Step 1: Materials
- A styrofoam head or a cast of your face
- Wed clay (I love Monster Makers)
- sculpting tools
- Thermoplastic like Wonderflex or something similar. Plaster bandages will also work.
- Cheesecloth and Ping pong balls for eyes
- White glue
- Petroleum jelly
- Heat gun
- Baseball cap or something similar
- Paints and brushes- acrylics work fine
- Zip ties
Step 2: Sculpt your mask
My mask is a re-imagining of a mask I saw online.
Sculpt your shape on your head form. Remember to be aware of where the eyes, nose and mouth are. If you're using a styrofoam head, you can measure your own face and mark their placement on the styrofoam.
Wed clay is very forgiving and very easy to use. Adding water helps smooth it out once you've got what you want. Make your sculpt looks how you want from every angle.
Step 3: Form thermoplastic or plaster bandages to sculpt
Use your fingers to get the plastic to form into the little grooves and crevices. Keep cool water nearby in case you touch the plastic while it's still a bit too hot and to rinse some of the glue from the plastic off your fingers.
When forming the shape, make sure to hold the plastic in place until it cools or it will spring back out. It takes a few minutes to get the hang of, but it's really quick, and really easy once you do.
If you are using plaster bandages, make sure to cover your sculpt in petroleum jelly before you begin. Lay short strips over the sculpt, making sure to form it into the creases.
Complete one layer. When this is dry, add a second layer with strips running in opposite directions. Let dry and repeat a third time. This should be sufficient for strength and shape retention.
Step 4: Make the hat
I covered the tube with plastic wrap just to make sure it wouldn't stick.
Hit the thermoplastic with a heat gun and form wrinkles.
Remove from the tube and continue to wrap around and glue it to itself with heat gun. If using plaster bandages, glue together with the bandages.
Use thermoplastic or bandages to make flat top and brim.
Step 5: Form the eyes
Cover with petroleum jelly.
Soak the cheesecloth in glue, and form over the ping pong balls.
Leave enough cheesecloth to sort of puddle around the side of the ball. This will give you a flange to glue to the inside of the mask.
Let dry thoroughly.
Cut holes out of the thermoplastic where you want the eyes to go.
Fit and glue in the eyes from the back of the mask.
Paint mask and hat with base coat of white paint (or gesso if you already have it).
I used some thin rope around the crown of the hat to give it some extra texture.
Step 6: Paint
Go overboard with shadows and highlights. What seems natural will get washed out from a distance, so go big.
Periodically hold the mask in front of a mirror from a slight distance to see how it looks. This gives you a different perspective than how you have been seeing it and may give you some ideas of how to perfect your design.
Paint the interior of your hat and mask black.
Step 7: Attach mask, wig and hat
Use zip ties to attach the wig to the mask, and then to the cap.
Style the wig to look totally crazypants.
To place the hat, it's best to try the mask on and decide where it's most balanced on the whole rig. Then attach the hat with zip ties.