Saturday, March 19, 2011

Deer Antlers, Part 2

Here's the deer mask back in June. I felt pleased and thought all I needed to do was smooth and refine the antlers a little.

Ha, ha.

While I worked on bunny masks and looked at the deer mask just sitting on my workbench for the next several months, I realized the distance from the center of the mask to the tip of one antler was almost twice as far as to the other. Some asymmetry in deer antlers is to be expected, but not this much. Not cool.

So I cut the antler between the innermost and the three outermost tines and rotated the whole thing out a little. Not surprisingly, while the tip of the antler is more properly positioned, the tines are now tilted too far back. I stapled wads of tinfoil to the antler to use as an armature for new improved tines.

Then I took a photo of the mask, which I printed out and folded in half to check the relative positions of the two antlers to each other. The bottom edge of the left hand antler obviously need work, but otherwise, so far, so good.

Then I covered the new tines with Celluclay, cut off the old ones, and refined the rest of the antler a little bit.

I got rid of the lump on the underside of the left hand antler and...

OMG! How could I not have noticed before that the tip of the right ear is at least a half an inch higher than the left ear?? So I carved the bottom edge of the antler up a little...

... and brought up the edge of the left ear.

And here's where we are for the moment.

But wait, look, the second outermost tine on the right hand antler is about an inch longer than its conterpart on the left.... AAAGGGGHHHH!!!!


Créaturiste said...

Looking very good!

Yerr' dravin' yeShelf MAWD!!!!

I once saw, online, a neat tip about making antlers symmetrical.
They made the thick wire armature of each antler connect to its counterpart on the other side, covered the antlers with the material as normal, and when dry or cured, they cut the excess wire off, and finished the tips.

And nowadays, for armatures of thin things, I avoid foil and paper as much as possible possible. I've ahad a few repairs to do on some projects, and they could have easily been prevented. I do use wire covered in cotton string, then paint/soak with boiled wheat paste. When fully dry, I finish with paper mache strips. VERY strong and stable, while being very uniform. Does good for fingers too!

barb said...

This is funny because I was whining about this very problem on a FB group yesterday, as I keep deconstructing, fixing and tweaking this stupid falcon I'm working on.

How did the eyes get so unbalanced?
How come one wing is higher than the other one?

Well, it's good to know I don't have some kind of weird symmetry disorder, and am not the only one plagued by it.