My Theatre Debut!

So I had temporarily fallen of the face of the earth and lost contact with the world, so I will explain where I have been;

As some of you already know, I have been in a theatre production of “The Great Gatsby”, in one of the leading roles, Nick Carraway. The show went incredibly well and was very positively received.

This was my first show, having previously acted only in front of the camera and never in front of an audience. It was a very big role, so I certainly had to learn to swim as I was drowning, I was on stage for aprox 95 pages (/minutes).  It  was a very different experience and has taught me a lot.

Here are some photos of the play;

Thanks to everyone involved. I had a great time.




1000 1:6 scale bricks and a wardrobe

Another month has flown by. I’ve been really busy with my theater role in the production of “The Great Gatsby”. The show starts in just over two weeks, so will only be getting busier from here on in.

In the studio;

I’ve finished the neighboring brick wall.

I did a base coat of ceiling paint and then black spray paint. After that, I used various shades of Resene test pots to paint the wall, and drybrushed it to give it a sort of “bricky” look.  I found that the test pots are actually a really cheap way to get ultra specific colors for next to no money.

After that I proceeded to fill in the gaps with cement, wiping of the excess with a damp cloth. After it was all dry I gave it a rub with a dry cloth and it actually gave it a really awesome layed brick texture, with some of the cement having seaped into the grooves of the bricks themselves.

It holds up pretty well to closeups…

In fact, even at an individual level, I find them to be fairly photorealistic.

I liked them so much actually that I ended up doing one of the interior walls of the apartment set in brick too (the one that would be the exterior wall). So, around 1000 1:6 scale bricks later…

In addition to that, 1:6 scale carpentry keeps on rolling on. I’ve found myself having to cut a lot of balsa strips, and this was becoming very time consuming to do by hand, so, I made an adjustable strip cutting jig. I recommend it to anyone who needs to cut a lot of balsa, it saves SO much time.

You just adjust it to the desired width and then run it along the balsa. Super easy and way more accurate than I was doing by hand.

I’ve finished my last piece of free standing furniture; the wardrobe.

For those who have read the screenplay, you understand the significance of this piece, and for those who haven’t – the wardrobe is the place where the man has kept his dreams and aspirations locked away.

Here’s the frame;

And a mid-build shot;

And here it is finished (with the apartment bricks in the background);

I handmade a lock and fittings out of brass and used some tiny 12mm hinges.

One of the back panels is also hinged, so it can open for me too shoot through the wardrobe for a shot or two.

I’ve really been enjoying the tiny furniture making.

So now I am working on the apartment door, the windows, the plinths etc, the kitchen, the rabbit, the dove. Well, I guess I’m working on lots of stuff.

Thanks for reading, until next time.


Character completed, hands, furniture started.

So, it’s been a while since I’ve posted. I’m gonna make it a “first week of every month” thing from now on, unless it’s just a few quick photos.

I’ve fabricated some new sculpting tools out of brass, after watching a tutorial excerpt by Marc Spess (very talented sculpter), and sculpted some apoxie sculpt hair onto the baked sculpy head. Then undercoated it with my new Badger 150 airbrush (which I am very happy with).

After that I spent a few hours airbrushing and matte coated it with some Krylon stuff when done. The eyeballs, which I had made and hand painted previously, were then covered in vasaline and inserted into the sockets. I then sculpted eyelids over them out of apoxie sculpt. The eyes can be animated by inserting a needle into the pupil. The eyelids can be animated subtly in post if need be, as I will be doing extensive secondary animation in post for the mouth to achieve subtle expressions anyway.  I finished the rest of the paint job by hand. The eyebrows are Van Aken plasticine, so they can be animated.

I’m fairly happy with how it turned out considering it’s a first attempt.


Over Xmas and New Years, we had some family stay, my aunt and uncle and their kid. Was really great taking a couple of weeks off to live a bit. My aunt sometimes works in project consulting and scheduling (I think?), so I sat down one afternoon with her and did a schedule for the film. Man, I really had no idea how much time this thing was gonna take me. Principal photography is scheduled to start on the 1st of June, Post production complete on the 31st of December.

I think they enjoyed it here. New Zealand is a very different country to the Netherlands.

Back in the studio;

I spent some time on the milling machine and made a whole bunch of brass knuckle brackets for the puppets hands.

After that I just did the usual, twisted aluminium wire and heatshrink . Then apoxied the hands into some brass tubes as to make them slot in to the armature, thus making them easily replaceable. Pre-coated them in PAX. They looked kinda freaky, as if the skin had been eaten off them or something.

Then started building them up with cotton wool and latex.

They are nearly done now. They haven’t turned out as good as I had hoped, but hey that’s life sometimes. They are totally usable, I just tend to have high expectations.

I’ve started on the furniture too. His bed is done and so Is the dining table.

I used 6mm open cell foam (cushion foam) sheets and some Ados spray glue to bulk out the armature, making sure to leave access holes for the tightening screws. After trimming the excess foam off I made a start on dressing it. The clothes required a fair bit of tailoring but they got there in the end.

He is nearly finished now. His shoes are painted with PAX. I made a tiny 1/6 scale belt buckle out of brass. I made his beeper. All he is waiting on now are the finishing touches on the hands.

Will probably upload some photos of the finished character in the coming month.

I think he is going to work pretty well in this film.


After having spent much time in a dark room over the last 6 months, I thought I’d go out and audition at the local theatre. I ended up landing one of the leads, Nick Caraway, in a local production of Ken Duncan’s adaptation of  “The Great Gatsby”. Should be a good little show.

Also, I’ve come across a location that has sparked some massive ideas for a feature film.

More on that later this year.