Radical! Creating a totally awesome 90's Donatello!

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Grimwood

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I do a lot of charity work with my character Rowsby Woof, a wascally wily dog with an acerbic wit and snappy banter for children's charities and decided this year to do a throwback project: Donatello, via 1990's TMNT.

The biggest challenges of course would be the mask and shell. The iconic look is very specific to the films and easily recognizable to anyone remotely familiar with the green heroes. I'm happy to say both projects are already underway!

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The concept drawing

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Humble beginnings

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The base

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Outside completed! Still have trimming and rounding to do, as well as proper placement and gluing the bits into place. I plan to create another base, glue the two edges together using a stiff cardboard backing, then stuff the interior with some sort of stuffing. That should give it that rounded shape. Then, I'll create a strapping system to hold it on my back like a backpack.

Lots of work to do!

Thanks for viewing.
 

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Grimwood

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Basic shell complete! Have to add some trim, add detail to the plates, plastidip, paint then gloss coat it. Got a lot done today!

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I salute my old Land's End backpack I've had for over 29 years. Used it in highschool and it was in great shape even today! Just need to attach it after I get the whole thing painted.

Tomorrow I'll be finishing up the breast plate.
 

Grimwood

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Breast plate is done, created some side panels. Still need some darned glue sticks. Already have the buckles to connect it all.

My spandex pants arrived the other day so i will probably start on building my muscle suit next.
 

Grimwood

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Coming together. Tomorrow I will finish up the shell (tabs around the outside edge) trimming, shaping and painting. I'm fairly happy with the breast plate, still need to connect the cod piece. Need to start working on that darned muscle suit. I'm a little nervous, but I felt that way about the shell too. Need to just get on with it.

Plan to be a little overly muscley... I think Donatello would forgive me.
 

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Grimwood

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shell1.jpg

So here it is, straps attached. It was hard taking a selfie and get the shell in the photo, but the basic idea is there.

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By the way... furries do ruin everything. I think once the mask is on and I add the muscley body, this will work as far as placement is concerned.


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Side view. I may be doing a little angle correction, depending on the size of the head.

Breast plate is complete! Need to figure out the best way to attach it.
 

Grimwood

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Sprayed an aerosol based polyurethane stain over the shell to gloss it up a bit. Worked great! Almost looks wet. Need to do several more coats, but I'm liking the way it's turning out.
 

Grimwood

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Started on the hands. The seams came together beautifully using contact cement, The 1/4" foam is very flexible.

This is a tough part of the project, flexibility speaking. This option has potential, but I think it might be a little too limiting. I'll finish one, and if I like the finished product, I'll keep it. The fingernails are just drawn on for perspective. I plan to use something similar to a thin plastic for the real thing, painted tan.

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wholesomejoe

Active Member
looking good, I'm also doing a Donnie suit. Question, how do you plan to cover up the straps from the back pack? I was thinking about going the same route with my shell. I went down to the goodwill and bought a jansport backpack for 3 bucks to cut up, but then I got home and realized.. "Hey, how will I not see these straps?"
 

Grimwood

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Sorry about the delay in response. I never got notification that anyone posted!

Anyhow, Someone had posted in another topic that you can create a torso that fits over the straps. Or, you can camouflage them. I like the torso over the straps idea, I may go that route. In the meantime, here are a few more photos of the work in progress. Another option is to skip the backpack all together and get yourself some straps that click together. You can then fashion a harness of sorts that is hidden under the breast plate. Let me know which way you decide to go.

I was going to do a complete sculpt of the foot out of clay, create a mold and cast it but had started the foam version and wanted to see how it would look with liquid latex with acrylic paint over 1/4" foam and a shoe.

This is with 2 coats of latex and paint over foam. So far, the results are promising. I have a lot of work left to do on the foot itself, but this is going to save me a lot of time and money, and was fairly easy to do. I am cutting out pieces of plastic which I will paint a greenish yellow for the toenails.

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Here's another view. The latex is really filling in the holes in the foam giving it an interesting surface. Like I said, however, a lot of work remains on the foot itself, along with blending the top of the foot into the calf. At this point, the calf muscles will have to be massive to blend, but the turtles have faily large gastrocnemius muscles anyway, so it will work out in the end.The fact that they also have long feet also works because the shoe is 12 inches and the toes extend another 5 inches beyond that.


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The bottom of the foot will be trimmed, and a pad of sorts will be applied to the sole. In the end, it should be seamless.
 

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Grimwood

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how will the body of your suit cover the backpack straps?
I think it's based on a half torso Idea that's cut higher up on the back. I haven't figured this part out quite yet. I'll probably devise my own strap system that works for me.

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Started over on the feet. I think they are turning out pretty well. The first foot was way smaller than the second, so I had to re-wrap the first one. Looks a little better now. Now, to paint! Then, I gotta get started on the legs. I'm going to make a foot collar that covers the top of the foot. It will blend the foot and leg together... hopefully.
 
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Grimwood

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Need to get some better photos. Selfies on the half shell are incredibly difficult to get just right! Started the muscle suit, results of which are shown in this poor photo. Sorry, I'll get someone to take a better picture next time.

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Part of my issue with the chest here is it's too big. I need to trim it down otherwise I will be one wide turtle once the breastplate is attached. The excellent turtle mask was created by a very skilled craftsman on the board here at the RPF. His name is Sync.
 

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Grimwood

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Just got back from Boston. What an awesome city! But, on my return, jumped right back into the suit.

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So this is the Left foot... or maybe the right... guess I should label them. This is pre-latex. I have some more trimming to do on the seams and will fill what's left with latex. Also am going to trim down the nails before I paint them yellow-ish. The flexibility is pretty good so far. Will add on some muscles in the back (gastrocs and other fills ins) to flesh it out a bit.

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I actually ran out of foam... just ordered some more. It's so cheap! And versatile, and flexible. I'm not sure it will be all that breathable, however. Time will tell. I imagine with all the latex applied, it's going to be very hot. I know the mask is going to be an issue as far as ventilation goes. Need to do some adjustments.
 

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Grimwood

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feets1.jpg

Well, here they are pre-latex. A bit more trimming, filing of the nails and blending them a bit, latex paint of dark green, yellowish nails, then highlight with an airbrush.

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This one looks a bit washed out because I had to take pics myself, in the dark, due to the shadow. I think I should use a shoe horn to get these things on and off. Walking in them isn't too bad. They are made from very breathable, light running shoes
 

nbehling

Active Member
Looks great so far! I am following this build close. what did you do to get the dome shape of the shell?
 

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