I made this Darth Maul mask for a cosplay party with some coworkers.
A long time ago there was a tv show called “el pulpo negro” (the black octopus) starred by the master of suspense movies Narciso Ibáñez Menta. Some of the characters in that show wore latex masks to perform their non-good actions. Since that old 80’s tv show I am interested in the process of making latex masks.
This project is about a latex mask made from a lifecasting of my own head.
Some time ago I made another one (a batman mask) which I molded in water based clay. I didn’t make an instructable about this because I only have a few pictures and none about the creation process
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Step 1: Trying to Do Lifecasting by Myself
I made a first attempt of making this life casting mold of my own head with no help. I tried to simplify the process by splitting the cast in two parts hoping I could join them later. But it was not as easy...
I used dental alginate for this casting and made the positive with dental stone. This stuff can be found in dental stores.
Two keys on working with alginate: be fast and use petroleum jelly in hairy zones.
I use no specific measures for mixing alginate with water... Just add water and keep mixing until it gets creamy.
It is very difficult to apply alginate to your own head especially in the upper half. Although each part seemed to be OK it was almost impossible to make the two half parts match. It is very difficult to keep the borders of two parts aligned if your are making it by yourself. I tried twice and I failed. So I asked a friend for some help in applying the alginate (thank you Edw!).
Step 2: Face Front and Rear Casting
I decided to make the rear part of head by hand, with the help of a balloon… It was hardest than expected and took much longer because I had to add a lot of clay to make it thick enough, but it worked.
Step 3: Adding Some Clay...
Once the base was ready, I added some face details using clay.
The first attempt was useless because it was nearly impossible to wear it. It was very tight to the face.
So I decided to add some clay to make the cast a little bigger.
When everything dries brush some soapy water all over the head. This allows latex not to stick to the plaster when removing the mold.
Step 4: Applying Latex
I started to drop latex over the head. Once you get used on how to do it is easy. But I failed at first attempts (and I had to discard the first latex mask) because it was uneven. The latex must flow all over so it covers quickly every single inch of the head. It is important to rotate the head to avoid spilling.
This process should be repeated four or five times. No more! In the first attempt I was worry about getting a thin mask and added more layers than needed, which turned out in a very thick and unusable mask (which as I already said, finally went to trash).
Step 5: Making the Horns
While I wait for latex to dry, I made the horns. I created them with a great quality sulfur free oil based clay called nonameclay. It gets soft by heating with a heat gun, and gets hard as rock when cold.
Before they get hard I added a little handler to allow a simpler demold.
Then I mixed a little bit of alginate with water, and created the mold.
Let drop some liquid latext into it and after a whole day you get this solid latext horns…
Step 6: Drawing Design and Painting
With some Darth’s pictures near I started drawing the design.
I though about some kind of stencil, but finnaly I decided to draw it by hand. If someone knows how to stencil a mask, tips are welcome :)
For painting is very important to add some liquid latex to acrilic paint. If no latex is added you will get flakes all over!!
It took a couple of days to finish it.
Step 7: Fixing Horns
For adding the horns I use latex as adhesive. This is the best adhesive to join two latex parts.
Step 8: Painting Horns
Finishing painting horns by mixing ocher with black acrylic paint.
Step 9: Costume
I won’t give big details about costume making because I didn't spent much time on it. Is fairly simple (and basic). Just black fabric.
A lot of improvements to this very basic costume can be done
A pair of contacts would improve this mask. I couldn't get them on time and they were too expensive!
Step 10: And Now... With My Friend Vader :)
Thank you for reading my instructable.
Comments are welcome!