roxybisquaint: (sarah expletive)
Don't you hate it when you get to the end of a good hair day? Because you know a bad hair day is sure to follow.

Maybe it's not the same for you, but good hair days never come consecutively for me. I can have days in a row of decent hair, hair I don't hate, nondescript passable hair. But actual good hair is always a fluke. It's that perfect accident of a great part, the right amount of natural air-drying before I blow dry, the length of time I blow dry it before I get impatient and flip my head upside down to speed up the process, and the perfect ratio of hair products. Today it all came together so well that even as the day winds down, it still looks good. I even got coffee on my hair got earlier (don't ask) and had to rinse some ends. Didn't matter. Still looked good.

Tomorrow, I'll try to reproduce this hair, but it won't work. The part will be all wrong. I'll wait too long then over-blow dry it. I'll put in too much of this product and not enough of that one. I'll get frustrated. I'll brush it too much. Then I'll end up putting it in a ponytail.
roxybisquaint: (cameron laundry)
Summer Glau made an appearance in one of my dreams recently... I walked into my bedroom and there she was putting away the man's laundry. What's up with that? The man was out in the living room completely unaware, so I went and told him. Next thing you know, he and Summer are chatting away in our bedroom and she's pointing out which of his shirts is her favorite. I don't think I need a shrink to analyze this one for me.... Hey Summer Glau! Get the hell out of my bedroom!

I'm fully expecting Felicia Day to be folding the man's jeans or something in dream soon. Since we've been watching The Guild, he's suggested to me (on more than one occasion) that I should dye my hair red again. Can't imagine why. I did, though. I got my hair colored today and I went red. It's much darker than a Felicia Day red, but the man was pleased anyway.
roxybisquaint: (sarah cameron badass)
Action figure Kyle is finished. Action figure Riley is finished. And action figure Catherine is finished. Yay! Since they need to sit for a while before I assemble them for pictures (want to make sure the paint is good and hard), I moved on to Cameron. Cameron?! You ask. Yeah, Cameron. I've always thought her hair was too big, so I decided to grind it down some.

No finished picture of her yet either (she's drying), but the operation was a success. Well, sort of. I still think her hair is too big, but I feared taking too much off or it might crack or have some other catastrophic failure. One of the things I learned going through this action figure making process a second time is that it's best to grind down the top and back of the head before sculpting on hair. I didn't do that with Cameron, but I did it with the new figures and it worked out well. Lesson learned.



So anyway, Cameron still has big hair, but I think it's improved. At least it's not such a lightbulb head now. And with a fresh coat of paint, it's a slightly lighter brown and not quite as shiny.

ETA: I just found a splinter of plastic embedded in my knuckle. I yanked it and now I have a bloody knuckle. I blame Cameron. This action figure making is hazardous! A few days ago I stabbed my finger with the tip of my pocket knife while I was whittling Catherine Weaver's hair. It was quite a sight when her face was suddenly covered in blood. :P
roxybisquaint: (sarah hmm...)
While away on vacation, the part in my hair shifted from the left side, where it's resided for about 5 years, to the right side. I don't know how long it's intending to stay there, but it seems content at the moment. Does anyone else's hair go through these part shifts?
roxybisquaint: (sarah kidding me)
I saw a guy with a comb in his back pocket and a mullet.

I don't just mean a regular comb. Remember those combs with the long handles that people used to carry in their pocket as a fashion accessory? When was that, like 1980 or there about? Well he had one of those and it was sticking a good 4" out of the back pocket of his jean shorts, complimented by long socks and a muscle shirt (sans muscles).

And when I say he had a mullet, I don't mean an ordinary mullet. I'm talking full-on Billy Ray Cyrus Achy Breaky Heart mullet, the length of which was pulled neatly back in a ponytail that hung to the middle of his yellow muscle shirt (which matched his yellow muscle car, by the way). Here's the odd thing: he was using a girl's scrunchie to hold his ponytail.

How does a guy end up like that? I think there's a story there.
roxybisquaint: (john eww)
Thanks to the split verdict of my poll, I went ahead and made a duplicate head for John so he can have both season 1 emo hair and season 2 short hair. The first order of business was to finish up the short hair look. To do that, I simply added a little tuft of Sculpey to the front.

Then it was time for head duplication. You've already seen how I had to alter his neck, so I won't bore you with that again. That's the part I was dreading most about making a second head, but it was actually a lot quicker and easier since I'd been through the process once before. What I will show you this time is where I got the head(s) from:



It comes from a stupid underwater Deep Six figure and those suckers are hard to crack open. I had to cut it apart and then use a hammer and 6-in-1 tool to smash it open the rest of the way. For some reason this second head was much more difficult to get to. But once it was out, ground down and neck neck base molded on, it was time for EMO HAIR SCULPTING. Yeeeeeeeeee-haaaaaaaaaaa!



That was without a doubt the funnest part of this whole action figure process so far. I don't know if you guys like it, but I LOVE it. I think it's hilarious — just like John's hair was by the end of the season. After cooking the head to harden the hair, I did the usual shaping and here is the finished product:



After that, I assessed each figure and did some final prep work on everyone — added an EMT badge to Charley's shirt, sanded the military stripes off Ellison's legs, stuck some pockets on Derek's jacket and added a tuft to his hair, and I reshaped the soles of John's shoes to convert them from dress shoes to sneakers and sanded off his gloves (although I did those last 2 things to John after I took the photo below). And I think that's about it.



So guess what? It's finally painting time!
I'd like there to actually be some surprise to all this, so I probably won't show any of the painting process until they're done. Sit tight.

Part 1 | Part 2 | Part 3 | Part 4 | Part 5 | Part 6 | Part 7 | Part 8 | Part 9 | Part 10: The Unveiling
roxybisquaint: (cameron damaged)
When last we met, there was news of Cameron having been damaged—melted in a pot of boiling water as I was hardening her freshly sculpted hair. A series of events led to this catastrophe. The plastic of her torso (which was a late 90s re-issue Baroness) was of a cheaper plastic than other Joe parts and apparently had less tolerance for heat. But I can't blame it all on the plastic. I had the flame up too high and left her in the water too long, causing her upper thighs to get a bit misshapen too. And making matters worse, the torso buckled outward, effectively attaching itself to the back of her hair. I tried, unsuccessfully, to save her head, the hair ended up breaking off in the process. So that left me basically starting from scratch on Cameron. Augh.

Fortunately, I had duplicate parts for her head, legs and abdomen. The arms had survived without incident, so all I needed was a new torso to get her reassembled. Instead of a Baroness torso, I had to go with a Scarlet one. It works better really and the only reason I didn't use it originally is because, well, it's a 1982 Scarlet piece! But Cameron was in need, so Scarlet went to the parts pile. After getting rid of the grenade on the chest, smoothing out some texture on the shoulder and filling in a seam across the chest, the new torso was ready. I also got rid of the watch on her wrist (cyborgs don't wear watches - Cameron's got an accurate internal clock).



For some reason, sculpting the hair this time was a lot harder. I just couldn't seem to get it on there right and I think I started over about a dozen times. But I eventually got it the way I wanted it and it was time to get her back into the water. I was much more careful, keeping the heat down lower and gently removing her head from the body before cooking (I wasn't taking any chances—this was the last good female torso I had for her). It went fine and Cameron's hair hardened without incident.



I'd forgotten that I still had to remove pouches off the sides of the legs again (just like last time), so I took care of that and then went to work on the final shaping of her hair. Just like with Sarah, Cameron's hair was somewhat big on top. With my trusty Dremel in hand, I reduced it down and did some shaping, smoothing and detailing. Aside from it being a little longer than I wanted (I was afraid I'd break it if I tried to shorten it), I'm pleased with the results.



Now because I'm going to make a second head for John (one with short hair, one with long hair), I'm still not ready to start painting. I'd also like to do a little more work on Derek's jacket and possibly his hair. But I'll be done with sculpting today regardless. Unfortunately, I've got a busy week coming up so I don't know how much time I'll actually have to devote to this for the next several days. I'll be so sad if I can't start painting, though. Something tells me I'll work it in somehow. It think these figures are going to turn out really good. I'm excited.

Oh yeah - I started thinking about accessories! Maybe an AR15 and a handgun for Sarah, a block of C4 and a handgun for Derek, medical bag for Charley, handgun for Ellison. I guess Cameron and Cromartie don't need accessories do they? And what about John? Maybe a laptop and a texbook (or backpack)? Suggestions welcome.

Part 1 | Part 2 | Part 3 | Part 4 | Part 5 | Part 6 | Part 7 | Part 8 | Part 9 | Part 10: The Unveiling
roxybisquaint: (john eww)
Thank you so much for the response everyone. I've closed the poll because it seems pretty clear that I need to make both a short hair head and an emo bangs head for John. Really, that's what I wanted to do anyway, but it means preparing another head (pain in the butt), so if the majority of people preferred short hair John I wasn't going to bother. I will now. So thanks again - you've motivated me to do it.

[Poll #1226397]

If you have no idea what this is about, see these posts:
Part 1 | Part 2 | Part 3 | Part 4 | Part 5 | Part 6 | Part 7 | Part 8 | Part 9 | Part 10: The Unveiling
roxybisquaint: (sarah happy)
<< As you can see, I couldn't be happier about how well Sarah's hair turned out. Seriously. I'm proud. And yeah, I know I was all about doing Cameron's hair, but when it came time to start sculpting, I choked. Since Sarah's hair is a big ol' mess, I figured it'd be best to start with hers in case things didn't go so well. But they did. It wasn't perfect by any means, but I did some obsessive Dremeling and damn, I think it's good. Hope you guys think so too. Keep in mind I had to make the bottom flare out a bit to I could get the head into the body and also allow it some movement. And of course there's really no consistent style to Sarah's hair to go by. It's different in every scene of every episode!

You may recall (I think I mentioned before) that this head had kind of a shelf on the forehead above the eyebrows to help hold the original hair piece. If I didn't get rid of that, Sarah would have looked like Frankenstein's monster. I tried sanding it down, but it was too close to the eyebrows to make any headway. I filled it with Sculpey instead and that worked quite well. So I had a nice smooth head to start with and didn't need to worry about covering any more of her forehead than what I wanted. Next, I went to town on the hair, piecing it in in sections and then boiled it to harden the Sculpey.



I know, boiling it seems weird, but it's a common method for doing this. Technically, you're supposed to bake it in an oven, but when you have it molded onto a plastic action figure, you'd melt the figure. Boiling is an alternate method. You can still melt a figure, though - I did that with Cameron tonight. Yeah, melted her torso, which is why she's not ready. There's work to be done and I'll explain that story when she is ready. In the meantime, I'm sleeping with a loaded Glock under my pillow. I think the damage has messed up her programming and she's reverted back to "KILL ROXY" mode. Maybe action figure John can fix her for me ;)

Anyway... Once Sarah's hair was fully hardened and dry, I did a lot of work Dremeling and sanding as usual (I'm never satisfied). I thought the hair was kind of big, so I took the overall size of it down and then had to add a lot of detail back in that I lost when sanding. But as I said in the beginning, I'm very pleased with the end result.



Aside from hair work, I also had a few other sculpting tidbits to deal with. Previously, I had Sarah in pushed up sleeves to be her brown leather jacket (from Queen's Gambit), but now it's going to be a black leather jacket. And that meant new arms with full sleeves. One of the arms I needed had a broken thumb, though (if you know Joes, you know that's a common problem). Anyway, I fixed it with some Sculpey. Sarah also had a knife on her boot that I hadn't yet gotten rid of yet. I wanted these boots because they have a knife holster on them like her mission boots, but since she doesn't actually carry a knife in it, the visible handle had to go. After grinding it off, I reshaped a small section of the leg.



And there you have it. Sarah can now join Ellison, John, Derek and Cromartie in the ready-to-paint pile. Charley is almost ready. I just need to sculpt a tiny EMT badge onto his shirt. Cameron's hair is ready for final shaping, but I have to replace her torso now and that means more work. The backup torso for her has a grenade on it that I'll need to grind off. Grrrrrr. Neverending process, it seems. I just want to freaking paint!!!! Soon.

Part 1 | Part 2 | Part 3 | Part 4 | Part 5 | Part 6 | Part 7 | Part 8 | Part 9 | Part 10: The Unveiling
roxybisquaint: (aeryn dark)
Long hair + Short sleeves = Where the hell is that hair that's tickling the back of my arm?!

Hairs that detach from my head have a habit of dangling off my back in such a way that one end of them keeps tickling the back of my upper arm. And I can never see them, just feel them. Drives. Me. Nuts. I swear I spend half my short sleeves weather days grabbing blindly at my back trying to find these torturous hairs. Such a relief when I finally get one, though. Very satisfying.
roxybisquaint: (crichton creamsicle)
Don't pause to listen to a recording of your own voice.
You know that weird thing where your voice sounds completely different to you recorded than it does through your own ears, even though everyone tells you, "yeah that's what you sound like" (and you wonder how they can stand to be around you when you talk)? Well I just got a digital copy of a video from a 1999 New Year's Eve party, so of course, I watched it. It's about 12 minutes long and I think I'm talking either to the camera or in the background for a good 10 minutes of it. And now I can't get my own voice out of my head. When I tried to start writing again, I couldn't hear character voices anymore, I heard my recorded voice from 1999. It's very annoying having characters sound like recorded me. That simply doesn't work. On the upside, my hair looked really good.
roxybisquaint: (me frustration)
Maybe I'll just shave it off and tattoo my head. All right, maybe not. One of these days, though, I swear I'm going to follow through on that longstanding threat. That'll teach it.

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Roxy Bisquaint

March 2011

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