Monday, February 07, 2011

AFB Custom Spotlight: Gladiator!

One of the things I have most enjoyed since I started interacting with other collectors online is seeing the amazing custom work so many people produce. I was not blessed with the skills to do such amazing things - in fact I wasn't blessed with good fine motor skills at all! Instead of trying to customise my own figures, I've bee very contest to see the great results other people have been able to achieve, and have been very fortunate to be able to get many much-wanted characters done as commissions over the years, as this blog can attest!

Over at the AFB Forum, we have a very clever group of customisers who post their work in our customs board, called "The Originals". As a new monthly feature at AFB, I'm going to spotlight one of these great pieces of work. There's a bit of twist though: I'm going to choose the custom this month, but from here on in it will be the responsibility of the chosen customiser to choose the next custom (not their own work) to be featured.

For the first run of this new feature, I thought it was fitting to choose the winner of our first custom contest, which was an amazing Gladiator figure completed by fishmilkshake to win the "What the Buck?!?" contest held last year. I've invited fishmilkshake to share his inspiration, recipe and process with you! Over to you, FMS!

fishmilkshake writes:

A long time fave of mine, Gladiator was always high on my list of "must do" Marvel characters when I started customising. When I got started, the first thing I noticed were the inconsistencies in his appearance. Not just his costume, but even his skin colour. For a long time I even thought his mohawk was head gear and not actual hair. So anyway, I decided to base my figure on one of my favourite comics, John Byrne's "Fantastic Four #249". (Cover is upper left)

Buck: DCUC - Ocean pyjama Aquaman body and Red Tornado head and cape.

Paint: Games Workshop "Skull White" aerosol undercoat, Tamiya 'Italian Red', Gunge Sangyo Blue & Yellow, Games Workshop 'Liche Purple', custom colour for the mohawk.


- I had to sand off the 'arrow' logo from Red Tornado's head.

- The mohawk was made from two sheets of plasticard glued together then shaped to fit. I used Tamiya modelling putty to fill the gaps where it joins the head. I used a scalpel to score lines in the mohawk to give the appearance of hair strands

- The pointed ears are made from 'green stuff' and then shaped.

- The belt buckle is a small Batlogo from a DCD figure.

- Gold cord from the fodder bin.

The chest logo started off as a waterslide transfer and quickly became a disaster. I ended up using some vinyl and glued it in place.

I made a specific effort to keep the gloss of the paint used for the costume as a contrast to the matte colour used for his skin. The face is a basecoat of a Games Workshop colour, with 3 shades of drybrushing, each with a bit more white. The effect is to try and separate the high and low areas.

The cape was the biggest nightmare. The rubber they're made from doesn't take the paint application as well as the plastic figure. I had to use some Testors 'Dullcote' to try and seal the paint on the cape.

The sharp lines where colours meet are achieved by masking off areas with Tamiya "low tack" tape.


Many thanks to fishmilkshake for taking the time to put together that great description for us. I am sure you'll agree with me that this is truly a great piece.

It's now up to FMS to select the custom from the AFB Forum that will be featured in next month's Custom Spotlight!

Check out "The Originals" Custom board here, discuss this post at the AFB Forum, and comment on this post to enter the February AFB Comment of the Month Contest!

Until next time!


Polarboy said...

Factory perfect. Actually better then factory made.

Polarboy said...

Factory perfect. Actually better then factory made.

Unknown said...

That is superb. You know the upcoming MU figure won't be a patch on that.

chrismandesign said...

i don’t remember if i voted for this figure in that last year contest, but anyway is a very well done personalization of a character not well known in Marvel Universe... a powerful & charismatic character i must say...

Unknown said...

That figure looks amazing!

Westy said...

Still amazing that anyone could manage that without corporate funding.

fishmilkshake said...

Damn that guy is talented :) :) :)
Seriously tho', thanks for the kind words folks and thanks to Andy for hitting me up first for the spotlight.

Highskull´76 said...

Great idea for the blog and a greater custom to start with! JUST PERFECT!!!

chopa said...

Love me some gladiator, and this dude is quite awesome. The DCUC buck works great for it.

Super-Duper ToyBox said...

Excellent work!!

dj jimenez said...

this is just amazing!
unfortunately if i gave it a shot... not so much. but kudos!

slangards said...

Wow! That's one great looking custom.

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