Introduction: How to Make a Dragon Skull

About: Untidy, disorganised and a bit silly. I am a photographer, artist, body artist, sculptor, prosthetic maker, model engineer, and general idiot who likes making stuff and messing about. I give hands on workshops…

I have to do a Dragon body paint next month and I wanted a nice interesting Headpiece. having very little money I thought I would make one.

here's how i made mine. It would probably be possible to make this into a mask too.

Step 1: The Design and Materials

I found this excellent illustration by McGibs and thought I would try and turn the two dimensional image into a 3 dimensional object.

I used standard A4 card stock (180 gsm)
A printer and computer
Glass-fibre layup resin
Masking tape
Isopon P38 (Bondo)
Sharp knives and scissors
A Dremel

Step 2: Preparing the Design

I used GIMP to remove all the horns and the face and lower jaw, then printed off 2 resized images onto the card stock.

These were then cut out, and I worked out where I wanted to cut and where I wanted to fold.
The two side were then glued together at the nose and the general shape and dimensions were worked out.

I used more card to fill the gaps, sticking them in with masking tape.

Step 3: Stiffening the Basic Structure

Once the basic card assembly was complete, I coated the inside with a layer of resin. Once cured I turned it over and added another layer of resin to the outside.

This was then set aside for a few hours to go solid.

Step 4: Adding the Texture

Once the resin had cured, I began coating it with P38 (Bondo).
I tried to get the thickness's to vary in line with the original drawing.

Once the P38 (Bondo) had hardened off, I used the Dremel with a rough sanding drum to smooth out the contours whilst keeping a slightly rough 'bone like' texture to it.

Finally i made the smaller horns from P38 (Bondo) and stuck them in place.

Step 5: First Paint Job

Since the original drawing is monochrome I had to decide on some colours. I went for yellow, brown and black.

The paint was applied with brush, sponge and airbrush. I sort of added a little of the patterns of the original drawing too.

Step 6: Making the Horns

I used exactly the same process for the main horns. I isolated them in GIMP, printed one off, flipped the images and printed the other.

Again I decided where to cut and where to fold, stuck the sections with masking tape and twisted and pulled until I had a pleasing shape.

I then coated both sides of each horn with resin and allowed to dry.

Step 7: Test Fit and Texture

After test fitting the horns I again coated them in P38 (Bondo) but only where the scales would go.

these were then sanded back to give them more definition.

Step 8: Final Assembly and Painting

The horns were glued into place using the P38 (Bondo) which ensured the gaps were well filled.

A small amount of sanding and then they were painted to match the skull. Some minor brushwork details for the gold bands and the skull is complete.

Step 9: Supplemental

I needed a way of getting this thing on and off my model.
i mounted the skull on an old baseball cap with the brim cut to fit the jaw.

Couldn't get the flight feathers in time so I've used the old tried and tested pipe lagging foam to make a frill. It needs eyes and some final paint touches, but should be OK

Finished now ....