Monday, January 31, 2011


I'll just get straight to the beans and suggest that if you are at all fond of Dragons, then do get this bust. From start to finish, I thoroughly enjoyed working with this piece. A few details:

The kit comes in two solid, light gray resin pieces. Assembled, it's a
height of ten inches, with casting duties handled by Shane McGowin. There are so many tiny spikes and spines on the surface that I feared wouldn't survive the casting process, but to my surprise, most of them did. Don't get me wrong: there were some repairs to be done, but work was minimal and easy.

Now let's discuss the sculptor, Jarett Riva for a moment. T
his guy comes outta' the gate with a piece of this caliber, and it's just friggin' crazy...

I remember seeing progress photos of it on a modeling forum cal
led the The Clubhouse. Jarett must have been surreptitiously working with the piece for some time, and when he finally announced that it was his intention to produce the bust and make it available to purchase, I'm sure a group of ravenous hobbyists had their fingers hovering over the 'Pay Now' button.

Examining the creature's face, I see a hint of self-satisfactio
n in that half smirk, but maybe it's just me. The stoic, upright position of the head works the aforementioned aspect even further into being. I think it was an excellent decision for Jarett to imbue a little personality unto the dragon instead of portraying a fire-crazed, apocalyptic wyrm. (And let me tell ya', there's absolutely nothing wrong with that, either...) But the proverbial icing on the cake is without a doubt the wonderful field of reptilian textures the sculpture boasts. I might even take it to the ledge and say that this piece boasts some of the most exquisite textures of this sort that I've had the pleasure of seeing.

The whole piece is just handsome and full of pride; a combination of words which sum the piece up best in my opinion.

Prior to physically painting the piece, my mind's eye painte
d Surreptitious as dark, and dusty with layers of soot. That was my original destination, but my craft transported me to a different isle. However, I cannot say that I don't enjoy where I landed. There was a point that I had incorporated too many different transparent colors that I thought would add an interesting effect, but all that only succeeded in making the bust appear muddy and without any solid look. So in short, "Less is more"...or in my situation, " Additions through subtractions." In which case, I subtracted every scrap of paint and primer off it back down to the bare resin...

I had to strip the bust and start all over.

Well, I didn't have to, but I certainly wanted to. So I returned to the look that I was happiest with before the pie
ce was 'lost', and slowly proceeded with caution from there. And I do feel content with the look of it all. Contact Jarett at: to harass him about this piece. ;)

Sunday, January 30, 2011

Surreptitious: work in progress

This piece it titled, " Surreptitious". Sculpted by Jarett Riva, a.k.a. Evilriva. I'll post finished photos as well as more details on the piece, hopefully tomorrow evening; but for now, I'll part with a few photos of the bust primed, as well
as several ones showing the bust with a few early layers of paint on it.

Stay tuned...

Monday, January 17, 2011

Oil-Soaked (Spiderzero Creature Head No.7)

There's a wall in my little 'studio', if you will, that's lined with boxes upon boxes haphazardly stacked (not at all unlike many other people in this Hobby). Inside one of those boxes lies a menagerie of some of the strangest creatures known to man. I reached in, pulled one out and imagined what it would like like with some pigment on it. what happened...

Yeah, yeah... Enough with the dramatics already. I decided t
hat I needed a quick fix, so lucky me, I have a box filled with those excellent resin creature heads that Simon Lee has been putting out over the last 3 years. This particular one, simply titled, 'Creature Head No. 7' was the one that had the honor of being subjected to my imagination.

If my memory serves me correctly, Simon actually used his Mantis creature bust as a substrate to begin this piece, and it does seem to be so, as there certainly
is a semblance of that previous creature lurking in there. The head itself is no more than 2.5" tall and wide, according to Simon's website. I was always very interested in the photo of the No. 7 creature head Simon used on his website. It appeared very dark and oily; maybe some condensation steaming up the lenses, or whatever they are. So I used that photo as a launching pad.

I also wanted to make a simple themed base that went alo
ng with the greasy, lubricated look I planned to give the head, so I dragged out a box that I've been stowing away random interesting looking junk in for the last ten years. After wasting time on a few doomed designs I finally arrived at a suitable look that I felt cooperated with the head, which consisted of some parts from an old clock radio, an oscillating fan and some wires here and there.

Painting it was pretty simple, I just wanted the entire piece to appear very dark, grimy and unclean. I always look forward to an opportunity to get one of these little bastards out and be creative with it.