Ear Casting

For our first full lesson back for creature design, we had to create a cast of an ear. The ear, once it is cast will then is used to create a prosthetic for our creatures we will be designing. Before we can make the positive of the ear out of plaster, we first had to use alginate to make a negative of the ear. To make the negative of the ear we had to plug the ear using cotton wool, the pour the alginate in to the ear using the top of a paper cup to hold the mould of the alginate ear.  Once the alginate is set you can then make a positive of the ear out of plaster. After the plaster is set the ear is then ready to be sculpted on to, so that a desired effect can be created. The process of this a cast can be used in the film and television industry, to make a bespoke prosthetic for an actor.  Below are some pictures of the ear cast being made and the method.

 

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Products/Tools needed

  • Cotton wool
  • Paper cups x2
  • Vaseline
  • Clingfilm
  • Bowl
  • Water
  • Alginate
  • Mixer
  • Modrock
  • Clay
  • Plaster

 

Method

Making the alginate negative

  1. Lie model down on one side a flat surface
  2. Put ear through cling film
  3. Vaseline the edges of the cling film down
  4. Put cotton wool in the ear, to block the alginate from going in the ear
  5. Make a wall around the ear with the large end of a paper cup
  6. Put tepped/room temperature water into a large bowl, (As alginate only has a short working time, around 3 minutes, you have to work fast when using it.)
  7. Pour the alginate into the bowl of water (this is probably a two man job,  so get a friend to pour the alginate while you mix) and mix together with an electric mixer, until it’s at a watery porridge consistency, this is when it is ready and you will have to be fast pouring it in to the ear.
  8. Pour alginate into ear, start by pouring behind the ear, until the ear is full submerged by the alginate. Make sure to put paper towels around the bottom of the cup to stop any leakage.
  9. Put a finger in the ear and move it around to remove any bubbles in the alginate
  10.  Leave the alginate for about 5 minutes, until the alginate goes solid.
  11. Remove the paper towel, the cup from the ear. ( to remove, pull the cup gently push it towards the back of the head, and then wiggle upwards to remove).

Making the plaster positive

  1. Cut another paper cup in half and place on top of the other cup.
  2. Use a couple of pieces of Modrock to hold the two cups together, and use clay to re-enforce the join of the cups and to stop the plaster from leaking out.
  3. Mix up plaster
  4. Pour the plaster into the new mould with the alginate ear in. Pour the plaster to the side of the ear  and move around to get the plaster into the ear, remove any air bubbles by gently shaking the mould, then continue to pour plaster into the mould, to give it a good base.
  5. Once the plaster is set, remove the clay and modrock from the outside of the cup and then cut away the remaining of the cups.  Once the cups have been removed, gently pull away the alginate, which will then reveal the plaster casting of an ear.

 

Thanks for reading

Hannah xoxo

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Making A Silicone Prosthetic

After completing parts one and two of the face casting process, I then moved on to making my prosthetic. For my prosthetic I decide to sculpt a witches nose and chin, I wanted to base my character on both the witches in the new and old Wizard of Oz films. Below  is a list of the products I used to create my prosthetic as well as the method and pictures.

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Products and Tools needed:

  • 2 strips of Mod rock
  • Petroleum jelly
  • Plaster
  • 2 X 12″ by 12″ of Scrim
  • 3 X Mixing bowl
  • Access to water
  • Chisel
  • Flat wooden board
  • Silicone part A, B and a accelerate
  • Weighing sales
  • 1/2 inch paint brushes
  • Paper towel

Method

  • Build a clay wall similarly to before but this time it was twice as tall. Add a layer of Mod-Roc to provide more strength.
  • Once the wall was complete, paste a thin layer of petroleum jelly all over the exposed plaster on the face cast base, making it easier to separate the top and the bottom part of the mould.
  • Mix up a batch a plaster and added a beauty coat over the top of the sculpture. This is to ensure we get a good coverage of the full sculpt.
  • Pour a little more plaster onto the cast and allowed it to dry for a few minutes. Then add a layer of scrim over the top and added more plaster on top.
  • Poured some more plaster over the top to ensure none of the scrim was visible. Then leave to dry for 1 hour to ensure it is fully set.
  • Once set, remove the clay and Mod-Roc wall and gently file away any rough edges of the plaster with a metal file.
  • Clean out any of the Plasterline. Leave the white top part of the cast to soak in water for around 10 minutes. This is so the silicone doesn’t absorb into the open pours of the plaster. Once soaked pat dry ready for the next step. Finally apply a very light coat of petroleum jelly to act as a releasing agent.  .

Mixing Silicone 

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  • Place the empty plastic bowl onto the scales making sure it is still on 0 (This is so we don’t include the weight of the bowl as the -measurements have to be accurate in order to get a good batch of silicon)
  • Add 500grams of part A of the rubber silicone
  • Add 50grams of part B (Silicone catalyst)
  • Add Desired silicone colour a little at a time
  • Mix the pigment in thoroughly to ensure an even colour throughout the silicone
  • Add 5grams of the accelerent. This allows the silicone to set much quicker cutting the waiting time down dramatically.
  • Mix well
  • Once mixed thoroughly then pour into the top part of the mould
  • Once you are happy with the desired about of silicone immediately sandwich the two parts of the moulds together using the drilled dents as a guide to line it up correctly. You may need to use a clamp at this stage to tighten the two parts together.
  • Allow any excess silicone to drain out. This is a good sign, it shows that the mould is completely filled.
  • Then leave to dry completely for around 30-45 minutes. To tell if it is completely set, is to pour a small mount of silicone on the top of the moulds as this will act as a visible guide.

Final Image

After casting my prosthetic I then had to apply it to my model. Overall I am happy with the way my sculpting turn out as well as the look of it once it was cast. In hindsight I would of probably not have pre coloured my prosthetic,as it didn’t look right when I applied the rest of the make-up to my model.

 

Thanks for reading

Hannah xoxo

Face Casting

This semester in special effects we are going to be learning about prosthetic’s, but to  be able to create prosthetic’s we need to create  a face cast to work off. Also in special effects this semester we  have the privilege to be tutored by a member of the Madame Tussauds  casting team. In our fist lesson we were being shown how to create a face cast using Mouldlife Life Form  Face Coat and Modrock. Face  casts can be used in various areas of make up such as film, television and theater. Once the face cast is produced then prosthetic’s can be made and molded to fit an actors face. Below are some pictures of the process along with a method of how we created the face casts.

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Products used

Mouldlife Life Form Face Coat Part A & B

Modrock (Plaster Bandage)

Gauze

Method

  1. Mark an out an outline on the face of where you would like the cast to be.
  2. Cove up the model with a plastic sheets and gaffer tape to secure the back to prevent anything falling.
  3. Mix together both A and B parts of Mouldlife Face Coat (Half and Half).
  4. Roll mixture onto the skin taking extra care around the eyes and nostrils (DO NOT cover the nostrils as this allows the model to breathe throughout the process) Apply a good layer all over the face.
  5. Apply gauze on top of the face coat, over the eyes and mouth.
  6. With a bowl of warm water, fold the Modrock in half and put into water and remove any excess water and apply to the face covering the gauze and all the face coat, once you have covered most of the face with Modrock apply a strip around the sides of the face and one down the nose giving the cast more support.
  7. Allow the Modrock to set.
  8. Using a blunt modeling tool, remove the face coat and  Modrock  by getting the tool between the face coat and the skin ( to help with removing the face cast get the model to move their face).

Using Plaster to fill Face Cast

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Products Used

Powder Plaster

Water

Scrim

Method

  1. Cover the nose of the Face Cast with a flat piece of clay and fix the face cast to the board with more clay to secure and keep level.
  2. Cover any visible plaster and bandage with Vaseline.
  3. Pour a cup of cold water into a bowl and add a handful of plaster, sieving it into the water using your hands.
  4. Allow plaster to soak into the water before mixing to a single cream texture (when plaster starts to rest on top and looks like thick wet sand then it’s ready to mix).
  5. Use hands to mix plaster and to get rid of lumps.
  6. Brush layers of plaster until no green rubber is showing ( the plaster may repel due to grease from rubber or skin/make-up).
  7. Continue to paint the plaster until a thick layer is applied and allow to dry.
  8. Once the first layer of plaster is dried, spray with some water to help the next layer of plaster adhere.
  9. Paint another layer of plaster and add scrim (fabric) and then add another layer of plaster on top of the scrim be careful not to create any air bubbles.
  10. After the final layer has dried use a blunt tool between the rubber and the plaster and gently remove the face cast and tidy up any scrim that may be hanging over the edge.

Sorry for such a long post, thanks for reading

Hannah xoxo