Monday, October 31, 2011

The Cheshire Cat: Chapter 23

Cheshire Cat: Copper, Silver Leaf, Polyester
First- I don't actually know it's polyester. I bought it back a month ago, and I've forgotten and didn't write it down. Eventually, I'll change the description to "cloth" or "mesh" but right now, polyester seems pretty funny.

According to Borges, the phrase "grin like a Cheshire cat" existed pre-alice. I didn't know that.Borges knew many things I do not know. Borges also puts the Cheshire Cat- known for his grin- in the same chapter as the Killkenny cats- known for their teeth. I wanted teeth, and that crescent moon smile, and a suggestion of a cat. I based this mask very loosely on an African mask, and, somehow, ended up with a Cheshire cat Burka, which seems very perfect, and I do hope it doesn't offend anyone. By the time I finish this book, I will have appropriated things from all sorts of cultures I know much less about, and I can only hope that everyone has a sense of humor.

Tuesday, October 25, 2011

Cereberus *process*

Some masks simply are more than one day's labor. Cereberus is fabricated, but not finished. His small heads both needs eyes, and he himself needs smoothing and generalized finishing. The he'll get waxed and have his portrait taken- hopefully tomorrow!  
1- pattern making. Cereberus' pattern is based off parts of Cassowary, Crocotta, and Phooka. ANd then mostly redrawn. 
2- Tracing. As you can see, the horns get put on, here. I did make a pattern for the horn tip heads, so they would be the same.
3. First hammer pass. Clearly, I missed photographing a few steps before here. This is after the second annealing (the first was just to fold the horns in half. Usually I do all my forming in one pass, but not today.
4. Second hammer pass. Getting the two horns where I want them, and perfectly matching. This is sometimes a little frustrating.
5. Soldering. Once the horns are done, the next step is to join that long seam. I'll do so in multiple passes, each time securing somewhere from 1-4 inches. 
6. Fabrication and fitting complete. The fitting on a piece with a crest can take a while- in this case over an hour to get all the curves lined up the way I wanted them. His crest helps balance the two hornheads that fall so far forward, making him actually pretty wearable.

Monday, October 24, 2011

Cheshire Cat: process

the frame for the cheshire cat, in progress

and the frame complete, with silver leaf teeth. This frame will be largely invisible, but, for now I have to let the leaf set for 48 hours. So on to cerberus!

Sunday, October 23, 2011

The Monkey of the Inkpot: Chapter 77

Monkey of the Inkpot: Copper
From Borges: "...Then a person sits down to write, the monkey squats cross-legged nearby with one forepaw folded over the other, waiting until the task is over. Then it drinks what is left of the ink, and afterward sits back on its haunches, quiet and satisfied" This text appears to be quoted by Borges from Want Tai-Hai. At any rate, i thought it adorable. The text on here is the paragraph typed in the kickstarter video. It took three tries to get the etching the way I wanted it; lacy in some parts, a little more solid in others. I wanted a monkey made of words, words so jumbled by being drunk up that they were no longer truly legible.

Sunday, October 9, 2011

Sunday, October 2, 2011

Oroborous **process**

Much of the time, for face masks, I do not make a paper pattern. I copy my general pattern onto the metal, and then draw, either in or out from it, directly on the copper. I draw with a sharpie, and erase with acetone (acetone being the one chemical that I do keep in the shop- it's just so darned handy). I'll keep reworking it untill I think it's just right, and then I'll cut it out.

Saturday, October 1, 2011