[FINISHED] Monster Photoreceptor Cell, now accepting orders

Discussion in 'Resonators Romper Room' started by moonbeams, May 18, 2014.

  1. moonbeams

    moonbeams Toy Prince

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    [FINISHED] Monster Photoreceptor Cell, now accepting orders
    Update, project now completed:
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    Hello everyone.

    I love cells and wanted a model of a rod cell for display. I couldn't find one, so inspired by the Balzac Skullman (my only soft vinyl when I started this project 6 months ago), I started sculpting my own.
    [​IMG]

    Then I got really inspired from the Kaiju stuff here, so I decided to make it into a monster rod cell. I turned the cilium into a mouth and the presynaptic terminals into spidery legs (crudely), and tried to make it look like it was "creeping forward". (I'm imagining it towering over skyscrapers with humans the size of the small sphere in the picture below).
    [​IMG]

    So 6 months of work (and it looks like it was made in 10 minutes), and I'm here asking for your advice on casting. I want to do clear resin (blue, purple, or green) with glow in the dark organelles (guts). This is fitting because the very first stage of vision begins when a photon activates the rhodopsin discs.

    So I have 3 questions:

    1. What kind of clay do I use to make the mold? I'm very concerned about this getting destroyed when making the silicon mold.

    2. Any tips for how to cast this with all these spidery legs?

    3. I would like to hear your constructive criticisms. Would this even appeal to you? I made this just for myself, but if there is interest, I would be happy to make a batch. My goal is to get it made in soft vinyl when I go back to Japan in a year.

    Here are some pics.

    [​IMG]
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    Thanks so much for looking.

    If you're interested, I'm doing a series of these. I'll call it "Astrocyte Productions" after the glial cell in the central nervous system. The next project will be a bacteriophage: [​IMG] followed by an astrocyte: [​IMG].
     
  2. Russblue11

    Russblue11 S7 Royalty

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    [FINISHED] Monster Photoreceptor Cell, now accepting orders
    Re: Inspired by you, I made a 10" rod cell and I need your h

    It kind of looks like there's a mouth there - are you adding any more facial features? And I know you're new to sculpting but I would like to see more detail on the body and legs - maybe make the nucleus wavy or dripping like a sludge monster? Some kind of suckers like an octopus on the legs?

    It will look great once you get the casting of the internal parts sorted out (sorry I can't help with that)
     
  3. moonbeams

    moonbeams Toy Prince

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    [FINISHED] Monster Photoreceptor Cell, now accepting orders
    Re: Inspired by you, I made a 10" rod cell and I need your h

    Thanks for the input Kevin. I like the idea about sludge. It could be the extracellular fluid. And I could maybe do a effect on the nucleus for cytoplasm.

    As for features, my main goal is to keep it true to the anatomy. I could get away with the mouth because rod cells have a similar structure. Initially, the legs were just axon terminals, and the idea of creeping legs came later, so I redid it. You can see pics into Facebook somewhere from when I started. But the surface of cells are primarily a layer of lipids, so it should be smooth and shiny. No eyes because the rod cell is part of the eye (thanks James!). I just think that cells look like alien monsters so I'd like to see them in soft vinyl.
     
  4. computerhair415

    computerhair415 Comment King

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    [FINISHED] Monster Photoreceptor Cell, now accepting orders
    Re: Inspired by you, I made a 10" rod cell and I need your h

    I like your concept. I think this will translate well into resin. Is the idea to have the rhodopsin discs be cast inside the rod cell, as well as the nucleus and nucleolus? If that is the case I would wet sand the rod cell. so it becomes clear. I would cast the nucleus and the nucleolus as one part mold. The rod cell would be a 2 maybe 3 part mold. The Rhodopsin discs should be a 2 part mold. Youtube has great tutorials on mold making.
     
  5. moonbeams

    moonbeams Toy Prince

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    [FINISHED] Monster Photoreceptor Cell, now accepting orders
    Re: Inspired by you, I made a 10" rod cell and I need your h

    Bryan,

    Thank you so much for the advice and pointers. I'm pretty clueless when it comes to casting (tried to make some charms, but failed at that).

    Never heard of "2 part / 3 part mold" but found some videos, so thank you for this.

    The nucleolus (black) will go inside the nucleus (milky transparent glow). The rhodopsin (strong glow) will be cast in the outer segment (head) of rod cell (transparent color). A Halloween version will be made with orange cell and black inner parts.

    When I cast the rhodopsin discs, the challenge would be to have it lodged into the mold so the rod cell cures with the discs centered in the middle, not touching the walls. I was thinking of using wire through the mouth to suspend the discs. The downside is that I might be stuck with a hole in the back. The green line would represent the suspension wire:
    [​IMG]
     
  6. moonbeams

    moonbeams Toy Prince

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    [FINISHED] Monster Photoreceptor Cell, now accepting orders
    Re: Inspired by you, I made a 10" rod cell and I need your h

    I have some more questions.

    1. Do I want to coat the clay with gloss before making the mold? I have this:
    [​IMG]

    2. This is a stupid question, but mold release goes on the clay before pouring in the silicon, right? Do I also use mold release on the finished silicon before casting resin?

    I have this:
    [​IMG]
     
  7. hellointerloper

    hellointerloper Post Pimp

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    Re: Inspired by you, I made a 10" rod cell and I need your h

    Don't use Play-Doh for mold-making. It sticks to primer like hell, not sure about clay. I tried making a mold with it and found myself spending way too much time trying to dig Play-Doh out of crevasses, and in the end I just had to reprime the original for painting because I had colored streaks all over the thing.

    http://madebytesselate.com/guide-a-two-part-mould/

    This is the best two-part mold tutorial I've found since it's complete with photos.
    As for getting a glow effect, Solar Color Dust is awesome for that kind of stuff and pretty reasonably priced as well.
     
  8. moonbeams

    moonbeams Toy Prince

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    [FINISHED] Monster Photoreceptor Cell, now accepting orders
    Re: Inspired by you, I made a 10" rod cell and I need your h

    Thank you! I need legos, but I couldn't find just the blocks without some kind of expensive set. I'm thinking of using cardboard and glue or acrylic if I can find it.

    I have a clay called PRIMA, but in my practice runs it has stuck to the baked sculpy and very difficult to clean off. I tried to make a charm for my wife with a message carved into the back and the PRIMA clay just burrowed into the grooves of the message, rendering it useless.

    I think I'll order this for the clay:
    http://www.dickblick.com/products/sculp ... lasteline/

    So I started wet-sanding as advised. Shiny as a cue ball now.
     
  9. Russblue11

    Russblue11 S7 Royalty

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    [FINISHED] Monster Photoreceptor Cell, now accepting orders
    Re: Inspired by you, I made a 10" rod cell and I need your h

    How many LEGO do you need? I have a good amount of bricks
     
  10. moonbeams

    moonbeams Toy Prince

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    [FINISHED] Monster Photoreceptor Cell, now accepting orders
    Re: Inspired by you, I made a 10" rod cell and I need your h

    Enough to make a 12" x 8" x 8" 2 part mold. I think that'll be a lot. I'll probably go with cardboard.

    So, I think I just over sanded. One of the legs broke off, but the wire keeps it in place. Crazy glued it in. I appreciate all this help so far.
     
  11. moonbeams

    moonbeams Toy Prince

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    [FINISHED] Monster Photoreceptor Cell, now accepting orders
    Re: Inspired by you, I made a 10" rod cell and I need your h

    Can anyone recommend a good resin? I have amalite amazing clear cast. Not sure it's high quality. Thanks everyone.
     
  12. Ultra999

    Ultra999 Post Pimp

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    [FINISHED] Monster Photoreceptor Cell, now accepting orders
    Re: Inspired by you, I made a 10" rod cell and I need your h

    all of your questions have been asked and thoroughly answered by those who came before you, so please make use of the search function.
     
  13. hellointerloper

    hellointerloper Post Pimp

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    Re: Inspired by you, I made a 10" rod cell and I need your h

    Smooth-On has some great quality resin in tons of different cure times. It's a favorite of the resin-slinging people I follow on Instagram.
     
  14. moonbeams

    moonbeams Toy Prince

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    Re: Inspired by you, I made a 10" rod cell and I need your h

    Thank you. Actually, when I first started out, I stayed up all night and read this entire sub-forum to collect information. So I went to look for smooth-on, but I couldn't find it in clear, only white, on Amazon. So for clear I got this stuff called Amazing Clear Cast by Alumilite andl my practice runs came out very bad. I'm sure it's my fault, though. The stuff in the mold came out with sticky textured surfaces when I wanted smooth. But maybe that was because I didn't sand the clay. I thought it was the mold release. But it gives a really cool effect when you pour it on something and let it cure in the open air.

    In this thread viewtopic.php?f=49&t=40939&hilit=resin+recommend smooth-on was recommended, but not as a clear resin, so that's why I asked here.

    Ultra999, I've read the Dan Perez site, but if my memory is correct, the type of clay recommended is no longer in production, so I tried something that looked similar, but it wasn't very good. That's why I asked here, thank you.
     
  15. pyroatheart1.3

    pyroatheart1.3 Addicted

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    Re: Inspired by you, I made a 10" rod cell and I need your h

    .
     
  16. computerhair415

    computerhair415 Comment King

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    [FINISHED] Monster Photoreceptor Cell, now accepting orders
    Re: Inspired by you, I made a 10" rod cell and I need your h

    For mold release I just started using Stoner and it works great. For silicone I like the Mold Star 30 by smooth on. I also like Tap Platinum. They are both nice and flex well, and seem to de-gas without a vacuum fairly well. As far as resin goes, Smooth On is awesome. I like the 325 and the 326. One has a shorter pot and cure time. If you use Mold Star 30 you can use unbaked sculpy for the clay up. If you use Tap Platinum I would use plasticine clay. I highly suggest using the Mold Star 30 for two part molds because its more rigid, and using Tap Platinum for one part molds because its super flexible..

    Have Fun!
     
  17. moonbeams

    moonbeams Toy Prince

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    [FINISHED] Monster Photoreceptor Cell, now accepting orders
    Re: Inspired by you, I made a 10" rod cell and I need your h

    Bryan, thank you again!

    I've been using Smooth-on's OOMOO 30. I guess that's different than the Mold Star 30? The packaging looks the same besides the name.

    I was just about to pick up the 360, but now I'll have to check out the 325 and 326.

    I was wondering what you meant by a 1 part mold for the big sphere, but if there is a flexible rubber, I see what you mean.

    Do you spray any kind of release into the mold before you pour in resin?
     
  18. moonbeams

    moonbeams Toy Prince

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    [FINISHED] Monster Photoreceptor Cell, now accepting orders
  19. computerhair415

    computerhair415 Comment King

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    Re: Inspired by you, I made a 10" rod cell and I need your h


    I used a powder. The same kind as in your link.
     
  20. moonbeams

    moonbeams Toy Prince

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    [FINISHED] Monster Photoreceptor Cell, now accepting orders
    Re: Photoreceptor cell model with a kaiju twist (retitled)

    Here's my progress so far. Many thanks to people who have given me their input and extra thanks to Bryan for so much pm advice.

    On the left is my black/glow rhodopsin discs. I like Halloween, so I'm making an orange cell with black organelles for a Halloween theme. In the middle is a magenta/glow nucleus and on the right is a glow in the dark one. After wet sanding, I poured a new coat of resin to give them a slimy finish.
    [​IMG]
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    This is my failed first casting. The resin I used had a faulty hardener so it never cured. I tried to sand it, but it just ate up the sand paper. But this gives us an idea of what the finished model would look like. Notice a piece is missing. The red thing in the bottom of the nucleus is a heart shaped charm I made. The purple pour on the rhodopsin was a bad idea, so it got used in this test piece.
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    The cell in the dark. I think I should add more glow to the body, but too much glow pigment would make it opaque.

    Here are my 5 finished rhodopsin discs awaiting castings.
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    You can't see it in the photograph, but the black has a slight glow as well.

    I made these nucleuses today. They haven't been sanded yet. On the left is a super glow, red in the middle (to get a purple effect when casted in a blue rod cell) and black for my Halloween one (that will have an orange cell body). Everything glows, but the black is super weak.
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    And finally, today I cooked up some mitochondria. These will give the cell it's power. The grey ones are the clay originals. The yellow stuff is mold putty with high power glow in the dark resin.
    [​IMG]
    Thanks for your time.
     
  21. hellointerloper

    hellointerloper Post Pimp

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    Re: Photoreceptor cell model with a kaiju twist (retitled)

    This project is turning out to be super-ambitious, but I think the end result will be well worth it! Even your miscast is pretty impressive. Can't wait to see the finished product.
     
  22. moonbeams

    moonbeams Toy Prince

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    Re: Photoreceptor cell model with a kaiju twist (retitled)

    Thank you, Maddie. Well, it's all casted now. Demolding wil be tomorrow evening, or morning if I get too anxious.

    I poured some resin in both sides of the mold in order to set the small pieces inside and after a few hours I put it all together. I'm not sure if everything bonded and if the resin flowed all the way through. We'll find out soon.

    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]
     
  23. moonbeams

    moonbeams Toy Prince

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    Re: Photoreceptor cell model with a kaiju twist (retitled)

    Just demolded. A little too much dye, but pretty happy.

    [​IMG]
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  24. hellointerloper

    hellointerloper Post Pimp

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    Re: Photoreceptor cell model with a kaiju twist (retitled)

    Got to say, it looks damn awesome! I agree, a little too much dye, but for the first successful cast it looks amazing. That glow shot looks great too. You might want to get yourself a blacklight for ultimate glowyness, it charges anything GID almost instantly.
    Can't wait to see more!
     
  25. moonbeams

    moonbeams Toy Prince

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    Re: Photoreceptor cell model with a kaiju twist (retitled)

    Maddie, a black light would be awesome. Maybe one day.

    The one on the right is my test/error casting. It never cured, so I just sprayed it with a glaze. It doesn't have mitochondria, the organelles that power a cell. The one on the left came out too dark to really see the nucleus, but I'm getting closer.

    I should add a resin drip, especially from the cilium (mouth).

    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]
     

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