I was explaining the mane rerooting process on geekcraft, so I thought I should take some photos of that as I go. Each of those bundles is one-third of a hank of pony hair, cut lengthwise (i.e., a full hank is the same thickness as one of those bundles, but three times the length). Usually one hank is enough for the mane and the tail, but because of how much Liz Ten's hair curls I have to start it out longer than normal to make it look right.
The separated strands at the bottom of the picture are the other third, which I prepped earlier today. Pull a tiny lock of hair away from the main section, knot it in the middle, and cover the knot in glue. These are the plugs that will go into the holes on the back of the pony's head to form the mane, and bundle takes me about an hour to prep. This is the first reason that rerooting is tedious. We'll get to the others as I get there.
Liz's back end, with the first two layers of sculpting done and her tail in. Normally hair is the very last thing I do on a pony, but my hairing method requires that the head be unattached. When there's a portion of the sculpting that will either cover the neck seam or prevent the plastic around it from flexing, though, the hair has to be completed first so the head can get reattached and sculpted around. Once her head is back on, I'll start sculpting her shirt and her guns, and touch up those flaky bits of paint around her neckline.
And talking of her head, here it is. This picture is a little blurry, but it's a good example of how much of the life in a custom comes from getting the eyes right. You're seeing a real reflection and an artificial one there; a couple dots of white paint to brighten her expression, and a good coating of high-gloss sealant to give her eyes the right wet look.
And she just wouldn't be Liz Ten without her mask, would she? Molded perfectly to her face, just like the one in the show. It's removable, obviously, but it holds itself in place when it's on.
And now we get to the crazy one. The attacking Angel is my first repose, which involves carving a pony up and resculpting it in a different configuration, usually with the help of an underframe of wire or foil. Pony Bob here has lost his back legs entirely. He will have wings eventually, but I want to get his forelegs attached before I start making their armature so I've got something to keep him more balanced.
The forelegs will be reposed in a more aggressive posture. These two legs are facing different directions, but other than that they were identical before I cut the top one in half and gave it a new joint. And don't let the uneven color on the clay fool you; it's been buffed and smoothed and sanded until perfectly smooth to the touch and once it's apinted it will look and feel like it was manufactured that way.
Oh God, the face. Bob started out as what collectors refer to as a "Donkey pose" pony, a mold that the majority of the community hates because it looks so dopey. Slightly less so now, don't you think? So far Bob's had his brow ridges redefined and his ears chopped off and flattened backwards, and I'm not done with him yet. If this pony doesn't give me nightmares, I will have failed in my tribute.