Saturday, July 14, 2012

Shrunken Head

Effects artist Dustin Heald brings us this nicely done shrunken head. If you follow the link the extreme closeups are instructive. The lighting makes the highlights a bit too prominent, but you can see just how detailed the piece actually is. The sculpting on the bits of stretched skin is outstanding. I also like the attention to the pore structure of the skin. They're both subtle effects that add a lot to the finished head.


Stella Anderson said...

Wow, that's a good one! The only critique I'd make is that the proportions of the nose and lower face are more in line with a live or mummified head than a shrunken one, but this has me really blown away.

Markus said...

Really a very nice shrunken head! I have made one myself years ago, but I have never finished it, because I never sculpted the ears...
The structure of the skin is really impressive. But to play devil´s advocate, this intensive pore-structure is not that approbiate in this case. The shrunken heads were often polished with warm stones, and at least the more prominent parts like the cheek ares are often comparably smooth. Furthermore the colour could be darker, as shrunken heads were often blackish from the cooking-process in tanine-rich water and from charcoal-powder.
It feels really somewhat nasty to criticize such a nice prop, but as I have made a lot of research about shrunken heads and the way the look like, when I decided to make one for myself, I wanted to point out this minor faults.
What I really like are the seams, especially on the backside of the head, as this detail is often missing in modern mockups of shrunken heads.

Rhissanna said...

I really need to make a shrunken head for Hubby's study. This one is remarkable; the skin texture does make a difference and helps support its authenticity, even if, as the above comment notes, it's not how a real shrinkie would look.

This one also looks disconcertingly like my Dad.