Tuesday, August 31, 2010

Masking basics

 For all you toy customizers out there here is some information from the new  Custom Empire blog on masking
Masking is an old painter’s trick dealing with one of the most commonly used masking materials in custom painting, masking tape.Masking is a very basic part of painting any object, however masking often takes a long time to do and is therefore often skipped or done quickly and poorly. Masking however is as important as the painting and when mastered it becomes a valuable tool that will give what ever your painting a truly professional finish.

In the beginning there was only one type of masking tape, crepe (as in crepe paper, pictured above) and takes some time in acquiring the skill to lay it down so that the paint doesn't bleed under it.

These days there are also new types of masking tape available on the market made from plastic called 3M blue Fine Line. It's known for its ability to produce a nicely defined sharp edge (line) for even the most inexperienced painters.
Because this tape is plastic it can be manipulated to go around corners and curves with relative ease but again it will sill take a bit of practice. If you can not get the plastic type tapes regular crepe masking tape works just fine, and has done for a long time. Do not feel that you can not do it because you don’t have the new wiz bang product, focus on your technique first and foremost.
Masking tape comes in varriety of different widths so finding just the right width for your project is pretty easy, it also comes in many different qualities’, however it really pays to use the best quality masking tape available to you. The best masking tape that I know of is 3M and all of there masking tapes are readily available online.
3M also now have a huge range of different masking types for different projects inclding masking tape developed especially for automotive custom painting (very similar to custom toy painting, dont you think?). You can find their full range of products on their website…


3M also have a whole bunch of masking product information, tips and tricks(which in time I will also supply here), product demonstrations and custom sizes shapes and rolls…You can also check your local hardware stores, paint shops/ suppliers or if there is one, a automotive paint specialist.
As lot of the custom painting we do is on surfaces that are not flat, masking tape seems to work the best as it will conform to just about any shape object with out producing a bunch of wrinkles. Wrinkles not only make design lay out difficult but are areas where under spray is likely to occur defeating the purpose of masking the surface to begin with.
Most masking tape is solve proof which is very important as most of the better paints (auto and metallic’s) used in custom painting are usually solvent based. This is important because the solvent (in the paint) will not cause the adhesive to separate from the tape leaving your painting surface a mess or allowing the paint to bleed under the edges of the tape (this is also called “creep”)
This shouldn't happen with a good grade masking tape however it will often happen if you try to use cheaper masking material with solvent based paints.
If you are using water based paints (acrylics) this is not as much of an issue but I would still ere on the side of caution and buy a good quality tape.

If you are not sure about the quality of your tape (as is often the case for me here living in Japan and unable to read the packaging and labels) do a quick test. Lay some tape down on something (ice cream container plastic bottle whatever) and spray/brush/sponge your paint over the edge, just as you would if you were painting your figure... watch as the paint goes on and wait for your paint to dry a bit, then peel and check the edge of the tape and paint… if it is not solvent resistant you will see it almost straight away. This test will only take you a few minutes but I guarantee it will save you tears later down the track.

*Tip Avoid laying your tape down on its side as doing so will allow dirt, dust and shit to collect and tick to the sides of your tape, possibly getting onto the painting surface when you go to use it. It will also produce a fuzzy edge on the masking tape something you want to avoid. One way to avoid this is to keep your tape in a zip lock bag, not only will it keep your tape clean but it will also help keep you organized.

During the custom painting process we often need to mask over areas that we recently painted. For an added measure of safety you can make the tape less likely to pull paint up if you reduce how much tack (stick) the adhesive of the tape has. This is easy to accomplish by simply sticking the tape to your CLEAN (not flannel) shirt or jeans before applying it to your paint surface. You can also take some of the tack (stick) off with your fingers but be aware that if you wish to paint the area being masked again your fingers may leave unwanted oil on the surface. This is a good trick when painting hard surfaces like plastic and metal.

What brands and materials a custom painter devotes his loyalty to, is decided by personal experience and preference.
One more thing you should consider when using masking as a customizing technique is what else can I use, masking in the end is just blocking paint from a particular surface area which could be achieved by using all manner of things.
Like Gmunny who customized this black and silver munny here with rubber bands... Awesome! check out more of there work and munny goodness here...
So most importantly be creative play around, test out a bunch of things and have fun... Oh and if you find a great product or technique come back le us know so we can share it.
Also if you have any cool examples of masking techniques and would like to share email me and we so we can put hem in our gallery...
I hope you found the above information helpful and you can apply it to your next custom painting project. Please book mark this site and come back often as I will add more info as time allows.
Ps: The photos here were found using google image search if you are the artist who painted the awesome red/ white Munny let us know so we can give you credit ad link to our site or photo gallery...
Have an awesome day folks 

Monday, August 30, 2010

Robo Curious

A seriously very cool video from the one and only Bjork... for those of you who are robo-curious you'll love this one.


All is Full of Love

Saturday, August 28, 2010

Jon Burgeran MUNNYWORLD Live Painting

Here is a very cool video of Jon Burgeran customizing a Munny... I feel this video speaks for is self, so I'll say no more.

Check it out and let us know what you think...


Ps: cool colours dont ya think?

Thursday, August 26, 2010

Ninniku Progress Update- I've been framed!!

As promissed  here are some much awaited progress photos of the giant garlic costume I am making for some friends of friends family business, who are now my friends... did you follow that?

The first step of the project was for me to look at the design and talk with the client; we did this in the very professional environment of Monsterosity House with Beer and a BBQ.
At our second meeting I took measurements and then drew the full scale silhouette of the garlicus ginormous on the wall for them to see the size, shape and what have you.(as seen in the last update at Ninniku) also with Beer and BBQ.
 In the past week I bought some PVC pipe... a trick I learnt from a very clever friend of mine(we use to use cane) and proceeded to cut heat and shape the pieces slowly piecing Ninnikun together using the full scale silhouette patten made on the wall at the last BBQ... I also created a side silhouette pattern for the front and back struts and a pattern for the horizontal circular/oval struts. The pattern was constructed from the criteria of the client based on what the costume needs to do and also the reality of keeping, storing and  transporting a costume as big as this. For example we have made this Ninniku oval shaped (side view) so that he can go through doors (sideways) but we have kept his  silhouette(front view) wide and round in keeping with the design and so on and so forth.

Anyway two Mondays ago we did a preliminary fitting and a look see so every one could get a general feel for it... this time we had pizza, awesome apple juice and some cake...yum!
 The next step in the process is to cut shape and bend the rest of the support struts so that the shape has a total of 8 vertical struts...this will make Ninniku superhero strong and give me a good guide line for cutting the foam. While this is a long and boring step it is the most important as the next foam layer relies on the frame for its shape. making sure he is round in shape and not facetted.
Next step foam...

If your hard core you can go and read(Japanese) the Ninniku blog (highly recomended) or you can stay here in safty and comfort for your garlic viewing pleasure. 



First Fitting

Have a great day people!

Wednesday, August 25, 2010

Cool Shit! Pretty Dead Things

Although this is not new information and these colourfully cool but creepy critters have been around for a while I thought they were interesting and would look rather pretty here, so better late than never I say...

These colorful specimen samples are created from a new Japanese technology which has been named “Transparent Specimen technology”.

This new technology renders the skin and muscles of small animals and fish transparent allowing us the ability to see through the body to observe the inner workings of the, blood circulatory system stomach heart and other organs and of coarse its skeleton.
 The biggest benefit of this technology is that scientists are now able see inside the bodies of these creatures with out ever cutting into or opening up the bodies with surgical knife and thusly causing no damage.
 Making these specimens transparent with the aptly named “Transparent Specimen technology” takes several months to half year of bleaching the animal’s body and also a special process to make protein clear...

Following that, special liquids (dyes?) are used to change the colour of the cartilage to blue and the bones to a pink magenta colour.... Hmmm Did anyone else put carnations in coloured (dyed) water in school changing the colour of the veins in the petals…weee…I just had a little flash back I wonder if there were special chemicals in that dye? I remember it being so much fun and magical 
 Anyway although this technology was created for scientist to be able to see the organs of small animals without cutting any part of body, these specimens are now fast becoming popular as interior objects as well… yes that’s right you can in fact buy these and have them in your home.
 I havent been able to find them online but if you live in  or are going to visit Japan(and me) You can buy these colourful specimens here for around 500yen($5) to 5000yen($50) depending on size at Tokyu Hands ... and I also saw these guys at Design Festa this past year. I didn’t realize at the time that you could actually buy them... so guess what I will be purchasing at the November Design Festa this year... ohhh pretty!!


Ps: sorry for the slightly dry writing today guys this was translated from a Japanese website and I did it in a rush...

Have an awesome day!!!

Tuesday, August 24, 2010

Indy Grrrl

Yesterday I was doing some research (procrastinating) on the net and stumbled upon a funky looking blog... it is mostly for chicks but there was some cool movie reviews so after reading a bit I clicked follow and surfed on.

This morning I checked my email and was pleasantly surprised to see indygrrrl had not only clicked follow on my blog but left a lovely comment too.

If there is anything a blog writer likes, even or especially new writers, its… comments!
Those of you who leave comments here and already know me... Know well that I suck at  the whole comments thing, what can i say? I need to get over myself and try harder. I usually read any comments left, then get all panicky because I don’t know what to write back and i dont want to come off looking stupid... so then i dont end up writing anything, how stupid is that!? Anyways that’s beside the point...

The point is however after reading a few articles on indygirrrls blog and her visiting my blog and leaving a nice message, I have learnt a lesson from all this... Just do it!(thank you nike)  Just write something! This doesn’t mean going to someone’s blog and writing some random comment like "Scooby Doo where are you?" just for the fuck of it (although I would find that somewhat amusing) but it also doesn’t mean it has to be the most in-depth earth shattering deep and meaningful Woo-Woo statement either... (Note: to self second half of statement applies to me.)
Take the few minutes it takes and encourage the comments culture and connection with others that is so rewarding. Now im sure this isn’t ground breaking news to most people but for me the light bulb flicked on... and I think the most amusing part of all this, is I teach language and what is language?  Communication.

So I have to say im always absolutly thrilled to get any comments and realized today that comments are communication, connection and most importantly contact with others... and that’s why bloggers blog to communicate, connect and make contact. What a revelation...he he he

So thank you indygirrrl for an unexpected little epiphany!

Anyway thats enough yammering on from me... Indy girrrl’s blog is full of fun stuff as is her etsy shop... On her blog she writes about many things and while nail polish and lip gloss don’t do it for me, just sayin.... she also writes about music, food, fashion, art and does some really kick ass movie reviews. I think we have the same taste in movies just so ya know...

Her etsy shop IndyGrrrlProductions is full of brightly coloured things, jewelery for the most part but she also makes up Mystery Boxs...  check out her shop to solve the mystery

Now I could go into her style but personally I think it is much better for you to hop on over to her blog and have a look... and I also challenge you to do something nice today leave a comment over there , Im sure it would make her day as I know it would make mine and bleave it or not probably yours too!

as always... Enjoy!

Green Apple - Necklace

Craft Bear Earrings

Graffiti  Necklace

Mystery Box No. 66

Have a great day kids!

Thursday, August 19, 2010

Only you - Portishead

Hey everyone!

Just wanted to pop in and say Hi, I noticed we have a couple of new followers too so a big welcome to Love b and Monsterforge

As im sure you all remember (because I think I may have mentioned it once or twice) Monsterosity has been very lucky to be a part of an exhibition at Art Box International gallery and from all reports all went well.

As promissed I have some photos to share with you but I havent had a moment spare to put them up here with Ninniku taking up all of my spare time... speaking of which there are new photos up on the Ninniku blog so you should hope on over and check em out.
Ill also give you guys a progress report here in the next week(ish) as well as an Artbox report. Oh, and that box I got in the mail...I almost forgot about the mystery box.

In the mean time here is another song from me favorate band, Yep! You guessed it...

Portishead- Only You

Have a kick ass awesome day folks!

Saturday, August 14, 2010


Just recently I found and have been watching an internet show called Toy Break, this is a very cool show that airs once a week and is all about my favorite thing in the world toys!
I also decided to join their forum where there are lots of cool friendly people talking toy stuff...I highly recommend a visit if toys are your thing in any way.

Anyway whilst watching this show George and Ayleen were sent some one of a kind custom toys by one of there forum members Monsterforge

Monster Forge hand sculpted figurines called "Kawaiiju" ("Kawaii" is the Japanese word used to describe anything cute, and "Kaiju" means mysterious beast-- so this is a blending of the two!). Being Japanese in influence I personally was instantly interested.
Each monster was given a name, a hand drawn header with the name and a profile of each monster on the back and all of the pieces also included a hand drawn card. Boy what a lot of work!

The toys were blind-bagged in little paper outer-baggies, so no one had any idea of who would get what... but part of the fun of the blind bagging is the "Golden" Ticket! If you were the lucky dog to get the baggy with the magical Kawaiiju Golden Ticket you could send it back to claim your very own for Big Daddy (and who the hell doesn’t want their own big daddy?), the biggest Kawaiiju of them all!

To make this whole thing even more awesome, MonsterForge shared his entire process from sketches to casts on the Toy Break/ Octobertoys forum and answered any questions people had... what a cool dude!!!
I beleive this Kawaiiju series was his first series which Im sad to say I missed out on but lets all hope he does a series 2… I’ll keep an eye out and let you guys know…

Lastly I  have to say that I think this is really really cool, I don’t think there is anything better than getting your very own toy that no one else in the world has, in this world of mass production owning your very own one of a kind hand crafted piece really is a special thing...
Well done Monsterforge!!


You can check out more of Monsterforge's gear and or stalk him on his blog
Or check out his art on devient art

Wednesday, August 11, 2010

What the hell is a Ninniku anyway?

As I mentioned in the last post life has been busy… and thus the crazyness continues…

 I don’t know about you but I think one of the coolest (and possibly most terrifying) things in the world is seeing me on someone else’s blog with a whole bunch of stuff written in Japanese undoubtedly about well you know who. Ok ok so its possible they are also talking about our giant Ninniku (garlic) project but lets just indulge my ego on this one it makes for a better story…

Any way I have to tell you that when I saw the photos of yours truly on the Ninniku (garlic) blog I was so excited I had a little crazy laugh erupt from me (given I’m a little drunk)…and then I was like "Oh my god people will see me… Ahhhhh!!!" But all is well because a few sips (gulps) of a very nice sake and I am back to giggle pops.

If you are new as I know a couple of you are WELCOME!!! (Did I just yell?) or missed my post a few months back I am making a giant garlic (ninniku) costume for some friends of friends who have a garlic(ninniku) business.

We had a BBQ a couple weeks ago and got stuck into it…we (I) also did some work… If you’re interested and why the fuuuu… fatuties, wouldn’t you be? You can see a couple photos of, well me in action… click on over to http://ninnic.jp/times/ and check it out.
 Now because I was working/drunk at the last Ninniku (garlic) meting/BBQ I failed to take photos so seriously you’ll have to pop over to keep up with whats going on… now now don’t freak out because its all in Japanese, you only have to pop over, have a looksee at the pickies and then come back here to the safety of Monsterosity English

As for progress I promiss (although I guarantee nothing if beer is involved) to take photos at the next Ninniku (garlic) meeting, which looks like it will be next weekend… which reminds me I have work to do!!!

Have a great day everyone!!!

 Ps: I taught you guys a new Japanese word today, can anyone tell me what it is?

 Pps: if you think you might like to try some of the Ninniku (garlic) sauce flick me an email, my people will talk to your people an we'll T something up

Tuesday, August 10, 2010

Just around the corner...

Life is busy, crazy, up and down, fast and slow and sometimes sideways....with so much going on all the time it is easy to forget where we are, and the good things seem to get over looked, disappearing in plain sight...

Its an old adage but sometimes it really is important to stop and smell the roses, celebrate the successes we have had, look at where we are now and where we have come from... open our eyes and see.

It may sound funny but I often forget I am an aussie guy living in a foreign land...it all gets lost in the ebb and flow of wakening up, going to work, paying the bills and trying to build an empire of my own...

Today on my way home my mind was still and my eyes were open and as I walked up the hill I noticed something that I always new was there and see most days...but today was somehow different and I remembered...

 I live in Japan and that’s pretty cool!

What is there that you pass by or over look, what will you see if you quiet your mind and really open you eyes?

What is around your corner? That reminds you of where you are and that life after all is pretty darn good!

Have a great day peeps!!!

Wednesday, August 4, 2010

Monsterosity Work in progress

Just another quick update on the toys for Art Box... again its 1am and there is that work thingy I have to attend to tomorrow...

This one still has a long way to go but slow and steady wins the race...or so they tell me.

Hope you like her!

Have a great day everyone!!!

Tuesday, August 3, 2010

Work in progress Shinigami- God of Death

Hey guys!

I had some progress over the week end so once again I thought Id give you an update....sadly I dont have time to write a whole bunch of stuff cos its 12:30am and I really have to get some sleep...got that work thingy I have to do tomorrow after all.

I took these photos in a bit of a hurry tonight so Im sorry for the poor quality but what are ya gonna do...
 Any who introducing...

  Shinigami God(dess) of Death...

Have a great day People!!!

Sunday, August 1, 2010

Work in progress Shinigami- God of Death

Hey Peeps

This is the last peice I am working on for the Art Box international  show that I have mentioned maybe once or twice... once again this is a work in progress...I have only just cut this lovely lady out and will be very busy this weekend sewing her together. She is based on the Grim Reaper or as known in Japan Shinigami.

There is still more detail to come, her face, hood and cloak and a few tiny little skull details....

Will post more pics soon....

Have a great week end!!!