Ratty with ears gluing on... looks a little painful... Epoxy resin is a dangerous thing for me as it gets a little too tempting to glue stuff to EVERYTHING...
Saturday, 23 April 2011
As Uni is closed for Easter I've brought some bits home to be getting on with... unfortunately this means I'll probably get glue & stuff all over my bedroom... but I do get to listen to my music nice & loud :D
Anyway, this is my first colour version, I really like green & pink together... very summery, like the weather at the moment! Ears & tail from a charity shop duvet set, body was MDF found in the street.
Tiny 6cm head ratties cut from a sheet of MDF found by a bin on the street. Cleaned up, flattened and lasered :) Nice sense of satisfaction knowing I effectively saved them from landfill.
They will soon be joining the rest of my growing collection on my desk here :D
Sunday, 17 April 2011
Well, I've mostly been getting on with building up the parts I'm getting back from the laser cutter, but (typically) the sandblaster is out of action at uni...meaning I can't clean up the final pieces...so I have a backlog of about 5-6 acrylic Rats!
The laser cutter is booked up until the middle of May, meaning I'm just going to have to suck it up and outsource...expensive! But worth it as I should be able to make some metal versions from reclaimed galvanised steel (I'll have to double check this) which used to be a trailer...
Anyway, this is a *nearly* finished BIG acrylic Rat, from a cutting before I took out a lot of the interior weight and recessed the joints on the design...so he's a bit of a heavy FrankenRat with his bolts sticking out... which is why he has shiny red & (fake) leather ears & tail...he's Frank-N-FurteRat (of Rocky Horror fame)...tedious link maybe, but the people I've told have liked the association... Ha :)
Wednesday, 13 April 2011
Making process and materials. I'm really pleased with how this came out, it was good fun to do something completely separate from my uni work, a nice break from thinking about articulation and layers! I hadn't painted anything for a while so that was nice to get back into.
Anyway! Back on with RAT WORK! :D
Friday, 8 April 2011
Work in progress of a mask for a ball this weekend....
Initial sketchbook work.
Built on top of a simple store-bought one.
Wednesday, 6 April 2011
It's going to be quite difficult to part with them I think, especially as they're hand finished so I ALREADY feel they have unique 'personalities'... (Oh dear, I'm both anthropomorphising AND personifying inanimate objects at the same time...) but then it will be nice to see them go to new homes where people will enjoy having them!
It's the Easter 'Holidays' at the moment (in quotes because it most certainly doesn't FEEL like a holiday!) so the workshops at uni are frustratingly closed...though it has given me opportunity to really catch up on all the supporting work for my degree. I was initially reluctant to start it, but I've really enjoyed working back with 2D materials, thinking over new designs and ideas...just using pens & pencils for drawing again!!
Anyways, I have an enormous 'To Do' list which I should get back to :)
Sunday, 3 April 2011
I explored abandoned buildings, raided skips for food, went weeks without spending money, helped friends out in exchange for food, swam in lakes and rivers, cycled everywhere, made some wonderful new friends...it was wonderful. I felt properly free and floaty...
It did all have to end though... I found it very difficult to re-focus myself on my course and having a routine and schedule... but I did, eventually! They're quite bitter-sweet memories as I'll never have that time again, but that makes it even more precious. I wanted my work this year to come from those experiences I had :)
I went through quite a lot of different ideas before deciding to make my own swarm of rats to come exploring with me in future...
They're in a vague order of newest to oldest images...
This was the very first 'finished-ish' Ratty. He's made with an old placard for a university protest, his ears and tail are recycled material scraps.
This was the first experiments with glueing the threads of the pivots (to keep tension on the layers & therefore make them able to hold their own weight) and it works really well! Left in position for even a few days they hold position very well.
...and this is the professional photograph of one of 'em for our degree brochure. He's made with old laminate floor-boards, saved from landfill. He measures about 80cm, nose to tail and is fairly heavy as he was cut before I had the revelation about removing all the internal weight.
Unfortunately the photograph had to be portrait to fit the layout of the brochure...and I already had an image of a Rat standing up on the opposite page... but I do quite like how it looks like he's been caught in the spotlight of something...from doing something bad :D
This is an early cardboard prototype with contours, jaw mechanism (which you can't see, it's oh-so-clever) ;P and ear-fixing problems ironed out with the addition of a few more outer layers on the head.
The two above are previous cardboard prototypes. It was after playing with these that I had the idea of contouring the outer layers to make them more realistic and pleasing as they were pretty bulky. I do really like the idea of having few 'Rats with Wings' in my show, it's a bit tongue in cheek, but will have to see if I have the time to fully develop a wing I'm happy with!
Started looking at how the legs were going to make a working joint that didn't over-extend.
These were very early versions, I hadn't looked at real rats deliberately so I'd be drawing from imagined stereotypes. I wanted them skinny & scrawny and nasty looking...but I eventually fell out of love with them because they just weren't Ratty enough and I don't think people would ever really like them... so the design was scrapped and I started again from fresh and ended up with the shape you see above :)