Step 1: Intro
We were given a short section of poem "Three little schoolboys walking in the zoo, a big bear hugged one and then there were two" and told to spark off ideas from that. Instead of actually doing it about schoolboys, bears or possibly paedophiles (also, in the gay clubbing scene a bear can also mean "a large hairy man") i decided to go a lil bit out there and concentrate on what everyone thinks of when they look at bears. Yup, thats right. Berserkers. (taken from the old norse bersekr meaning "bear shirt") Replace the schoolboys with young and inexperinced soldiers and you've got yourself a massacre _
It must be the panto seething in my blood (i have been clean for 3 years but it gets hard at times :p) but i decided to make costumes, then take photos and work back into them to create the final piece. Here is some of the initial ideas for the story and the costume. I went thru many phases of bear related clothing and then decided that a giant floating skull (kinda lifesize) attached to the person so that you could see them as well. (When berserking it is said that they take on the spirit of the bear or wolf and so i wanted the person to be seen clearly too) Also I wanted the costume to move the same way a bear does and so create a hunched gait when the person is crouched forwards. i took the idea from the lion king musical on how they suspended giant masks above the heads of the actors that moved into a feline stance when they leaned forward.
Step 2: Materials
2 Long metals bars - you choose what height you want the head to be (place one end at the base of your spine in order to gauge)
A short section of metal bar to be used as the pin (all metal was found in a skip :p)
Cardboard (forraged fior)
Chickenwire or similar mesh to make your mask out of - mine was approx 70x110 cm ish (I paid money for this O_O)
A small carboard box about 20x10x40 cm
Towel or other pelt like material (I went ahead and bought a towel before realising that it would've been cheaper going to a fabric shop u_u)
Weightlifting lumbar support belt - prefferably one with a pouch for putting inserts into. (Again i paid money for this O_O)
Random pice of fibreboard that fitted into said pouch.
Loo roll for the mache
Assorted knives and cutting impliments - hacksaw with metal blade or random snips for working with the bars. Wire cutters for the mesh
Step 3: Make the Frame
Step 4: Making the Mask
Step 5: See If They Fit
Step 6: Get Your Paste On
Step 7: Trial Run
Also in the second picture you can see how far the mask does swing forward when crouching/leaning. I was lucky that i managed to fluke the holes in the box to roughly the CoG of the whole thing so it didnt have a tendancy to stick in one place
The mask can also be worn as a rather fetching hat - as demonstrated by Mr Jack and Mr Alec.
Step 8: Add Fur... and Hair
Crazy swimming shorts are not part of a normal berserker's appariel but this one was on its holidays. They are not ones for wearing glasses either which resulted in lots of cropped and decapitated photos of me trying to orientate myself with the lense. (also my hair was wet and scraggly as i used the ancient techniques passed down from generation to generation of barbarians - namely a shower :p)
The costume isnt really finished as i have to figure out what the lower half of me is wearing and whether or not i can fashion some katars. I also *found* some ethnicy tassley keyrings at work that would look nice also. (I'm accessorising... what am i thinking O_o)
I have a rough idea of where i am going to be shooting but havent roped in any specimins *cough* other people to help. I also need to polish up my old school SLR skills as my shiny digicam wont shoot for toffee in the dark O_o.
I'll post up some final pics when i eventually get around to it - I'm a student so sloth is part of my nature :p