Keiko girls done!

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Very different from what I imagined the set to be initially, but I’m not complaining 🙂

More images from my smugmug gallery.

Photographing this kit was a real challenge. The girls are facing different ways, so their faces could easily be in the shadows, especially Holiday (middle). After picking up some studio setup tips, I built a reflector board using crumbled aluminum foil, and it worked really great.

Another challenge is the depth of the kit. The kit is about 8″ in diameter, so it’s quite deep for a macro-like shot. Had to crank all the way up to f/22, which requires bright flash to compensate. I also couldn’t expose more than 1 second or else the modeling light (yellow tint) will show in the photos. Somehow everything worked out just ok at ISO 200.

Otoko no Tatakai (男の戦い) – Eva 01 vs. Zeruel

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Introduction

Scale
n/s
Sculptor
Maker
Musashiya

Completed
07/05/08

Parts


The second of my grail kits, this one is a scene in Episode 19 of Evangelion (titled “Man’s fight”, i.e. otoko no tatakai in japanese), where a sulking Shinji got inspired by Kaji: “Shinji, the only thing I can do is stand here and water. But you, you have something that you can do. That only you can do. Nobody is forcing you. Think for yourself, and make the decision by yourself. Think about what you ought to do now. You know, so you don’t have any regrets.” Then Shinji climbed into Eva 01 and busted into NERV HQ shaft and proceeded to beat the crap out of Zeruel, the 14th Angel.

This kit gained its grail status half by its dynamic sculpt and half by its name 🙂 What hot-blooded young male aged between 19-29 wouldn’t love to build something with this name, haha. The most time-consume aspect of this kit is the planning for the base. The original kit contains Eva 01 and Zeruel, plus a couple of “rock” pieces for the figures to stand. However the kit would look very dull with them; a mini-diorama base would be needed to fill the void between the figures. Also I wanted to re-create the feeling of Eva 01 crashing into the NERV HQ by busting through walls as in the episode. To fill the spaces, I commandeered parts of my my LMHG Eva 01’s launch pad and cut them up for a fallen launch pad, and casted plaster of paris in metal wire forms, then hammered the castings to create stray pieces of “cement”. The shape and size of the base were also brain tears as well, as this diorama is difficult to give a good visual perspective, since only half Zeruel’s body is visible. I wanted to hide the fact that it’s only half a body. In the end, I populated Zeruel with debris and fallen NERV columns to create a bed of crap around it, that made Zeruel looks like it’s pushed back and has fallen into a pile. I also got some flying debris on Eva 01 so that it looks like pieces of the wall are just flying off it. I used a clear disc for the base, but it’s pretty clear that having visible gaps in the debris piles is a bad idea. So I blacked out the bottoms of Zeruel and 01, leaving parts of the base clear and part opaque.





Midori Washio from Protect Gear (Takara)

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Introduction

Scale
1/6
Sculptor
Maker

Completed
07/03/08

Parts


Another special forces member from the Protect Gear universe. Midori was the first figure offered in the Cool Girl line before Chuichi. No major mods this time, just weathering so that Midori can be paired up with Chuichi.

Fine Molds 1/72 X-Wing (Star Wars)

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xwing_0001


Introduction

 

Scale
1/72
Sculptor
Maker

Completed
07/03/08

Parts


 

One of the best rendition of X-Wing by Fine Molds. I mainly build this to accompany the Millennium Falcon. Since I chose to build the Falcon with the second Falcon trip configuration, I built the X-Wing as Luke’s.

xwing_0029 xwing_0028 xwing_0027 xwing_0025 xwing_0018 xwing_0013 xwing_0012 xwing_0002

 

Silent Moebius Venus Plaque

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Introduction

Scale
1/8
Sculptor
Maker

Completed
06/29/08

Parts


Finally done with this grail kit of mine. The WIP thread is here, and most of the explanation about the kit are in it.

Doing the kit is like a quest of sorts, since I haven’t seen this kit in color, it’s been always a dream of mine to do it.

The girls are:

Top: Rally
Second row: Lebia, Yuki
Thrid: Nami, Katsumi, Kiddy

Each girl is done with a different skintone I’ve collected over the years – may be not as faithful to the original’s “dead-people” colors, but I love healthy skins 🙂 I’ve spent waaaayyy too much time on the peripherals (base background, frame), but in the end they turned out half as good as I wanted them to, which is a minor regret. For the background, I have it a weak “pool bottom” pattern, and poured clear resin on top to create the water; however the resin levels too much (despite multiple applications) and I didn’t get much ripples. The frame I was trying to get some fancy glass with pearlescent properties, but the effect didn’t show at all. However it’s still a good transparent aqueous blue frame to go with the plaque. Of the girls, I really like Nami, Yuki, Lebia and Katsumi. Rally is cool with her lifting pose, but she seems a little rigid. I think Kiddy is a little off… and she proved to be the most difficult to get the eyes to look halfway decent.



Fine Molds Millennium Falcon (Star Wars)

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falcon_0027

 


Introduction

Scale
1/72
Sculptor
Maker

Completed
06/20/08

Parts


The best rendition of Millennium Falcon by Fine Molds.

falcon_0052 falcon_0059 falcon_0055 falcon_0041 falcon_0044 falcon_0022 falcon_0021 falcon_0017 falcon_0032 falcon_0037 falcon_0026

Destiny (Gundam Seed) with MG Freedom Conversion

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destiny_0006


Introduction

Scale
1/100
Sculptor
Maker

Completed
08/30/07

Parts


MG Freedom with VP conversion parts.

1/10 Berserk Skeleton Knight (Art of War)

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skull_0093

Introduction

Scale
1/10
Sculptor
Maker

Completed
06/21/08

Parts


This awesome Skeleton Knight (or Skull Knight) is from one of my fav manga series Berserk. Check out the Art of War site for their cool Berserk line up. There was another Skeleton Knight on horse before, but this one beats it hands down. It compares favorably to my two yet-to-finish grail kits, Guts and Griffith on horses. I seriously think that AoW has two sculptors, one that’s very experienced and one not so much. Some of their kits just have horrible proportions, the same person can’t be sculpting these awesome on-horse kits.

Anyway since only the prepaint statue was available, and these things sell out immediately, I had to get it. There are two versions of the kit, one with normal sword and one with the “Priming Sword” that has the eyes on it. I think both have their merits, the Priming one definitely has the cool factor, and I like how the vines tangle on the “blade”; but the down side is that the “blade” just looks like a meat rod full of eyes, which doesn’t look like something you cut things with. Anyway, I got the normal version and was happy about it.

The paint job was ok, but definitely needs work. I didn’t have time to redo the base and it seems the painter has done a decent enough job, so I left it alone. Skully and his horse though got a complete repaint. All the metal areas are redone with Alclad metalizers, mainly steel for the darker parts and polished aluminum highlights. The paint actually reacts well to my dark oil wash too, coolness. I’ve also created some patterns for the shield so that it doesn’t look so boring (originally it’s just monochrome with the red insigna). All the reliefed areas got properly drybrushed. The fluorescent paints on Skully’s and horsey’s eyes do wonders once again under flash, and I feathered some titanium whites in the middle of each. Horsey gets a midnight blue toned body with a bit of pearl white drybrushed – I’ve always wanted to try pearls on horses since their skin looks so shiny 🙂 I tried to give all the parts more variations in color tones, because otherwise the dude will just be surrounded by black, which is one problem I have with the original paint job. His cape/loin cloth gets a reddish brown tone, and to distinguish from horsey the horse cloth has a navy blue tone with some heavy drybrushing to brighten the piece. One last thing I wanted to mention is that I’m extremely pleased with Alclad’s gold, the color is “Pale Gold”, but there’s nothing pale about it. It’s actually pretty warm, and beats all the gold colors I’ve tried so far. Typical gold paints are full of brass metal bits, so the gold looks very “pale” in the sense that it’s closer to silver, like Mr. Color’s gold. Mr. Metal Color gold has the right tone, but the thing doesn’t last on unprotected surfaces 🙁 Anyway, thumbs up for Alclad!

Ahhh, I wish one day I’ll finish the two other on horse kits so that all of them can ride into the sunset! :mrgreen: you can all stop puking now 🙂


1/6 Protect Gear Chuichi Koshiramaru Custom

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Introduction

Scale
1/6
Sculptor
Maker

Completed
06/21/08

Parts


Yes yes yes I’m painting action figures now! 🙂 The ultra cool armor from the Protect Gear line designed by Yutaka Izubuchi got my blood boiling, and the this variation offered by Takara is especially enticing. So I got over my pride and bought the figure. Actually because of its design, the totally black plastic of the original kinda works fine. I especially like the leather suit, which eliminates the typical toy-like appearance of these figures. But without some work it’ll just be lacking details. So I decided to do something about it.

Long story short, the main alteration of the figure is the ammo belt for the Mauser MG34 machine gun. The original is a plastic belt which SUCKS. See the original pics from HLJ here. It took me a while to find something I really want – a small company called Barrack Sergent offers ammo belts that are exact scaled replica of the real thing, as the segments are chained together with metal, and all the bullets are brass casts. This thing WEIGHS. Now I have the droopy belt that KICK ASS. Sorry I’m being juvenile here… :mrgreen: Those belts are $15 a piece, and I needed 2 to make a good-looking length. It was actually quite painful to chain the two belts together since you need to work with the tiny tiny wire binding between the segments, but it’s definitely worth it. You can see how they perform in the pics below (click to enlarge). The top belt is the original figure’s plastic version, which is horrible looking – not bendy and very plastic-looking. The middle one is the belt i got from a Hot Toy’s MG43 machine gun. It has metal-cast bullets and cloth connections, which makes it more realistic. But it can’t compare with the bottom one, the Barrack Sergent’s, which completely adheres to any surface.

img_4104.jpgimg_4105.jpgimg_4107.jpg

There are some seam lines to remove but not a lot. I repainted all the amour pieces and weathered them. I stuffed some cottons in his pants :mrgreen: so that he looks better when his legs are in a spreading pose… well if you own the figure you’ll see. Also originally I planned to repaint the inside head, but really, what’s the point?! I’ll probably never take off the head gear, and the head is made of a rubbery plastic that can only work with V-color… well V-color has a shelf life that’s rather short, unfortunately, and all of mine are dried up… Anyway Chuichi’s awesomeness can only be accompanied by his girlfriend Midori.

Lacus Clyne from Gundam Seed

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IMG_4727

Introduction

Scale
1/6
Sculptor
Maker

Completed
06/02/08

Parts


Lacus is one Gundam female protagonist that I like a lot; she’s really strong, and actually performs some useful functions in the story 🙂

This dress is one of her stage dress, which as usual is very revealing ^_^;; The patterns on the dress are rather tedious to stencil, but I enjoyed hand painting the laces on the body suit. I replaced the resin ribbons on her dress with wired sheer, which looks much softer and flexible than the resins. Originally I thought of using acetate sheets, but turns out they didn’t bend to heat as well as I thought. Haro was painted with flourescent pink if it looks a bit glowing :mrgreen: