Latest StoriesMakers
    Foley Artist John Roesch's Audio Props

    From Wired: "A tour from veteran Foley artist John Roesch of the Skywalker's custom built soundstage. Roesch reveals some of the strangest audio props that were used in films like 'Who Framed Roger Rabbit,' 'Back to the Future' and 'Braveheart’."

    In Brief: Guillermo del Toro's Bleak House Going on Tour

    As you're probably aware, Guillermo del Toro has been amassing a collection of film props, replicas, sculptures, and other art pieces in his famous cave, known as the Bleak House (some of Adam's props live there!). This summer, part of that collection is going on tour in a travelling museum exhibit, starting at Los Angeles' LACMA. The director calls it "an exhibit of my movie stuff", and the show will be organized by themes that inspire his films and creative process. After showing at the LACMA until the end of this year, the exhibit will travel to Minneapolis and Toronto, and possibly other cities. While we wait for the the exhibit's July opening, you can find some glimpses of the Bleak House in del Toro's wonderful Cabinet of Curiosities book.

    Norman
    Making Dinosaur Models for 60's Stop-Motion Film

    From British Pathe, a YouTube channel repository of 20th century archival footage, a 1967 short educational film about the making of dinosaur puppets for stop-motion animation. It covers the sculpting, molding, and casting of the models--some things just haven't changed! (Though the use of a skeleton for the puppet armature is suspect.)

    Lewis Nowosad Hits an Impasse on his Guardians Helmet

    As I have written before, I'll be posting and commenting on the things you guys are making as a result of what you see on Tested. This photo was posted by Lewis Nowosad, who asked me for some advice during his build of a Guardian of the Galaxy helmet, which he's finishing so he can join the efforts of the nonprofit Avenger's Initiative.

    Unfortunately, I don't have enough information to really tackle this problem; the one pic doesn't quite tell the story. Lewis, for keeping it on your head I might suggest elastic around the back, at the top of your neck, with a center strap heading up and over your head.

    As for the hinging back, I might suggest velcro instead of a mechanical solution, because it's more forgiving. Fitting a mechanical solution around a head in a close-fitting helmet is a bear of a problem to solve.

    Good luck, and let us know how it goes!

    Keep sharing your builds! If you're using Twitter, be sure to tag @donttrythis and @testedcom. If Facebook, post on the wall of Adam's solo group or Tested's.

    Building Fallout 4 T-60 Power Armor, Part 2

    Last time, I shared how we tackled the digital design planning for the Fallout 4 Power Armor build. We extracted the game models using NifSkope, prepared them for our build by increasing their detail in Blender, then finally cut them into sections that would fit on our 3D printers in NetFabb. With our first batch of models are ready to produce, it's time to send them to the machines to create and get them looking nice.

    I'll be using the helmet and the large shoulders to demonstrate the techniques I use to go from raw 3D print to finished master ready for molding. But same process is used whether I'm making something small like a detail piece or a weapon, or the big printed sections of armor. For this build, we'll be using the 3D printer for the interior "frame" pieces, the large shoulders, and the back armor as well as some of the smaller detail bits throughout the armor like the oversized bolts on the knees and the oil filters under the chest.

    I print exclusively in ABS plastic because of some interesting post processing methods available, specifically being able to use acetone to smooth your prints to reduce or eliminate the print "grain" visible at each layer in the printing process. This is not acetone vapor smoothing, which looks really pretty but softens up all of the hard edges we worked to preserve, but rather a solution mixed up and painted directly on to the part. I'll create a batch of "ABS juice" to paint the surface with a brush that both fills in the valleys of the print lines like a body filler, and also acts to soften up and smooth down the high points.

    Photo Gallery: Monsterpalooza 2016

    We spent this past weekend at Monsterpalooza, the annual creature and makeup effects convention in Pasadena. It was an awesome place to meet sculptors, painters, and other artists showing off their personal projects, and in many cases, selling resin kits (I picked up a few). The event was one big mutual appreciation society--the place to put faces to Instagram art accounts and discover many new ones to follow. Frank and Len recorded two episodes of Creature Geek there, too! Here are some photos from the show, and we'll have videos and interviews we shot there on the site in the coming days!

    Show and Tell: Rey's Blaster Replica Kit!

    Prop maker Bill Doran (aka Punished Props) visits our office this week to share one of his recent builds: a replica of Rey's blaster from Star Wars: The Force Awakens! Bill shows how he designed the blaster to be assembled as a kit, and we put one together! (Find Bill's blueprints and other fabrication guides here!)

    A Seriously Awesome Sewing Table by John Calhoun

    As I have written before, I'll be posting and commenting on the things you guys are making as a result of what you see on Tested. This one is from John Calhoun, who built a seriously utilitarian and excellent sewing table based on my own.

    Photo credit: John Calhoun

    There's no adornment at all, and that is its own kind of beautiful. When we make the objects we make with, we're engaging in a powerful dialog with the world and ourselves about what's possible.

    Simple Feats of Science: Liquid Nitrogen Experiments!

    In this episode of Simple Feats of Science, we're joined by Zeke Kossover from The Exploratorium to demonstrate an unconventional experiment with liquid nitrogen. Kishore and Zeke discuss some liquid nitrogen basics, and then show how you can use it to illuminate a broken light bulb!

    Tested Mailbag: Codenames Box

    Time to open another Tested mystery mailbag! This one comes from Robbie, who sends a great accessory to one of our favorite tabletop games, Codenames. Do you keep your board game boxes? Thanks, Robbie!

    Shop Tips: Covering Your Work Tables

    A simple yet essential shop tip from Frank's shop today: covering your work tables with a big sheet of paper. Frank talks about what type of paper he uses and why it perfectly suits his projects and table dimensions. It's time to paper up our tables!

    The Immortal Show - Episode 35 - 4/15/16
    Frank and Len welcome guests Andrew Freeman and George Frangadakis of Immortal Masks. Frank adds some "apple juice" to the mix and we chat about the creative process, what prospective artists should be working on if they want to work with a company like Immortal, and how a little strip club taught George everything he needed to know about running a business. Once again, this episode enters a NSFW realm, so if there are sensitive ears nearby, maybe listen on your headphones. In any event, if you like the show, please consider heading over to our Patreon (http://www.patreon.com/creaturegeek) and throwing us some bucks. We will see you LIVE at Monsterpalooza, coming up next week!
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    In Brief: Topographically Accurate Lunar Desk Globe

    I am completely enamored by this desk model, a project four years in the making by artist Oscar Lhermitte and London design studio Kudu. It's a 1/20million scale model of the moon (~7-inch diameter), modeled with accurate topographical data from NASA's Lunar Reconnaissance Orbiter and 3D printed with an industrial SLS printer at 100 microns layer height. The resin cast globe rotates on a simple motorized pedestal, illuminated by a ring of LEDs on an extended arm to simulate the sun. The photos of this globe look stunning. Find the project on Kickstarter here, where the desk model is selling for $700 for the globe and motorized LED arm. Too expensive for me, but it's absolutely lovely.

    Norman
    Tested Builds: Perfect Grade Gundam, Part 1

    Welcome to another week of builds! We're tackling a new type of kit this week: gunpla! And for our first Gundam build, we're going big with a Perfect Grade Zeta Gundam at 1/60 scale. Norm is joined by Sean Charlesworth, Frank Ippolito, and special guest Danica Johnson to work together and build this mecha! (This first video is available for everyone--watch the rest of the build by signing up with the Tested Premium member community!)

    The Hodge Podge/Potpourri Show - Episode 34 - 4/8/16
    Frank and I record a "real time" episode this week. For the first time, we actually recorded this episode this week, instead of weeks ahead. This is one of our first Hodge Podge/Potpourri shows. On this ep, we chat about The Witch, Batman V Superman, Daredevil, orange blood and a lot more! If you like the show, please consider heading over to our Patreon (http://www.patreon.com/creaturegeek) and throwing us some bucks. See you at Monsterpalooza later this month!
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