Friday, November 13, 2009

Pegaso Mayan Priest Bust

As promised earlier I am starting to paint the Mayan Priest bust from Pegaso. This little jewel represents the movie character from Mel Gibson's movie "Apocalypto". Now I loved this movie and regardless of your opinions on historical accuracy I find this period of history really fascinating and artistically this bust really hits my buttons in what I want to spend my money on. The kit is mostly resin with the feathers being cast in white metal. The quality is what you would expect from Pegaso and I was very happy with the resin bits as that was my business back in the day. The feathers are nice but due to the medium of white metal are a bit thick in my book. This is a trade off as being able to bend them to a natural shape is much easier in this material and they won't ever break the way resin items would. The engineering for the feathers is nice in that they fit together in a sandwich as you paint them so that once complete you can simply glue them on as one unit. In the picture of the separate primed bits you can see the center section of feathers is actually made up of three pieces that I will paint as one and the two other pieces will glue to the tab.

Some of the cool painting challenges here are the feathers that being from South American tropical birds would be iridescent, colorful or in some cases dyed. I use "Daniel Smith" brand iridescent and interference paints that Phil Kessling turned me onto may years ago. I may well write a little blog entry on the use of these next week. The other interesting challenge is the Jadeite/Turquoise jewelry that adorns the figure. This material is found in varying shades of greenish blue and is heavily veined black and brown. Research should be done by the painter to make sure they accurately portray the colors of Jadeite found in South America (not N.A. or Asia, there is a difference). Lastly is the body paint, tattoos and scarification found on this character in the movie.

So last Tuesday night while watching the final table of the World Series of Poker, I started painting the bust. For this figure I started with a base color of Burnt Sienna and Burnt Umber mixed straight out of the tube with a Titanium White, Cadmium Yellow Medium mix for my first layer of highlights. What you see here is the flesh as seen at the finish of the wet-on-wet work. Next comes the shadow glazing and spot highlighting that will be done this weekend.

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