Tuesday, January 31, 2012

CUSTOMIZER SPOTLIGHT #18: SILLOF

This summer, Sillof ran out of room in his workshop and was looking to sell some of his custom action figures. I have always been a huge fan of his work, so when I found out that I actually had a chance to own one of his action figures I jumped at the chance. I loved Sillof's various renditions of Chewbacca, and I was really happy when I was able to acquire his 1st Lt. Chuck Backer from his World War line of figures. It's the only 6" custom action figure that I own, but I totally love it. It's one of my favorite pieces.


1st Lt. CHUCK BACKER
created by
Sillof


This 6" custom action figure created by Sillof can now be found in my personal collection.



1st Lt. Chuck Backer was created in 2008 and was featured in Sillof's Star Wars 1942 line.


Sillof is pronouced "Si" (like Psi or Sci-fi ) and "llof" (like cough or pilaf) and no it is not his real name. He's a high school history and film teacher. He has no formal art training, other then art classes in middle school. If something turns out good, he says it is just from years of practice, or luck. He started building custom figures and dioramas when he was a kid. He opened a website in 1999. It was then called "The Wookie's Workshop" and "The Wook's Workshop". before he had his current website www.Sillof.com.

His work has been featured online on blogs, websites, and online news services, newspapers at the local, national and international levels, in books and magazines nationally and world wide. His customs have even been featured on television in local news, national news, cable, and overseas, in independent films as props, costumes, and set designs. His action figures have been publicly displayed at contests, fairs, & conventions including 3 of the 4 Star Wars Celebrations. Most recently his work has been seen in Toyfare and Star Wars Insider Magazines.

Unlike other customizers, Sillof has gotten away from faithfully creating characters and has begun to redesign these figures in various time periods or aesthetics. He creates these works out of admiration for their original designs, but rather than just recreate another person's work he enjoys putting his own spin on classic characters, as well as creating his own new characters. This is all just the creations of his spare time. He starts with a general concept or direction (samurai for example) Then he brainstorms what he wants. This is mostly done in his brain. Then he makes a list of adjectives and descriptions of the character, maybe a little back story and the physical elements he wants to include in the figure.

He then begins the actual construction. He usually works on all of them at once. So while the glue or paint is drying on one he works on another. Some parts of the figures are recycled from existing toys. They are cut off and glued together. Sometimes he sculpts over the old toy parts. Sometimes he dremels down the part using it more as an armature and sculpts over it. Often times, he will sculpt an entire new piece. Some of the figures are completely built from scratch. It really just depends on what he wants, needs, and what he has on hand in his various drawers of parts.

He sculpts using a 2 part epoxy polymer sculpting compound called Apoxie by Aves Studios. You mix 2 parts together and then in few hours it is hard a rock. It is not as easy to work with as sculpey but more then makes up for it with it's durability. Sillof says it gets easier to work with practice.




You can see more custom action figures created by Sillof here:

http://www.sillof.com/



We also recommend checking out his "Toy Wars" film series where he brings his action figures and dioramas to life at this link here:

http://www.sillof.com/Toywars.htm





Our CUSTOMIZER SPOTLIGHT post was featured on Ed Johnson Presents: NERD NEWS.





Thursday, January 26, 2012

TTT Added to "Customs I Wish I Owned"


TTT's dad collected Star Wars figures in the 70's-80's, him & his brother used to modify their toys as kids, usually with a bench vice for Hot Wheels and a lighter for their model planes/cars.

In high school he started getting into model cars and got pretty serious about them for awhile, but eventually got out of it.

In 1998 he became a serious toy collector, everything from HotWheels/NASCAR, Spawn, Star Wars, GI Joe and Transformers.

In 2007, some toys had fallen off of a shelf, everything was OK except for a Transformers Alternators Smokescreen figure, he was busted in half at the waist. TTT replaced the figure but now had this busted useless piece...what to do ? He thought..."Hey, I used to paint model cars the same size as this !...maybe I can customize this, huh?" But being busted in half, he wasn't about repaint the whole thing so he came up with adding some battle damage...why not - nothing to lose. So he started one day, just went at it, melted some bits, dremeled off chunks, it was fun and it worked rather well. Soon, he had to do another...and another...and...well the rest is history.

He started collecting G.I. Joe 25th in 2008 which lead to customizing them shortly after and here we are today.

TTT now specializes in pretty much anything, models, figures...cars, statues...nice clean and shiny to rusty, burned and trashed & zombiefied. Most know him for battle damage & zombie type work. 2012 marks 5 years of TTT "torturing your toys".

Ever wonder what the zombie apocalypse would like like in the Star Wars universe. Check out these customs. The paint work is just phenomenal.


Tuesday, January 24, 2012

The Old Republic Customizing Contest



Imperial Shipyards, Yakface and Echo Base News Combine for TOR Customs Contest!

In tribute of Mercury Art Studios to boot! This could be the first Across Sites Custom Contest. The idea is simple make some type of The Old Republic Custom, but all entries much have some sort of "Evolutions" theme and you will need three customs to enter. Entries aren't due until April 30th. Click on through to read all the great details and see what the prizes are!





Wednesday, January 18, 2012

R5-P8 - Pirate Droid


R5-P8 was an R5-series astromech droid produced by Industrial Automaton. It was an assassin droid of Hondo Ohnaka's pirate gang during the Clone Wars. It had a blaster pistol fixed on its head, so it could serve both repairs and security purposes.


Dad created this custom droid that appeared in Season 1 of the Clone Wars "The Gungan General" episode just by repainting the new Vintage R5-D4 action figure that can be found now on pegs everywhere. As soon as the figure came out, Dad knew he wanted to try and make this droid even though there are rumors circulating that he may find his way to a proper release by Hasbro down the road. Dad used the gun from the Toys R' Us Nikto Guard and modified it by cutting pieces off some guns in our fodder bin. Nothing too crazy was done to make this one. What you see is what you get.



R5-P8











Before and after.



Dad's R5-P8 was featured in Yakface's Mega Spotlight.



Dad's R5-P8 was featured on the front page of Imperial Shipyards.


Saturday, January 14, 2012

MANDALORIAN TWI'LEK with SPEEDER BIKE VIDEO








MANDALORIAN TWI'LEK with SPEEDER BIKE
created by Darth Daddy & Elias








MANDALORIAN TWI'LEK with SPEEDER BIKE VIDEO featured on the front page of Imperial Shipyards.





Friday, January 13, 2012

Yakfinities #43 - Cantina Denizens






For all you fans of the Original Trilogy, this is the Yakfinities Customizing Challenge you’ve been waiting for – Cantina Denizens! Entries don’t necessarily have to be “on-screen” characters seen in the classic cantina from Mos Eisley, but are certainly encouraged!

Whether you’re a crafty customizing veteran or are new to this realm of the hobby, Yakface invites you to join in and take part by creating your own custom figure this round. And as always, regardless of talent level, they’ll be giving away some free figures to three random winners!



"Smuggler Ship and Smuggler Team" Entry Photo and Video

Well the contest has wrapped up and voting is going to begin soon. This project was a lot of fun to do, but even more fun to play with. Dad packed a lot of cool features into this vehicle to make it not only a cool smuggler vehicle, but a playset too, complete with a mini speeder bike and secret smuggler storage. The part I love best is the engine room that Dad created. Dad used the Storm Hawks Condor, as the base piece for the vehicle and embellished the vehicle with parts of the Spinmaster Dark Ace's Talon Switchblade Elite and Spinmaster Aerrow's Skimmer III Ultra Storm Hawks toys to make this spaceship until he finished the ship off with a few guns from some G.I. Joe fodder.

When Dad and I set out to create our smuggler teams that included the smuggler with their mate, we decided to make half of each others team. Dad made an Ewok smuggler and I made him a monkey lizard for his mate. On the other smuggler team, I created an Arkanian and Dad created her Twi'lek mate. It was a great way to put a crew together for the new ship Dad made and stay within the rules of the contest. To create the action figures Dad and I agreed we'd each do a painted figure and one kitbash figure so we would have time to meet the deadline.

Dad sculpted a Vintage Wicket and added some accessories to make Pop the Ewok. Once the build was complete, Dad painted "Pop" in Aurebesh on the back of the Ewok's jacket. Then Dad created a simple kitbash using the body of a Comic Pack Jarael topped with the head of a Lyn Me that he modified with a Dremel to finish his second figure.

I repainted the monkey lizard that came with a Hondo Ohnaka and glued on a piece of a G.I. Joe gun barrel to make the robotic eye, but then broke the kitbash rule when I had to paint the wrists and neck of a G.I. Joe Helix figure to match the head of the modified Comic Pack Jarael.


Smuggler Ship and Smuggler Team
created by Elias and Darth Daddy




BACKSTORY:

Pop the Ewok grew up a slave on Coruscant. He was kidnapped as a baby and was kept as a pet until he got older and the family lost interest. Old enough to set out on his own, Pop hit the streets and never looked back. He befriended a monkey lizard with a robotic eye named Tiet Pescow and together they worked at a space ship repair shop until one day a golden opportunity presented itself. A customer came to have his K-37 Starstreak racing ship serviced but was struck dead by an out of control speeder. Pop and Tiet got the vessel home while their employer was at lunch and quit their jobs later that afternoon. They saw the ship as their ticket to riches and that night decided to become smugglers. Pop flew the craft and his monkey lizard mechanic/mate Tiet was often found tinkering around in the engine room of the vessel. The ship is so rare that very few spacers know the punch the spacecraft packs, but these two knew they had something special and they quickly rose to prominence in smuggling circles and throughout the crime underworld.

Pop and Tiet are currently being kept company by an Arkanian Offshoot smuggler named Daala and her Twi'lek mate, Maari former slaves under what was left of the remnants of The Crucible. Both had risen through the ranks of the organization and bore the tattoos of the order. The Flames of the Crucible were a runic language usually tattooed on the members of The Crucible, an organization of slavers. The tattoos held different meanings and could be found on the arms, chest, and even face of anyone within the ranks of the Crucible. The Flames tattooed on the face of Daala were specific to the minders and internal security forces who had, through talent or deed, become a permanent part of the Crucible. They were unique to them, whereas the general populace didn't have them, nor did the minions in specialized roles. Tattoos on the arms of members of the Crucible like the ones found on Maari were usually a reference to military insignia, representing rank and the particular group of trainees a minder is assigned to. Some members, such as Daala, were known to bear the Flames of the Crucible on their faces. In Daala's case the tattoos actually meant "Protector," the name that was given to her by the slaves of the Crucible. These two escaped The Crucible and made a very successful living as smugglers. That was until recently when they had their spaceship stolen. Now they are earning some fast credits traveling with Pops providing security on the riskier ventures he has been involved with recently. They are hoping they can earn enough to get another ship. The four have found that they make one great team working together and serious thought is being given to keeping this team together by all.


Smuggler Ship and Smuggler Team
VIDEO







WIP Pics




Our Smuggler video was featured on the front page of Imperial Shipyards.




CAFN: Episode 21 - Speedlee's Customs



Paul Speedlee


Another fun episode from Custom Action Figure News. We love that the reach of this show is global. It truly represents the scope of the hobby. This time, Lucasclones and Tamer interviewed Paul Speedlee from Singapore. We checked out his work and it's worth taking a look. Listen to the interview and check out his links.


Head on over to his Facebook page and give the guy a like, he has earned it!

http://www.facebook.com/pages/Speedleescustoms/132585396811079


You must go to his Blog to check it out:

http://speedleescustoms.blogspot.com/



CAFN GALLERY