Howdy y'all!

My name is McKinlay. I work in the model shop at Laika Studios. I've been a professional model maker for 10 years or so and have been at Laika for four. I posted in the "introduce yourself" thread, but I thought I'd give a wave in a couple different sections.

I enjoy helping others out, so feel free to ask me any questions about making models or props. Can't talk too much about things going on at Laika, but I have plenty of other knowledge to share.

I'm also writing an ebook about model making for stop motion, and so may ask some feedback from anyone interested in giving it at some point.

Thanks everyone!

P.S. Since a few people have expressed interested, send me an email at animationmodelshop@gmail.com if you'd like me to let you know when the ebook will be available for purchase. It'll be a few months. I'll give a free copy to the first handful of people who want on the list, in exchange for your initial thoughts and opinions. :)

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Hi McKinlay. Sorry for late reply, just got back. Thanks for your advice re the tools. I hadn't thought of styrene, and that would be easiest by quite a stretch. Many thanks!

Sure thing, man. Post some pics when you're done!

McKinlay

Hello

I have been reading this thread recently. It's got some good stuff on it. I thought I would ask you a question. I made this tap the other day, I think since the picture was taken I have shortened the bit the water is meant to come out of, and smoothed the paint (i was being impatient and picked it up). I was just wondering if you had any pointers on how to make it better, not sure if I am just settling on how it looks because I am quite new to building props (it's going to be in the background, so might not get seen too much, but I should learnt, right?). Also do you know any clever tricks about how to make things shiny? Would it just be to use some fancy paint? 

If anybody is wondering about how to bend metal tubing without it pinching....Tape one end up, fill it with salt, tape the other end up and bend it round a piece of doweling. Don't go crazy with the gaffer tape, it took ages to get off, and it's only holing in a bit of salt. 

This is the kitchen the the above tap it going to go in. The sink will be a little bit forward with a coloured piece of wood behind it nd the tap will be mounted on that. 

If anyone can come in on this...

Nice work on that kitchen Anthony.  And I like your tap handles too.  Good work bending the tube, I usually bend solid rod or thicker armature wire and drill a hole into the tip to make it look hollow.  

If the tap is aluminium, it can be polished with Brasso to look like chrome.  I use a cloth buffing wheel and one of those waxy blocks of polishing compound on my grinder to do most of the hard work, but still finish off by hand with Brasso.

If it is silver paint, there are some fairly good "chrome" spray paints.  It won't have a real chrome mirror finish but can look good enough on camera.

Hey Anthony,

The kitchen and faucet are looking good. Nick's suggestion of brasso is a good solution. There's a Testors Model Magic chrome that looks pretty good. It dulls when touched, though. Even after it's dry. That's the case will most "chrome" paints. http://amzn.com/B004GJDUN0

Bare Metal Foil works pretty well, too. It's thinner than foil, but thicker than leaf. Self adhesive, and you just burnish it in and polish.  http://amzn.com/B00DR26YYO

If it's already made of brass or copper, there's a company called Caswell that make's a simple chrome plating system. It actually works pretty well, but takes some practice to get good results. Make sure you polish the metal to a mirror finish before plating. http://www.caswellplating.com/electroplating-anodizing/brush-platin...

You could've also made the faucet neck out of styrene rod. Just warm it up with a heat gun and bend it around a dowel. Then, drill out the end a little bit like Nick suggested.

McKinlay

Thank you very much for your replies. It's very useful to have such knowledgeable people here. 

Hey McKinlay, im Andrew. I have a question for you. I need to make two feet, that should look very close to original feet of a woman (feet skin color etc), they suppose to lie in a bath and talk. What material you would suggest to use to make it and do i need any wire support for bending fingers and a bit of body))))?

Thank you in advance!

Hi McKinlay!

I'm hannah and I'm going to be doing a stop motion animation for my university thesis project. 

I'm very curious (cannot find info online anywhere!) how much a simple doll would cost to create? assuming we have the armature, how much can i expect for this to cost us?

Hi McKinlay,

I feel so excited when I saw this discussion, since there so many question in my head about Laika's models and puppets.

recently I did a research and experiments about laika's facial expression system which utilized 3D printing technology. 

Since there is a limitation in finding detail information about the mechanical system, I did my experiments based on information that mostly I gathered from behind the scene video on the internet, some online articles and discussion articles in this forum.

I try to use a mechanical system that used by Laika (found the 3D model posted by Demian in one of discussion in this website :http://www.stopmotionanimation.com/forum/topics/paranorman-eyes?id=...) in my character's face

It did quite well. however I found that the eye mechanical system seems only work best on Laika's characters which mostly have separated eyelids. 

Here is the picture and a link of the video

https://www.instagram.com/p/BOT_MV6hplx/?taken-by=bharotoyekti&...

  

I really hope to hear any feedbacks or comments about my works from you as a professional model maker who works in Laika.

ThankYou...

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