Thursday, August 30, 2012

All Hail the King, Baby!!

What hath started out as Captain Cupcake hath now becometh King Ding Dong!  All hail the King!

This is an early shot with just the stick/driftwood/plywood armature and a laminated plywood base.

I used chicken wire to fill-in the sides (along with some spray foam) and sheets of heavy cardboard to fill-in the front and back sides.  A relatively effective way to secure the cardboard was to 'stitch' it around some of the driftwood.  As an added bonus, it makes an appealing texture.

The fabric wrapped chicken wire was something I had left over from an idea that never really materialized.  I kept the chicken wire handy though, because I spent many painstaking hours wrapping the wire and I am loathe to waste that kind of time without getting some benefit for it.  It only had to sit on a shelf for 14 months before I found a use for it!

This is what the 'base' looks like.

The face is where the action really takes place.  The eyes, mouth, and 'stache' are fabric wrapped cardboard.

Any king worth his salt has a crown.

A few coats of mis-mixed/mis-tinted latex house paint to help seal the different fabrics used to make the skin and we are ready.

It's primed, the crown has been attached, and all it needs now is a finishing coat of paint.

King Ding Dong as seen in Merican-Tastic!

Here at 'Punching Holes in The Rah-Rah' it's not all about naughty bits, abused Dremel Tools, and local eateries, sometimes we have to take a moment to celebrate life's little milestones such as........


Truck-a-Saurus is now over 300,000 miles!

Tuesday, August 28, 2012

Divided By and some frame carving

Although you can see some hints of Divided By in the shots from the set-up of the 'Teaser Show' (a quick refresher can be seen here:, I just recently took some intentional images of the piece.  So here is a quick whiff of the piece along with some in-progress shots from the studio and then some detail shots of Divided By.

This is how the piece is looks in the case at Bucktown.

These are what the two masks looked like a few weeks prior when I had just applied the Iron Metallic Surfacer.

Followed shortly by the rusting/antiquing solution on both of them (3 coats of Surfacer and three coats of the rusting solution).  This first image was shot while the rusting compound was still wet.

This image shows the results of the rusting compound after one day. (you apply a coat and then let it sit for 24 hours.  Rust will start to develop throughout the day).

Here are a few detail shots from the completed piece.  (Note the difference between one day's worth of rust and three days)  (Here is a quick link to an earlier post regarding both the rust and the bronze antiquing solutions

I also shot some in-the-studio carving shots for the frame on Halcyon Days of Yore.  This is what the piece looks like in Merican-Tastic!

and here are a few images of the frame as I was carving it.

You can see on the image above, the marker 'inking' of lines, my notation of X's (which is what I use to remind me that I want to carve out that entire area), and the cross-cutting/hatching technique (on the left hand side of the frame) which allows to 'scrape' out the wood bits with the side of the Dremel blade.  You can see the finished result below.

Some of the faces come from a My Little Margie comic book from the 1950's

Which also found their way into the 'Merican-Tastic! SWAG' collection.....

Here are also a couple of shots of Delivery Especial along with few repeats from an earlier post

May I present to you, the one, the only, Dr. William Campbell (music guru at St. Ambrose University) showing his love for the carved frame by pointing at some random bit of it.

A quick note on the way out, Back in 2008 Bill Campbell, Kris Eiterheim, and I had our students participate in a multi-disciplinary collaborative (music composition, theater lighting, and 3-D Design) project called 'The Cube'.  Here is a link to the faculty night performance:

Here is a sweet shot of the insides of 'The Cube' before our performance. Helping 'operate' 'The Cube' were Heidi Hernandez, Matt Sanchez, and Jeff Tady (although for some reason, Jeff is not in the picture, trust me, we had 5 people shoe-horned into that intellectual cage-match of visual goodness!)

The photograph was taken by Terry Rathje (you may remember him from some earlier posts....).

And remember, 'We are here to entertain you wholesomely and thoroughly.....'.

Monday, August 20, 2012

Before and After

A quick tour of some of the collaborative works in Merican-Tastic!

Before (Steve Banks start).

After (Heidi Hernandez finish).

Before (Heidi Hernandez start).

After (Steve Banks finish).

Antes (Steve Banks start -the carved frame had yet to be completed).


Before (Steve Banks start)

After (Heidi Hernandez finish)

Before (Heidi Hernandez start)

After (Steve Banks finish).

And finally, 'Merican-Tastic!'.  Before (Steve Banks start).

After (Heidi Hernandez finish).

Until next time, keep your hands at 'Ten' and 'Two'.....