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Archive for June 15th, 2011

The other day the following message appeared on the letter corner:

Hello! I’m an everyday reader of your blog! I’m also always somehow losing money every time I read a review on your blog! :P

I noticed some of the most recent figures are made using 3DCG which is incredible, but I was just wondering – are the prototype figures generally made by hand?

I’d love to see what kind of tools the pros use when sculpting figures!!

  -   Rurumenmen

I really want to know myself!!

So today I’m off to see Takanon – he has experience with both hand sculpting and 3D sculpting!

001

This here is Takanon-sensei!

Even though I asked first thing in the morning he was happy to prepare some tools for us! Takanon-sensei is a wonderful sensei that jumps at the opportunity to help out with blog entries!

Before we start our studies, note that sculptors can use a lot of different raw materials, but Takanon-sensei uses ‘polyester putty’. 

To put it in a nutshell, polyester putty is the kind of putty you carve down into the shape you want.

Sensei! Teach us about some of your tools!

002

(1) Hardening Spray: Used to speed up the drying of glue.
(2) Instant Glue: Added to putty to make it harden faster.
(3) Sandpaper: Used for finishing touches and making smooth surfaces.
(4) Nippers: Used to cut things like Nendoroid joints and brass wires.
(5) Chisel Set: Used to carve out bits of putty.
(6) Design Knife: This is where the sculpting really begins!
(7) Craft Knife: Miscellaneous tasks.
(8) Pin Vice: Used to dig out holes. Size is changed based on diameter.
(9) Needle: Used along with the pin vice.

Sensei! What are the miscellaneous tasks of the craft knife?

 
    / ̄ ̄\
   / .ー  ー \ ← Takanon-sensei
   |  (●) (●) |  
   |  (__人__)|   ”Eh… opening packages and stuff?”
   |   `i  i´  | 
   |   . `⌒   }      
   ヽ       } 
    ヽ     ノ 
   /      ヽ

So… it’s not used for the sculpting?

I kind of wanted to remove it from the photo seen it wasn’t involved… but Takanon insisted that it was depressing if the craft knife wasn’t included… so I left it in. :P

Although when it comes to reproduction the craft knife plays a more important role allowing for a quick job. If you’re interested, take a look at this article:

Mikatan’s Summer Vacation Research Project:
Figure Reproduction –  Last Day (Japanese)

http://ameblo.jp/gsc-mikatan/entry-10617444280.html

003

(10) Putty Stand: The polyester putty is made on this stand.
(11) Polyester Putty: White: Main Putty; Yellow: Hardening Agent.
(12) Tooth Brush: An old toothbrush. Cleans up carvings.
(13) Clutch Pencil: Used to mark where joints and eyes will be placed.
(14) Tweezers: Reach places when they can’t be reached by hand.
(15) Ruler: Simply used to make sure the sizes match up.
(16) Vernier Scale: Used to measure curved parts

Sensei! Are these all the tools sculptors use?

     / ̄ ̄\
   / .ー  ー \ ← Takanon-sensei
   |  (●) (●) |  
   |  (__人__)|   ”I think that pretty much covers it”
   |   `i  i´  | 
   |   . `⌒   }      
   ヽ       } 
    ヽ     ノ 
   /      ヽ

Understood!

Can you give us a little more detailed explanation now? ^^

004

(10) Putty Stand

This is actually called something completely different at Max Factory – it seems the name differs between companies! ^^

This stand is used to mix the white and yellow parts of the polyester putty together using something like a toothpick.

This creates the raw materials for sculpting!

Once mixed the putty will slowly harden, so it goes in a cycle of a process – mix, mold, harden and sculpt. Normally the white and yellow parts are mixed at a 5:1 ratio, but sometimes more of the hardening agent is added to make it harden faster!

005

(9) Needle!

As I wrote above this has a supporting role – it is used along with the pin vice. Takanon-sensei has made his own hand holds using putty to make it easier to hold! Sensei is also left handed… being left handed is kinda cool I think. :P

006

Let’s take a look at how exactly it is used!

First the area you want the hole is marked by the clutch pencil (13), then the needle (9) is used to make a little dent on the putty!

007

A pin vice (8) is then used on the dented area to make a hole!

         ____
      /::::::─三三─\
    /:::::::: ( ○)三(○)\   “Eh?
    |::::::::::(__人__):::|   Do you really need the needle…?”
     \:::::::   |r┬-|   /
    ノ::::::::  `ー’´  \ 

I’m sure there are some people who thought that, as I know I did! :P

Apparently by just using the pin vice without a dent, it’s very easy to slip and not make a straight hole! 

Bascially it’s just a way to make sure that it works out smoothly!

010

(3) Sandpaper!

There are apparently a lot of different types of sandpaper.

To divide them into three broad types, there would be paper, cloth and sponge types.

The paper type is used for straight lines, while the cloth and sponge types are much softer and are used for curved surfaces. Right here Takanon is making use of the paper type.

011

This here is the cloth type!

It’s often used on parts like heads that have a clearly curved surface. It actually seems like quite a lot of fun to work with, I kind of want to give it a try myself one day. (Though I doubt the world will be so kind as to let me do so).

By the way, in the first picture of the tools with numbers there was a little pink thing with a handle – this is also a type of file like the sandpaper, and is called a ‘Tiler’. The opposite side of the handle has a rough surface that can be replaced by double-sided tape when it wears away.

009

(16) Vernier Scale!

This is to calculate things like whether or not the thickness of the arms is the same on both sides. Measuring curved surfaces with a straight ruler is pretty much impossible, so that’s when the Vernier scale comes into play! You simply place the object to be measured between the two parts and you get the exact size.

Sensei also uses it in 3D work!

“I made it 0.4mm using 3D data, but how big did it come out?”

It is used to make sure about things like that – the image above is that 0.4mm! It’s so tiny! I don’t think I could ever become a sculptor… I’d never pay enough attention to the details!
012

      ____
    /      \
   /  ─    ─ \    “Excluding the putty itself, if you could use
 /    (●)   (●) \    only three tools, which would they be?”
 |     (__人__)   |
  \     |r┬-|   ,/ 
  ノ     `ー’´  \ 

A question I asked Sensei and received a true master’s reply!

“As long as I have (6) the design knife I would be fine! It’s the basis of everything!”

Of course the tools we took a look at today are useful, but when it comes down to it, as long as you have the design knife you can still do the sculpting!

Thank you for showing us behind the scenes of a master sculptor today! It was a lot of fun!  (`・ω・´)ゞ

Takanon-sensei is a very busy man, but even so he took some time off for this – thanks a lot! Also a big thanks to Rurumenmen who sent in the mail leading to this blog entry!! I hope it has given you at least an idea of what tools the sculptors here at GSC use!


-Notice-

The opening animation for Black Rock Shooter THE GAME is here!

Apparently the animation was done by ‘ufotable’, the group responsible for awesome anime like Kara no Kyoukai!!

It’s a really incredible watch!!

Kondou-san, the man in charge really put a lot of effort into this to get it to this incredible quality! The music and video give a different feeling to the anime, but it’s just as incredible as ever!! Take a look: http://www.nicovideo.jp/watch/1308097319?via=thumb_watch


That’s all for today!
I hope to see you all again tomorrow!! (・∀・)ノ゛

Tomorrow we’ll be taking a look at the WonFes Products!!

http://whl4u.jp/

This is still the WonHobby 13 page, but it will change to WonHobby 14 on Friday!

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Hi again everyone!
I’m going to make use of this space today to let everyone know that when TYPE MOON’s new game, ‘Mahoutsukai no Yoru” releases, I’m going to be taking some paid leave…!! :P

But anyway, today we continue with this corner!

          ____
        / ― ― \
 ミ ミ ミ /  (●)  (●)  \      ミ ミ ミ
/⌒)⌒)⌒.   (__人__)   \   /⌒)⌒)⌒)
| / / /      |r┬-|      | (⌒)/ / / //
| ::::::(⌒)   `ー’´     /  ゝ  ::::/
|     ノ            \  /  )  /
ヽ    /             ヽ/    /
 |    |   l||l 从人 l||l      l||l 从人 l||l
 ヽ    -一””””~~``’ー–、   -一”””’ー-、
  ヽ ____(⌒)(⌒)⌒) )  (⌒_(⌒)⌒)⌒))

Kuroyagi-san’s Letter Corner!
I’ll be taking a look at a few more photos sent in to my inbox!

(゚д゚) Letters asking about changes to products are quite hard for me to reply to… but I do pass the info onto the design team!

(゚д゚) If there is a problem with your product, please email the Good Smile Support Team at support@goodsmile.jp

(゚д゚) If you want to let me know something without me talking about it on the blog, just let me know in the mail and I’ll be happy to keep it quiet!

Let’s get started once again today!! (・∀・)ノ


It seems like my Date Masamune is going to write something… I wonder what! Date and the two Bakuman Nendoroids are so cute! I love them! I’m looking forward to what figures are coming up next! (´∀`)

   - Eririn

006

It looks like he’s working hard at it!!

That serious face and crossed arms really do give off the feeling that he is thinking about what to write!! I do wonder what exactly he is writing about, though. :P


Congratulations on your 10th anniversary, GSC! I hope you continue to move from strength to strength!

Today is Children’s Day, so I decided to take a picture with Haru-chan and some carp streamers…. all in miniature mode…

   - Kn.

001

It’s as if you can feel the breeze!

A truly wonderful photo that really captures a precious moment! The little extras all around her add to the detail so nicely as well – it’s such a nice scene!
Plus the little carp streamer that is watching the carp streamers with Haru-chan… he’s so adorable!


Yesterday my Kuroneko arrived, so I had to take some photos ASAP. ♪
I wanted to get a picture of her making doujin games, so I made a quick notebook PC out of cardboard. ^^;

   - Annon

002

You made that yourself!!?

It’s incredible! I can even see the keyboard’s keys! I wish I could make things like that! For those like me who aren’t good with this kind of handiwork, there is a notebook included in Phat! Company’s Classroom Set!


I always take some photos over at Kyuufurukawa Park, and this year when I heard the roses were going into bloom I went along with my Nendoroid Kuroneko.

I took this photo with the scenario of her saying “I want you to give me this rose”. I actually wanted to find a slightly redder rose, but a TV crew was filming on the day so I didn’t have a chance to get close to the ones I wanted.

There are a load of beautiful flowers at the moment, so do consider visiting yourself!

   - nekobin

003

Kuroneko looks perfect with roses!

That face is just too adorable, and the rose is gorgeous and suits her so nicely!
I suddenly get the urge to do some outdoor photography myself… (´;ω;`)


For my birthday someone gave me custom made Nendoroid Rin & Len figures – magnet Rin & Len! (^ω^)
They were so cute that I just had to share them with everyone else, so I decided to email you some photos! Both Rin, Len and I will be super happy if you take a look!

   - Haru

004

I took a look! And I loved it!

The costumes and little extras are all custom changes… it’s amazing!! I particularly love the way the wings look – I kind of want those headphones for my Nendoroids too! Thank you very much for sharing them with us!


It’s a simple picture, but I decided to send a picture of my Rin and Len!
I’m a big fan of the Nendoroid series, and when ever I’m feeling down they really cheer me up. I’m really grateful to everyone at Good Smile for bringing these lovable figures into the world!

   - Yanagi

005

And thank you for a wonderful picture!

They look so cute in this picture, it really brings a smile to my face!!
I might be wrong, but I believe the background and clothes are made to look as if Rin and Len are the master of ceremonies at a wedding! (Apologies if I’m wrong!). I’m sure if anyone were to get married with such cute announcers they would without a doubt be happy for life! ^^


Spring is changing into summer far too quickly, so as a memory of Spring I decided to send this picture through. The title for the picture is “Yearning for Spring”.

   - Leonov

007

She is such a cutie!!

As I’ve said before, I love photos where a girl looks up like this! They instantly become three times as cute when the picture is from above! As always, your photography skills are incredible!


I just got my Western Playset, so I decided to play around a bit!
They are just the right size for figma as well, so it was a lot of fun to play with! :P Lulu-sama really is in his element!

   - Ringo

008

The playsets works with figmas too!

In yesterday’s post we also had a figma using the playset – I’m actually really surprised at how well it works with them! :P
But seeing Lelouche is this kind of atmosphere really is ideal isn’t it… it’s almost too perfect…


Thanks for the blog every weekday, I love reading it!
I took a picture using a sliver of moonlight coming through my curtains and I quite liked it, so I decided to send it through to you! Youmu stands staring into the night, patiently waiting for the day that Good Smile announces that Yuyuko-sama’s Nendoroid has been sent out…

“Yuyuko-sama… how late should I stay up waiting for you….?”

   - Anonymous

009

You’re scaring me, Myon!! ! ((((;゚Д゚))))

Why is she holding swords in both hands? xD
And by the way, Yuyuko has been safely sent out from GSC… I hope she has managed to meet up with her now!


I tried making my own Nendoroid Petite of Ghost in the Shell’s Motoko Kusanagi to display next to the Nendoroid Tachikoma. I made a smiling and a shouting face, two sets of legs – one for standing and one for sitting, as well as a handgun, sub-machine gun and a body and rifle to recreate the scenes from episode 21.

… I think I made a bit too much, but I’m sure there are others like me who would love to see her as an official product!! Maybe even just as an extra to a magazine or something!

   - Lunapon

010

Everything from here are custom made figures by fans!
This one has incredible detail for it’s size!!

If you look up close you can see how carefully the body has been made…. I also really like the way you’ve done the flow of the fair! It looks just like Motoko!


I decided to make a custom WRS-chan. The arms coming out the back of her armor use a ball-joint so they can be moved around a little too! ^^

   - Monban

011

This looks 100% authentic!! xD

The expression is from Gold Saw-san, the sickle must be DM-san’s and the body is BRS-chan’s, right? Everything else is all made from scratch? Wow!!


I tried to make my own Nendoroid Lum-chan. :P
She needed a nice upset face, so I made use of Kuro-chan’s expression.

   - Keme

012

She’s so adorable!!

I know a lot of guys will say that Kyouko is better, but I definitely think Lum is cuter! There is no way this can lose!!! (`・ω・´)
Once again, this is incredible quality – really well done!!


This month is finally the month that my Miku: Support ver arrives… I can’t wait! While Miku-san is cheering, I thought team Death Note could so some preaching, so I made a “Let’s Save Electricity” poster using their Nendoroids!

I’m also doing my best to conserve electricity, so I only get to read your blog in the evenings, but I love doing so every day!
Try not to catch a cold this rainy season – stay well!

   - Ricao

013

A wonderful poster!

If the Nendoroids tell us to do something, I’m sure a lot more people will understand! :P
This summer is a summer to conserve electricity! If we all work together we can get through this easily!


That brings the 54th Kuroyagi-san’s letter corner to an end!
Thanks to everyone who sent in mail!
I make sure to read each and every mail I receive!

As always, I’m always looking for more mail from readers! I promise to read it, and swear I won’t eat it! :P

If you have any questions, photos, product requests, want to talk about what you ate today, your goals for the summer… no matter what you want to talk about, send it through to me! Girls and boys both welcome!
 
 
(゚∀゚)Mikatan Mail:
mikatan-b@goodsmile.jp

 
 
That’s all for today!
I hope to see you all again tomorrow!!

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