Friday, November 12, 2010

Ironback Spitter, King of the Koopa's

Story time!
So, back around '00 I worked at a gaming store in Seattle called Games and Gizmo's and Ron Kruzie was one of our customers. He had his award winning fantasy beastman army on display there and would come in and play his Imperial Guard army or do some work on one of his latest projects. He had planned to do a lizardman army and wanted to do a special project for his Slaan mage as he didn't like the howdah version that was available at the time. He wanted to have his priest riding on top of a giant snapping turtle and I did some concept sketches for it and gave it to him. Soon after G&G went out of business and forced everyone to go elsewhere for their geek-fix. Years later I was working at Privateer Press as a sculptor/mold maker/caster and Mike McVey had bought on this freelance painter for the mini's line and low and behold it was Ron. After I moved out of the area Ron went full time and is to this day they guy who I deal with directly for my Privateer jobs.
Skip ahead to summer of this year and Ron sends me the concept art for the Ironback Spitter. We talked on the phone and during the conversation I remind him of the Slaan mount I sketched up for his army and we both had a laugh at the irony; 10 years later and we finally got around to working on a snapping turtle.
If PP kept the parts breakdown like I did them I managed to slip in ball and socket joints at the torso, shoulders and neck to hopefully add a little variation when people put the guy together.

Picture provided by:Privateer Press, concept art by Chris walton, paint by PP paint crew

Tuesday, November 9, 2010

The right tool for the job.

I've had this guys site for a while but keep forgetting to link to it. So here it is, a blog site dedicated to making your own sculpting tools. Not only that but the author has compiled all of the info into downloadable PDF format files, how cool is that?

Monday, November 8, 2010

Interview with toy sculptor Bill Merklein

Gyre-Viper over on Hisstank posted an interview he had with Bill Merklein, one of the head sculptors of the G.I. Joe toy lines as well as, Mighty Max, X-Men, Visionaries and Air Raiders lines from Hasbro during the 80's (just to name a few) Even if you are not interested in toys he does cover some of his sculpting techniques and materials. Here is your chance to see the guy who helped bring many of he iconic toy characters from the 80's and 90's to reality. Check it out, you might be surprised at what you may have owned that Bill had a hand in creating. But, be forewarned; the video may be broken into 7 parts but your looking at over an hour of info. Hope you enjoy it as much as I did.

YouTube - Bill Merklein GI JOE Interview Part 1

YouTube - Bill Merklein GI JOE Interview Part 2

YouTube - Bill Merklein GI JOE Interview Part 3

YouTube - Bill Merklein GI JOE Interview Part 4

YouTube - Bill Merklein GI JOE Interview Part 5

YouTube - Bill Merklein GI JOE Interview Part 6

YouTube - Bill Merklein GI JOE Interview Part 7*

Update: 02/09/15; Gary Head (AKA Gyre-Viper / Gary Goggles) died from a heart attack yesterday. R.I.P.