Pre-Planning

For a while now I’ve been thinking about how exactly I’ll tackle this huge project. What materials will I use? I could cut shapes out of foam, but that doesn’t look very nice. After a bunch of brainstorming, I decided the only way I’d be truly happy with the costume would be to make it as high quality as possible; that means resin. Resin is not something I’ve worked with before, although I have a little experience with making molds and casting from them. I did a lot of research about the casting process, which type of resin I should use, where to get it, etc. I also scoured the internet for as many good reference pictures as I could find. It is very hard to find good orthographic images of Samus…

Next I decided to make a mock-up of the costume in Maya. This way I could easily visualize how it would all fit together. Turning the Varia Suit into something a normal human can wear takes a little bit of work. In her suit, Samus is by no means an average woman. Her legs are crazy long, her head is tiny, her waist is super thin, and her shoulders are very wide. I looked around a bit online to see if I could find a good 3D Samus model to use for the mock-up, but to no avail, so I started making my own model from scratch by using the images I had found. It was going pretty well, but then I managed to find a 3d model (even rigged!) that someone had posted on the Garry’s Mod site (looks like it might even be an official model, ripped directly from the game). Using a model of a woman I found which I roughly sized to my own proportions, I cut apart the suit’s armor and edited it to fit.

Here is the result:

It looks pretty good! At least until you see it side by side with a picture of the real Samus:

Not quite the same, but it’ll have to do.

From here, my next step is to start making real life mock-ups of the armor pieces to fit them to my body, most likely with tag board or something similar. Using those as a reference, I’ll carve the pieces out of foam and/or wood, followed by covering them with Bondo and sanding them to a nice, smooth finish. Those will then be molded then casted with resin, which I’ll go over in a later post.

~ by talaaya on February 14, 2012.

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