Detective Sam Spade

Following my two recent commissions, the vampire and the artist series suffocating piece, I was asked by the same private collector to create a custom munny with the police officer theme. To be honest, I\’m not a huge fan of police officers especially after my recent experience with jury duty. But after mulling this concept over I did remember one detective that has always arrested my attention. That would be one Sam Spade. Sam Spade is the legendary character from the 1941 film classic, The Maltese Falcon, portraited by one of Hollywood\’s best, Humphrey Bogart. Now in the film, Bogie plays a private detective and not a police officer, but I took some liberty with the character and suggested a Sam Spade from his years prior to his private practice.
The custom was created using a 4\” Mini Munny, wire, polymer clay and acrylic paint.

Blank Franks Sold

I just sold my first two Blank Franks. The toy customizer Brixpix in Largo, FL contacted me and asked me how many of them I had as he wanted to buy a few. This got me thinking about something that had been a nagging thought since I posted the Blanks for sale. They\’re not perfect.

That\’s right. It\’s my first stab at my own platform and for the most part I really like this guy. I think he has a lot of potential and I hope to continue doing lots of work with him. The problem I have is that I haven\’t finished developing him yet. I have a prototype mold created which these Blank were created with. I made 3 casts of which my nephew got one, and then I had two left over. I can make as many as I want but what I really want to do is refine the piece more. Overall, the piece needs some generally smoothing of the larger shapes. I want true arcs and lines and I don\’t quite have that yet. There are also some imperfections in the cast, tiny bubbles that you get when you\’re not using a vacuum chamber.
At any rate, I was completely honest with the buyer, and I told him that although I didn\’t want to kill a sale, this was the reality of the pieces.
He bought them anyways. So he has the 2nd and 3rd casts of the official first run of Blank Frank. There was actually another mold before that but it went so horrible I will not be counting them. I am going to do my best to make sure I get around to refining this platform. I really think it has legs.
Thanks Brixpix!

Suffocating


Here is my latest custom done by commission for a very nice client who gave me complete freedom to be creative. Well, maybe not complete freedom. There was one requirement and that was what inspired this concept. The requirement was that the dunny needed to fit inside an acrylic baseball trophy case. The collector has a beautiful showcase of Dunnys all featuring the artists particular styles. I really could do whatever I wanted but when he told me about the restriction I have to admit I was a little stumped. I\’m building a reputation(or trying to) as a artist who modifies the platform in a manner that hopefully hasn\’t been seen before. I like to add to the platform with sculpture and to be restricted to the height of the Dunny at first put a big cramp on my style. But I then began thinking about who the character was. Why was he in the case? What would happen if he was in the case? That\’s it. I now had my idea. My Dunny would be trapped in the case and fighting for his life. I really like this idea because when the client showed me the case of Dunnys that other artists had done, I thought to myself, how can I stand out amongst all this great work? Well, all the other are standing in the same Dunny pose and this guy is seated with ears drooping. Mission accomplished. Now my only fear is that I\’m too different and my Dunny will stick out like a sore thumb making my client remove him from the company of the others.

I had debated for a bit whether or not to make this guy a creature. Eventually I came to the conclusion that I wanted the focus to be on the struggle between life and death. This Dunny is at the brink of death. He\’s just passed out and has moments to live. If I was to make the character a creature it might then become more of a narrative on the creature and less on the struggle.
To make this guy I ended up chopping of the head and repositioning it at an angle. I also cut off the legs and angled them out to allow for a seated position. Once that was done I cut out a mouth and eye sockets, created a large tongue and eyes, primed and painted and can say now that I am very happy with the results. To create the sweating look I simply applied a gloss varnish over the entire piece and then used a matte varnish to dull the areas I wanted dry. This created the sweat on his shirt and piss on his pants. I then applied gloss varnish in drops on his forehead and dripping from eyes and nose. I really love how the gloss looks like sweat beads.
Overall I think this is one of my favorite pieces so far. The paint job was real subtle but works for me. The sculpt is polished with only a couple minor things I would have done better upon reflection. Considering the size of this thing, 3\” Dunny, I couldn\’t be much happier. This piece and the Vampire Dunny were the first and second 3\” customs I have done and I found them to be taxing. The bodies as so small to work with and make it difficult for me to get the results I want. I\’ll probably be staying away from pieces this small in the future but you never know when I good project might come your way.

Ent Munny #2


Check out my latest Munny custom. It\’s a bit different from the last one. I decided I wanted a more childlike face than the tikki one I had done before. I also put more effort into the tree itself. I fashioned this after a real bonsai and I\’m pretty happy with the results. I cut out the belly and made a little world in there. Originally I had planned on making a squirrel to live in there but as this is a mini Munny the squirrel was so tiny I had a hard time with it. It also blocked the view of my cool shrooms which in the end was the deciding factor to leave the guy out. For the colors I also changed things up a bit. Once I finished my sculpt I began planning the colors of the piece. Unlike the awesome painter Bryan Collins, who says he typically thinks of a color scheme before he ever thinks of the concept itself, I generally avoid the color scheme all together and then struggle with it later on. This is something I\’ll eventually(hopefully) get over with time. Anyways, I was looking around to some of the artists I like for a little inspiration and saw on 64 colors site a piece that was all too similar this ent and I was a little disappointed because I really don\’t want to look like I copied anyone else. If I did colors similar to what I had done with my last ent, this would end up way too similar to one of their pieces. So I made sure to avoid using the same colors. For that reason I chose a green scheme. I think this makes it look more like vines than a tree, but what they heck, I like it anyways.

What do you think?

Old Copper Frank Version 2

I actually finished this guy last week but just have been busy with a commission (which should hopefully be done by the end of the week). I\’m not completely satisfied with it due to it\’s imperfections but that\’s OK cause I really like the concept. I\’ll be continuing with this guy until I get it right. I made this guy using the last of my poor casts. So he was rough to begin with. I think for that reason I sped through the process just to get it done and realize the concept. I also used copper paint(Modern Masters) and patina glaze to create a more realistic finish and go figure, I like the fake spray paint and green acrylic aging I did before better. This just seems too aged. Thoughts?

The concept, which originated with a frankenstein-like/big dumb animal (B.D.A. is a term I\’m been using for many years since Chris Farley and David Spade made Tommy Boy) and wasn\’t in
tended to be steam punk. But then due to the bad casts I made and having to come up with a clever way to cover up, I found the first Old Copper Frank character. I like this and started thinking how to expand on that and it just seemed natural that Franks body be the furnace and his head be the boiler. Which really gets me to thinking how I can manipulate this concept and thus the intentions of continuing this character for a while. SO… I dremeled out the back and added hinged doors. When taking a picture of my progress I noticed the door handles resembled tiny wings which got me to thinking more about the character of this guy. He\’s a steam punk angel. But of course, he need
ed steam stacks and naturally I thought that it would be cool to make the stacks into horns which would make this a conflicted character, not always good, not always bad. I also decided that the shape of the head would be a difficult shape for a piece of metal to be made, so I added a plate at the brow area which is more for the logical construction of the boiler and less about creating eyes, but of course it now
appears that Frank has a mask.
So that\’s how Old Copper Frank version 2 came about. I\’ll be developing a story behind him with hopefully some illustrations. I think he needs a friend. A forest creature who finds him in a post-apocalyptic area. One who might be making a nest inside the cold furnace and then accidentally starts a fire which bring Frank back to life. It would be a mutual friendship, the critter keeps the furnace going and Frank provides man-power and security to our little friend. What do you think?