File puptcrit/puptcrit.0801, message 335


To: <puptcrit-AT-puptcrit.org>
Date: Fri, 1 Feb 2008 00:38:50 -0500
Subject: [Puptcrit] TECH: Precision Eyelids



I don't have these flashes often enough, but what fun the most recent was: quick eyelids.
Maybe I subconsiously remembered seeing the leather camels in decoration stores, because I suddenly thought of making a slit in a material and pushing a bead behind it, creating instant lids, precisely. Having no leather of the right colors, I tried various ways with felt and fun foam, and came up with three very surprising results:

- ROUND EYELID. Ideal for birds and fish... Using a hole punch, make a hole into a piece of fun foam (aka L200). Using a drop of hot glue, temporarily adhere a shiny bead onto a non-porous surface such as a plastic cutting board or a self-healing cutting mat. This holds the bead in place.  Then apply hot glue to the lower hemisphere of a bead, and press the pierced fun foam patch, with hole centered, down onto the bead, shaping the opening as you wish it.  Don't pull too hard or too quick, the foam could tear. Hold it in place. When mostly cool, remove bead-eyelid from the mat, and dip eye in cold water, to quick-set.  The heat of the hot glue is enough to activate the "thermoploastic" properties of the Fun Foam. Same could be done with felt, even craft felt works well.

-QUICK SIMPLE EYELID.
Using a craft knife or straight-edged razor blade, make a straight slit into a piece of fun foam (aka L200) or felt.  Using a drop of hot glue, temporarily adhere a shiny bead onto a non-porous surface such as a plastic cutting board or a self-healing cutting mat. This holds the bead in place.  Then apply hot glue to the lower hemisphere of a bead, and press the pierced fun foam patch, with hole centered, down onto the bead,  shaping the opening as you wish it (changes expression). Don't pull too hard or too quick, the foam could tear. Holding until mostly cool. Then remove bead-eyelid from the mat, and dip the eye in cold water, to quick-set. Trim the excess off.

DETAILED EYELID.
Using a craft knife or straight-edged razor blade, make a straight slit into a piece of fun foam (aka L200) or felt. draw a line of hot glue on each side of the slit, and fold each side over the glue, forming a precise thin hem. The other side will be clean and posess a certain natural tickness and definition that the simple eyelid method (see above) can't offer.  Using a drop of hot glue, temporarily adhere a shiny bead onto a non-porous surface such as a plastic cutting board or a self-healing cutting mat. This holds the bead in place.  Then apply hot glue to the lower hemisphere of a bead, and press the pierced fun foam patch, with hole centered, down onto the bead,  shaping the opening and the outer folds (pinching helps) as you wish it (changes expression). Don't pull too hard or too quick, the foam could tear. Holding until mostly cool. Then remove bead-eyelid from the mat, and dip the eye in cold water, to quick-set.   Trim the excess off. The effect is thicker with Fun Foam, but is quite nice with felt.
  

BONUS:
SUPER CLEAN CUSTOM COLOR EYEBALL:
When you need a very smooth eyeball in a specific color, this trick is easy and efficient.
Quickly apply an even coat of hot glue all over a bead (or wooden ball), then stretch down a square of clean Fun Foam over it and as far down as it will go, holding any way you can, until it is mostly cooled down. A string or ela stic could probably be used, but I have not tested this yet. Dip eyeball in cold water to quick fix.  If you don't hold long enough or don't dip, the fun foam might shrink back and lose its shape. Trim the excess off. Pupils can be glued on, or drawn on with permanent markers. I sometimes like to add pupils when the eyes are positioned on the head, allowing for precise focus adjustement.  

I did not try this because I just thought of it, but here is a trick you might find useful:
-draw the pupil on a piece of transparent tape and position on the eyeball until perfect focus.
-use a sharp needle and poke the pupil at the center, marking where it will go on the eye.
-re-make the pupil out of the final material, and attach to eyeball, or draw it with a permanent marker.

Pics coming soon.
Comments and questions welcomed.

 







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