Friday, September 20, 2013

Cthulhu Fhtagn! Centipede Edition.

Copper Centipede returns with another hand carved Cthulhu idol. This time it's finished as aged bone.


CoastConFan said...

As much as I like the figure, the heavy black wash hinders it by making it look much like any other prop and certainly not bone. Along with a much lighter black or brown wash, some highlight brushing would help the illusion. It’s really just about there with a lighter hand. Now if you look at his “Maltese Falcon” type figure, it really has all the color and nuance of time stained bone: His Cthulhu Idol has excellent graining, although the wash is a little heavy, nonetheless a very competent piece:

Now bone is porous and can pick up ground staining from the soil in which it is buried. In some cases it can have a greenish tinge, for example, from copper or bronze exposure as with burial items in a tomb. The bone can remain perfectly bleached white or take on a series of yellowish hues. Bone can even turn completely black due to local circumstance.

For you prop makers out there, here are a few examples of bones and bone objects from different archeological sites showing some of the range that bone can be transformed from its original color. Mind you I won’t even go into the range of encrustation colors. The good thing is that with a wide range of tinting and coloring, your prop doesn’t have to always be “bone colored.” An advance prop maker would consider the prominent grain in a bone, which might become very prominent in a dug artifact (quite different from ivory which is not bone). Generally though a level of detail is only necessary on the amount of scrutiny it received, most needs only “curb appeal.”

note the color range of this assemblage

deteriorated bone item

Anonymous said...

Wow thanks for the kind words and honest critique! Dreggs/Copper Centipede here.

This was one of three plaster figures that I first experimented with a bone color on, so this kind of critique is much appreciated! The staining is a more brownish color than the photos suggest, but is still a little darker than intended.

The cherry crow figure you mention actually wasn't painted or stained aside from the black contrast. I erroneously had been told the type of wood I was using for a lot of my earlier figures was cherry. Only recently found out that it was actually a type of rosewood, which is known for it's red/brown color.

The other Cthulhu idol you mention is also wood (yellow cedar in this case), so the graining on that piece is credited to nature ha ha. That was actually unfinished at that point and this was the finished piece:

Here is MUCH more recent idol in the same unfinished condition:
And then with paint and polishing:

Haven't recently done many bone-colored finishes on wooden pieces since people have been asking for the traditional green instead...
Though I've found that it is much easier to accomplish a bone or ivory appearance on wood grain than plaster. I'm finding that my usual staining techniques don't like to stick to the plaster's surface so I'm experimenting to find what does work.

Great reference links you posted! I'll definitely use those and I'm sure many others will find them very helpful as well.
Thanks! : )