Sunday, 24 November 2013

Gaige - So Much Progress!

Hello Travellers! As always, thanks for reading (especially these non-tutorial posts that don't have a direct benefit for the average reader), I appreciate every one of you, even though I have no idea who you are! Lots of news, mostly good, some bad.  I guess I'll start with the bad...

Miss you Blue!
RIP Blue <3
I know I haven't mentioned it to this point, but my favourite pets ever (and only pets ever, to be fair to all the other awesome animals out there) have all been rats - they're sweet, smart, cuddly, and they all have their own little personalities, oh, and they are so damn cute! So it's with a heavy heart that I announce the passing of one of my girls, Little Girl Blue (just Blue for short) at the tender age of two.  She was a wonderful rat who was stubborn and sweet, loved to climb, always wanted to be wherever she wasn't, and she's sorely missed. Blue was preceeded "over the rainbow bridge" by her sister Pumpkin, and leaves behind her happy, healthy sister Phantom. Here's the last pic of the two of us, from Halloween night, after everyone else had headed home and I was chilling on the couch taking a break from playing Borderlands to cuddle with my girls.  Miss you Blue!

Next up, I finally started a Facebook Page for my cosplay stuff! I resisted it for a long time, but because I'm trying to keep my personal Facebook separate from my cosplay, but kept wanting to be able to make posts and such on Facebook about it, so I gave in. If you want to check it out, it's at! I'll try to update it a little more frequently than I update here to keep everyone up to date on my progress and plans!

My Robin!
Rocking as Robin!
Thirdly, I noticed that I was getting some traffic from Cosplay Nation, and it turns out that they featured my Robin costume! Awesome, it's really nice getting props for my hard work - especially on a costume that needs so much work before next wear (new shirt, fix cape, and completely replace the shoe covers which had to be thrown out after the wet, muddy race). Thanks Cosplay Nation!

So I hit a bit of a snag with my Rubi - I mentioned that I planned to wire in a switch so I could click the lights on or off with the trigger. I bought the switch (again, because I lost the blasted thing the first time I bought it... small components are not my friend) soldered some wires to it, installed it so the trigger would activate it, and discovered that it was a MOMENTARY on/off, not a click on click off, meaning I would have to hold the switch to keep the lights on, which sounds like too much of a pain to me (and likely to put undue stress on the gun). So I ran back to my electronics store, and apparently they don't have anything that would fit the bill, and the only other place that may have it wasn't open by that time on a Saturday, and wasn't open Sundays either. Boo. So as I was working days Monday and Tuesday, the first chance I had to get the switch was Wednesday - and I did, but first I got distracted - oops!

In the meantime, I got started on my grenade mod! I'm making a legendary level Maliwan mod called "Rubberized Fire Leech." I had picked this one over my standard Torgue Bonus Package (almost all of my characters have these, and many hours have been spent farming Torgue Tokens to make this possible because EXPLOSIONS) as the one I had in hand when I was planning this costume didn't look all that memorable. I had also considered a Vladof Pandemic I had lying around, but figured Fire Leech would be easier to make work... until I discovered that hexagons are hard to draw (before I had to etch them in to the foam with the calligraphy point from my hot knife set), and the blasted thing is COVERED in them (guess what - so is my shield! I hate my life.. just a little bit).

The shaping and honeycombing alone took about eight hours, and was a royal pain in the patootie, but looks SWEET! Once that was done, I needed to find something to use for the windows that would be opaque enough to hide the innards, but clear enough to let all the light through.  After exploring a few other options, I ended up using the plastic from a freezer dinner container - success!   I also added an extra piece of craft foam inside to hold the LEDs in place and add a wee bit more stability to the body, and wired in the four LEDs for the main body, which glow so nicely though the window (though I don't think they're quite as bright as the green ones I've been using on Rubi). And I got the bottom part, top handle and side attachments together - up next, I need install the switch, then seal, prime, paint and coat it all, wire in the lights for the side and top, and put it all together!  Yeah, I know, no big deal!

While I was looking for window material, I started on my shield, which will be my favourite legendary shield, Maliwan's Impaler (Vlad would be so proud). I had two on hand when I was picking (a level 37 my baby mechromancer was using, and a level 50 that my siren had been using) and picked the one with the cool glowy honeycomb design on it, because more glowy = more better (and more grammatically incorrect). I didn't get very far before shaking my head and heading off to video game land for the night because the damn hexagons were killing me.

I've also been working on a few other parts of the costume... still no cloth bits though.  First the bolts for the choker! After searching toy stores and thrift shops for toy bolts I could use, I broke down and hit the hardware store to see if I could find actual bolts that would work... But the ones that were the proper diameter were all too long, and the ones that were the right length were all to thin. So I picked up mouldmaking and polyester resin supplies, and one of the too-long-but-right-diameter bolts. Because I have no idea what I'm doing, I'm still getting the hang of everything, but after two attempts at both moulding and casting, I have two acceptable-but-not-perfect bolts, but have learned a lot and am working on refining my technique. I'll either get it perfect or run out of time sooner or later! Oh, and I made ONE of the nuts. If you look closely, only the center one is a hex nut, and the other two are square, so I put one of the square ones together using one layer of 6mm and one layer of 3mm craft foam to get the desired thickness.

Colour is there!
Loving the blue!
Aaaand I've put some solid work into the shoes. After picking out all the stitches on the diamond quilting, I used multiple applications of 3D fabric paint to fill the holes, though I wasn't able to completely override the diamond impressions, at least the texture has been lessened.  Following that, I painted on several layers of the 3D paint, but it just wasn't giving the coverage I needed, so I switched to acrylic paint and fabric medium (to keep it from cracking and flaking) which has been MUCH more successful - they're almost perfect! And last night I started to build on the toe (to make them a little more rounded) and now I just need to make the toe and heel caps, and carve and apply a layer of 6mm craft foam to add the detail to the sole, make and attach the vault symbols, and paint on all the wee details and cell shading.

One of these days I'll start on my actual costume (hopefully soon because I have only have two weeks left)! I have all the fabric I need, templates I made for the front and back skulls, and picked up a pattern I can mod to make the vest, I just need to quit tinkering with all my props so I can get to it!! I was WAY slowed down last week by a bout of the flu... It's so hard to motivate yourself to be all creative when you're sick.

Next time, I'll have another update on my progress (as I really need to make some between now and then), and my very first non-cosplay tutorial that can also be used for cosplay - I'm using the technique on Gaige for sure, but it's also great for personal use or gift making - stay tuned to find out what it is!

No comments:

Post a Comment