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Garbage Gods and Two Decades

 
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ionustron



Joined: 05 Dec 2006

PostPosted: Tue Mar 15, 2011 3:31 am    Post subject: Garbage Gods and Two Decades    Reply with quote

This is a subject I've mentioned a good twice ever on the forums...



Odysseys through poor camera and lighting!

Ive never shown these officially because I was never sure over the years what the reception would be. I mean, close friends seem to really like them, but theyre school friends and we always say half-truths at each other when it comes to our work.



I started making figurines with plastic-wrapped wire twisty ties when I was four. Actually, I forget when I officially started. Worked the ladder first with the wonders of tinfoil and duct tape and toilet paper for fillings of stuffed dollies. I recall a couple mini stealth fighters composed of paper and a base of toothpicks lathed in clear tape.



Then there was some yellow scrappy old ties from a pack of Hefty. Id mangled the things just curious about the structure, literally two and two and two together until it resembled a stick guy. Then one of the wires broke making a limp leg, attached by plastic alone. It became an ancient skeleton. The first thing I ever made.



It wasnt like I was living in poverty. I went through the action figure crazes with all the other TV-heads. But something about the creative toys stuck more - the smaller, the better. Micro machines and Legos were the mainstays. I liked putty and play doh but they were too messy and fragile.



It should be pathetically obvious I was obsessive about video games and back in those days there was little to no budget to market toy lines for little Japanese games. When kids would write fan fiction of Scooby Doo or draw their favorite Ninja Turtle on line paper or act out the Babysitters Club, I was off in my own space alternating between a Nintendo, a Master System, or a 2600, and when the games were mostly defeated and well past the point of replay, the adventures continued on a massive wooden kitchen table.



Always a brown wasteland where I built towns, castles, forts, airships, populated with wiry things - knights, demons, dragons, jets, mechs, and robot masters.



There were phases. Id get a couple columns of yellow and Id have to make them last for a while, and often take other things apart for something better, more competent. Then Id find an archaic set of crappy green paper ties and suddenly everyone was wearing combat damage scale mail or army fatigues. Id save up the single reds and blues from bread bags for one coordinated figurine. And then there was orange.



I miss Lobsterman, and the Behemoth, and the Great Gutsman Sigma Tank. So many old figurines I regret scuttling for parts and progress. It also didnt help that all of those were orange. The first time I shared the existence of these things with people was for an Elementary school art project where everyone was making crap with odd wood shapes. I wished to make a playset complete with actors but was sorely short on resources to work with, to my surprise the next day when I was pulled out of class by my art teacher and the janitor whom gave me a freaking log of orange. At least a couple pounds of long ties. It took years to exhaust.



I recall a mild, cloudy Saturday mid-morning next door with my mother. Our kindly neighbor, Nana Kay, was having a yard sale. I would find the strangest toy race car Id ever seen, made of painted tin, with thin button-like unpainted tin wheels (had to have been antique.) But the amazing discovery was a sandwich bag of assorted ties. In hindsight, Im not sure why that would be there other than mom mentioning what I was doing some time prior, but there they were. My first pine green ties, and to this day, Ive never seen another pink.



My output really fell back after this one. For the time, it was my first epic. Hed go on to challenge many Christmas trees.



That time, however, was over a decade ago - aside from the one in the first image. Heres some more recent.



This one is a kinda embarrassing subject. Its a recent iteration of an old favorite character of mine. Call it a Muse, a Mary-sue, a cry for help, a poor SOS, too much time spent playing JRPGs etc. etc. This was definitely the start of my odd fixation on the Armored Lady.



Ive made a few iterations of the figure with evolving design over the decade. The figure that started it all, not pictured; I gave to a close friend back in collage. I mean, Ive been friends with him since about the time I just started reading Insert Credit. Life happened rather spectacularly, horribly, and Ive found it difficult to communicate to him over the last few years. Ill always consider him my friend however. Another buddy told me that in his collection of busts and figures (yeah comic books,) Sara is the crown.



The second iteration was so bright and refined. The crowning achievement was when I graduated from High School - where I went, we werent allowed any personal expression on our cap and gowns. When I asked my English teacher, heading up marching practice, if I could take the figure with me, on my tassel, flying along. He was cool with it!



(These last two werent the same character. Its just that yellow was the only abundant color that worked decently for hair. And armor. And skin. You start to use the paper texture to your advantage as skin and the plastic side for everything else. Even from an early age, the dark line of the wire through each tie became the impression of eyes when folded to make a head. As stilted as this sounds, perhaps it came from those days when wed stare at little sprites on fuzzy old television sets. Green, red, blue, black, and brown were rare (especially brown.) Ive never seen other colors.)

Anyway, I lost that second version towards the end of collage. Sometimes for luck Id hold onto one in my pocket to class or wherever, and, well You know the Simpsons episode that delves into Montgomery Burnss childhood, and his solitary object of innocence - the teddy named Bobo, and the anguish of seeming forever loss? That.



(I should really get around to finishing this one.)

So why am I bringing this up now? Of all things, playing Soul Nomad reminded me of all the good times. I doubt I will ever fully understand the purpose of Nippon Ichi and who their target audience truly is, but the game strummed deep warm chords. First in that most of the aesthetic was dangerously close to one of my reoccurring dreams of playing a particular SRPG, and the other was the process of essentially picking from various playsets and populating them with figurines of knights, monsters, dragons... and having long drawn out battles. This is contrary to what the game wanted to have going, a running S&M joke. which becomes harder to ignore as time goes on.







I wished to do something nice for the Talbain because it was his game first. In the process I wanted to do a recreation of something I did a decade ago. A restart and about a month later, I finished something that was much larger than I had intended. Sorry it took so long...







I really went far too overboard on this one. Its actually a remake of a big monster I put together last decade. I used to like doing that when some figures seemed unremarkable. Id fuse them together into abominations for great battles.





Over the years, I gave many out to friends as gifts and they went over well. Even as far back as second grade I remember adults flat out stating you should sell these! But the through didnt sit well with me even up until a few years ago. Perhaps that was all a grand waste of time, or idiotic that I would consider it now with the most mundane of subject matter instead of Art, but itd be nice to make some sort of living through this. Least fund my entertainment budget and be able to visit friends again, Id like to start an Etsy project with this, but I could use input as to whether you feel this stuff would interest other people and what would be reasonable.



I must add that if many people find this thread too presumptuous or far over bounds for the use of this forum, than please remove or move it to the post pictures thread or something (just PM me first so, no JARGON please.)


Last edited by ionustron on Wed Mar 16, 2011 1:42 am; edited 1 time in total
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Drem



Joined: 04 Dec 2006
Location: The Planet Bookshelves

PostPosted: Tue Mar 15, 2011 3:35 am        Reply with quote

Holy crap. These are amarzing.
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Loki Laufeyson
fps fragmaster


Joined: 05 Dec 2006
Location: Beneath the Mushroom Kingdom

PostPosted: Tue Mar 15, 2011 3:38 am        Reply with quote

how could anyone object to a post like this?
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SuperWes



Joined: 04 Dec 2006
Location: St. Louis, Missouri

PostPosted: Tue Mar 15, 2011 3:40 am        Reply with quote

Front page.

-Wes
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Talbain



Joined: 14 Jan 2007

PostPosted: Tue Mar 15, 2011 3:44 am        Reply with quote

Awesome.

This one's my favorite.
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Last edited by Talbain on Wed Mar 16, 2011 1:56 am; edited 2 times in total
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cavefish



Joined: 04 Sep 2010

PostPosted: Tue Mar 15, 2011 3:45 am        Reply with quote

This is really beautiful. You're a cool guy.
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Notymenow



Joined: 19 Sep 2010
Location: Near Starkvegas, MS

PostPosted: Tue Mar 15, 2011 3:46 am        Reply with quote

SuperWes wrote:
Front page.

-Weş


definitely!
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wourme



Joined: 05 Dec 2006
Location: Building World

PostPosted: Tue Mar 15, 2011 3:55 am        Reply with quote

Nice work. I like that the bird/angel woman has a face.

You might be able to get sharper shots if you use a small tripod (or just perch the camera on something) and use the timer setting instead of pressing the button while holding it in your hand.

A good backdrop for such things is a piece of black velvet, maybe draped over some boxes so that it's under and behind the figures. If you want to improve your lighting on the cheap, shine a lamp through some frosted shower curtain material. You can get that for practically nothing at a fabric store. (You can get the velvet there, too, but it's not quite as cheap as the curtain plastic.)


Last edited by wourme on Tue Mar 15, 2011 3:56 am; edited 1 time in total
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Mr. Mechanical
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Joined: 04 Dec 2006
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PostPosted: Tue Mar 15, 2011 3:55 am        Reply with quote

These are great!
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Sly Buccelli



Joined: 10 Jan 2007
Location: DiGiorno of Death

PostPosted: Tue Mar 15, 2011 4:02 am        Reply with quote

Man, when I was a kid I used to draw tons of stuff inspired by videogames, but this is a whole different level. I'm very impressed by your creativity and resourcefulness. And you have been really prolific too. Hats off, Mr Ionustron. This really is an achievement.
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ionustron



Joined: 05 Dec 2006

PostPosted: Tue Mar 15, 2011 4:08 am        Reply with quote

wourme wrote:
Nice work. I like that the bird/angel woman has a face.

You might be able to get sharper shots if you use a small tripod (or just perch the camera on something) and use the timer setting instead of pressing the button while holding it in your hand.

A good backdrop for such things is a piece of black velvet, maybe draped over some boxes so that it's under and behind the figures. If you want to improve your lighting on the cheap, shine a lamp through some frosted shower curtain material. You can get that for practically nothing at a fabric store. (You can get the velvet there, too, but it's not quite as cheap as the curtain plastic.)


Tripod is next on the list to get...

Yeah, I had a poor setup. Some foil would've helped out rimlight allot. Using a positional lamp with warm light and a animation light table for cool light. Prolly not a good idea to mix them...

Velvet is a great idea and I bet I have some! I used to have a bunch of fadeless paper I was going to use, but haven't been able to find it.
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Tlon



Joined: 25 Sep 2008

PostPosted: Tue Mar 15, 2011 4:35 am        Reply with quote

holy shit

etsy, ebay, whatever. do you have markets near you? you could sell them there
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cassievania
cassie-no night zone


Joined: 16 Feb 2010
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PostPosted: Tue Mar 15, 2011 4:50 am        Reply with quote

oh man

these are beautiful
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kthorjensen
He brought three meals


Joined: 06 Dec 2006

PostPosted: Tue Mar 15, 2011 5:05 am        Reply with quote

These are so wonderful. Thank you for sharing them. What a thing.
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108
fairy godmilf


Joined: 05 Dec 2006
Location: oakland, california

PostPosted: Tue Mar 15, 2011 5:08 am        Reply with quote

you need to make a stop-motion film with these things! make them speak esperanto; you could get an academy award for best animated short.
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ionustron



Joined: 05 Dec 2006

PostPosted: Tue Mar 15, 2011 5:15 am        Reply with quote

I actually tried to do a puppetry thing with a bunch for an Intro to Video Production class back in trade school. It didn't work that well, I'm not sure where the movie file is though ;.; Had lots of awful awful Final Cut Pro green screen, so it looked like everyone was being attacked by gnats.

Fun but excruciating project...
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field balm



Joined: 31 Aug 2010

PostPosted: Tue Mar 15, 2011 6:32 am        Reply with quote

these are fucking badass! stop-motion was my first thought too. use it as sprites for a fighting game?
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costel



Joined: 30 Aug 2010
Location: Omsk,Florida

PostPosted: Tue Mar 15, 2011 6:33 am        Reply with quote

Fucking gorgeous work. Really incredible stuff. A lot of heart warming anecdotes too, especially concerning your early development and fondness for Legos and Micro Machines. It reminds me of my brother in law. I can't state enough how impressive and visually striking they all are.
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P1d40n3



Joined: 28 Jan 2008
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PostPosted: Tue Mar 15, 2011 9:40 am        Reply with quote

These are fucking ace.

108 wrote:
you need to make a stop-motion film with these things!


And this. 1000 times this.
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Mikey



Joined: 11 Dec 2006
Location: selectbutton.net, duh

PostPosted: Tue Mar 15, 2011 12:50 pm        Reply with quote

These are pretty damn sweet dude.
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L



Joined: 05 Dec 2006

PostPosted: Tue Mar 15, 2011 1:30 pm        Reply with quote

Someone tell me what word has been word-filtered into "JARGON" in the last line.

(It's so hard to keep track of these word-filters. One of the admins ought to post a screencap of the word-filter panel so we can finally see what they are.)
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luvcraft
buy my game buy my game me me me


Joined: 05 Dec 2006
Location: Cobrastan

PostPosted: Tue Mar 15, 2011 3:22 pm        Reply with quote

oops, sorry for crashing your photobucket, ionustron. I shared this thread with some friends. :|

maybe move the pics to flickr? I don't think they have the bandwidth limitations that photobucket does (or at least I've never run into them).
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Laurel Soup



Joined: 05 Dec 2006
Location: Hitsville, USA

PostPosted: Tue Mar 15, 2011 3:29 pm        Reply with quote

I can't even see the pictures, and I'm sold on these.
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Loki Laufeyson
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Joined: 05 Dec 2006
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PostPosted: Tue Mar 15, 2011 3:31 pm        Reply with quote

i think someone should give ionustron a link to the sb image uploady thing.
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Laurel Soup



Joined: 05 Dec 2006
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PostPosted: Tue Mar 15, 2011 3:39 pm        Reply with quote

Well, the one pictured on BoingBoing is gorgeous.
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luvcraft
buy my game buy my game me me me


Joined: 05 Dec 2006
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PostPosted: Tue Mar 15, 2011 3:42 pm        Reply with quote

luvcraft wrote:
oops, sorry for crashing your photobucket, ionustron. I shared this thread with some friends. :|


and then apparently Boing Boing picked it up from there!
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tacotaskforce



Joined: 04 Dec 2006
Location: Logical, Practical

PostPosted: Tue Mar 15, 2011 5:20 pm        Reply with quote

And then it went up on Reddit.
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BotageL
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PostPosted: Tue Mar 15, 2011 5:27 pm        Reply with quote

y'all should really stop using photobucket
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CubaLibre
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PostPosted: Tue Mar 15, 2011 5:57 pm        Reply with quote

Yeah, one of the admins should really give you the keys to the ftp.
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luvcraft
buy my game buy my game me me me


Joined: 05 Dec 2006
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PostPosted: Tue Mar 15, 2011 6:55 pm        Reply with quote

some nice redditor has reposted the images to imgur.
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another coma
NeoGAF Reject


Joined: 05 Dec 2006
Location: the wrong museum

PostPosted: Tue Mar 15, 2011 8:59 pm        Reply with quote

Sorry Ionustron I frontpaged it when I should have assumed this would happen :(

these figurines are incredible of course, I can help you replace the links later if you don't have time.
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ionustron



Joined: 05 Dec 2006

PostPosted: Tue Mar 15, 2011 11:23 pm        Reply with quote

shiiiiii~shiiiiii~shiiiiii~

Wasn't expecting that to happen. So I guess there's interest!

flickr or ftp, I don't care. Either way, I guess I'll send these to flickr for the time being.

B coma you can migrate if you also wish.

----

While working on this, I've been thinking or recreating either the R-9 or the Axelay. I love both and been meaning to do that for a while. What should I do first (or something else?)

----

Alright, stuff was migrated to flickr, which I have no idea how long will last before overtaken by hosting logos and crap...
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This Machine Kills Fascis
Unfinite Indiscovery


Joined: 06 Dec 2006
Location: Inside Thomas the Tank Engine, screaming

PostPosted: Wed Mar 16, 2011 2:24 am        Reply with quote

I love it when someone invents a creative hobby for themselves--starting out small and then getting more and more engrossed by it.

This is exactly the sort of thing that I like to see on the front page.
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radish



Joined: 23 Aug 2007
Location: tromaville

PostPosted: Wed Mar 16, 2011 3:00 am        Reply with quote

Dang, those are pretty amazing dude.
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shnozlak



Joined: 05 Dec 2006
Location: pushing crates in the sewer level

PostPosted: Wed Mar 16, 2011 1:08 pm        Reply with quote

Charming in a way thats hard to define.
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The Blueberry Hill



Joined: 12 Dec 2006

PostPosted: Wed Mar 16, 2011 4:21 pm        Reply with quote

ionustron wrote:
While working on this, I've been thinking or recreating either the R-9 or the Axelay. I love both and been meaning to do that for a while. What should I do first (or something else?)


I don't know! The ships are my favourites, so make sure you end up doing them both.

Mack, from Captain Commando, might be a good one to do.
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HarveyQ



Joined: 28 Jan 2009
Location: on a beach in a town where I am going to live

PostPosted: Wed Mar 16, 2011 4:36 pm        Reply with quote

this is brilliant!
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Churippu
Mister Mercury


Joined: 05 Dec 2006
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PostPosted: Fri Mar 18, 2011 3:24 am        Reply with quote

Oh WOW! These are so amazing! I love the swords in the first picture.
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diplo



Joined: 18 Dec 2006
Location: Brandy Brendo's bungalow

PostPosted: Fri Mar 18, 2011 8:59 pm        Reply with quote

Yep, this is all nice. Thanks for taking the time to make this thread.
I like the swords for the four-armed figure.
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Levi



Joined: 05 Dec 2006

PostPosted: Sun Mar 20, 2011 1:29 am        Reply with quote

Now that I can see them, these are beautiful.

They have that suggestive, sketchy quality that great concept and sprite art possesses.

All the blood potions in Lea Monde.
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