Introduction: Handmade Freddy Krueger Latex Costume Mask
Here is my tutorial on latex masks. I have made quite a few. This is my favorite.
Clay and clay tools for sculpting
Plaster of Paris
Mannequin head or equivalent to sculpt on
Latex (I use Magic Makers and had to order it online)
NOTE; clean your hands and tools in a bucket, it will ruin your sink and clog your drain!!
Step 1: Sculpting and Preparing Sculpt
Sculpting is done out of clay. I use a clay that never dries. This way it is reusable. I did a full mask with neck for Freddy. He turned out pretty good.
I have yet to master mold making but I do know the basics and hope to get better with time :)
First you must build up a wall between the front and the back. This is what you see in the picture. I built this wall out of clay. I have also used pieces of plastic cut into strips.
Before applying the plaster I sprayed the sculpt with cooking spray and lightly brushed it into all the nooks and holes. I then took a measuring spoon and cut small 1/2 circles in the clay wall. This will help putting the 2 halves back together. I also put some extra clay strips over the wall, a couple on top and a couple on each side. These will be used later for pry points.
The plaster I use is Plaster of Paris (purchased at Lowes). Mix small amounts at a time until you get use to it. The first few layers of plaster should be very running and brushed on. This is called your beauty layer. You will pick up all your detail in the first few layers so take your time. If the plaster dries too fast throw it away and start fresh. After a few layers and all detail is filled in you can start applying large amounts. There are some really good videos on youtube for this.
I build up the plaster several inches thick and let dry.
Remove the clay wall and start all over on the other side. Spraying the plaster wall and back of the head with food release and then plastering the back the same way. Try not to build plaster on the top of both halves together so you don't lock your mold.
Let this dry overnight.
Using a screw driver and small hammer tap on the seam until it starts to crack and slowly wiggle the 2 pieces apart. Mine broke and needed repaired. A little elmers glue and then plaster and it was good as new.
Step 2: Latex
After you get your mold apart. Clean it carefully with a dry brush. Sometimes I even rinse it with water and let it dry. Before putting the 2 halves together, using a soft paint brush, brush latex on each half just like you are painting the mold. This helps the latex get into all the cracks and pick up all your detail. NOTE; if you dip your brush in dish soap and wipe off it helps keep it clean. Otherwise everything it touches is trash.
The 2 halves of the mold should fit together very tightly without at gaps around the seam. Mine never seem to. My solution to this (until I get better at molding)...put the 2 halves together and lock tight with a ratchet strap or tie tight with belt. Then I take some clay and smooth it around the outside of the mold, all the way around the seam so none of the latex leaks out.
I put my mold inside a milk crate to keep it up, and fill with latex. (if you only have a little bit of latex you can continue to turn your mold allowing the latex to build up.) After about 10 minutes pour the latex back into the bucket. Let your mold sit right side up allowing the excess latex to drip out.
Let dry over night. (seriously, don't rush it)
Step 3: Sanding and Painting
After the latex is completely dry (it will be darker in color), pour a little corn starch inside to keep it from sticking to itself. This is a really big help.
Pull your mask out carefully.
Now you can see how well your mold was. If it has a large seam, trim it down or even sand with a dremel. Trim out eyes, neck, mouth etc.
Painting...I use acrylic paints mixed with just a little bit of latex.
Mask can also be repaired with latex.