Hey there! I wanted to do a cosplay for Anime Expo 2018 and decided to do Elias Ainsworth from The Ancient Magus' Bride. The outfit is fairly simple, but making his head is more involved. So this instructable outlines my journey to create the headgear. Here we go...
Step 1: Gather the Materials
A plethora of things are needed to finish the project. Since this instructable is submitted under the theme "Stick It!," here is the list of adhesives/sticking materials used:
- Masking Tape
- Hot Melt Glue Sticks
- Paper Mache = Flour + Water + Paper
- Acrylic Cement
Next are the other materials used for the project:
- Aluminum Foil
- Red Cloth
- Gold Ribbon/Thread
- Tint Film
- Acrylic Paint - Brown & White
- Red LEDs x2
- Resistors/Potentiometer (optional)
Finally, here are the tools used:
- 3D Printer
- Soldering Iron
- Glue Gun
- Heat Gun (optional)
- Paint brush
- Measuring tape or ruler
Most of these things can be bought at any hobby shop or your favorite online store ;]
Step 2: 3D Print the Base
For any headgear, it is important to have a good foundation. Some people use plaster, mesh, or aluminum foil to create the base of their mask. Due to laziness and time-constraints, I decided to 3D print something that has a similar shape or characteristics of my headgear.
Thankfully wilfredoaristo at Thingiverse (https://www.thingiverse.com/thing:1785541) already modeled something. So I went ahead and printed the individual pieces using PLA. After that, I tried the fit which is on the small side. The interwebs suggested several things to adjust PLA prints, and I chose the heat gun to make the changes. I applied 170ºF of hot air and waited for the material to be malleable. Then I just bent it the way I wanted it to.
Note: 3D printing all the pieces take an ample amount of time. Kick back and enjoy some anime episodes while you wait.
Step 3: Cement Things Together
Cement things together!
For PLA prints, the interwebs suggested using acrylic cement (https://hackaday.com/2018/02/07/locally-sourced-pl...). Other adhesives can also be used which really boils down to the materials being adhered together and your preference.
Note: please read the instruction label on whatever adhesive before using them. Some of them are hazardous and need proper ventilation during use.
Step 4: Add on Details
The eye-socket holes on the original print are too big so I crumpled a sheet of aluminum foil to fill-in part of the eye-socket. Then I used masking tape to hold both the foil and the skull together.
The same process was used to create the horns. I shaped some aluminum foil to kindda match the source material and covered the whole thing with masking tape to reinforce it.
Step 5: Paper Mache Time
I wanted the headgear to be more robust and easier to paint so I added paper mache on top of the print. I used one part flour and one part water then mixed them together in a pot. The mixture acts as an adhesive for the strips of newspaper that are used to cover the horns and part of the skull. Once it dried, I hot glued the horns on the skull.
Note1: there are other methods and recipes for paper mache out there so don't restrict yourself.
Note2: the horns can be hot glued on the skull after doing the next step.
Step 6: Paint Em
Bust out your paint brush!
I used brown and titanium white to paint the horns and the skull respectively. Here's a handy little trick to add ridges on the horns: use hot glue. This is detailed here: http://chrixdesign.blogspot.com/2013/08/demonic-ho.... This is basically the blog where I got the whole horn idea from. Thanks again interwebs :]
Step 7: Make the Hood
Making the hood needs some planning. I shaped it as a trapezoid with a base of roughly 12 inches, height of 14 inches, and the top to be 10 inches. After cutting the red cloth up as designed, I started stapling the golden ribbons onto it. You can sew them together too, but I don't have the skills for that :P
Step 8: Make the Eyes
The eyes consist of the tint film and the red LEDs. For my build, I soldered resistors on each LED to extend the battery life. Then I soldered the wires connecting the coin cell battery. A simpler way to do it is hooking LEDs up directly to the battery. You can learn more here if you're interested: https://learn.adafruit.com/lets-put-leds-in-things....
Once the electronics are hooked up, time to mount them into the skull. Hot glue the tint film around the eye-sockets first. Then hot glue the electronics.
Step 9: Wear Your New Headgear!
Finalize the build by tying the hood around the horns and staple some extra golden ribbons to create the loops. Now go out there and wear it!