Sunday, 7 December 2014

Black Board Guitar

I first saw this guitar poking out the top of my local wood recycling bank, I just had to take it! I decided I would give this battered guitar a new life. Here is what I did:

First I took a look at the damage. Superficial damage was pretty bad, however technical elements like the pickups were working fine:

I first sanded the whole guitar so when I came to painting the paint would definitely soak into the surface of the wood and not peel or chip off.

I then used fine surface polyfilla to fill in the dents and holes. I went over the whole guitar filling in all the little gaps. I would advise using a strong flat tool to do this, try to level off the polyfilla as much as you can as this will save you sanding time later.

I then sanded the polyfilla so it sat flush with the body of the guitar. I used a block of wood and fine surface sandpaper (P 400). I didn’t use my hands to do this as it wouldn't have achieved an even surface.

I took off the scratch plate so I could paint the body easily. I wanted my guitar to be unusual so I painted the body using black chalkboard paint (Don’t ask my why!). I wasn’t sure how it would come out, after about three coats I thought the effect was pretty awesome!

I then took to taking off the machine heads and replacing them with ones I took from another guitar. If you are buying tuning pegs make sure you buy them in the right direction, you will need right pegs for right handed guitars and left pegs for left handed guitars. Make sure the holes in the head of the guitar are the right size for the tuning pegs, I shoved my new tuning pegs through holes that were too small which resulted in stiff unusable tuning pegs, I had to take them out and drill new holes. (Please don't make this mistake”! It was time consuming and frustrating!)

I then painted the neck with a matte white paint. I bought a set of new string and threaded them through. Watch this video if you not sure how to string a guitar:
I ruined a new string in my ignorance!

Here is the finished guitar:

Wednesday, 29 October 2014

Robt. Burns Cigar Box

This is a prop I made for a show called "The Storm" It took a while, but I thoroughly enjoyed all the detailed work. Here's how I did it: 

I began by researching different designs for the cigar box. I settled on an earlier design as the brand “Robt. Burns” was clearly displayed on the front and easy for audiences to read.

I then began to take measurements for the box. I decided to make mine a little smaller than the original so it would fit between other props on set. I drew a blueprint and then cut out the design using 6mm plywood.

After Cutting I assembled the box using a combination of wood glue and super glue for optimal strength. For the lid I used gaffer tape so it could be opened and closed easily.

I then covered the inside of the box with canvas to give the box a luxurious feel.

For the outside of the box I needed the signature “Robt Burns” tape to decorate the sides of the box. For this I found an image of the tape and using Photoshop cut out a section of the tape from the image and then patched it together to create a line of tape. I then printed this out on canvas paper and lined the box with the tape.

I then needed to create the label for the inside of the lid. Unfortunately all the pictures of the labels I found appeared too pixelated when printed to a larger scale. To Remedy this I used photoshop to create the text that I needed for the label and patched together various images to create my replica version of the label.

Creating Text:

Adding Text to Picture of Robt. Burns:

Creating Circular emblem..

Finished Label:

After gluing the label to the inside of the lid I then began work on the top of the box.

As shown earlier I wanted this design for the top:

To achieve this effect I used some fablon vinyl that I had leftover from another project. I used oak and pine for the two shades of wood needed. I cut the pieces individually so they wouldn't sit on top of each other.   

The next step was to add the golden Robt. Burns writing. For this I printed out the logo and traced the letters onto the box using carbon paper.

I then painted over the outline with golden paint.

The last step was to apply the golden edging around the lid. I used some chain link line stickers for this effect.

And it's done! Here are some extra pictures:


Sunday, 19 October 2014

The Wishing Tree

My First Project! I began by searching the net for some inspiration, the tree needed to come apart easily so it could be transported. I decided I would use ply as it is strong and fairly light weight. I used 4 sheets of 9mm Ply. I then cut out two pieces for the trunk, I cut the first sheet with a slit taken out of the top and the second sheet had a slit taken from the bottom so the two pieces would slide and lock together. For the branches I used a similar method.
 I then used white matte paint to cover the whole tree. I then decorated the tree with blue lights.

The Beginning

My first post, October 19th 2014. Today I am starting out on a great expedition, from this day on wards I will map my progress. This blog will be dedicated to documenting the life of a prop maker (will be prop maker). Each project I complete I will document here, writing on the skills I learnt and the errors I made. Right Now right here I am at the very beginning of my education, every post I make, every project I complete will take me a step further to where I want to go.