Low Budget Fabrication

I am planning on producing a micro budget feature here sometime soon, and I wanted to possibly do a full size suit for the creature in the film. It would be a Bigfoot style creature on a limited budget. How much did it cost some of you to create a finished suit and do you think it could be done a low budget? Would it be better to go for a miniature and use forced perspective?
Thanks guys and gals!

Comments

  • Chris EllerbyChris Ellerby Los Angeles Admin
    Hi Tyler,

    Full suits can be expensive, but you can cut a lot of the cost down by doing the work yourself, so the only cost is materials.  Finding good fur will likely be the hardest challenge, as longer faux fur tends to be expensive.   Most of the fur used in the industry comes from https://www.nftech.com/ and they occasionally have leftovers from larger runs that they sell at a discount.  That said, sourcing enough for a full suit and doing so on a budget may be rough.  If you scour google enough you can find some fake fur that is a bit longer and may work for you with a bit of dye and styling.

    How you shoot the suit also matters.  If you plan your shots so the character is only seen in wide shots and in controlled lighting (aka dimly lit or backlit) you can make an inexpensive character look good.  Show as little as possible, keep the character (or camera) moving, and light it right.  Think of how they shot the creature in Alien.

    /Chris
  • edited April 30
    Thanks, Chris! I am going to contact the company you mention ASAP! I found some material at the hobby lobby: https://www.hobbylobby.com/Crafts-Hobbies/Basic-Crafts/Craft-Fur/2-Tone-Light-Brown-Long-Pile-Faux-Fur/p/29281
    or this:
    I might be able to get away using some of this if I need to really do it on the cheap. I also could repurpose one of those furry star wars wookiee costume suites and take the fur parts off of that.
    Any idea how much material would be needed? Thanks for the advice!
    -Tyler



  • Chris EllerbyChris Ellerby Los Angeles Admin
    Not exactly sure how much you would need, it depends on the size of the character, and you'll want plenty of extra for safety.  You could mock up the entire character using a cheap fabric like muslin then measure up all your pieces.  You'll need to make templates in something like muslin anyway.

    I'd try and find the longest fibers you can on the fur so you can matt it up and get a good natural look.

    /Chris
  • Thanks, that's very helpful! One more question. What product should I use when matting hair to get that natural look? I'm watching a couple of classes on hair, but none mention a human-sized hairy character and what product (like dye or a matting component). At least so far, I haven't finished the class yet. Thanks again!
  • Chris EllerbyChris Ellerby Los Angeles Admin
    For matting hair you can use things like hair spray, hair gel, or gafquat. Depends on the effect you are going for.  I'm sure there are also other good options.

    /Chris
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