Thursday, 6 December 2012
I have now made a start on the set and some props that will create the scenery. I think i have started most things now, oh well, it keeps me moving. This post is about the trees. I was thinking hard about how i want the set to look, i would of loved to create something with as much detail as something like Aardman's Pirates for example, but i thought that doesn't really go with the theme of the story and will make the characters look out of place. So, i thought round shapes or curved lines and bright colours, simple but effective. Below are a few quick drawings i did of some trees and how i thought they should look.
With some ideas down on paper, (or in this case, on the screen) i found it much easier to visualise how i want the trees to be. The next problem was, how am i going to make them? They need to be fairly big which creates a problem for the weight of them, i could of sculpted them and then made moulds and cast them in plastic but due to the size i decided not to go with that idea. With the help from my girlfriends recent activity in making cake pops, i stumbled upon oasis. This stuff is usually used for arranging flowers. I bought a dense block which i can only describe as a softer and maybe slightly crumblier version of styrofoam. This oasis though is very easy to carve and very lightweight.
The pic below is not a great image but basically i have carefully, using a range of different scalpels, carved away at the block. This does leave some fairly strong lines where the chunks have come out.
But because oasis is soft its very easy to sand down the a nice smooth finish, obviously its not going to be a shiny surface but it has a great texture and i think will work great as a tree.
To mix things up i also bout some round balls made from the same oasis stuff. With these i have joined two together using a cocktail stick covered in superglue. These will be round trees.
To make the trunk i sculpted plastiline onto a bamboo stick and added some texture to act a bark. Again its not the best image, but basically the bamboo sticking out the top of the sculpt will be pushed inside the oasis tree and the sculpted part of the trunk will act as a stopper, so the trunk can only go in so far. I then made a mould of the trunk by putting it inside a cardboard tube and pouring in thick moulding silicone.
These are the trunks cast in plastic ready to be trimmed and painted.