Primary materials: Cloth, glue, metal mesh, sawdust, tape, acrylic paint.
At a dance lesson I saw a woman with long, dark purple hair that really worked for her, and that inspired me to make this. It is the second mask in a trilogy of similar shapes (preceded by the First One, followed be Grace).
Besides the color, there were a few things I wanted to accomplish:
1. Use a mask base that I had originally made for the First One before putting it aside because of design changes on that project.
2. Incorporate sunglasses lenses into the eyes. I hadn’t done this before.
3. Make the face shape more aggressively curved than the “beak” of the First One.
4. Experiment with sculpting using sawdust mixed with water and glue.
5. Make the straps using a belt.
6. Make the entire thing fast and without over engineering it.
How did I do on my points? I successfully used the mask base, sunglasses lenses, belt, and built up most of the mass of the face using sawdust and glue, covered by a single layer of cloth.
Sawdust and glue works all right as a material, and isn’t too heavy, although it soaks up a lot of glue and takes a long time to dry. I haven’t seen any reason to use it over papier-mache.
The beak didn’t turn out like I intended. This happened because of a combination of the sawdust mixture contracting, and the way I was leaning this up to dry. It caused the beak to curve in exactly the opposite direction of what I wanted. It goes out a little, almost like a chin, instead of curving in toward the wearer. By the time I noticed this, it was too late to fix without sawing the mask in half, or taking some other action I wasn’t willing to do.
The “fingers” that wrap around the head turned out to be a challenge. I made them out of tape and aluminum foil and began wrapping them in cloth; I then realized this might be too weak, so I cut them off and made new fingers supported by coat-hanger “bones.” I still wouldn’t use this to swing from the rafters, but I’m not concerned the fingers will accidentally crack off.
Despite not turning out exactly as I had planned, I like it.