Author Archives: Rosie Whittle

Styling the Wig

Originally I meant to attach wefts of hair to the skullcap itself and style these, however this would have been unnecessarily expensive and time consuming considering there were plenty of wigs available. I was a bit worried that the wig might take damage from the dreadlocks and styling but I was careful not to be too rough with it. I back-combed the entire wig, created dreadlocks, plaits, and braids, and used various material including cotton, silk pods, straw, Hessian, muslin, and rope to style the wig. I also used additional layers of weft hair dread-locked and even an extra wig underneath to add further volume to the hair and make it thicker and look more wild.

  

  


Colouring the Prosthetics

After a mix both successful and unsuccessful foam runs I eventually managed to make 3 prosthetics in good enough condition to use, 2 for the photo shoots and 1 for the exhibition. I started to experiment with colouring on the unsuccessful foam prosthetics and originally tried giving the faun a green hue to the skin, however I wasn’t overly keen on this so changed this to a darker brown and eventually a slightly red toned brown. I used alcohol based ink applied with an airbrush for the majority of the colouring and once all of the main colouring was finished I applied a final layer of colour and detail of alcohol based skin illustrator pallets flicked on for depth and a more sporadic appearance.

  


Attaching the Horns

Once I had both horns cast, cleaned, and coloured I had to start thinking about how I would attach them to the skull cap. Initially I wanted the horns to be detachable so I tried a variety of methods that would allow the horns to be taken off easily yet remain firmly attached when needed. I tried a method of attaching metal plates to the horns and the skull cap and secure together with poppers, velcro, and hooks but the horns were not secure enough and sagged as they sat. I then tried using a metal wire frame to support the horns and give them some extra stability but still have them attached by Velcro but unfortunately the hold with the velcro was not strong enough.

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I eventually decided that it would be better to permanently attach the horns to a wire frame and have the frame sit on the skull cap underneath the make-up. This would mean that they were not detachable but it would make them a lot more secure and I found that it was very successful.

 


Moulding the Body Pieces

Once I had finished sculpting the body pieces design I was ready to start moulding them. Because of the awkward shape and size of the pieces I decided to mould the whole thing in four parts to make sure the mould released easily. The shape of the vines on the shoulders was very awkward to mould because of the gap beneath them and the angle they leaned at.

Before moulding the main pieces I separated the joining piece in the middle so that it could be applied separately to cover the join of the two pieces. Unfortunately when I was moulding the body appliances I forgot to create a cutting edge, this meant that the edges would be thicker than I sculpted and that they would not be defined from the overflow material. Because of this I had to come up with a slightly different way of presenting it when applied. Instead of trying to completely hide the edges of the piece I would trim the prosthetic to follow the lines of the body and allow the edges to completely show and use shading and colouring to define them. This would make the piece stand out in its own right and look striking while also fitting with the rest of the look.

 

 


Moulding the Ears and Stumps

The next task was to mould the separate ears and base stumps for the horns. I removed these from the main sculpt before moulding it and will attach them separately later. I moulded them separately because the ears would make moulding the main sculpt a lot more difficult and the stumps would make the horns easier to attach if they were separate.

I decided to mould them both in two parts in fibreglass, to do this with the ears I had to flatten them out first and re-shape them when they were applied.

 


Foam Latex Runs

Once I had the 3 part mould of the faun sculpt I could start to do some practice foam runs to get the final foam latex prosthetic piece. I haven’t worked with foam latex for around a year now so I was eager to get back into it. I was also going to be doing these foam runs alone so I was a bit apprehensive at first but after the first run I was confident working quickly and independently with the foam latex.

The first test piece came out quite well in the detail however the foam had not quite reached all of the areas of the mould so the mouth peice was quite deformed and missing a significant amount. The first couple of attempts that I did were by using the injection method which I had not done before so it allowed to to experiment and gain experience in a new skill.

  

The second run that I did came out a lot better but was still missing the same area around the mouth so I decided that the next time I would do a press mould so that I could be certain that the foam latex would get the whole of the sculpt piece. The press mould piece came out really well and though it had a small air bubble and an area that deflated slightly it was definitely the best so far, the blemishes could be easily repaired and the piece would be fit for use.

  

I will continue to make foam latex pieces until I have 3 completely successful runs, this will give me one for the studio shoot, one for the location shoot, and one for the exhibition piece.


Moulding the Second Horn

The second horn had to be moulded differently to the first horn because the amount of TinSil used to create the first mould was too much to be cost effective. After considering a lot of different ideas and methods I eventually decided to separate the tip of the horn where it starts to twist back on itself and mould that part separately in a small amount of silicon and mould the main body in 3 parts in fibreglass.

For the tip of the horn I simply separated it from the rest as it stated to curve under. I then re-sculpted slightly to make sure it still re-attached neatly, and secured the tip to a wire frame and suspended it above a container, allowing a space at the bottom for the silicon to flood below it. I flooded the container with silicon and allowed to cure overnight before demoulding.

 

For the body of the horn I built walls along the 3 part divides and fibre-glassed it the same as for the make-up sculpt. I left a hole at the tip of the body to allow a gap to four in the expanding foam when I cast it later. Once all the parts had cured, I neatened the edges and drilled bolt holes before de-moulding and cleaning the mould for use.