Ok workin' for real now on the full sized Twig Theatre! Flickering Lanterns taking shape!
I started by drawing out the lantern pattern in several different sizes. I really wanted to play with different sizes and placing them next to the theatre to see how it all looked. Can't make assumptions that it will look good just because it looked good on the miniature model (I would soon learn!)
Papa bear was a little too big!
Baby bear was a little too small!
But Mama bear was juuuuuuust right!
I traced out the full sized bracket on a piece of cardboard . Then hot glued it with hinges onto the side of the theatre so I could look at the bracket and lantern together.
Here's how they look together!
whoa pretty magical....it's got that look I want! Don't always know exactly what that is....but when I see it- I know it. Immediately!
Funny thing happens...I am learning....when you try to recreate something you have built in miniature. It doesn't always look as cute or as "magical" as it did when it was small. So, the first lantern mock-up I made (papa bear) was a close replica of the miniature model lantern and I did not like it at all. Two things were disagreeable about this mock-up....it was way too large AND it looked too "straight", or not animated enough I shall say. So I tried smaller and then I tried in between. This middle lantern actually did something funny... it looks like the glass windows are "blowing out" . It made it look somewhat animated and that was it! Thats what it needed!
So, after discussing the various conditions these lanterns may have to endure we decided that fiberglass lanterns would be the best material to use. This would allow flexibilty in design, as well as durability. I anticipate constant packing and unpacking, moisture, UV light, kids tugging and pulling on them.
The only other material that seemed practical would be to actually pound and shape metal into lanterns....maybe later!
So, the next step was to sculpt the shape that we would fiberglass on top of. I started with a 4 inch pvc tube and bulked the clay out around this shape.
I am staying with some friends (John and Annette) while I am working on this project and this workshop is right across from my room! Are you kidding!!?? if I get the urge to make a puppet in the middle of the night... there's that conspiring universe again!
This nifty little wood gadget allowed me to make sure the slope around the pipe stayed consistent! John's idea! ...I love such things!
And then I eventually pulled away from that nifty wood gadget as I tried to make the sculpt match my model.
ok! ready to be fiberglassed! John had some fiberglass 'roll' left over from a tractor roof he repaired so there was no extra purchase to make this happen.
The sculpt was covered in saran wrap and then waxed
Then, down to the barn for the icky part!! John prepping...putting wax on some plexiglass.
My first time fiberglassing!!! Johns' showin' me the ropes
I put a wrap sheet of fiberglass around the sculpt and then dab the resin on it with a brush till it is soaked in. Multiple sheets were applied (4 I think) and then a day or so later the resin is hard enough to sand.
The first lantern is done and the two things to the right will be the bottom for both lanterns. Lastly we will work on the Lantern tops.
From this point I remove from the clay buck from inside and it is a hollow tube....then sand it, cut out the windows and paint.
The shellac crazed on one of the panes. It was so beautiful I just left it.
The cart is coming along quite nicely! And the lanterns are a magical addition.
Brackets (for lanterns)
This is a large cherry board John had in the workshop. John just built a house so he has many materials I have been able to use.
band saw and scroll saw cut