And that's the truth! Not as big an update as the last but definately some progress being made on several figures which will be finding completion soon. Would like to start out with a little Metal Gear!...
Solid Snake from Metal Gear Solid 2: Sons of Liberty.
Since the last update I've began building the chest and upper abdomen. You can see the progression below.
...and if you've followed any of my work in progress, you'll notice I have a systematic progression to building my sculpts. First the head sculpt (sometimes to completion), then the neck, shoulders, upper arms, collar bone/chest, abdomen and finally lower abdomen...funny thig is, the back side is completely bare! You wouldn't notice in the images but I haven't built up the back of the figures torso in the least...it's merely a choice and a way of controlling the progression...I also find that working a little at a time I'm able to apply more attention to the details and arrive at a more accurate sculpt when finished. Just one of my wacky ways...
Here I've gone ahead and added the ammo vest and clasps. I know the ammo vest allows more slack that what is seen...looks a bit skin tight with the waist being to small. No worries, I'll be adding some loose folds later before I add the ammo pack attachments.
Next up is my progress on the Cybrog Ninja, Gray Fox from Metal Gear Solid.
You can see from the image above and the one to follow that I've made HUGE progress over the past several weeks! This sculpt is base on the sculpt work provided by the crew over at Play Arts for their 12" Metal Gear line - the images I showed you in the last entry. In fact here is a new image showing their progress...
So impressed and excited I am for this piece, I've taken on the challenge of reducing that 12" piece to the 1:18 scale...below are my most recent updates.
This version of Gray Fox derives from the concept art featuring additional cybernetics (as seen in the arms and legs) than what appears in the actual game play render.
The legs and lower arms are tricky - so is the chest! I will thicken them up a bit more once I have the other arm and leg done. With this sculpt, I went outside my usual system of building because of the complexity and the abundance of line.
Head sculpt close to completion - this version will also include an alternate head sculpt of FOX with his human face exposed...hmmm, seems all my figures now have more than one head sculpt..what can I say, I like the extra work...LOL!!!
Already presents the cold, machine like stare with that cycloptic eye..."Neither Enemy Nor Friend. I am Back From A World Where Such Words Are Meaningless".
Back to the galaxy far, far away...Next up is a brief update on the Tonnika Sisters - trying to limit the updates a bit on these two while I continue to sculpt the remains of the clothing on each figure - Just added the neck collars, soon will add additional detail and have them ready to be painted.
Told you it would be brief...no worries, more to be seen soon from the sisters.
Let's get on to the Republic Shock Troopers and their new toys..
Not only are these four individially sculpted soldiers going to get unique accessories/gear but all will be issued firepower - these custom blasters I created. What you see are castings I made from a master...the weapon itself is a mashup of existing "store bought" and some sculpting. Tried to make the rifles have the look and feel of the weapons shown through the pages of Dark Horse's comic series Star Wars: Invasion..which artist Colin Wilson so masterfully illustrates...
I have to say that when I chose to sculpt four of these guys, I wasn't sure I could keep my enthusiasm with the project...repeating the same process over and over...and over again can become a labor, and you naturally loose interest. But now that I see these guys together closer than ever to completion, I will never do just one trooper even again - troopers will always come in twos or fours...like my Imperial Trooper in the works...hard work but worth it!
I've added additional (but slight) detailing to the helmets. Also acquired the tubing for the back of each to plug into their environmental tanks.
I will possibly go back and cast the rifles in black or smokey gray - first time I've casted my own weapons so didn't even think about coloring till after the fact. May create a smaller side arm for each trooper as well.
As far as where the rifle will be placed when not in use...time for the magnet trick! Will embed a magnet into the side of the rifle and somewhere along the back of each trooper so the rifle can easily be stowed.
Another piece nearing completion (the sculpting part that is)...is Darth Malgus from the Bioware/Lucasarts game, Star Wars: The Old Republic.
While completing the sculpt, I have been testing the "Soft Goods" such as the cape and hood and how it will function with the figure. Below are test images...
Decided to go with a rubbery hood instead of cloth. At this scale the material is too light to lay correctly. The plastic hood comes from a Vintage 2011 Darth Sideous figure, and shortened to fit tighter to the head. I will make a casting of this to be rid of the deam lines and add an extension to the back.
So far I have a total of four completed head sculpts for this figure...why not make another one...I'm crazy right? Well, like I said in my last entry, I wanted to recreate the likeness of Malgus as seen in the Hope trailer where he gently glances over and smiles after executing a republic soldier. So very Sith of him! What can you say - he enjoys his work!
I'll get this sculpt painted up soon!
One final update on Darth Malgus would be his lower leg armor being completed. Still need to sharpen the lines...next will be the foot armor and boots.
Alright, onto another figure nearing completion, Savage Opress. I think somewhere back in another entry I spoke of an alternate head sculpt showing battle damage - well, here ya go - The "Brutality" version.
Sporting cut horns, cuts and bruises, this version of Savage will consist of the alternate head sculpt, battle damaged chest armor and shoulder armor. The image above and below lack the side horns that were added later.
And here he is complete - This is not a version that shows a defeated Savage, this one will depict a version that doesn't know when to quit...a merciless brute! You don't want none of this!....
Well after saying how tough he is, I rip off his arms...my bad, and I apologise...but that's not the focus of the next two images. I completed his belt (sans the hilt) and his soft goods/plastic tunic.
The design on the front of the tunic will be painted on.
Just yesterday I recieved the Hasbro Clone Wars version of Savage and I must say, not a bad figure...for the exception of not having ball jointed ankles and the yellow and black being WAY TOO YELLOW AND BLACK!
Anyway I had to do a comparision shot to the non-animated version I'm working on..why oh why did they skimp out on the blade!
Again, a nice figure - not knockin' Hasbro's at all. I just think that if it met my version in a dark alley it would scare the tats right off of his ultra yellow body LOL! BOO!
And finally for this entry - the title speaks of a "Fistful of Work"...I've taken on Cold War Espionage and Galactic War, how about I broaden my horizons and take on Bounty Killers south of the boarder?...
That's right, as the announcement says below, I'm going to create 9 - 10 figures (and their horses) based on the Dollars Trilogy: A Fistful Of Dollars, For A Few Dollars More and The Good, The Bad and The Ugly.
For a Fistful Of Dollars I've chosen three characters - Joe (Clint), Ramón Rojo and his brother Esteban Rojo - just because of that elaborate costume!
For A Few Dollars More will be Monco (Clint), El Indio and Col. Douglas Mortimer
And finally The Good, The Bad and the Ugly will be Blondie (Clint), "Angel Eyes" and Tuco
Now I've already begun sculpting - in fact I have completed two head sculpts. Both versions are of Clint Eastwood. Since he looks similar in all three films for the exception of a small costume change, I will be using thess sculpts throughout the line. The two group images below are that of the same head sculpt, just different settings...
I will have four versions of this headsculpt when completed - One with the hat, one without. Then a second set being the same for the exception of him smoking a small cigar.
The brim of the hat was difficult to sculpt at first but realized that I could add the FIXIT on a little thicker then once cured, reduce it with a dremel tool then sand the brim down. Happy to say, it works!
Alas, once again, we've come to the end of another blog entry - but I'd like to take a moment to put all this aside and ask for your help...
Michael Martinez, owner and artist of Mercury Art Studios, was tragically killed last week by a drunk driver. He leaves behind his fiancé Hollie, his baby daughter and another one that has yet to be born. I met Mike online...never met the man personally...but you couldn't mistaken the enthusiasm he had for the hobbie of customizing action figures. He and I would brainstorm on occasion and his ideas were fantastic. He was just getting confident at incorporating more sculpted work into his figures and breaking away from retooling. He didn't limit himself to just one subject or scale - and was able to make a living selling quality work he created for fans and collectors to purchase on Ebay. He had a lot going his way, not only as an artist, but as a father and future husband. A tragic loss.
If you knew him or Hollie, please send them a message of support and your prayers. You can leave a posting on Mike's facebook page - Michael Martinez or on his Mercury Art Studios page here - Mercury Art Studios
If you would to make a donation to help Hollie and the kids out, you can send it directly to her via paypal at this addresss - email@example.com. Shout out to Tamer for the info - thank you!
RIP Mike - You'll be missed!!
Now - On a lighter note. My facebook fans and followers here on the blogs are suffering my maddness! Over 650 on facebook and over 105 followers here on my blogspot!?! We need a doctor in here! LOL! Seriously I appreciate each one of you and your continued interest in my work! You all inspire me just as much as I hope inspire you - we need each other right?! Wanna join in on this maddness? Stop by my Faceboook page and become a fan! Sith_fire30 Creations
Also be sure to stop by my Flickr photostream for todays images plus many more. I'll be launching these images as soon as this blog entry goes live so please stop by - I will be adding more images which will NOT BE SEEN ON THIS BLOG or on Facebook so bookmark my FLICKR page and check in often.
Sithfire30 Creations can now be found on twitter!!! @sith_fire30
be sure to follow! I suck at it but still getting a tweet out every once in awhile LOL!
If any of you have questions, suggestions or comments, please feel free to contact me here, my facebook or my e-mail - firstname.lastname@example.org.
Talk to ya later - next update coming soon!