Every now and then a project comes along that is just so cool that you're not sure if you can do it justice. Clear Horizons' Hell Divers was the latest for me. Here are a couple of the images sent to me in an introductory email query from Harold at Clear Horizons.
I loved the concept art. But as with most of my sculpting, the problem would be how to translate the details to 15mm reality. About two weeks of deliberation went into the decision of what details to leave in and what forms to simplify to scale these down into identifiable Hell Divers. My skill with the putty only allows for so much. The physical properties of the putty only so much more. Mold making and casting add even more constraints. My job is to balance all of these aspects as well as I can to create the impression of the original concept.
I started with the head and the three body forms I would use to build the completed line of figures. The weapon and backpack were designed at the same time so I wouldn't need to sculpt them over and over.
These were sent to the mold maker to be cast. I was really happy with these basic parts. Here are the masters in metal.
Metal parts in hand, the design process starts all over again as I decide how to attach the weapons, heads, and arms. This involved a lot of drilling, some gluing, and a good bit of swearing as pieces dropped from my fingers and onto the floor. I worked on two at first so I could get a feel for what the process of completion would be.
|Hell Diver Command|
Here you can see the rest starting to take shape.
Once the first couple are done and the sculpting is worked out, it's just a matter of repeating the process until all of them are completed. There are eight basic troopers.
|Kneeling Hell Divers|
So you can see a little bit of the progression from start to finish. The final sculpts are not exact copies of the concept art., but are they faithful enough to the idea? Sales will tell.