First, I want to say thank you to everyone for their patience in the recent month. You've all been wonderful seeing me thru everything I've been up to.
Let me assure those that I've not tied recent business up with, that THIS is NOT where the delay came from. It was that dreaded ESB Holster project that threw everything off.
So, while babysitting the holsters as they cooked (so time intensive/need to be baby sat) I got a wild hair to do something different, for "me"
I've not stretched my creative legs in quite some time, as most of you know the last couple of years have not been good for me/us. So the motivation, and quite frankly the "love" of making props was fading fast. Until this. I feel rejuvenated.
The best part of all of this is this. In 2008 I was blessed to be a part of the "Jeremy Bulloch" project. To think back when I was 5, or 11 .. and not know that one day I would help make a suit for this "icon" we grew up with - just WOW !. I still get a buz from that. Another opportunity may have arisen.
Most of you know him as "the Droid Wrangler". Don Bies. The man responsible for R2-D2 from '86 to present. I've been lucky enough to be able to communicate with him about his hand in Episode III when he made the mask you are about to see me building a replica of - over at the RPF. He was kind and gracious enough to chime in and share everything he can remember about this project. As any of you well know, it would be a dream come true for most of us if we could have a sit down with Joe Johnston wouldn't it? Well - same thing here for me. Mr. Bies is one of my secret heros. He even shared "bench" pictures of him building this thing So he doesn't know it yet, but I may try to squeeze one of these into his private collection if he feels it a "worthy" representation of his original work. Those of you that cross over to the RPF, I would appreciate your discretion in regards to this. He hasn't seen these pictures yet. I wouldn't want his constructive criticisms to be clouded by any of this
I should add, that this is not entirely my fault One of our own members here at TDH sparked this "wild hair" in me when he purchased a casting of the following "outer shell". He's been such a great friend, that I decided a hollow shell wasn't good enough for him. So I got the idea to do it up dandy for him. One thing led to another .. and Mr. Bies became involved in his own way. So Jason (Darthmiller) - thanks a helluva lot brother ! It's all YOUR fault I'm in this mess. But what a wonderful mess it is. And thank you bro for all your patience too.
The following is what is posted over at the RPF ....
Be gentle :
Sorry the pics are later than I wanted them to be. I finally just had to set aside everything else I was working on. I don't want this thread to die.
So I slapped what pieces I had laying around for this project into a casting to show that I'm dead bone serious about this thing. I wish I could have painted the pieces but just too short on time. Keep in mind that everything is just thrown in there in a rush. It's just to illustrate some of what I have done on this. There are quite a few more pieces, but they weren't presentable for the purpose of showing off. Maybe the primers will accentuate what's going on in there. Speaking of, I didn't pop in the right eye assembly so you can see what's up underneath.
As you might be able to see, I'm going for a true "replica", not a reasonable facsimile. But of course, it's not perfect. There is only one that is, and that's the original. So we can only do our best with what we have. And it's certainly NOT 3 dimensional reference unfortunately. I've never even seen this thing in person. I missed it when it was at a "Where Science Meets Imagination" close to me, and I kick myself for that every time I look at this thing.
There are some pieces that have since been modified a bit since Mr. Bies shared his pics with us. Oh, and the contacts were already re-worked as I wasn't happy with the first versions you see here.
They say that "Imitation is the sincerest form of flattery". My little homage to you, Mr. Bies .. please be kind
A couple of important notes that I didn't touch on earlier.
Everything is scaled as well as humanly possible to the few "found" parts that we have. It's nice because there was one small "found" tid bit in every section that allowed the scaling. Will it be dead on accurate? Absolutely not. There is no way it could be. WIth pictures as our only reference, I'm sure you know that it's a judgement call in the end because perspectives get whacked out of proportion due to focal length, ect, ect.
Everything is a little rough in appearance - this is because on most pieces I have not done the finish work as of yet. Ya know, making them "beautiful" as Ivo likes to say So pay no attention to the scratch marks here and there (especially in the mouth cage), or the pinholes. It will indeed be "beautiful" when complete.
I must reiterate what I said in my picture post - some of the parts you see, are not the recent final versions that I've made. Some of these parts are in their 4th generation already. The "nose" for instance - I wanted the nose to be cast-able. So the version in the pics is designed without the undercut between the inner and outer "tubes". the most recent version, has the undercut to look more authentic. It will be a grip to cast, but oh well. But it couldn't make it to picture day as some of the other cool parts that are already done. Same for the mouth "comb" shaped piece. The one pictures is lop sided. The "real" one is sitting in silicone.
Last, but not least - there are no milled, machined, or laser cut parts shown. Everything you see was hand cut (oh, you can tell I'm sure ). But it will even out in the wash when the finish work is done.
That's about all I can think of for the moment