Saturday, September 15, 2012

Hey everybody. Wanted to update the progress of the Cloaked Ghost. This will be an entry about finishing the hands, fixing the hood, and starting the cheese cloth application. My next entry will show how I add all the cheese cloth and display the final ghost. My previous entry showed how I used newspaper, tape and paper mache to make the hands. Once the hands are dry I paint them flat black...
Next I use fabric stiffener to apply small pieces of cheesecloth. I cut plenty of pieces around 2-3 inches square, any smaller and I cannot spread the cheese cloth out after dipping it in the fabric stiffener and wringing it out.
I usually start with the fingers and work my way onto the hand.
The final effect under the black light...
Next, I was not happy with the way the cloak looked in my test run (below) I wanted to keep the void just where the head was supposed to be, without the black cloth blocking any part of the body as the head turned. After some experimentation, I found that trimming the hood gave the desired effect. Here is the trim job...
The result test run with some cheese cloth and black light shows how this technique allows the void to remain without obscuring the body as the head turns... Finally, with the body clearly visible under the void, I decided to add some detail to the cheesecloth on the body. This will be done by cutting ragged strips long enough to reach the bottom, placing them on the body, the applying some Elmer glue/water mix in strategic spots to secure the cheese cloth in place. The idea is shown below with the initial strip placed...
Thanks for looking. The next post should finish up this ghost!

Friday, September 7, 2012

Animated Cloaked Ghost Part II

The hands are just about done, now it is time to dress the ghost using black cloth. I built the hands using the same technique as the previous ghosts. First build an armature using small newspaper balls for knuckles, and masking tape to hold everything together.
Once the hands are together I pose them, and if needed secure them so they hold the pose while the paper mache dries.
The following video shows the ghost with the rough hands and the basic cloak outline in place. I am also getting questions about how I figure linkages. The following video shows how I lay everything out with cardboard and tacks to at least get close (this is after several sketches). I take the final strips and use them to check the fit as I assemble the actual linkages. As I built the ghost, the location of the motor or arms would change, and I would modify the cardboard mock-up accordingly. Note that the head and left arm linkages were close, but the right arm prototype did not capture the complexity of that movement. I also spend a lot of time sitting and watching things in motion, and tweaking until things look right.

Thursday, September 6, 2012

Cloaked Ghost WIP part 1

I finally got started on a new ghost. This will be another version of the cloaked ghost. The original cloaked ghost is a product of Pumpkinrot..
Grim came up with his own version...
My ghost will be modeled after Grim's version. What I really like about Grim's version is the way the void in the hood opens into the body of the ghost. The animated cloaked ghost will have 3 movements. The head will look back and forth. The right hand will hold a lantern, and it will extend the lantern out as it keeps watch over all TOT walking by. Finally, the left hand will point at the TOTs as they walk by, slowly moving back and forth as if pointing to each TOT. The video below shows the armature with the basic movement done... Next steps will be completing the hands and arms with mache, and forming the hood. The ghost will use RIT treated cheese cloth; the challenge will be to recreate the void as in Grim's ghost with the UV reactive cloth.