Friday, April 22, 2011

New Tutorial

A few weeks ago I did a full repair on a Lady Phase CM that was sent to me for finishing. In the box her poor neck got cracked pretty badly, and the weight of the head caused it to split completely apart. 

I documented how I repaired it with the intention of posting the steps tutorial style on my website. I angled this for the beginners out there that might not realize how simple it is to fix something like this. 


Thursday, April 21, 2011

Announcement Time!

I have been selected to judge the Artist Resin Halter Division for the Arizona Live Show this upcoming Saturday, April 23rd. This show is being partnered with Kick AZ Live, which is the next day (Sunday).

Check the website out here:

I can't wait to see everyone there and especially all the models!

I can't promise I'll be able to take a lot of pictures, but I'll see just how the day goes and I plan on having tons of fun, while meeting all sorts of people in the hobby that live close to me :D.

See you all on Saturday!

American Heartland Live Model Horse Show Donations

Before Christmas I was approached by the show hostess of the American Heartland Live Show, being held in Platte City, MO May 21 and 22, to see if I would be willing to prep some models that would be painted and auctioned off for charity. I agreed, and was sent 5 models. 

Thats Goffert, Running Stallion/Unicorn, Pluto, Classic Mesteno Grazing, and Stone Morgan. Each of these molds has presented its own challenges in prepping. 

I'll start with the lovely Pluto. This mold was donated by Judy Miller.

Pluto just before primer.

Such a lovely pose, but the mold itself held a ugly surprise. Prepping went well until the point where I started to lightly sand the body smooth. This body would NOT go smooth at all. I sanded and sanded and sanded till my hands were claws and still it wasn't ready for primer. 

I finally broke down and asked for some advice in a few places, and was told to use the trick of rubbing alcohol. The alcohol, when used in small amounts rubbed on the body, slightly 'melts' the plastic. This was exactly what I needed in lieu of re-sculpting the entire body. 

After that problem was solved, there was the next little issue of Pluto being gender-less. After some careful study, I decided the mold looked more mare-like to me than stud-like. So "it" became a "her".

forgive the grainy photo!

My first attempts at sculpting mare parts didn't go quite so well. She looked like she was either a nursing mare, or just about to deliver with the smallest pregnant belly ever! (Though had I thought about that sooner, I would have re-sculpted her to be a near term pregnant mare cause that would be neat!) However, since she wasn't supposed to be a prego mare (thinking performance classes here), her newly formed girlhood needed to be adjusted.

'plastic surgery' rocks!

This seems to be more like it! After I was happy about the re-sculpt I then started in on some other issues this old gal had. She rocked when standing, had little to no detail in her hooves, nose, and ears, and this split level seam she had on her belly. 

I for whatever reason totally didn't take pictures of her after she was primed, before I sent her off to the painter. She was sent to Lauren Reed to paint, and the next three picture credits go to her.

She got painted to a lovely palomino with chrome! Lauren did a beautiful job on her!

Oh how about the Morgan next? He was also donated by Judy Miller.

whatcha lookin' at me for?

His biggest mold issue was he had a floating hoof. This meant that when he was on a flat surface, one rear hoof was not flat level, but instead had the tiniest bit of distance between the hoof and surface. This usually isn't that hard to correct, a little bit of clay under his hoof and away we go. However once I got into getting him to stand level and flat, I realized that one of his hooves were not anatomically straight. If he had been a real horse, his bone would have been broken at the fetlock. 

So out came the heat gun, and we set that hoof to rights. 

Oh and did I mention that this guy had a giant crater in one of his hind hooves? Yep. Like someone had caved the entire side of his hoof in with a finger. So that got repaired as well. He also got some definition in the usual places though I honestly can't remember now If I carved out his hooves or not?! Not that it matters a whole lot....

But since this guy screams stud, and he came rather, well, lacking, we needed to remedy that little problem in a jiffy. 

Now I will have to say here that sculpting 'boy bits' while your son, husband/boyfriend, stepson, father - well ANY male relative around is quite the interesting experience. My boyfriend thought it was rather fascinating and tried to offer 'help' in the shape and size of certain parts that start with the letter "T". My son, who is 10, was extremely embarrassed that mom would even think about those parts, much less create them in full 3-D. My father took one look at what I was doing, turned bright red, and walked out of the room.

Personally, I was laughing at all three of them. Funnily enough, the one that didn't have any sort of visible reaction was the 13 year old step son. He either wasn't paying much attention, or just didn't care. I suspect the latter....

But, and no thanks to the BF on this, I rather overdid things the first time. I won't show the photo due to bloggers sensitive nature about things such as this, but suffice it to say that Mr. Morgan here was decidedly more human looking than equine in that department. Again, NO thanks to the BF there....

So after some 're-tooling', we ended up with a much more anatomically correct stallion. Which again, we will not show pictures of because I don't want Google Police to come after me.

it was the stretched out hind that was the problem child.

He was the only one of the five that got prepped in white primer. And I will never use that primer again.

He was sent to Lynn Royea, and these next three pictures are credited to her. She painted him to a luscious bay. Love love love that pangare on him! She did an AMAZING job.

Horse number three posed little challenge at all - not like the first two. He is the Hartland ASB, also donated by Judy Miller. 

The Show's website doesn't have finished pictures of him yet, but here he is in his primed glory.

He is also another mold that was made intentionally an "It", so he became a gelding. He is currently being finished by Gay Mahlandt and I cannot WAIT to see him finished.

Then there is this little guy. This little man has a bit of a story behind him.

note the different colored hind hoof...

The original model was donated by Amber Ackerman. He was mailed with a broken leg, which was absolutely fine. Broken legs are easy for me to fix, and in no time I had his leg pinned and set back together. 

However, before that happened, I made a HUGE boo-boo on him. He came to me still in his OF clothes, and not thinking anything of it, I stripped him. (Yea I know, its worthless to strip an OF model.) Well I ignored that little 'rule' and did it anyways. When I went to scrub the oven cleaner off of him, the brush I was using was the wrong brush to be using. Unbeknownst to me, I was literally creating thousands of tiny scratches in his mane, tail, body, face, etc. It wasn't until he had dried and I sat down to examine him to see what prep work needed done that I realized my mistake. 

His mane detail was totally annihilated. I would have to completely remove and re-sculpt his mane, tail, face, etc. This was something I did NOT have time to do. So I went ahead and fixed his leg anyways, and in the meantime got hold of Melissa and explained my situation. 

She was extremely forgiving, and accepted my fix; which was to locate another mold, out of my own pocket, prep that one, and send it along its way. In exchange I would keep this one and do what I wanted to it later on 'whenever'. 

I lost four ebay auctions in a week on this guy LOL! I finally won one and for a lot less than what I was willing to pay. The other upside was that the 'new' one would be structurally more sound than the first, as that leg wouldn't be broken! 

The replacement was a easy, quick prep - just some seams, basic sanding, and a little work on the ears - he was good to go. 

the replacement model the day I received it

one week later!

Besides the intact leg, this one was in much better condition all around.

And look at what Julie Cervantes turned him into!

credit goes to Julie for these pics, of course!

lovin' that detail! gorgeous!

Didn't she do just the most incredible job? I think she did! 

It is a wonderful feeling for a prepper to see the fruits of my hard work in such glorious full color detail! This is what keeps me motivated. 

Nextly in line is...

This poor guy started life off as this mythical animal...

image credit to modelhorsegallery

But lost his horn. I killeded it. 

He also had some severe farrier issues.... as anyone that has ever tried to prep this mold knows he doesn't stand all that well without help. 

So after some serious finagling with my heat gun, some clay, and his legs, he finally stood on his own four legs without falling over drunklike. Which, is a good thing...

Prepping on him went smoothly after that. Oh, he was also given generously by Judy Miller.

His finish work pictures haven't yet been put up either but he is being painted by Kollean Gouyton. Another one I can't wait to see when finished!

Now thats five horses out of six, yes? So where is Goffert? 

Goffert was a BAD horse. Very, very Bad.

He became that ONE horse that every artist/prepper dreads working on. He purposely broke himself just to spite me, I think. Which is very sad, because what did I ever do to him? I petted him, gave him baths, got all the dirty black stuff off of him, fixed a serious injury to his leg... why I was KIND! 

And this is how he repaid all that kindness...

He blew seams out. 


after seam....

after seam.
The full length of his belly, back, underside of neck and jaw, and down his face. 

Its difficult to see in these pics unless you blow 'em up big but there is a lighter white line where the seam is usually located on the mold. That lighter white line is the soda glue I applied after taking a dremel and basically 'gutting' the seam. In an upcoming blog post, I'll go over the details of how I did that as a tutorial.

After three priming attempts he kept coming back with little imperfections like this mold mark on his leg....

clicky to make bigger to see details...

scratches on his mane and tail...

and while this is the leg that had the 'injury' I fixed previously (see soda glue in mid cannon bone?) it was the gouges/cuts/whatever they were in the feather detail that just would NOT take primer! 

Sadly enough, after primer attempt one, but before primer attempt two, I resculpted that area of feather on the picture above and made it look really, really neat. That area of the mold is seriously lacking in detail. However, when primer job numero dos went bad due to it FLAKING OFF (a serious WTH? moment....), the clay I had sculpted popped right off the leg. It just wasn't meant to be.

He was just problem after problem, headache after headache, and quite frankly, I wanted to smash him into pieces when his seams blew out after the third primer attempt.

So what did I do with such an Ill-behaved beastie? I got permission to replace him in the show auction with a brand new, nice and pretty 

Bay Glossy Braveheart Resin from Horse Power Graphics.
Clicky HERE :) for full color pictures of the pretty pony.

So not all is lost. Goffert will join the ranks of the yet to be tamed wild hosses in my body corral, where the other monsters will teach him some manners. 

Or so I hope. Cause he won't see the light of day any time soon.

There will also be this little guy raffled off at the show as well:

ok, I know, horrible picture.

This little guy started life as "Amber", and I turned his head a little more so he's looking back behind him, re-sculpted his neck, turned one ear, gave him a brand new mane, tail, and boy parts appropriate for about a 2-3 month old colt. I named him "Adam" but even I admit that's not very creative. LOL.

He will be finished rather quickly and mailed off to Carole Ingram for color and personality! He isn't listed on the show website yet, which is why I'm mentioning him here. :D

I blogged about him before -
If anyone is interested!

Since that post, the tail I sculpted on him broke in two places, and the pastel job I had started on him wasn't going well at all. So he got stripped, a new tail put back on, and re-prepped for priming.

Monday, March 7, 2011

Tutorial: Carving Hooves and Ears On Model Horses

A few weeks back I posted on my website a video tutorial on how to Carve Ears and Hooves on Model Horses. Here is the Link.

A little taste: 


Saturday, March 5, 2011

The Forgotten Blog...

Well its 2011 and I think its time to resurrect the art blog again. 

I've been busy prepping plastic ponies, being sick, and dealing with Girl Scout Drama. For the majority of the last week of Feb. 2011 I was dealing with a pretty major sinus infection  with what I'm sure was a double ear infection as well. It meant I slept - a lot - and getting out of bed made things spin quite crazily. Not so good when dealing with plastic expensive ponies that belong to other people, no? So I figured they would stay safely on their shelves, UNDAMAGED, and I would simply pass the time miserable. That plan seemed to work, as no plastic ponies were damaged during the week of weakness. I am now feeling quite better, and ready to start once more. 

And the Girl Scout Drama - well in a nutshell I started out the school year as the leader of my daughters fledgling Brownie Level Troop. Lets just say that I don't play well with PTO/PTA moms. All I had was PTO/PTA moms. Of course right?  

Well my mother was also my girl scout troop leader for nearly a decade, so I figured if SHE could do it, so could I. Not so much... ever heard of the "helicopter mom"? Moms termed because they 'hover'... constantly. I couldn't catch a break, and quite frankly, the control freak in me started to well, freak. Things suddenly were not so happy, and I decided to step down from the Leader Position, and hand the troop over to the mom that seemed to be the most qualified to handle it. 

Now on to the plastic ponies...

I have still to catch up on a lot of orders:

I have the Ruffian and Smarty Jones finished, I just need final pictures taken. The PAM and Classic Arab Family that go to the same owner I have yet to finish. 

Goffert - well he's being a royal pain in the rear right now. Had him all ready to go, and next I know the primer is chipping off. I tried sanding the areas where it was chipping, and it just chipped off worse. So he will need to be stripped and reprimed before he can be mailed off. And I thought he was done....

The BHR Arab and Pyt are going to be sent to a painter here soon for finish work. 

Jade and Jewel are being worked on slowly, as I am resculpting details back into both of them. 

CM'd Lady Phase has a giant crack in her neck that needs to be repaired.

And a few others that I'm sure I'm forgetting at the moment. 

So I will continue to be quite busy till March, April! 

I also have a new project arriving in the mail pretty soon... These pictures are the property of a fellow Blabber 'Sweet Defense', and I am only using them because I have no other pictures at the moment.

I probably over paid for him, but something about him was talking to me - no SCREAMING at me. Don't quite know what it is yet, though I have a pretty good rough idea... I am seeing something very different than anything out there yet and I hope I can translate what is in my head to actual clay and design. I will be going back to my polymer clay roots on him, and can't wait to start figuring out concept ideas. 

I don't expect to be getting to him before the school year is out, which means I have plenty of time to plan, figure, prepare, and practice. :D. 

Tuesday, November 16, 2010

In Progress all the way to Almost Completed

The Halla seen in the last post had some serious cosmetic surgery. The tail was a nearly 5 hour removal process with the dremel, but that time includes the detail work reshaping the leg. The pictures below show the progress of the tail removal from about one hour in, to near completed. After the last picture was taken, he had some very small divots that the dremel created filled back in, and was sanded, and overall just smoothed out. He is now finished.

This last picture shows the carving out and shaping of the ears and nostrils. 

The next project is a Ruffian and Smarty Jones from the same owner as the Halla, tail repairs, and general prep.