Monster Mud

Here’s how our saxophone ghost looks:

Saxophone ghost with one coat of monster mud

I took a trip to Home Depot yesterday and made a big bucket of monster mud. This figure still needs another pass or two, and then primer and paint, but I’m very happy with how this turned out and I’m ready to proceed in earnest with this technique! As you may recall, I wanted to prove that this was going to get me the sort of results I expected before doing too much of it, which meant getting pretty far with just one character. Now that I’m here, I’m prepared to make all the others, and it will go faster! There’s only so much I can do on one of these pieces before I need to wait for that work to dry, which meant a maximum of two hours of progress a day (one in the morning and one in the evening, and that was only when I was really productive). Now I’m only limited by how much physical space I have to lay all these things out—which is still prohibitive, but less so. Nice.

Next week, you’ll see this character totally done and standing up, and all the others will be pretty close to done as well. My blue-sky milestone from months ago was to have a space booked and all the characters built by the end of July. I’m not too far off.

Now I’ve started thinking about what the scenery will look like. A recent idea involved stretching large canvases with a bend in the middle—halfway between a framed painting and a cyclorama. The book has inspired a different idea, where I build a minimal set out of dimensional set pieces (using the same building technique as I’m using for the characters) and leaving most of it dark, so the audience may fill in the blanks. If I can pull this off then I think it will look better, but I can’t get a clear idea of how it will look in my head, so it’s time for more scale models. That’s the project for the first half of August.

The second half of August is for building whatever set we land on, which includes the mechanisms for character animation. I have some ideas for all of that and I feel good about them; we’ll cover that soon.

Tickets will go on sale September 2nd, which means a website, which means marketing materials. Titles, subtitles, logos, and branding are all in flight. Feeling fine about all that; we have plenty of time to figure it out.

That’s all for now. It’s an in-between week in terms of a progress report, but it’s a good one. See ya!