Monday, February 20, 2012

Prep school

Today I decided to take a break from those harnesses and spend some time prepping my Bint Soraya resin.  Since I get the occasional question about prepping, I thought I'd go ahead and document part of the process. 

Here's my work desk set up for prepping.  My tools include a carbide scraper, an X-acto knife, fine grit sandpaper and a Sharpie marker.  Good lighting is a must.  I'm working under both an open window and an Ott light.
This particular resin is a very clean casting so there aren't a lot of major issues to address.  However, careful inspection reveals several small divots such as this.
It's easy to lose track of all the little dings, so I make my life a lot easier by highlighting them with the Sharpie.
Once I've gone over the entire model, it's time to move onto the filling stage. 
A lot of people use Bondo spot putty to fill the little dings and divots.  I'm not one of them.  Bondo is stinky and at least somewhat toxic.  I much prefer "messo" which is a mix of modeling paste and gesso.  
I dab it onto the marked area, 
and then wipe off the excess with my finger. 
You can see the white messo filling in the divot here.  I let the area dry and then carefully sand it smooth.  
Obviously this still needs to be sanded!
Prepping isn't hard, but it does require a lot of patience and attention to detail.  Please feel free to share your best prepping tips in the comment section!

P.S.  Anyone who's seen the project shelf in my basement knows I needed a new unpainted resin like I need a hole in the head.  In my defense, I offer this photo:
I can't imagine a better horse for the six year Marston costume than Bint Soraya.  However, I'm a bit undecided as to what color would best compliment both her and the costume.  Suggestions are definitely welcome!

31 comments:

  1. It's a very good idea of highlighting the to do parts with a sharpie, I will keep this in mind with my next project. Thank you!

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  2. I use a pencil to mark spots. I just circle it to remind me. Of course, this only works if I remembered to wash the model beforehand, otherwise the Comet washes it right off...

    I think your costume would look smashing with a high contrast dapple grey.

    Pixie photos should be coming your way tomorrow when it's light again!

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  3. Depending on whether you want contrast or matching, i think a firey red bay would look amazing! Especially with a big white blaze and white stockings *swoon*!

    Love your stuff, keep it up! I can't wait to see what you do with all those models waiting for you :)

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  4. I beg to differ! It is impossible to have too many unpainted resins!

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  5. I vote for a red-golden bay too, although a dapple grey would be lovely as well. I usually use wet epoxy for filling little divots (in plastic customs, anyway- I've never worked on a resin). Is messo superior enough to invest in? I prefer to limit my number of materials.

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  6. See, I was originally thinking black or black bay because I could conceivably paint those colors myself. However, the more I look at those black tassels, the more I think maybe that's not such a good idea. Dark dapple grey is awesome in theory, but if I go that route someone else will have to paint her. There is simply no way I can pull that color off.

    This is the problem with having so many unpainted resins. I simply don't have the painting chops to finish most (any?) of them myself, and commissioning finishwork is difficult since I'm both extremely broke and extremely picky!

    Leah--I've also used wet epoxy so I actually feel qualified to field this one! Messo won't fill big holes, but I prefer it for little divots and pinholes. It's easier to apply and dries a LOT faster. It's also really good for adding veins, whisker bumps and hair texture.

    Danielle--SQUEEEE!!! Can't wait to see her!

    :)

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  7. Using a sharpie is a great idea, that would cut down the time I spend going over and over a model trying to find all the areas needing fixing.

    My vote would be for a lovely dark dapple grey or black because if I remember right your Indian Fire is the yummiest bay colour.

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  8. My vote is grey too....

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  9. "Purple Chestnut" - a rare variation of flaxen liver chestnut but with bluish or purple tones instead of gold tones in the body. The first horse in this thread is a good example:
    http://www.ablackhorse.com/forums/lofiversion/index.php?t9394.html

    or, perhaps mulberry gray or a bright bay.

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  10. Wowie... I think WHATEVER color you paint her, that costume with that model is SMASHING! Really the perfect choice.

    You know me, of course I'd like to see the dapple grey, but I also think a golden/red bay with black points - and maybe a tiny bit of chrome - would be gorgeous.

    P.S. Getting a little better at the new WV but still think it's a pain in the *$$.

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  11. Oh, don't get me started on the new word verification. I hate, hate, HATE it! I always have to refresh it at least once before I can make out the letters. Still, I suppose it is a necessary evil. Right before the change I was getting several spam comments every day. That's stopped completely now. I just hope I'm not missing out on all the "good" comments to.

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  12. I never thought of marking problem spots! I just go about trying to fix them as I find them, that will make it so much easier!

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  13. That stuff looks so much easier to use than liquid resin....I always make a mess and it dries up in the bottle before I can use half of it....

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  14. In my experience with model tack, black is a very strong color. If the horse does not have black, he will tend to be overruled by black tack. Red is the second strongest color. So far, my reasoning leads to bay or grey. But personally (!) I don't care for greys, and Covert noted you already have a fine bay. So, after much thought, my suggestion is for DOESKIN, a light buckskin, with golden tones. The Pulque chestnut would receive my second-choice; he doesn't have black.

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  15. god... Im terrible at CM. Im really quite jealous of your talent

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  16. read this a few days ago and has semi inspired me to start work on my mini braveheart resin or perhaps my lydia .. riiight after i finish my current tack commissions >.<"

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  17. Bright golden chestnut (I want to say palomino but that's no good, of course!)

    JenF

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  18. I always wanted to get into prepping, but I feel like there's no way to "practice" without a ridiculous amount of pressure, since resins are so expensive and I don't want to ruin one (or two or three...).

    Oh, and I vote mulberry grey for the Arab resin.

    ~Mara

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  19. These how-to posts are why I love your blog! I've recently started doing horse model painting myself, and yours is the blog I turn to whenever I get stuck or need inspiration.
    I finished painting/remodeling my first model as a gift for my barn owner. I'm going to share a picture, don't judge too harshly. :)

    https://fbcdn-sphotos-a.akamaihd.net/hphotos-ak-snc7/s720x720/402945_2729653435681_1087560008_32485196_1045161262_n.jpg

    I still need to work on my re-modelling skills, but I'm quite happy with the paint job itself.

    Your blog helped SO much with teaching me how to prep/paint, so from the bottom of my beginner/amateur heart, THANK YOU!

    --Brilliant Eraser Productions--

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  20. zikzik-

    I think a dapple grey would be splended!

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  21. Thanks for the tips on marking the spots - I hadn't thought of that!! And also for the suggestion of the paste and gesso mix. MUCH nicer then bondo (and less gloves for me to go through). And even better.... an excuse to hit the art store up the road from my office!! Wheee!!!!

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  22. is there any particular reason you have used purple?? or was it just handy to where you were working :P

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  23. I vote a dapple grey too!

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  24. I got a hold of some Modeling Paste and wow, messo is just genius! Thank you so much for the tip. It is totally revolutionizing my prepping process, and next up I'll try wrinkles!

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  25. love that costume, would love to see a tutorial in the future on how to make something like a rug and travel boots to protect your model :)

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  26. After even more thought (is it okay to change one's mind?!) I want to vote for the mulberry gray. The Spanish word for this color is 'moradorado.' I found some pictures: a filly of Varian Arabian's Audacious PS. I'm typing this by hand: www.varianarabians.com/stallions/audacious_ps.asp#id=audacious&num=1

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  27. Thanks for the information on prepping. I'm going to be prepping my first two resins soon, and will try the gesso/messo mix. What type of primer do you use? Thanks again!

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  28. The marker tip saves me so much time now, thank you!!

    ~Emily Dunnan

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  29. Thanks
    I am making ready for casting of my piece in resin. Filling holes is a pain for me. Do you open the holes a bit with a drill?
    I love the costume!!
    Sheila

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  30. WOW! Sheila, I just looked at your blog and that Arab sculpture is amazing!

    When I was still filling holes with apoxie sculpt, I'd often enlarge them a bit with the tip of my carbide scraper. That made it a lot easier to smoosh the wet epoxy into the hole. Now that I'm using messo, I don't usually bother. The exception is when I'm reasonably certain there's a big open pocket underneath the pin hole. This happens a lot with home cast resins, so I will poke at those holes just to make sure the area is nice and solid.

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  31. I think a chestnut with stockings and a black muzzle and around the eyes would be perfect! It would bring out the yellow/gold tones in the costume and contrast nicely with the black.

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