The first LMC-FXWarehouseInc mask making
seminar was a trumpeting success. Ok, I had to say that to
psyche you up for the 2nd seminar, but I think it was nonetheless.
We had 3 eager participants from the 4 corners of the globe.
Err, I mean the 3 corners of the globe. Well, 2 were from the
US and one was from Mexico. I think Mexico has a corner there
The organization of this
seminar was top notch, as evidenced by the first day when I went to
pick up Nathan from his hotel and he had already taken a taxi to
FXWarehouse. That's ok, because I got a free towel and a
couple of those little soaps from his hotel room (shhh, don't tell
Thea had the shop setup perfectly.
Three cheers to Thea for making this a heck of alot easier by
providing us with room and materials! Heck, we'll give her
Everyone found their way to the shop
(eventually), and we set out to get started. After a thorough,
world class explanation of just what it takes to make a mask,
the crowd was literally in awe. Gaping jaws at the wonderment
of what those early pioneers such as Don Post must have gone through
was not an uncommon site. Well, maybe we didn't discuss Don
Post that much and maybe gaping jaws was just a slight bit of drool
from the donuts, but you get the point. The first order
of the day was to get everyone sculpting. I convinced everyone
to try out WED clay (a water based clay that rocks). Most were
easily persuaded. I only had to put Nathan in a headlock once
before he obliged. Guillermo (further known as the Big 'G')
wanted to try Roma because that's all he has to work with in Mexico.
Well, the lack of a microwave and/or an oven soon had Big 'G' using
a heat gun to soften the clay. Let's just say Big 'G' was
motivated to move back to WED and I didn't have to apply any
The sculpting was moving along at a quick
pace. Clay was flying, tales of our misspent youth were
flowing (oops, I shouldn't mention that, sorry Kevin).
Sculpting is one of those things where the hours just literally fly
by. Before we knew it, the week was up and no one had
bothered to tell us to stop sculpting. Wait a minute, I
should say the day was up. Right, the day was up not the week.
Kevin had mentioned countless times on Monday he was really worried
that the long distance drive to come out was putting alot of wear
and tear on his van. That and the fact his transmission fell
out on the hiway had him really concerned.
Tuesday came and I got another set of
towels and soap from Nathan's room. Everyone showed up on
time, everyone that is but Kevin. For those more perceptive
readers, you may recall that I brought to light Kevin's car
troubles. Don't worry if you can't remember, it's only a
sentence or two above this one. Well, his transmission really
was kaput and he wasn't going to make it. If you are going to
miss any day of this world class training, I suppose the 2nd
sculpting day was the best. All we were doing on Tuesday was
sculpt, sculpt, sculpt (and maybe a headlock or two). That's
exactly what we did. By the end of Tuesday, we had some pretty
fine looking sculpts. Well, Kevin's was slightly behind the
pace, but I tossed a little clay on his armature to give him
something to mold.
Wednesday was the day of dread aka molding
day. I laid in my bed all night on Tuesday in the fetal
position rocking back and forth wondering how the heck we were going
to get through this. When I shut my eyes, all I could see was Big
'G' laying on the ground in a pool of plaster, while Nathan was head
first in the bag of ultracal. I summoned up my reserve of
strength and headed out to get another towel and soap from Nathan's
room. Ummm...I mean to the shop.
My worries were for naught because the
molding went smooth as silk. We decided to sculpt more on
Wednesday, so we split the molding into 2 days: back half on
Wednesday and the other half on Thursday. All molds opened
with no problems!!! Wow! Who'd a thunk it? Every mask
artist gets a tinge of excitement when they successfully pull open a
mold. It's almost as good as that three letter word, well you
know what I mean.
We had to move quickly because we also had
to cast in these molds on Thursday so we could have them ready to
paint on Friday. Everyone cleaned out their molds and did any
necessary repair work. Now we were ready to slush in the
latex. For you perceptive readers, you may recall my
fear of Nathan falling into the bag of ultracal. Not to worry,
he fell into a bucket of latex. Well, he didn't fall as much
as his mold fell and he dove in after it. Ok, maybe it wasn't
a full pail, but there was latex involved and we did get dirty.
While the latex dwelled, we set off to
learn the fine art of how to remove clogs from your airbrush aka
airbrushing with latex paint. I had some scrap masks to tinker
with and everyone went at it. I brought home everyone's
mold so I could pull the latex copies out that night so they could
cure for Friday.
Friday came and we were all excited to
finally paint our own masks. Well, Kevin was partially excited
and I don't think Nathan was outwardly showing excitement, Big 'G'
seemed indifferent. Heck, maybe I was the only one excited.
We spent Friday learning about what paints will kill you and what
paints will frustrate you, as well as what paints won't work at all.
We all settled on our own favorite paints and got to it. I
threw in some info on adding hair to your masks and why most artists
do bald heads and we called it a day.
Of course you will want to see pictures.
I want to thank Kevin, Big 'G' and Nathan(thanks for the pics too!)
for coming to this life enriching class and of course Thea for
putting up with us and for providing a great place to hold the