mask problem solving

edited January 2019 in Makeup Effects
Hey guys i am working on SHREK this year, the budget is not allowing me to use silicon , so using casting latex, they what a three piece mask so the face is on show with added elements. What is the best was to cast this mold? at the moment it has been molded on a crystical rock mold face cast, the monster clay to create a sock effect mask with shrek ears attached, How do i block out the face to rubber cast this ?? thanks Amanda 


  • Hi, have any pics? Need more visual info to help you.
  • Todd WatsonTodd Watson ✭✭
    edited January 2019
    Hey Amanda,
    I'd use a 2-part ultracal stone mold of your sculpt to make a full head cowl that has the Shrek ears, top of the head to just above the brow line, to under the performer's chin with the large Shrek double chin and neck/chest down into the costume, leaving a hole you'll cut out for the actors face after casting. Then make a separate stone mold for the nose. These two pieces should give you a full Shrek look, but still leave enough of the actor's face to show expression.

    After opening and cleaning your molds, and in the case of the cowl, mold strapping it back together, you'll fill them with casting latex. Let them sit (or dwell) full for anywhere from 1/2 an hour to several hours, then pour off the liquid latex back into a container you can seal to reuse. You may need gallons for a full cowl. Then turn the molds upside down over a bucket or grate for 20 minutes to let the excess latex drain off and help avoid thick spots.

    Let the latex cure (or dry) until it changes from white to a light yellow. The longer the liquid latex stays in the mold, the thicker your pieces will be, and the drying time will get longer, sometimes days (!). Putting a fan or gentle heat on the mold can speed up cure time, but...

    Latex will shrink as it dries, so make sure it's thin enough to get over your actors head and move well, but not so thin it will tear as you demold or rip in normal use. The nose latex may only need minutes in the mold, since it should be very thin to not have a thick, visible edge when glued on.  Cut down couch cushion foam or use panty hose full of cotton batting or polyfill to help the chin and neck hold their shape as the actor moves.

    It may take a time or two to get it right, as temperature, humidity and your casting latex will affect the outcome of your final piece, so don't get discouraged. Make sure to use baby powder to cover the inside of your latex castings before you open the molds, freshly cured latex will stick to itself if you don't. 

    These are the basic concepts, and Timothy Martin's great mask making course here on SWSCA will take you thru all the steps I just described, as well as how to seam, patch and paint your cowl piece.

    Good Luck!


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