Sunday, February 20, 2011

Introducing: Baby Barnacle!

You may be thinking, "Enough with the barnacles already, Lyman!" Okay, I'll get off the barnacles kick after this post.


Baby Barnacle has just graduated from her ambulatory stage of life and is ready to settle down and grow up (or maybe settle up and grow down).  With BB hanging above your workspace you can rest assured that those baby-blue peepers will keep an eye on your valuables, paper clips, etc.

How do you like those Loony Tunes eyes?
P.S. Keep your eyes on your fries!

Would you like to hazard a guess as to what the eyes are made of?

Feed me, I'm yours!!!

Family portrait

Mama (above left) has gone to lurk in the lobby of Valve Software in Bellevue WA.

Baby is rumored to be hanging around Gameinformer Magazine in Minneapolis.

Saturday, February 12, 2011

Valve Software

My son, Robert, and I had the opportunity to fly to Bellevue, WA (near Seattle) and present a barnacle sculpture to the guys who created the Half-Life games: Valve Software. The barnacle was well-received - even by Ted who invented the thing! It was a humbling experience to see my custom model along-side professionally-made models.
L-R: Ted Backman, Lyman w/ barnacle, Robert, Chris Green

In the wild, just before capture
Here it is in it's new home at Valve. (Photo courtesy of Courtney Hebb)

Home, sweet home

We weren't allowed to take a camera past the lobby: Portal™ technology is still hush-hush.

The Valve
Head-crabs need love too!

Lyman, Robert and Lamarr

"Water-laser" cut steel panel
The automated sentry gun was way cool. It startled me when I walked near and it began tracking my movements and firing.  Sentry Gun Video

Working model automatic Sentry Gun! (Created by WETA Workshop)

Wednesday, February 2, 2011

Project: Frankenfoot!

I wanted to do something for my friend, Ron, who is recovering from foot surgery.
Brainstorm: "The Frankenfoot Foot-Note Post-It Holder!"

Come, Igor, the game's a-foot!

The Plan
I used my own (significantly foreshortened) size 14 foot for a model.

Pattern was transferred to fiberboard for strength.

I need to leave a space for the Post-It's™ so a cardboard corral is built.

Paper and tape bulk out the foot before applying paper mache strips. Wads of paper create ankle-bones.

Another use for wine corks is discovered: as big toes. Coat-hanger wire serves as stiffeners (just like in real toes).

Toes are wrapped with paper and tape.

Some assembly is required.

Note:  For close-set digits like these it would've been a lot easier to have completed them before attachment.

A nice looking foot
Below: after paper mache-ing and covering with glue-soaked cloth.
Toenails were cut from a plastic milk-jug and attached with hot glue.
The Boris Karloff-style "bolts" are made from two sizes of painted wooden dowels. Foot has been covered with glue-soaked cloth for strength.

Paper mache clay covers a multitude of sins; also seams.

How to add some "zip" to your step!

I found some samples of paint on sale and bought several colors, including Apple Green. It's good to have some around.

A nice green coat of paint
The final product! Fake scars were made with hot glue. Gloss was applied to the bolts and toenails for shine. Zipper, staples and scars add novelty.

A wash of black latex paint was applied then wiped off, accentuating details.
Check out those nails! Especially the one with nail polish. I tried to match Ron's favorite shade as closely as possible!

Here's a smiling Ron with his new foot. In his own words: "Ha, ha, that's perfect, Bruce - now get out!"
(I have no idea why he calls me Bruce.)

Ron, the original "Frankenfoot"

A perfect match!
I attached a fake toe tag like they use in the morgue to make it look more corpsified.