Friday, March 8, 2013

In Black & White and Candlelight

13 Dead End Drive” is a fun, humorous and slightly morbid game by Milton Bradley. The main appeal of the board game are the cool booby traps used to kill the other players and the fun, colorful characters. When shooting the photos for this blog I decided to shoot the photos in black and white using only candlelight…the result adds some creepy atmosphere to an already spooky game.

I've Created A Monster

Picked up this card game at a thrift store a few years back simply because the artwork caught my eye. We have never played this game; it has simply sat on the shelf as part of my collection of all things creepy.

The instructions on the back of the box read:

“Play the mad scientist and be the first player to build a whole monster (two arms, two legs, a body and a head) to win. Add an arm, take a leg and get a head. A fun and simple card game with no reading required featuring colorful monster illustrations. Includes 54 cards and instructions?

The colorful monster illustrations are the reason I was attracted to this game, unfortunately I have been unable to find any information on the artist.

Made in China
Copyright 2000 Fundex Games, Ltd.
PO. Box 421309
Indianapolis IN 46242

Project Prep

This rendering was submitted to the Downtown Midland Authority as part of the 2013 Downtown Midland Larger Than Life Sculpture Series, the concept was a 5 ½ foot tall garden gnome named G.U.S. (Gnome Ultra Sized).

The theme of this year’s series is anything found in a garden recreated on a large scale.

Gus was not chosen to be part of the series but I’m going to create him anyway as a gift for my Mom, she likes garden gnomes and it would be a nice addition to her three season room.

Whenever I do a commission job I always do my homework in order to figure out all the details so that I have a solid game plan. The prep work usually means making a miniature of the project which gives me three dimension references for the piece. In 2011 I created a troll called “Boris The Bolter” which started out as a small clay sculpture.

In the case of the gnome named Gus I did quite a few concept sketches then did a very rough mock-up of the face which is the only part that would be created from clay. The purpose of doing a mockup with the clay was to prove to myself that my approach would work on a large scale.

Over the years I have found that doing your homework first and playing with the form in a three dimensional way really makes the project come together quicker and without any unexpected surprises.

Here is the information submitted to the sculpture committee:

Gus is a 5 ½ foot tall garden gnome that has grown to ginormous proportions, sporting old leather boots and a bright red hat, Gus would enjoy being part of the 2013 Downtown Midland Larger Than Life Summer Sculpture Series.

The sculpture features the traditional elements and colors of garden gnomes complete with rosy cheeks and curly moustache and beard.

G.U.S. (Gnome Ultra Sized) will be constructed from a variety of materials. The core structure or armature will be a heavy duty metal tomato cage. The coat and hat will be created from burlap coated in a joint compound/latex mixture which results in a rock hard surface that is weather resistant. The face will be sculpted from custom made clay which is very durable and weather resistant. Accessories such as the belt, boots and watering can will be the actual items that will be treated to withstand the elements. The interior of the gnome sculpture will be filled with expanding spray foam which will reinforce the sculpture but also prevent wasps and hornets from building nests in the interior. The base for this sculpture will be provided by the artist.

Prior to painting the gnome will be sealed with a marine varnish then painted with good quality exterior latex paints. The sculpture will be delivered for the automotive clear coat.

5 ½ feet tall

2 feet wide

Approx: 75lbs

Monday, March 4, 2013

S.L.U.G. Zombies

Found a few packages of these very cool zombie figurines at our local Goodwill Thrift Store. Each zombie is about 2.5 inches tall and have some crazy detailing. You can find out more about this series here. 

Something From Nothing

Making a skull armature from recycled cardboard, tape and hot glue...a little something from nothing.

Saturday, March 2, 2013

Mighty Midland Mantis

One of my submissions for the 2013 Downtown Midland Sculpture Series was selected to be included in this year's event. Next week there is an artist's meeting to discuss details then it's forward go with the construction process. Very much looking forward to creating the Mantis, a nice change of pace from the usual Halloween craziness. Below is the description of the piece that was submitted to the judges.

Mighty Midland Mantis is a large four and a half foot tall praying mantis wood sculpture featuring bright colors and playful pose. The praying mantis is a mystical creature and it is often considered good luck when one is found in the garden, so it’s with that thought that I believe Mighty Midland Mantis would be a fun and positive addition to the 2013 Downtown Midland Larger Than Life Summer Sculpture Series.  The sculpture will be painted with very bright colors (greens, yellows and pinks) and will also feature the word “Midland” as part of the wing design.

Mighty Midland Mantis is constructed from pieces of ½ inch treated plywood, each piece cut from plywood then assembled in a puzzle fashion to create the final sculpture. A combination of hardware (bolts, screws, brackets) will be used in the assembly resulting in a very solid and durable sculpture that will withstand the elements and contact with the public. A base will be supplied with the sculpture.

The wood sculpture will be covered with a good quality exterior primer then painted with high quality exterior latex paint. The final piece will then be delivered for the automotive clear coat. In addition to the treated plywood the Mighty Midland Mantis will use a variety of metal hardware and metal rods to depict the antennas above each eye. 

A three foot circular base will be part of the sculpture.

Note: The mantis shown in these photos is a small miniature made from cardboard, the miniature serves as a guide and the pattern for the final sculpture. 


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