Author Topic: Re: Work In Progress--Deryni Action Figure Project (was Duncan Action Figure)  (Read 314482 times)

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Offline DesertRose

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That's about the only way I can see a ST/Deryni crossover working.  Either that or an away team beaming down into Gwynedd, but I suspect even the Deryni would be startled enough by that to start shooting arrows first and only think of asking questions later.   :D

"Holy [bleep], there's no Portal there!  How did those people in those strange tight clothes get there?"  (/nocks arrow)
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Offline Elkhound

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"Holy [bleep], there's no Portal there!  How did those people in those strange tight clothes get there?"  (/nocks arrow)

And the way the women dressed would be enough to give them apoplexy!  TOS--showing all that leg; TNG--wearing TROUSERS!

Offline Shiral

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"Holy [bleep], there's no Portal there!  How did those people in those strange tight clothes get there?"  (/nocks arrow)

And the way the women dressed would be enough to give them apoplexy!  TOS--showing all that leg; TNG--wearing TROUSERS!

Not really a problem. In both Star Trek series, they sometimes beamed down wearing the local styles in order to blend in. 
 
I did actually write a Dernyni/Star Trek Fanfic, which worked surprisingly well up to a point. Dhugal even went on a bender with Scotty and comes back to Kelson totally hung over.

D: I feel awful! They have incredible liquor up here!
K: What were you drinking?"
D: "I dunno--All I can tell is that it was green!

 I do sometimes wish I had a holodeck for the better visiting of Gwynedd! Talk about the RPG fun that could be had....
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More rerooting practice by evian_delacourt, on Flickr

I figure I need more rerooting practice before I dare try to create Kelson's border braid or make a Dhugal head, so I decided to pluck this head bald tonight.  Her current hair is unsalvageable, so might as well take it all out and give her a second chance at life.


Better view by evian_delacourt, on Flickr

Here's a view that shows her marker stained hair ends.  She also has a wide streak or two close to her crown that wasn't removed by the Clearasil treatment.  I figure she can only benefit from a full reroot, and if that ends up looking good, I can wipe her face clean and try a full repaint of that as well.


Newly shorn and plucked by evian_delacourt, on Flickr

Here is the bald head.  I used jewelry pliers this time to pull the hair plugs out, and that went better than the first time I tried this using tweezers.  I was also using some fingerless craft gloves that are supposed to help prevent cramping.  I didn't end up with achy hands this time, so they seem to have helped.

Oh, and notice the book I picked up at our local used bookstore today.  It's by Katherine something-or-other....   ;) :D


Holes in the head by evian_delacourt, on Flickr

The head has two large holes on each side where I think a tiara used to be attached.  I'm hoping when the new hair is rooted, it will hide those. 

I will need to paint and seal the scalp area with a matching color to the hair I plan to root in it before I can begin that step of the project.  Otherwise any gaps in the hair will show up very clearly.


Damaged part by evian_delacourt, on Flickr

The side part is also one single row of holes with a few vinyl splits (or perhaps just extra large holes?) instead of two parallel rows.  Not sure why it was done that way, but I plan to style it differently this time, so hopefully that damaged row won't matter.

Also picked up a few other project-related bits and bobs at Hobby Lobby and Joann's Fabrics today, so hopefully I'll have more photos to upload soon.
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Offline derynifanatic64

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I guess you could say that that head is your own personal gargoyle head.
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Offline Jerusha

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Head on a stick is mildly disturbing (but a great focal point for meetings) but a plucked head on a book about gargoyles - and she's still smiling ... Oh my!

I hope it's not the root of all evil.   ;D
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No, that would be the love of money.  Which is why I'm doing my best to get rid of mine by buying doll stuff and craft supplies.   ;) :D
« Last Edit: July 08, 2012, 09:00:16 pm by Evie »
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Re: Work In Progress--Deryni Action Figure Project (was Duncan Action Figure)
« Reply #322 on: August 03, 2012, 05:38:14 pm »
Reports of my death (or of this project's demise) have been greatly exaggerated....   ;)   I've just been taking a bit of a breather lately.

But getting back to business, today I purchased this handsome fellow (well, maybe not this exact one, but one like it) to convert into a nicer looking Dhugal MacArdry McLain:



I've also been reading up on a method of "dyeing" doll hair (actually, more like tinting with a very thin acrylic paint wash) that is supposed to be safer on the doll and less likely to ruin the vinyl skin if done properly.  So what I'm hoping to do, rather than pulling out all that hair and trying to reroot it, then forcing the resulting thick mass of hair into a Border braid, is just tint the figure's original hair to a nice "copper bronze" shade, and then only remove a row or two of the short hair at his nape and reroot in longer doll hair in a shade (or actually a blend of shades) that will hopefully closely match the newly-dyed hair on top of his head.  Any inexactness of color matching, I'm hoping to hide with the binding cords in the McLain colors that will be wound around the Border braid to secure it.

So to that end, after consulting off-forum with KK to find out exactly what color it is she had in mind when she described Dhugal's "copper bronze" hair, she said that the "Copper Auburn" or "Copper Penny" shades on this doll supply website probably come closest to what she has envisioned for his haircolor:

http://www.dollyhair.com/saranhair.htm

Since I suspect that the reddish tinting that I am hoping to achieve over the new figure's original brown hair is going to end up having some brownish lowlights (shadows) peeking through the translucent paint tint, I ordered a blend of doll hair that is 50% Copper Auburn (the darker of the two shades KK selected, which will serve as my "midtone" color), 25% Copper Penny, which I'm hoping will look like natural sun-lightened highlights, and the remaining 25% in Russet Brown, to match the more shadowed tones I suspect will end up in the dyed hair.  Hopefully that blend will come very close to matching whatever shade the dyed hair on top ends up being, but if not, I can reserve the hair for a different doll project and order a better matching blend.  (Or try re-dyeing the hair, though I wouldn't want to add too much paint wash to it, no matter how thinned out, for fear of making it too stiff.  I'm not aiming for Punk Hairstyle Dhugal, after all!  :D )

Of course, I do plan on testing the paint-"dyeing" technique on a spare head first, but fortunately I've got Duncan's original head set aside and all ready for testing.  I'll see how well I do with shading that sandy hair a darker shade of medium brown, and if I get good results from that (and assuming the color stays where it's supposed to and none of the pigment rubs off on his face), I'll dare to try it again with my current Duncan's hair.  By then, I ought to have received the new figure and supplies needed to get a start on the replacement Dhugal.

In the series, Dhugal is depicted with a mustache but without the beard, so when I repaint his eyes amber, I may go ahead and swab the beard off with an acetone dampened cotton swab at the same time.  Though since KK is going to be at Dragon*Con this year, I'll probably leave it as-is until she has a chance to see what he looks like at that point and decide for herself whether to "shave" it or leave it on.  After all, he may well decide to try growing a beard by 1136.   :)  Unlike my other figure, this facial hair is only painted on, not molded into the facial sculpt as well, so it should wipe off much more easily, and it's easier to clean excess paint off a doll's face than paint facial hair on and have it look good, so that's why I shopped around until I found one with decent looking facial hair already painted on.
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Offline Jerusha

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Re: Work In Progress--Deryni Action Figure Project (was Duncan Action Figure)
« Reply #323 on: August 05, 2012, 01:14:01 pm »
Welcome back to you and the "littles"!   :)
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Re: Work In Progress--Deryni Action Figure Project (was Duncan Action Figure)
« Reply #324 on: August 05, 2012, 03:10:00 pm »
Thanks, Jerusha!   :)

Here's the results of today's experimentation:


Test Duncan makeover by evian_delacourt, on Flickr

Today I tested a new form of hair dyeing that is supposed to be safe for doll hair, and applied it to the original Duncan head (the middle one).  Unfortunately the lighting in this photo doesn't show the color difference in the newly dyed hair to best advantage; when looked at in person, it looks a shade or two darker than it does in this photo.  However, with this method it is possible to go back over the dyed hair with another layer of coloring and build up the color that way if the first attempt isn't dark enough.

To "dye" the hair, I created a thin mixture of brown acrylic paints and water, mixing it to an ink-like consistency.  I used a paintbrush to apply a light wash of color to the surface layer of hair, and then used a flea comb (though any comb with very closely spaced teeth will work) to comb the color into the hair so it would coat all sides of the individual strands.  Before I did this, I had wrapped the skin areas with plastic cling wrap to help keep paint off them.  I also used the comb itself as a "paintbrush", dipping it into the thin paint and running it through the hair until the overall color was a nice shade of brown.

After dyeing the hair just a little darker than I wanted it (because the dye dries lighter than it appears when it's wet), I blow-dried the hair at the hair-drier's lowest setting until it was completely dry, fluffing it up to dry the underlayers first, then smoothing it down while the warm air was still blowing on it so that it would be nicely styled once it was fully dry.    In this shot, Alaric's hair is actually just a tiny bit darker than the original golden blonde hair this head originally started out with, before my various attempts to color it.  The current Duncan's hair color is closer to how it looked before I dyed it this time, and as I mentioned before, the new hair color actually appears a shade or two darker than this when there isn't direct flash lighting on it.  And the hair is still nice and supple, without any of the stiffness I feared I might get when I first read of this method.  There were one or two paint spots on the skin when I finished despite my precautions, but they came right up with a wipe of non-acetone nail polish.  Overall, I think this experiment was a success, and if the brown needs to go even darker, I can just repeat it until I achieve a better shade of Duncan's "medium brown."


Tonsure by evian_delacourt, on Flickr

Since I was going to be giving the test head a makeover anyway, I went ahead and tried plucking out the hair just at the top of the crown, around the original "cowlick."  It started out looking quite good, up until it was about 1/6 the size of a quarter.  I probably should have stopped there, but I kept on, thinking to make it about 1/6 the size of a silver dollar so that it would show up a little better.  Unfortunately, expanding the circumference just that tiny bit revealed a stubborn row of hair plugs that I just couldn't eliminate completely no matter how much I tried, so that's why there appears to be a darker row across the right side of the tonsure.  I hoped I could camouflage this and the holes in the vinyl with a few dabs of paint tinted to match his facial skin, so after I dyed his hair, I mixed a bit of "flesh" color from the tube with some of the brown ink wash just to dull it down to a shade that was a better match for his actual skintone, and I dabbed a bit of that color onto the exposed scalp.  I really didn't like the way that look, and despite my best efforts to avoid the hair roots around the bald spot, some of that hair got tinted anyway, so I used a napkin to dab up the excess paint and retouched Duncan's roots with the brown paint wash.  There might be some other way to cover up this area--perhaps molding a bit of flesh colored Sculpey to the right shape and gluing it in place once it is baked--but at the moment I'm still thinking it through.  I've noticed that the hair on the current Duncan head isn't rooted in exactly the same way--the central whorl of the hair isn't centered exactly at the crown of the head, but is a bit to one side--so I don't know if I could achieve the same results if I try this technique on that head.  He may end up needing to remain untonsured.  Either that, or I could end up swapping out heads again, though if I end up doing that, I'll have to figure out a way to match his eyebrow color first so I can reshape them, because the paint on the original head's eyebrows is partly worn off.  Maybe I can just try restyling the new Duncan's hair first to see if it's rooted in such a way that would allow for a nicely centered tonsure, or if it looks like I'd need to give up on the idea.  If I do tonsure him, I think I'll stick to a very small tonsure, even smaller than the one on the test head, to minimize the chances of running across an unsightly "scar" of hair plug holes aligned in a tight row.
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Offline derynifanatic64

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Re: Work In Progress--Deryni Action Figure Project (was Duncan Action Figure)
« Reply #325 on: August 05, 2012, 04:14:57 pm »
You might want to cover up some holes before putting on Duncan's hair to avoid having visible holes on his head.
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Re: Work In Progress--Deryni Action Figure Project (was Duncan Action Figure)
« Reply #326 on: August 05, 2012, 05:46:58 pm »
Not sure what you mean by "cover up some holes before putting on Duncan's hair."  This was the original hair rooted into the doll's head; all I did was pull out the hair at the top of the crown, not add any new hair to the head.  As for trying to cover up the resulting holes, that's what I'm still trying to figure out some way to do.  The flesh-colored paint didn't fill it in as I'd hoped, and the resulting painted area looked unattractive.  So unless I can figure out a better way to fill in the holes, I'm going to leave the replacement Duncan head well alone and not try to tonsure him.

Or did you mean before I put the dye on Duncan's hair?  If so, then it won't really make much difference whether I do that before or after pulling out the hair to make the tonsure.  Either way, there's no way to remove the hair from the head without leaving holes in the vinyl, and the non-acetone polish remover can remove any paint that might have seeped through to the scalp.  Although the holes do close up a bit if you can get all of the hair out of them.  The problem with the plugs that form that unsightly line to one side of the tonsure is that I couldn't get all of the hair out of them, so the vinyl can't shrink around the origiinal hole.  That's one of the hazards of plucking the hair out from the outside of the head, but unfortunately I wasn't able to pull it out from the inside (as I would normally do when removing hair from an entire head) because I couldn't direct the needlenose pliers to exactly the right hair plugs with exact precision and only pull out the strands within the circle of the tonsure.  Sometimes I'd grab and pull out hair I didn't mean to pull out, so it wasn't worth the risk of accidentally creating an even bigger bald area than needed.  TRY SOME NEEDLE HOLDERS WITH VERY NARROW JAWS!  KK
« Last Edit: August 14, 2012, 05:34:42 pm by KK »
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Offline derynifanatic64

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Re: Work In Progress--Deryni Action Figure Project (was Duncan Action Figure)
« Reply #327 on: August 05, 2012, 06:31:15 pm »
Nothing specific--but you'll find a way and it will turn out great.
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Re: Work In Progress--Deryni Action Figure Project (was Duncan Action Figure)
« Reply #328 on: August 05, 2012, 11:02:30 pm »
I decided to go ahead and dye the current Duncan head's hair tonight, since I had a little free time before and after supper.


Freshly dyed wet hair by evian_delacourt, on Flickr

Here's a close up view of the hair right after it was dyed and is still wet.  It dries a little bit lighter than it appears when it is wet, so I had to decide what color I wanted the hair to turn out, and then work the dye into the hair until it turned a little darker than how I want it to look when dry.  I thought about going a shade darker so that it would end up this color when dry, but I figured I can always add more color later if it's needed, but stripping color evenly off the hair to lighten it would be much harder.


Luke has to help by evian_delacourt, on Flickr

As usual, Luke is not happy unless he's getting in the way.  I was sitting in a chair that's beyond the upper left corner of this photo, but when Luke got between me and the paint dish, I had to switch places because he refused to budge.  In this photo, Duncan had just had his second application of hair dye.  The first wash was thinner than what I used on the test head, so the color difference once that application dried was not all that much darker than the original sandy blond color--more of a sandy light brown--so after heat drying it, I added a little more paint to the wash and then applied a second coat of the dye, letting it sit in his hair while I had my supper and not blotting the excess moisture off the hair as I had the first time so that when I blow-dried it again, more of the brown pigment would hopefully remain on the hair rather than coming off on the paper towel I'd originally blotted the hair with before drying it.


Color comparison by evian_delacourt, on Flickr

I had to photo edit this picture a bit, because it had no flash and the figures were so shadowed you could barely see them before I cranked up the brightness significantly, but when I tried taking photos with flash on, the added light added a lot of redness to Duncan's newly dyed hair that isn't actually there when you are looking directly at it.  So this is a bit truer to the actual color it turned out, although due to the shadows, it might look a shade or two darker than it really is.  Still, I think it will serve well enough to show the degree of contrast there is now between Alaric's and Duncan's hair.  It's not just golden blond vs. sandy blond anymore.


Unedited shot by evian_delacourt, on Flickr

And here's an unedited photo with the flash turned on.  This one isn't as deceptively red as my first attempt to photograph it, but it also makes faces and hair color both look a bit lighter than they are due to the high reflectivity.  Still, even with the light bouncing back, you can tell there's now a definite color difference between the two figures' hair colors.

After studying the crown of this Duncan's head closely, I've decided that any attempt to tonsure it would be a very bad idea due to how the hair is rooted, so I'll be leaving the back as-is.
« Last Edit: August 05, 2012, 11:11:01 pm by Evie »
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Offline Jerusha

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Re: Work In Progress--Deryni Action Figure Project (was Duncan Action Figure)
« Reply #329 on: August 06, 2012, 12:30:13 pm »
Nice colour for Duncan, Evie.   Though, I think he might be suggesting to Alaric that he'd like to borrow a tunic or shirt before the next photo op.   :D

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