Sunday, 30 March 2014

Food Automata!

I came across this whilst searching for techniques on how to build an automation for my Props module, I have to say it looks rather exciting. I hope you all agree that this is still acceptable for research.

Have fun making one yourself, I know I will.

Happy Mothers Day!

Tuesday, 18 March 2014

WW1 Replica Trench for The Time Bandits

I was given an opportunity to work with Freelance Artist Mike Myers to create a replica WW1 trench for  Historical Costume Interpreters group The Timebandits. This gained media attention from ITV News, The Evening Gazette and The Northern Echo.

ITV - Tyne Tees News 
Remembering Our War

Evening Gazette 
WW1 Traveling Trench

The trench was designed to replicate a typical British WW1 box trench and to accommodate the series of events for 'Remembering Our War' across the North East. The trench would provide a setting for reenactments of WW1 trench warfare by The Timebandits.

My first task was to design World War 1 sandbags which had to be lightweight due the nature of their use. We had to consider how the trench would be pack away for travelling to different schools and community centers across the North East.

we used pillow cases for the inside of the sandbag and traditional hessian for the outside, for authenticity we used a 'blanket stitch' around the edge to seal, leaving one side open. I found it quicker to use a domestic sewing machine to stitch around the edges, turn them inside out, adding the pillowcase stuffing and then blanket stitch around the edge for authenticity.This made the sandbags more durable.

We then tied up the open edge of the sandbags, making sure they were tight and secure, We applied a layer of PVA glue to add texture. These were later painted in a charcoal colour which i mixed up myself.

Sandbags with basic stitch around the inside. 
Sandbags with blanket stitch and secured with rope. 

Sandbags drying with a layer of PVA Glue 

 I was given the task to create three branches which would also be displayed on the panel walls of the trench.  I was given some paper cord, wire and duck tape to construct the branches. 

I got the cord and began cutting it down to different sizes of thickness and length for the branches. 
I wrapped it around some modelling wire and secured it with quite alot of masking tape. 

Branch made out of paper cord, modelling wire and lots of masking tape. 

To add an extra effect I scrunched up some aluminum foil to create bumps, like in tree branches. I made sure I had an actual branch to reference! 

To add texture to the branches, I mixed up some liquid latex with sawdust and a dab of black paint. 

Liquid Latex mixed with sawdust and black paint to add texture. 

Other small tasks I helped out with were fixing plywood to the steel frames which formed the base of our trench. assembling an arch way into the trench, which was basically an outside garden arch with some corrugated plastic painted over with silver metallic paint.

I painted some foam with a wash of brown paint, which was to act as flooring, real soil was spread over due to time limitations.

(from left John Sadler, Jemma Chisholm, John Hartil, Graeme Shakeshaft and Mike Myers) 
Photograph by Ian Copper (Evening Gazette) 

Pre-Production Photos working with John Hartil 

Photos by Kevin Holroyd - Level 4 Creative Film & Moving Image Production