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Discussion Starter #1
He may not be the biggest fan favorite, but he sure is a unique villain within the Star Wars Universe. I'm building this prop to include in our Halloween experience this year - "The Dark Side of the Force" to create an ominous presence for the Episode 1-3 generation. For this project, I'm focusing on detailing his head (I'll keep his head in the movie room), whereas the body will be fashioned from recyclable prop making materials from years past.

This project took 3 weekends and some evenings to make and was a ton of fun - also gave me an excuse to purchase the Black Series action figure to use as reference! At least - that's my excuse!

Feel free to follow along -

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Discussion Starter #2
The frame for the body begins with 4, 8-foot sections of ¾” PVC from the plumbing department at the hardware store. In order to support the weight of the body and head, I opted to double up on the supports for the legs and use two separate poles per leg instead of just one. I typically use wood screws to secure the pipes so I can make adjustments and recycle the parts for next year.

 

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This prop actually stands best in a tripod configuration in order to secure proper balance. I don’t want this to be mounted to a base as “The General” will be gracing our yard next to the house. The pole for the tripod has a slight bend in it so that it can be spun around to find the best position on uneven terrain. The pole will be hidden between the two cape colors so as not to be noticed.



 

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In order to keep things light - remember, the body will be recycled at some point - the hands are made from pipe insulation foam with silver duct tape. Later, the tips of the fingers (small triangles) will be cut from the same foam and adhered to make it look like there is a closed fist around the lightsaber. The lightsabers are super light weight kids toys. These may get hooked up to motors later to get the spinning action!

 

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Discussion Starter #5
I started with a Pepakura file for the General's Mask, but it proved to be too time consuming. Therefore, I opted to make the head out of cardboard and the face plate was a piece of craft foam which was heated and then shaped by hand. The eye sockets (meat) utilized crumpled tinfoil, and the eyes were made from small pieces of ping pong ball cut to shape. In order to get the spray paint to stick and cure to the foam, the entire head was coated in 2part resin epoxy and allowed to dry overnight. The paint was an antique-white spray paint from the hardware store.

 

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Discussion Starter #7
In order to make the guts of General Grievous, a ball (about the size of a racquet ball) of clear packing tape was crumpled and then spray painted red. A second ball layer of clear tape was wrapped over to create a sense of wetness through the high gloss sheen. Additionally, a rope of duct tape connected the two balls and was lightly misted with red paint.



 

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Discussion Starter #11
White pinstriping tape can be changed to any color with a Sharpie marker.



The iris of his eyes can be painted with an Olive Drab green (tops and bottoms) with a radiating burst of brown. In this case, The General has long, black stripes on this helmet and the pupils of his eyes use the same material.





Airbrushing completes the look by tying in the highlights, shadows and battle damage. Leveraging multiple colors helps achieve added visual depth. Pay attention to the edges of the cutouts (eyes, ears) and add additional battle damage to the helmet.

 

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Discussion Starter #14
The final and most important aspect of completing the head is to create a layer of super gloss over the eyes. To achieve this, simply brush on 4-5 layers of Future Floor Wax. Don’t scrub it on or you risk creating bubbles. Simply dip the brush and allow the drop to permeate the entire eye surface.





 
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