Busy times! Status of commission schedule.

Whew.

Been a while since the last update. I got hit with a slew of commission requests and general inquiries. The last two big projects have been exceedingly popular, which is awesome and humbling. However, I am up to my ears in work now (also awesome) but that means less time to post to the page or answer e-mails for non-clients. So, Just a quick update to where the studio is, work-wise and what it means for commissions right now.

Lokistuff

I am not accepting commissions until early next year. Right now the studio has been completely taken over by Loki (that sly b*stard). I will update the page when this changes, but until the current commissions for scepters, spears and armor are complete, I will not be accepting new commissions or even negotiating future commissions. I simply don’t have the time to do price quotes at the moment (which generally take between 30 and 90 minutes each). I will still give quotes for things I have done before and thus already know the price, but will not be taking actual orders until after new years most likely.

I also have had a massive amount of interest in the Megaman armor I completed earlier this year. I am floored by the response, and I really appreciate that the reaction has been so positive, but I will not take any commissions to replicate it. It was a great design and I learned a great deal from it’s completion, but I also learned that it is incredibly time consuming and that I did not want to undertake another project in that vein on a commission basis. If you have any questions about how I made it that are not covered in my post on creating flexible armor with EVA foam, please feel free to shoot me a line with your specific question and I’ll try to help out. However, I will not accept any commissions to make another one.

Thanks for reading, and look forward for Loki Scepter v 2.0 coming soon!

Status of the Site and Commissions

So, anyone who has tried to access the site in the last couple of weeks probably saw a very nasty warning page from google stating that the site was likely an attack site. This has been fixed! It seems my site was the target of a nasty bit of malicious code insert that tried to install malware whenever anyone visited it. I’ve been working with my hosting provider and the site is now clean again. If you have visited the site in the last 2-3 weeks and ignored the warning page, it wouldn’t hurt to run your favorite malware/virus checker just in case.
On brighter news, I have a few commissions slots open over the summer, but only for things which I already have the molds for. These items include:

I just won’t have time this summer to take on any new, custom commissions with my current workload and preparation for DragonCon. I will have time to prepare things I have already created molds for, however, and may also be able to provide any of the above listed items in kit form. Use the commission inquiry form to inquire.

2013 Commissions Are Now Open!

As 2012 winds down to a close, it’s time to look towards next year’s costumes and props!

I’m opening up commission inquiries for delivery during the first half of 2013. However, I am going to be speaking a bit on the nature of my request schedule, pricing and quality of work.

Firstly, I am in the extraordinarily awesome position of having a higher demand for my work than I can fulfill. Since I now need a way to determine which commissions to take on, I’ll be taking a page from two other creators I greatly respect. Like Volpin and Blind Squirrel have done this year, I’ll be making decisions according to what I personally would like to create. The reasoning for this is that as a propmaker, I do my best work when I am genuinely invested in a project; whether it’s because I am a fan of the franchise it is from, love the object’s design or enjoy the process that goes into its creation. In the interest of matching my time and skills up with projects that match my own loves, I’ve put together a list of things that interest me and that I’d love to create from.

  • Marvel Comics and Movies
  • Skyrim/TES Games
  • Fallout Games
  • Mass Effect Games
  • Terry Pratchett’s Discworld
  • Deus Ex Games
  • Borderlands Games
  • Lord of the Rings / The Hobbit
  • Batman Comics, Nolan-verse and Animated
  • A Game of Thrones
  • The Legend of Zelda
  • Final Fantasy Games, Especially IV, VI, IX, XII, XIII
  • Bubblegum Crisis Hardsuits
  • Breath of Fire Games

Now, if what you need isn’t on that list, does that mean I won’t make it? No way! I’m always open to new things, and if something looks interesting, I will certainly consider it. All this list is for is to show how to ensure that you get my attention.

Another bit I want to mention is on the “How much is this gonna cost?” question. Volpin recently did an excellent writeup on the topic of cost in prop commissions. I will never be able to beat mass production prices or those eBay sellers out of Hong Kong. However, I will give you the fairest price I can and absolute control of the substance and direction of your commission.

Another question I get from time to time, after I have given a quote on price, is “Can you cut some corners/use cheaper materials/have less detail to make it cheaper?” This is a very sticky question for me. Now, I costume myself, so I know all about how expensive the hobby can be, and understand how troubling it can be for just one part of a costume to take a large chunk out of the budget. I can sympathize with having a limited budget, as I always work on my own things on a shoestring budget, which is what lead me to learn how to make things myself in order to save money. However, when I put my name onto a commission, my name and reputation is now tied to that piece. If it breaks, if the paint job is less than perfect, if the details are fudged, it reflects upon my skill. While the client and I may know that the details were fudged to keep the piece within the client’s budget, and that we didn’t go with the better paint job at the request of the client, the casual viewer will see a sub-par paint job and muddy, inaccurate details. That will color their opinion on the prop’s creator and ultimately hurt my reputation. The only way I want to send props out for other costumers is if they are the best quality I could create at the time. Know that when I quote a price, it is the fairest price I can give for the quality my conscience requires and very rarely will I be able to re-quote a price lower than I originally gave. I will be spending dozens if not hundreds of hours on a piece for you, and I want to be able to look back at the end and know it was the finest work I could give.

I want to thank everyone reading this for following my work of the last year, and especially thank those who have trusted me to bring a piece of their costume to life. I hope to continue to create awesome, nerdy things in the coming year! If you’ve got something you need made, please swing on over to my Commissions Page and drop me a line!

 

Technical Difficulties and Things on the Table

Just a quick note to anyone currently waiting on a quote request reply; My motherboard on my main computer died on Saturday morning, so I am going to be running my communications from my netbook until a replacement arrives. Unfortunately, the files I use for calculating quotes and long term scheduling are trapped on that computer, so I will be a few days late getting prop quotes out.

On a more pleasant note, I have some cool new progress to show, and drop the news on a really cool build on the table right now.

First, doing a piece from Fushigi Yuugi, Miaka’s priestess tiara, going for something between the Manga and Anime design, expect a full build on this one in the next two weeks:

 

And next, something I am very excited about, Loki’s spear from The Avengers!

Not much yet, but you’ll be seeing much more of this beastie. It’s a very cool build, and as a massive comic nerd myself, I’m glad to be working on something so in tune with my own obsessions. A shop copy will definitely be made later on.

 

 

 

 

Distractotron’s Marvel Comics Epic Cosplay Video

So, one of my other costuming endeavors is being very active on a little forum known as the Superhero Costuming Forum. I assist with photoshoot planning and direction at our biggest con of the year, Dragon*Con, and recently I was made an Admin. This year, we had the fabulous opportunity to work with the guys from Beat Down Boogie and Distractotron, documenting some of our shoots and gatherings, including our two giant comic shoots, the Giant DC Photoshoot and the Giant Marvel Photoshoot. Each one brings literally hundreds of costumers of all skill levels and we get some fantastic group shots. It’s a heck of a gathering, especially when you count all the “regular” con-goers and photographers that come to see, and a ton of work has to go on behind the scenes to make the shoots and some special events at the shoots happen. This year we hosted a proposal (aided by Dean Cain himself!) and a wedding.

 

The guys at Distractotron recently uploaded their video from the Giant Marvel Photoshoot and the Avengers Assemble Photoshoot, which included a cameo by the incomparable Stan Lee! Excelsior!

Send the guys at Distratortron some love! And be sure to subscribe to their channel if you love seeing costume and con-related videos, as they still have a ton more to come. I do appear several time in the video, as I was one of three people helping to wrangle and arrange the hundreds of Marvel costumers into place. You’ll find me walking around in a pleated orange half cape in my Siryn costume.