Monday, March 30, 2015

The Zombaby

The raw materials for making a Zombaby

So, my secretary asked me, "WHY?"  to which I responded, "Why wouldn't I?"

Around Halloween of last year, I was making potion bottles for The Hot Chick's witches kitchen.  I found some blue goo in a brain shaped package.  The top of the package was hard plastic and just the right size...  I started thinking it was time to revisit my zombie nursery.  Yes, I have a zombie nursery.

Halloween came and went, Once Halloween is over (I consider Halloween to last between September 19th, International Talk Like a Pirate Day and November 5th, Guy Fawkes Day) I have been forbidden to make any Halloween props until after Christmas.  I cheat a little, but essentially I give the Hot Chick the whole month of December.

After New Years, I got busy with work, very busy with work, so it took me awhile to get started making props.  I took the plastic brain case to a thrift store and compared it to all the discarded baby dolls and found one that looked just right.

I bought a new thing of brain putty at the dollar store, though so I could take a picture of it to post here.  It was only a buck and I may want to do this again (again, again, again...)

I paid a buck for the brain putty, then I threw away the brain putty and saved the package.  That's the kind of Halloween nerd I am.

Brain goo package, notice the absence of the brain goo

A perfect fit.  I'll be you can guess where this is going.

Step #1:  Exposing the Brain
Once the brain goo package was fitted to the doll's head, I made a jaggedy line, just smaller than the plastic brain, with a sharpie pen.  Then I used a utility knife to cut a hole in the top of the doll's cranium.

I fitted the brain to the inside of the hole and found it fit perfectly.  To hold it in place, I tacked it with hot glue.  I like hot glue on lots of things, but I don't trust it on this kind of plastic.  So once I had the brain where I wanted it to be and had it tacked down, I cut a small hole in the back of the doll's head and filled the skull with Great Stuff.  I figured the expanding foam would keep the brain in place.  I was right.

The mark

Brain surgery

Nothing there

The brain in place

The skull filled with Great Stuff

Step #2:  The Paint Job
This is really a simple project.  Two steps.  Step one, brain surgery, step two paint job.  Done.

I first covered the plastic with mastic.  I use mastic alot when I'm doing props.  It gives a great surface to paint on.  Plastic is notorious for not holding paint, so I use mastic.  No problem then.

I used some acrylic paint to give the skull it's grey matter look, then I took some red and green acrylic paint to make lines and veins in it.  Everything was mottled in the paint job.  Two or three different greys for the base coat etc... Messy

The basic paint job on the brain

Once that was dry, it was time to work on the complexion.  This doll was way to perky.  It needed to be a little deader.  So I took it to the fume hood and found some grey primer spray paint and gave it a little dusting.  First, though I covered it's eyes with masking tape because I wanted to deal with them later.

Covering the eyes with masking tape

Zombie color

At this point I decided the clothes were way too clean and needed to be dirtied up a bit.  I found a few different colors of spray paint and mussed them up a bit.

Mussed up
Then it was time to deal with the eyes.  I removed the masking tape and then found some UV paint that goes on kind of pasty white but glows blue under blacklight.  Zombabies ought to have glowing blue eyes I think.

Finally, it was time to bloody it up a bit.  I used a bright red acrylic paint for the first coat, then I used alizarin crimson for the darker blood color.  The final piece of the puzzle was the blood splatter.  I used a toothbrush in the alizarin crimson and ran my thumb across the bristles.  Zombaby done.

Removing the masking tape

Masking tape gone

Pasty blue UV paint on eyes

Painting the spatters

Zombaby done
This is the latest addition to my zombie nursery.  I think she'll fit in just fine!

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