I used to watch Art Attack almost every day after school. My favourite part was always the first model since it was always something that looked practical and something I thought I could make. I was terrible at drawing and probably would never become an artist but I always liked making things and Art Attack was the first show I remember that made me want to be a creative person.
However, there was always something holding me back from making these practical models from the show: PVA glue. I don’t know about you but PVA glue to me was always this mysterious substance I could never get my hands on as a kid, which meant I could never really make any of the Art Attacks as much as I really wanted to. I would sit there paying close attention to all the steps, no PVA glue had been used yet, thinking there is still hope. And then close to the very end he always breaks out the PVA glue and suddenly all my hopes and dreams had been crushed.
Well that’s all changed now, I am a man dammit! And I’m going to buy as much PVA glue as I like and make as many cosplays as I want, and play dress up all the time and I’m never growing up you hear me! Sorry, got a little carried away there. I may have repressed some of my frustration regarding PVA glue over the years. So let’s just get on with the rest of the build. There’s less that one week to go before Halloween and it’s finally time to paint.
We have our shapes, we have our foam, we have the technology, we can build him. Before I started to paint my foam I went over all the shapes again to make sure they still fit properly. I reheated a few of the shapes just to refine it and I could assure they would lose shape. Once all the shapes have been sanded and fit perfectly you have to “Set” the foam, this means that we have to apply PVA glue to our shapes so that they harden and don’t loose their shape. I used about 3 coats of PVA glue per shape, make sure one layer dries before adding another layer. It takes roughly 45 minutes or one episode of Doctor Who between each coat.
Once all the PVA glue has dried overnight, your foam should feel pretty solid and tough. It will still have a little bit of flexibility but you don’t want to over bend it at this point, since you should already have the foam to it’s correct shape. The PVA also leaves the surface with this nice metallic shine on the foam, that’s what’s going to help give us a nice shine finish and gives it the impression of looking like real armour.
For paint there are a few options you can go for, if you want the fast option then spray paint will do the job quickest so long as you are well ventilated and have some kind of respirator. For me I decided to hand paint my shapes using regular Acrylic paint. Again it may take several coats of paint so really set on the foam and so you have a nice even finish on your paint. And that’s all there really is to it.
Whenever I have an idea or a project I want to do, I really obsess over it and focus almost all of my attention on it. Whether I’m writing music or writing a story or making my first cosplay from scratch I’m always trying to keep myself busy and learn new things. in a few days I’ll post again with the final assembly of the costume, I hope you have enjoyed following me on my journey as much as I have enjoyed making it. Now that I’m finished with this project, it’s time I got back to something I’ve been meaning to finish for a long time. Maybe I’ll share it with you one day.
Happy Halloween everyone!
The Writer of this piece was: Dean Walsh
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