Wednesday, October 3, 2012

Fine Fettle

It's funny — as this thing progresses, I'm spending more time worrying about accuracy. IG-88 looks like a gray 2-liter bottle with eyes, but Boba Fett's helmet is scaled to the nearest millimeter. I'm gaining confidence in my skills, I suppose, and the internet offers up a heck of a lot more detail on Boba Fett's armor than IG-88, so it's easier to set my sights higher. But I hope I haven't lost sight of the amateur charm of the project.

...On second thought, I'm pretty sure there will be enough goofiness on-screen to carry me through. I'm using Silly String instead of lasers, after all. Being amateur enough is probably not my primary concern.

Anyway. For Boba Fett's helmet, I'm wrapping sheets of styrene around an old bicycle helmet. Here are some of those aforementioned templates being traced onto the styrene:

The trapezoidal wedge of graph paper is there as a spacer — the bike helmet tapers in the back in a way the real helmet doesn't, so the wrap-around panels need to be extended.

Here's the assembled helmet, pre-painting. That milky T is what's left of the translucent protective sheet that styrene comes covered by. I peeled most of it off, but left it in place over the visor, so it'll remain transparent when I paint the helmet. Clever!

Looks a bit like Jango, actually.

The rangefinder is foam core, and the circular "hinge" it rises from is the end cap of a poster tube (IG-88's left arm, actually). Duct tape covers up the holes in the helmet, and holds gray acetate in place against the visor so it won't be totally see-through. Note the screen-accurate dent in the forehead.

Internet templates also provided me with the chest armor, here portrayed by corrugated cardboard. (Fett only appears from the chest up, so I don't need to worry about the rest of it.) Once they're painted, I'll attach them to a light blue turtleneck I found for $2 at a thrift store.

Finally, his rocket will slide through loops in my hiking backpack and be seen poking up over his shoulder. I made mine out of a few cups, a mop handle, some leftover posterboard, and the panacea that comes on a roll, duct tape:

If weather permits, I'll put a couple of coats of spray paint on tomorrow afternoon, then detail the helmet with sponged-on acrylics when the spray paint is dry.

In the last few days, I've also: spent some time figuring out how iMovie's voice over features work, tested my microphone with said features, greebled my Star Destroyer model so it doesn't look quite so clean, and bought black starfield fabric for miniature photography.

Boba Fett was the last big build before principal photography on Sunday. Once he's all painted and pretty, I'll still need to futz with the lights in IG-88's dome and make a couple of asteroids out of napkins and glue, but I'm very nearly ready to take off my modelmaker / costumer hat and put on my director hat. Almost time to start figuring out lights and camera angles!

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