right, but it should be easier and a lot less time consuming to only have to reroot one or two lines of hair rather than an entire doll's head. And I already have the fake hair left over from when I made my 12th Century style braids for my Sister Therese costume that I wore last year to Dragon*Con.
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Offline Shiral

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Re: Work In Progress--Duncan McLain Action Figure
« Reply #158 on: April 24, 2012, 03:28:44 pm »
"Well Pax Vobiscum, Li'l Lady!"

 :D Yes, Bishops with cowboy hats ARE Weird!

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Offline Evie

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Re: Work In Progress--Duncan McLain Action Figure
« Reply #159 on: April 25, 2012, 10:05:59 am »
See, Kelson doesn't always avoid the ladies!   ;)



It's good to be the King!  :D  Not only do you get lots of female attention, your profile goes on all the Kingdom's coins.



Hm.  Or maybe it's the other side that stamped on all the currency?  Kelson's not sure; he's got others who do his shopping for him!   ;D



(And don't worry, the poor kid's not hunchbacked or wearing football shoulder pads.  That tunic fabric is just a bit on the stiff side and doesn't have enough softness to drape when the figure is lying on his side, so it poofs instead.)

I'm thinking of taking a Sharpie marker and coloring at least some of the little "diamonds" in his crown red so they'll be rubies.  I think that would work better as Haldane regalia.  And it belatedly occurs to me that he needs an Eye of Rom.  Maybe one of my self-adhesive gems or pearls will be tiny enough and can be colored appropriately; I'll have to check.  If not, painting the head of a pin glossy red and then actually piercing his earlobe with it ought to do the trick.
« Last Edit: April 25, 2012, 10:11:09 am by Evie »
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Offline Jerusha

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Re: Work In Progress--Duncan McLain Action Figure
« Reply #160 on: April 25, 2012, 03:47:44 pm »
Duncan, Arilan, Kelson, Helena, Richenda - forget Saint Camber, we need to go on a Quest for Alaric!  :)
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Offline Evie

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Re: Work In Progress--Duncan McLain Action Figure
« Reply #161 on: April 26, 2012, 10:24:16 pm »
My bishops had a horrible, terrible, no good, very bad day, and they didn't even get to visit Australia!  :(  (Ten points if anyone out there gets that reference.)

I had a brand new purse/zippered tote bag with a black plastic lining, and I figured it would be the perfect size for carrying an action figure or two and some sewing supplies to the office with me, so I could get a bit of hand sewing done at odd moments.  Seemed like a good idea at the time, right?  Wrong!  At the end of the day, when I dug Duncan out again, I discovered this:



Oh noes!  Or perhaps I should say, Oh NOSE!!!!   :o  With that black smudge on his nose, my bishop looks more like a puppy now!

And the Arilan head didn't escape unscathed either:



The flash on my camera has washed the color on both those photos out quite a bit, but Arilan's cheek is also smudged, and I think there's a bit more dark gray on his chin and the very tip of his nose than there used to be, although with his beard shadow, it's harder to tell on his chin at least.  So as soon as we got home, I attacked both stains with a Q-tip soaked in rubbing alcohol, and when that did nothing to remove the black stain, I tried again with an acetone-based fingernail polish remover.  Normally this would be an extreme last resort, as acetone is what you are supposed to use to strip the facial paint completely if you want to repaint a doll's head from scratch, but it did absolutely nothing to remove the stain. 

I has a sad.   :'(

At this point I don't know if there is any hope of salvaging the Duncan head short of a full repaint, although my husband has a can of industrial strength acetone that I might try dampening a swab with to see if that will work first.  (And if it does, I'll attack the Sharpie stains under his hairline as well.)  I may have to start all over again with a new head, and if I end up having to do that, I don't know whether to start out again by modifying the same basic head (which I've gotten rather fond of along the way, so I'd hate for his face to change completely) or if I should just give up on that idea and try a totally new one.  Unfortunately I've only found Kens with this particular face mold with either golden blond or dark brown hair, not with light to medium brown hair.  There happens to be one on eBay at the moment that has lighter brown hair and blue eyes and is also articulated, but unfortunately the photo won't let me zoom in close enough to get a good idea of what his face looks like and how easy (or not) it might be to modify his hairstyle.

However, the day wasn't a complete loss.  KK's second package arrived in the mail today, containing some lovely gray silk and brown velvet that will make lovely Court clothing.  And Duncan also has some new jewelry:



Now he has a real ring to kiss at last.  If only I could do so with a straight face while my Bishop looks like he's masquerading as a puppy!  Waaaah!!!   :'(

The real irony of this is that I was in the chatroom with Annie and Alkari just this afternoon mentioning how ridiculously easy vinyl heads and bodies are to stain and ruin if you expose them to the wrong paints, dyes, or other chemicals, and all the while my action figures were getting stained from simply being inside a new handbag with a black lining that reacted badly to their 'skin'!  Grrrrrr!!!!  *tosses bag into donation box to send to thrift store*  >:(
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Offline Alkari

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Re: Work In Progress--Duncan McLain Action Figure
« Reply #162 on: April 27, 2012, 01:03:27 am »
* dies laughing*

You realise that this is most probably Aedwige's revenge?   "Keep your nasty meddling nose out of business that doesn't concern you, bishop!"    :D


Offline Jerusha

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Re: Work In Progress--Duncan McLain Action Figure
« Reply #163 on: April 27, 2012, 09:08:20 am »
Were you referring to Alexander and the Terrible, Horrible, No Good, Very Bad Day?  (I shouldn't get any points, though, because I Googled it.)

Poor Duncan and Arilan! I hope the stronger acetone works so you don't have to start completely over.

Though I can hear Helena and Richenda giggling a bit over the idea of Bishop Duncan as a puppy.  "Honestly, Richenda, he followed me home.  I have to keep him!"  ;D
From ghoulies and ghosties and long-leggity beasties and things that go bump in the night...good Lord deliver us!

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Offline Evie

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Re: Work In Progress--Duncan McLain Action Figure
« Reply #164 on: April 27, 2012, 11:41:18 am »
Exactly the book I had in mind.   :D

I don't know how well an entire face will fare under a repaint, since the vinyl is so flexible that most acrylics are likely to crack, though if it should come down to that, I've read that Testors paints are better suited for that sort of application than most, so I might have to see if I can find the right colors to mix to just the right shade.  In the meantime, I spent an hour or two looking up Kens on eBay again, and found one or two that might serve the purpose, although I don't like either of their faces nearly as well as my present one's, so it's all rather disheartening.  I guess if all fails, I can buy exactly the same sort of Ken I did last time and do a full re-root with the right color of brown hair once I've practiced the technique on a different head first, but that would be a WHOLE lot of work that I wouldn't look forward to, and there's no telling what his final hairstyle would end up looking like with me at the shears!  :(

And I can hear Richenda now.  "No, dear, he wasn't following you home, he was just heading back to his bedchamber for the night.  It is just one floor above yours, remember?  Now stop trying to drag him into your living quarters; you'll ruin his reputation.  Besides, Sister Therese is starting to stare...."   ;D
"In necessariis unitas, in non-necessariis libertas, in utrisque caritas."

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