When last I blogged about Halloween, I was working on creating a zombie. And I was, admittedly, following Neil Gaiman’s advice and pretending I was good at it. But a little foreplanning would have served me well.
So I had this mannequin:
..and I had this head…
..but this head was filled with hard foam.
So I had two choices: Try to figure out how to glue the head to the neck – o hai giraffe zombie! – or hollow out the head and slide it over the neck. Foam removal was much easier a concept than it was a reality, and it took me a few hours to remove enough foam to allow easy neck insertion. Considering I have another head to work with someday, I am documenting this fact in hopes that I remember to fit head to neck before I do any painting, because the fear of screwing up the mask and the paint job gave an extra level of anxiety to the task of foam removal.
As I mentioned previously, the mannequin I was using had a broken foot and couldn’t stand up on her own. While I was fighting with foam, he was creating a platform for our chickie, and rigging up an armature for the arms.
Our gal is a bit more brittle than we’d anticipated, so screwing directly into the body was not Bones’ favourite job. But he is my hero, and he made it work.
The apron-looking thing is a piece of a zombie costume. I’m not sure how old this thing is, but I love the look of the bones and such. Obviously, it was in need of a repainting to make it match her head…as the next photo shows.
The bits on her arms are from a completely different zombie costume. The look of it is SO different from everything else that I had some serious doubts any of this was going to look like it made any kind of sense.
We had left her with only a partial right arm so that I could get her dressed. Sadly, the clothing I had pulled from my costume stash for her just didn’t fit right. My wedding dress was promising, but Bones voiced…um, a loud protest…so I moved on to a blouse created by a Philly designer, Ercoli. The blouse had seen better days, and it allowed me to show off those gorgeous ribs of hers.
She still needed hands. I have a thing about monster figure hands, in that I want the figures in my haunts to have believable hands. I used to work for a haunt that used cotton gloves filled with nothing, and it was painfully obvious that they weren’t hands. So I had repainted a pair of recycled latex hands earlier. (Below is a progress pic.)
Hair was stumping me a little. I finally settled on a horribly gaudy red wig I had stashed away. With some black spray paint (I know, I know…tacky as heck) it showed some promise.
I slashed her clothing so that we could see her exposed bones and bits, using liquid latex to make the edges icky, and then used more latex mixed with grey powder to give her clothing a further grimy feel.
That neck seam is pretty amazingly invisible to me. Also, o hai! My zombie is a hussy! But I really couldn’t bear to cover up that chest.
She ended up being much prettier than she probably should be. I’m still not sure how exactly that happened… Were I to do it again, I’d have lightened up her face, because in haunt lighting her features are a little hard to make out. Alas. Still, for my first attempt, I am beyond happy with her!