Sunday, November 14, 2010

Mechanically Violated

If you're not already familiar with the work of master sculptor Takayuki Takeya, or a model kit producing company named, 'Fewture Models', then I'm sorry; this isn't the time or place for me to delve too deeply into the history of either one.

A long time has it been that I've had this piece in a box waiting to be painted. I did a bit of prep work on it last summer, but since then it's been hiding out in a dark corner. It's titled, 'Hakaider: Mechanical Violator', and was produced on the very cusp of 1999 or early 2000, I believe, by a legendary company named Fewture Models. Hakaider is a study of a Japanese science fiction film of the same name. The film was directed by Keita Amemiya. Sculptor Takayuki Takeya actually worked on the film, and this is his version of the character.

If you've not seen the film, there are slight differences from Takeya san's sculpture and the film version character. The piece illustrates a scene from the end of the movie in which Hakaider and Michael (Mechanical Justice) battle it out; and as you can see...Hakaider busted his balls.

If it's evident from the photos I took of the figure proper, you might be able to see the subtle movement of Hakaider walking off the square base. The figure is full of tension and attitude. It's always been one of my favorite works by Takayuki Takeya. I'm painting this for a friend, so it will be tough seeing it go, but we'll's been quite a while ago that it was sent to me, so I'm hoping it's been forgotten ;)

Stay tuned...

Sunday, November 7, 2010

Spiderzero: Medusa, in the buff.

This is one of those pieces that I felt intensely drawn to the moment I first saw it. Yet another masterful and strange piece sculpted by Simon Lee (Spiderzero).

The Medusa kit comes in four parts, ( 2 arms, torso and lower base section) solid cast in an off white resin. The original pre-order release also included a bonus figure of a mummified rat curled up in the fetal position. Simon's Medusa is loosely based on the infamous Medusa of Greek mythology. In Simon's own words:
" This character's design is very abstract. I didn't go with the traditional rendition / description of Medusa, rather, I chose to incorporate snake motifs into a very "Gigeresque" design. There's only a hint of sexuality, and the overall sexual ambiguity makes the character more mysterious and that much creepier. As I'd discussed in the Blah! section of the site, I'd designed this character as a shape-shifter. It's form is ever-changing. It can take on the form of a human or that of a snake, or both. Medusa's eyes are hidden in this design. They're hidden behind those striations where the eyes should be. Being "her" primary weapon, the eyes won't emerge until she's ready to attack."

As a whole, Medusa has aspects that both attract and repel me at the sam
e time. There's the pose: her arms out and overall shape gives me the vague impression of a Vegas showgirl in the middle of her onstage dancing act. I see a blasphemous sort of Siren, mocking the weak man; beguiling him with her disfigured promenade. The large head having the shape of her feathery and fanned out headdress. That large head also, for some reason, makes me think of the creepy, deformed blonde woman who appears during moments of Henry's trances in David Lynch's film 'Eraserhead'.

Those aspects, along with the obviously H.R. Giger styled appearance the piece has throughout. Most notably, the head itself makes me think of a Giger painting titled, 'Li I'.

There was a good bit of work that needed to be done with Medusa, primarily re sculpting detail to the areas that were affected by the offset mold lines. As time goes on I find that I rather enjoy doing this, the re sculpting in of detail bit; especially with Simon's work. It gives me the opportunity to better get in touch with the piece, study it and imagine h
ow I'd like to paint it. In a nutshell: it helps boost my creative energy and inspires the Hell out of me.

All of the re sculpting work was done using Aves: Apoxie Sculpt and A
ves: Safety Solvent to refine details and feather the edges of the clay out.