Author Topic: Re: Work In Progress--Deryni Action Figure Project (was Duncan Action Figure)  (Read 314487 times)

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Offline lenni

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Re: Work In Progress--Deryni Action Figure Project (was Duncan Action Figure)
« Reply #375 on: August 21, 2012, 11:37:54 pm »
May I de-lurk and say, "How entertaining you and the littles are, Evie!" Thanks so much for the updates and all.

Kathleen/Lenni
(re-lurking)

Online Evie

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Re: Work In Progress--Deryni Action Figure Project (was Duncan Action Figure)
« Reply #376 on: August 22, 2012, 08:48:11 am »
Thank you for delurking long enough to comment!  Keep watching this thread; the Dhugal braid hair is being maddeningly slow in arriving, but I've got a few other bits and bobs on their way that will hopefully lend themselves to some nice diorama scenes, at least when I can add a few more furnishings to the collection as well.  And a few of my littles have reminded me that they need some extra clothing, so that none of them will have to meet their Author naked, or nearly so.  So it's going to be a busy week and a half between now and Dragon*Con weekend!
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Online Evie

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Re: Work In Progress--Deryni Action Figure Project (was Duncan Action Figure)
« Reply #377 on: August 22, 2012, 03:21:52 pm »

Exotic beauty by evian_delacourt, on Flickr

I found this one on eBay first, and then one turned up at my local Target store.  I thought she looked almost exactly like my original "inspiration picture" for Dhugal's second duchess, Mirjana, but unfortunately she's on the pricey side, and she doesn't have a jointed body, so replacing her current body with a better one--and finding one with a close enough skintone match--was a daunting prospect.  I ended up ordering another one that cost less and already had a jointed body, not to mention the black hair and green eyes of my original character, but now that I've seen this one up close, I've fallen for her all over again.  Maybe she could become Rothana instead?  I had another one in mind for Rothana, but they've got similar enough coloring.  Decisions, decisions....


I spy with my little eye... by evian_delacourt, on Flickr

Guess what this once was, and what--with the addition of some sort of ornamental base to cover the existing fixture--it is going to turn into?  :-)
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Offline cynicalmedic

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Re: Work In Progress--Deryni Action Figure Project (was Duncan Action Figure)
« Reply #378 on: August 22, 2012, 04:08:49 pm »
Is that a drawer pull? I am guessing it will become Morgan's outrageously priced shiral crystal, but I could be wrong.
No more turning away
From the coldness inside
Just a world that we all must share
It's not enough just to stand and stare
Is it only a dream that there'll be
No more turning away?
David Gilmour/Richard Wright/Nick Mason

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Re: Work In Progress--Deryni Action Figure Project (was Duncan Action Figure)
« Reply #379 on: August 22, 2012, 04:59:17 pm »
It is going to be a nicely mounted shiral crystal, though whether it's Morgan's or one that the King or the Schola eventually acquires, I don't know yet.  The amber glass sphere appears to be about .9 of an inch across, so it would be a smidge under 6" across if it were in real scale.  I don't recall offhand how large Morgan's shiral crystal in the Green Tower was, but if it's significantly bigger or smaller than that, then this is probably the King's or the Schola's shiral.   But actually it's an antique lamp finial.  Good guess, though; I did look at a few drawer pulls during my search for something suitable.  :)
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Re: Work In Progress--Deryni Action Figure Project (was Duncan Action Figure)
« Reply #380 on: August 23, 2012, 03:55:50 pm »

Mirjana by evian_delacourt, on Flickr

Dhugal's new duchess arrived in the mail today.  (Wow, that sounds odd; talk about your mail order brides!  :D )  I've copied some pattern pieces for a Romanesque style gown so the poor girl can get a decent outfit and won't have to wear wrapping paper to Dragon*Con.  Like most of my others, she needs a slight makeover, so she'll be getting her eyes changed to a pale green and her lip color changed to something less modern.  She has very pretty eyes, and I don't really want to wipe them completely off to start from scratch, so she may retain a little more of the eye makeup than I ordinarily would like, but at least it is in neutral tones rather than in some bright color like blue or purple.  If I can use a toothpick with the end wrapped in a wisp of cotton and dampened in acetone to tone the eyeshadow down just a tad without erasing her pretty eyelashes along with it, I might try that instead of a full facial reconstruction.  Otherwise, maybe kohl-smudged eyelids are a fashion she brought back with her after her visit to Byzantyun?
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Re: Work In Progress--Deryni Action Figure Project (was Duncan Action Figure)
« Reply #381 on: August 24, 2012, 02:43:24 pm »

Dhugal's braid hair by evian_delacourt, on Flickr

Dhugal's braid hair finally arrived, so now I know what to match the rest of his hair to.  This is actually a mixture of three shades of red--Copper Penny for the highlights, Copper Auburn for the main shade, and Russet Brown for shadows.  It's a shame I'll need only a fraction of this hair for his braid; maybe I can find a spare head to root the rest of it into later, because it seems a pity to waste so much glorious copper hair!  (As usual, the camera flash renders the colors a little lighter than they actually are, so the main color of the actual hair is closer to the darker red strands showing in this photo.  It's a true copper, not yellowish at all despite the golden-yellow tint the flash gives in this picture.)
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Online Evie

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Re: Work In Progress--Deryni Action Figure Project (was Duncan Action Figure)
« Reply #382 on: August 24, 2012, 05:48:38 pm »

Mirjana's new undergown by evian_delacourt, on Flickr

Here's the lovely Torenthi widow wearing her widow's weeds.  Too bad her late and unlamented husband Nikos wasn't worth bothering with a period of prolonged mourning for, since she looks quite nice in black.   I think a veil made of the dove gray silk would look nice with this.


Close up shot by evian_delacourt, on Flickr

She still needs her eyes retouched, but they've already got a bit of a greenish tint in the highlights of the iris.


Full skirt with train by evian_delacourt, on Flickr

I still have to hem the gown, but here you can see that it has a gorgeously full skirt with a little bit of a train.  I think this same pattern will work splendidly for Araxie's and Richenda's Court garb as well.  Now I just need some doll stands so I can show off their flowing gowns to best advantage.
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Offline Jerusha

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Re: Work In Progress--Deryni Action Figure Project (was Duncan Action Figure)
« Reply #383 on: August 24, 2012, 07:31:23 pm »
Lovely gown, Evie, with much potential for court garb for our favourite "little" ladies.  :)
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Re: Work In Progress--Deryni Action Figure Project (was Duncan Action Figure)
« Reply #384 on: August 25, 2012, 06:02:55 pm »
OK, here are today's updates.  I will go ahead and warn you now, I had very mixed results, and a few were disappointing, although fortunately nothing ended up being a total loss.


Decapitated Dhugal by evian_delacourt, on Flickr

I thought this was going to be more straightforward than it was, and if the paint "dye" didn't take the way that I hoped it would, I would have the secondary option of rerooting the head.  Unfortunately, I discovered that Dhugal has a similar style neck joint to Kelson's rather than the sort all of the other figures have, only the head opening seems to be just a tiny bit narrower in Dhugal's head, and his bottommost row of hair at the nape of his head is rooted even higher up than Kelson's was.  I could reach up inside it and just get to that row with the tips of my tweezers, but couldn't get enough of a grip on the roots to tug at any of the hair, much less pull it out.  And my jeweler's pliers didn't work at all.  So that left me with only one option--attempt to dye the hair to match the new copper hair for the braid, and then root the new hair into new holes placed a row or two under the existing hair.  Or at least that was to be Plan A....


Dagnabbit! by evian_delacourt, on Flickr

Unfortunately, Plan A soon had to fall by the wayside, as I discovered that no matter how many applications of the thin paint wash I put on the hair, there was no way to get his dark brown hair significantly lighter, and certainly not light enough to match the hair I'd bought for the braid.  I ended up having to settle for turning it a dark auburn rather than a medium copper, so I guess this version of Dhugal will have to live with hair on the more bronze end of the "copper-bronze" spectrum rather than the copper end.

This meant, of course, that I couldn't use the new hair at all, since it didn't match, and using the dye over that hair would turn it a different color to the hair on his head.  So I ended up rooting in more brown hair, and then applying the dye to that as well.  It's not a perfect match, but it's about as close as I could get without risking the hair going from "wiry" to "stiff as cardboard" under all of the applications of thinned paint I had to comb through it to get it this red.  Between dyeing his original hair, rooting in new hair under it, and then dyeing the new hair, I would estimate this part of the project took two or three hours.  Most of that time was spent with the dyeing, since for every application of paint wash that I combed through the hair, I had to blow dry it before I could build up the next "layer" of color.

And of course, after all of this, Dhugal had some very interesting "copper" freckles under his hair, so I had to swab those off with non-acetone nail polish remover.


Finally it's all more or less one color by evian_delacourt, on Flickr

The braid hair is still slightly darker than the hair on his head, but I was afraid if I tried to put any more layers of red pigment on it, it would start looking more painted than dyed.  It was already getting pretty stiff despite my constant combing of it to get the dye wash to coat thoroughly between strands and separate them, so I called an end to that part of the process and decided it was time to braid the hair.


Nice thick braid by evian_delacourt, on Flickr

The one thing that did work right in all of this was that the resulting braid ended up nice and thick, which is consistent with what a braid made up of thicker, wirier hair than Kelson's ought to look like.  I braided the hair and then put a clear vinyl band right above where I wanted to cut off the excess hair.  Then I tucked the banded end underneath the top of the braid and secured the doubled braid with a thin black  cord.  


Finished braid by evian_delacourt, on Flickr

I took Dhugal outside so hopefully the reddish tint will show up better in the natural light.  Here is the braid bound in black cord.  This is his "everyday" look; if he were in fancier Court dress, he might use his blue and white McLain colors instead.  I may still have to adjust the braid length a bit, but that should be an easy fix if it ends up being necessary.  I haven't taken a ruler to it yet to find out how much shorter it might need to go.  It should be somewhere between 4" to 6" on a real person, so that would make it around .75" to 1" on my action figure Dhugal, but with it being so thick, it would look better on the longer end of that range, or even a smidge longer, than being too short and stubby.


Husband and Wife makeover by evian_delacourt, on Flickr

Once the hair dyeing and styling was done, it was time to fix eye colors (and for Mirjana, lip color as well).  Dhugal already had brown eyes with sort of tannish highlighting, so I just went over them lightly with some amber-colored paint.  Mirjana got a more vivid pale green applied over her existing eye color, and I toned down the fire engine red lipstick by painting over it with a lighter rose shade.


Untitled by evian_delacourt, on Flickr

This happy outing almost didn't get to happen because, after I re-painted Dhugal's eyes, sealed them, and allowed the new makeover to dry, I almost couldn't get his head back on his body!  Somehow I didn't think a Torenthi woman holding a disembodied head on a wooden stake would be quite the happy newlywed portrait I was hoping for.   :D  I nearly had heart failure when I couldn't get the head back onto Dhugal's body!  Even after I heated both the neck joint and the head opening with a blow dryer set on low (I couldn't set it on high because of the risk of warping or melting the vinyl or plastic), the head opening wouldn't stretch enough to go back over the internal neck peg again!  I finally applied a very thin layer of Vaseline onto the neck peg and the inside of the hole, which I hope won't end up damaging either.  (I know Vaseline can be used on vinyl temporarily without damaging it, but I don't know about what happens if it's left on permanently, and I had to put it on the inside of the head where it can't be wiped off).  After continuing to heat both head and neck joint and trying to jam the peg back into the head opening and the lip of the head joint back into the neck, I finally managed to get them wedged back into place.  I think something still didn't end up quite right inside, because now Dhugal's head is a lot harder to turn, but I am not about to try taking it off again to see what the problem might be, for fear I'll never get the head back on again!  

Of course, since I needed both hands during that little adventure, I wasn't able to take pictures of the goings-on, so you're only seeing the "happily ever after" picture.


Side view by evian_delacourt, on Flickr

Here's another look at Dhugal's braid from the side, in natural sunlight.


Close up of Mirjana by evian_delacourt, on Flickr

Here's a closer shot of her new eye color and paler lips.  After so many setbacks today, I decided to leave well enough alone with her eye shadow for fear of  messing up her eyes altogether and having to start completely from scratch in repainting them from the vinyl up.  So let's just assume that she's picked up the habit of kohl-enhancing her eyes during her earlier years in Torenth or in Byzantyun.


Dhugal close up by evian_delacourt, on Flickr

Here is a close up of Dhugal with his amber eyes and reddened hair.  I need to consult with KK before I "shave" off any of the facial hair with acetone, to make sure I don't end up taking too much of it off.  I may also go back and put a few coppery brushstrokes into his eyebrows and mustache to make them match the hair better.  (Although it's not too uncommon for redheads to have browner facial hair or brown haired men to have more reddish facial hair--my dad's beard, when he grew one, used to come in red even though his hair was brown, which is why he waited until there was enough gray in his facial hair to tone down the red before trying out a bearded look for a year or two.)  While the hair isn't nearly as light as I was hoping to go with it, at least I was able to get some color change to it, since rerooting the hair entirely ended up not being an option.


Naked...and all articulate by evian_delacourt, on Flickr

"Oh my, she's naked!  And all...articulate!"  (Sorry, just a bit of a joke for Firefly fans, not to mention I couldn't resist throwing in a gratuitous "fur blanket scene" photo for anyone who's already read A Time to Heal.)  



« Last Edit: August 25, 2012, 06:32:07 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 #385 on: August 25, 2012, 07:51:48 pm »
And we know where that blanket scene led to in A Time to Heal  ;)

Looking for a little Jared doll yet?  ;D
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Re: Work In Progress--Deryni Action Figure Project (was Duncan Action Figure)
« Reply #386 on: August 25, 2012, 08:52:40 pm »
Nope, just his head.... :D

Oh wait, you mean Baby Jared?  ;D
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Re: Work In Progress--Deryni Action Figure Project (was Duncan Action Figure)
« Reply #387 on: August 25, 2012, 11:10:48 pm »
One more update for the evening....


Bliaut construction finished by evian_delacourt, on Flickr

I may still add beads at some of the pattern intersections and/or bands of trim at the edges, and the back opening needs snaps, but at least I know now that the bliaut (overgown) fits properly.  The sleeves were a bit of a pain to set in.  I would like to make Queen Araxie some nice Court garb using this pattern, but I haven't decided if I'm going to keep the bliaut pattern as-is, or go with a more tailor-fitted T-tunic sort of construction instead (which is actually closer to being authentic for the period).  She will also need a long belt to cinch the gowns at the waist, and possibly a belt pouch or other accessories.

That plastic ring could use some altering as well, but all in good time....
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Re: Work In Progress--Deryni Action Figure Project (was Duncan Action Figure)
« Reply #388 on: August 26, 2012, 05:59:26 pm »

Itteh bitteh turnshoes by evian_delacourt, on Flickr

Finding Barbie shoes that look reasonably medieval for these pointy-toed little feet is an exercise in futility, so I decided to try making a simple turnshoe pattern using a rectangle cut from a thick paper towel.  I doubled a short side, sewed in a back seam, fit it onto the foot and brought the sides up to cover the front of the foot, marked where to start the front seam, then took it off the foot and continued sewing at a downward angle to create a period-looking pointed-toe shoe.  Then I just trimmed off the excess paper above the seam, and ta daa!  Instant footwear pattern.  Just needs a little tweaking to adjust the fit.


Itteh bitteh turnshoes by evian_delacourt, on Flickr

Here's a closer look at the pattern I drafted.  I modified it slightly after this shot was taken by snipping that lower left corner off the heel so the back of the shoe would have a more rounded shape.


New Barbie medieval shoes by evian_delacourt, on Flickr

Here are the new shoes.  The fit is a little loose, so I may add some means of securing them at the ankle.


New Barbie medieval shoes by evian_delacourt, on Flickr

Another view of the shoes.


Mirjana wears her new finery by evian_delacourt, on Flickr

I added beads to the bliaut and the shoes today.  This took longer than one might think, as my beading needle's eye is so small, I can't use a needle threader to thread it because the eye strips the doubled thread, so I had to find the thinnest thread in my kit--some very fine metallic gold--to do the beadwork.


Embellished shoes by evian_delacourt, on Flickr

My husband suggested adding some beads to the shoes as well, so I did.


Beadwork detail by evian_delacourt, on Flickr

Here is a closer look at the beadwork on the bliaut.  I haven't decided yet if I want to add beads to the sleeves, given my difficulties in even getting the needle threaded.
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Re: Work In Progress--Deryni Action Figure Project (was Duncan Action Figure)
« Reply #389 on: August 27, 2012, 04:16:45 pm »

Goblets, Fianna wine, and floral arrangement by evian_delacourt, on Flickr

This collection arrived in today's mail.  There are two brass goblets that might also be suitable for doubling as chalices (I will probably add some stick-on jewels to them a few millimeters below the rim of each), a bottle of Fianna wine in the matching brass cooler, and a floral arrangement that I wasn't expecting, but which was thrown in with the order.  I think it makes a nice centerpiece for the set.  Maybe Alaric and Richenda will need to have a date night sometime soon. 

I was also hoping to have at least a new undergown for Araxie to show off tonight, if not a complete outfit, but unfortunately I just discovered about 3/4 of the way through handsewing the fool thing that I've got only one seam stitched on the correct side of the fabric, and all the other seams are stitched on the opposite side, meaning that if I were to complete it this way, poor Araxie would end up with a gown that's wrong-side out and with a back seam running up the outside!  *headdesk*  My husband borrowed my seam ripper last night, so I can't rip out the wrong-side seams and see if the fabric can be resewn the right way or if I have to start over from scratch.  I guess I'll find that out tonight.

"In necessariis unitas, in non-necessariis libertas, in utrisque caritas."

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