Work on the unfinished Troll Screamers shown above as well as several NEW Troll Screamers will resume soon. I have several body parts ready to go for the new creations.

Friday, 25 December 2009


Who ever you are & what ever your beliefs around this ball we call earth, home. In what ever way you may celebrate this special day. Myself & the rest of the Jones family here at  DARKSIDE HQ wish you all a special seasons greetings & hoping you all got something you asked for off the big fat guy who dropped down your chimneys last night. May your day be a special one shared with good food, family with friends. Also hoping the new year will come & go with all your resolutions acted out with only fantastic results in the coming new year ahead.

Have a great one one & all. I will be back blogging my fingers off in the new year.

Jonty & family.

Saturday, 19 December 2009


Now it's time to create & then add the arms from which i will be hanging the stars.

Using 2 thin cardboard stock tubes (from inside boxes of insence sticks) i measured them to the right lengths then hot glued the ends together at the angle i wanted the arms to be at.

I then 'bulked' these out with foil to give me the fuller arm shape. I then paper stripped over both arms. When doing this remember to leave both the ends on both arms 'open' i will explain why in a moment.

Now it's time to make the hands. Nice big outsized cartoon hands for my moon i think. I cut 2 hand shapes from pizza card stock. Like the tubed arms i bulked these out with foil too.

Before you add the paper strips 'after' you add the foil this is the time to shape the fingers into a much better position if you like. Even on thin fingers the foil will hold the new shape you force them into. The paper strips will then lock that position & give the strength to the whole hand. Up to 6 layers is more than enough for the method i intend to finish the whole project with.

Remember to leave a small strip of card sticking out. Here i was forced to making it too small as my card stock was limited at this time. Try to make it a few inches long. Foil & paper strip over it just like the rest of the hand too. This is to be your wrist connection  & support later.

Fix the hand to the arm with hot glue (or anything you would normally use) then tape & paper strip it into final shape & position. Leave until FULLY dry before moving on.

The finger nails are just U shaped pieces of card stock around one side i added a small length of rolled foil to form the cuticle's. The knuckles again are just small lengths of rolled foil slightly bent & fixed in place. Remember only 2 sets of knuckles for the thumbs, but 3 sets for the fingers. Real or cartoon hands follow the SAME rules in this respect.

Now prepare the moon to take the arms by cutting 2 small holes in each side of the moon. Any position you like is fine just make SURE to line up the holes on BOTH sides to keep the arms level when fixed in place. If anything make these holes a little smaller than required if you can. You CAN always remove more if required. Adding 'padding' back later will make this point weak. Try to avoid that if you can.

NOW to one of the arms add a thinner tube that fits 'inside' BOTH the arms. It makes NO difference which arm you add it too, just make sure you add it to the 'shoulder' section NOT the wrist section. It MUST be inserted at LEAST 2 inches (4 cm) into each arm for a respectable fit & support later. Here i simply cut one of the 'same' tubes i used to form the arms. I cut it end to end then rolled it tighter then glued it into the new width with hot glue for speed.

NOW to do the unthinkable: Cut open an access port in the back of the moon. LEAVE at least 1 side still fixed to the project to assist in re-fitting the port correctly & easier later after you add the arms.

I chose to remove the 2 supporting tubes from the moons earlier creation. You need not do this if you do not wish to. I just like my work to be as hollow & as light as possible. In truth these ARE no longer required. The moon became self supporting the minuite the back was fixed in place anyway.

NOW slot in BOTH arms, but remember the NEWLY inserted tube. Make SURE this fits snuggly into the opposite arm. Add some glue to the other end just before you push the arms fully into place.

NOW is the best time to 'fix' the arms in their final position too. You can lock the position by glueing inside the body hidding the messy glue etc.

A quick hot glue around the port edges to fix this back in place & the arm fitting is finished.

Thats the arms fitted. Only 2 stages to go now. Adding texcture to the moon & the stars then painting them. In the next stage i will be adding the texture to the moon first then painting it.

Friday, 18 December 2009


Just stopping off to make 1 of 2 last posts for the remainder of the Christmas holiday. I WAS 'supposed' to shut down on the 2nd of December (my birthday) which IS a 20+ year tradition of mine ever since my Amstrad CPC 8Bit days. It seems these last few years this rule has been getting broken way too often, more than i like.

But having started the 3D moon & stars mobile project i felt it had a bit of a Christmassy theme to it too (the stars can be made for the tops of Christmas trees). So i am working to get this last project of the year finished before i shut down for sure.

I am, right after posting this er, post going to go & video the LAST stages of the project which will include adding the arms, stars, final layer of paper then painting. The video & pictures to this last stage SHOULD be here & online at YouTube within the next 2 days 3 at most.

It's been a busy, busy year. Way too many projects started & yet to be finished. Work in my main place of residence the paper mache group PMA. Posting on Dan Reeders new forum & then Kent Goodwins new website. Then starting this blog too. All this topped off with over 70 HOW TO video's (listed at the bottom of this page) on YouTube. Definately earned that shut down time this year i think lol.

So i am going to leave this here & go shoot & edit that last stage of the 3D moon & stars mobile HOW TO video. I CAN still be reached if something urgeant comes up, otherwise i will be back here & even more active than before come January folks. Have a good one see you all soon.

Wednesday, 16 December 2009


So now we are starting to get somewhere. We have the stars already & NOW we have the start of our moon. Well it has the making of a face to it now at least. So lets add some more details to the moon & give it a full face shall we. Through the face creation i am about to show you remember that i am NOT adding more than one or two layers of paper strips at ANY time. I know this sounds odd as this will not even for my techniques make things very strong. I assure you by the time this moon is ready to be hung from a ceiling it WILL be super strong with a serious hard shell like finish... No i won't be using Dragon Skin on it either. Trust me lol.

If you want to read this stage before doing anything & then doing these steps in your own order thats perfectly fine. These half spheres are the eyes. They can be any size you like & are very easy to make if you want to keep your project as much paper mache as possible which is my intention to keep the final weight down to a minimum.

You can use ANY ball be it plastic, rubber etc for this step. To make the outter side of the eyes as smooth as possible however you will need a ball or ball shape that you can cut in half or seperate. For the scale of MY moon i am using those plastic balls found in children ball pools.

After cutting two in half i used the 'insides' to make the eyes & the eye lids.

PVA glue will not to stick to anything plastic or with a plastic like smooth finish. This is ideal for this stage as the eye pieces simply slip right out of the ball halves. Note too the eye pieces are larger than the eye lids.

After marking the position you want the eyes fix them in place. Now fit the eye lids. Position these so the outer corners over lap or meet as shown.

Try to place them so they are 'off' the eye a fraction. This will make them stand out without having to make them extra thick to have the same effect (being raised from the eye) it will also make painting the eyes much easier too if you do not have a steady painting hand. It will be a good idea to also paint the eye ball(s) details NOW as you will be able to see under the eye lids a little.

Now would be the time to add eye lashes if you would like too.

Making the nostrils could not be easier. I am guessing your moon may not be as large as mine is, but you can make the nostrils very easily for a large moon by using your fingers as molds. For my moon my thumb tips were the perfect size. I simply compressed some foil around them making two foil thimbles as shown above.

Once you have these fixed in place. Simply squeeze the 'tops' of the foil nostrils to give them the right shape. Being made of foil you can try several shapes easily until you get the look you want.


The eyebrows are simply a foil sausage cut in two equal lengths with one end of each rolled into a slight point then bent a little. Like the nostrils try different shapes here too.


Now it is a moon so lets add some crators. Make some 'loose rolled' doughnuts of odd sizes. Not too many we do not want to over do it. Three or four per facet of our moon should be about right. Squash the doughnuts as shown above. WHY squash them? When we strip over these the sharp edges will form perfect crator edges through the paper strips.

Now fix these in place. Remember not too many per facet & spread them out mixing up the odd sizes as you go.

Something similar as shown above will look just right later. This is one of those times when 'less IS more'.

Now this IS important. To make great moon crators look like 'great moon crators' EVEN on a cartoon project such as this. ONLY add one or two layers of short thin strips. Also when adding the strips let the strips go as they please. By that i mean let them stick down 'roughly' at any angles they want. Do not make them smooth & perfectly brushed down. The BEST way is to simply 'jab' at the strips with the brush crudely. If they crease or crumple slightly ALL THE BETTER that will add to the crators character a LOT.

A PERFECT crator. Do not worry if one side of the crator is thicker than the rest or angled differently. As you can see in the example shown above. The sides are uneven in thickness & angle inside & out. PERFECT!.

Okay then i am going to finish PM'ing this guy over with more strips. Then he will be ready for his arms which i will show you how to make in the next post. I chose not to add them for now to make this guy easier to handle. I will also try to squeeze in the final finish for the moon & the stars & hopefully bringing both together to make the final mobile too.

Wednesday, 9 December 2009


Over the next few days, weeks month etc i will be starting to give out a little award of my own since it seems to be the standing tradition of the blogspot users. The many awards i have seen given to various blogs so far have been anything & everything from a very basic to very impressive looking award pictures. Some appear (to me) to be randomly yet attractive images designed by users. Whilst some feature images that represent the blog users own blog. I chose to go with this latter idea in mind for MY award logo image depicted below.

There ARE a couple of things i wish to point out & make VERY clear with MY award how ever. I have read in the 'BlogSpot help files'that the 'main' reason for many of these awards is as part of a 'pyramid scheme' where the sender intends the award to be a link back system to their own blogs. Generally accompanied by the message,"Pass this onto 'X' users in turn".

[1] I consider this to be a nasty & sneaky underhand way of doing things. If 'I' say something is good & i like it - I MEAN IT!. So with this in mind I ask the recievers of my little award here if/when they get it remember 'I' gave it because i truely liked what i saw on your blog. MY award picture carries NO hidden 'track back code' of any kind & will NEVER be asked by me to be used as such. It IS just an award.

[2] I do NOT nor ever ask ANYONE & rather you did not pass this award on to 'X' bloggers. This award IS from ME & ME alone DIRECTLY to the recipients blog.

[3] I WILL ONLY send this award via Email (when possible) directly to the recipient(s). It WILL never come with the message "Come to my blog to get the award". Yet another sneaky way of getting visitors... Nasty, nasty methods i deplore.

[4] IF you recieved this award & you did NOT get it directly from ME (via' Email ONLY) & or it comes with the message "Pass this on to...." Or ANYTHING similar then it is a FAKE award & DID NOT COME FROM ME & therefore  WILL NOT have the sentiment that comes with said award from me!.

[5] Anyone who recieves this award can display it or choose not to if they so wish. I ask only that they NOT pass it on.

[6] Finally ONLY the TRUE recipients of this award will be displaid down the right side section of MY blog. If you are NOT on this list then you did NOT get the award from ME!.

I have many friends who have blogs & websites be they paper mache related or other. IF you have not yet recieved this award from me yet, please do not panick or be alarmed it will simply mean i have not gotten to you yet. I will do my best to send it as quickly as i can.

Well thats enough of that. I appologise if this seems a little 'over the top' in any way. I just wanted the recipients of this award to know when i start to give this out it is meant 'as an award' & not some elaborate link back scheme. Thankyou for you time & understanding in reading this rambling post.



Here is a simple way to make custom shaped pulp beads with ready made holes in them. It is not a fast method bearing in mind drying times for pulp of course but that is part of the deal with pulps. By using a plaster base (slab of plaster) you can create any number of custom shaped beads.


To start i have already sunk some rubber balls into plaster then allowed these to dry. I used 2 sizes for some veriaty here.

As you can see i have ONLY sunk the rubber balls half way down into the wet plaster.

I would normally make my own box to contain the plaster here, but a shortage of carboard card stock in this case means i used a thick foil baking tray instead. They can be purchased quite cheaply in packets of two or more. When you remove these BE CAREFUL they can be quite thick & WILL cut deeply if you slip up. You WILL need to remove these i will explain why shortly.

Make sure the plaster is dried ALL the way through to the bottom before you carry on. Glass or rubber balls by nature WILL 'pop free' of the plaster very easily. Simply push them out with your thumb.


18 perfect mixed sized half spheres.

Now using a flat electrical sander sand the surface level. If you do not have an electrical sander then a large wooden block with sand paper wrapped around it will do nicely. Even sculpting plaster will sand down relatively easily since you only require the surface smoothed out it should not take long.

ALWAYS USE A DUST MASK & GOGGLES. If like me you wear glasses then they will give 'some' protection, the correct protective goggles ARE reccomended however.

If you have one then have a fan blowing the dust AWAY from you too. A small desk top fan is all you require to help keep the fine plaster dust away from you if you do not have the sufficient face protection. As you can see from the angle of the fine plaster dust here try to have the dust going into a corner or off away from you generally if working with an open bench etc.

Work left to right or in circular motions, but KEEP the pressure 'even' all the time. All you are trying to do here is make ALL the half spheres the same even depth.

Plaster tends to NOT absorb spray paint evenly. Since i want to seal these molds with high gloss silver spray (colours optional at all time here) I am going to have to give the plaster something to soak up to reduce the soaking up of the gloss spray. Here i am using a simple water based paint (pre-mixed) mixed with undilluted PVA glue. I am going to spray these molds with a final coating of high gloss metalic spray for several reasons. They mainly being: the plaster mold will last longer by not soaking up the water from the constant use of wet pulp & it will also soak up less (no) releasing agent extending the life of the mold & making releasing the dried pulp beads much easier.

A single coat is sufficiant, give it two if you like. Just make sure you cover the 'whole' surface.

Leave this to FULLY DRY.


Again start with a slab of plaster. This time without the rubber or glass balls added to it.

As before remove the foil casing. Also make sure it is FULLY dried out.

You CAN use absolutely 'anything' you wish to cut YOUR custom bead shapes out of the plaster as long as it is metal or very tough plastic & relatively thin/sharp edged plastic forms. The plaster (if you used basic builders dry wall 'finishing' plaster as i did) will be soft enough so you can easily carve out some great shapes.

Here how ever I am using some shaped grinding tools that slot into any standard electrical hand drill. They come in all sorts of shapes & sizes. You can use them each as they come or you can combine them for new shapes. The possibilities for great & 'original' custom bead shapes is endless here.

When using an electrical drill start slowly to guage how the drill is going to cope/cut through the plaster. The drill WILL have NO trouble of course BUT you do not want to go blasting through the other side now do you. Notice the plaster dust ON the grinding tool too. This will be an excellent marker when guaging the depth of the other beads your going to cut with each new shaped grindling tool.

Now as with method 1 give the plaster mold an undercoating of paint.


On the 'underside' of BOTH my plaster molds i sank 4 paper legs. These were simply 80gsm white A4 printer paper 'pegs' i glued up.

I also drilled out 1/2mm holes in the base of each half sphere base all the way out the bottom of the plaster slab. This is why i said to remove the boxing or foil baking tray earlier. I then sprayed the whole surface of BOTH molds with high gloss silver metalic spray paint.

These are NOW ready for adding my pulp to make my custom beads. I want to ensure how ever that my holes i made stay there when i pop the dried pulp bead halves out. I also need to carry this hole ALL the way through my newly formed beads too!.

To make sure the hole goes all the way through my newly formed beads i simply insert a pre-measured & cut length of wooden skewer into the hole in the base of my half spheres.

The pulp WILL of course fix itself to the wooden skewer making removal quite impossible or at least relatively difficult. SO, cover the piece of wooden skewer with a piece of thin foil. When the pulp is dry the wooden skewer will easily slide out of the foil wrapping you gave it. Any foil that is extruding from the pulp when you remove it from the plaster mold can easily be pulled off by hand or cut off afterwards.

Before or after inserting your cut wooden skewer pieces give the mold(s) a coating of wax as a releasing agent. Whilst using a simple paper pulp mixed with PVA (latex based) glue & a simple bees wax floor wax that the wax dries to a fine dusty coating that is mostly absorbed into the paper or pulp. Any residue can be easily wiped off using a dry cloth but i found i can easily paint or continue to glue over this coating as it absorbs any new glue or paint & shows no sign of flaking later on. YOU can use any releasing agent you wish how ever.

Now take small managable amounts of pulp at a time.

Then really 'force' in the pulp into the mold to ensure you get a nice smooth bead half when dry. If you like me still tend to mess this stage up a little (having gaps in the finished pulp surface) try adding a single or double layer of fine paper (telephone book paper) to the mold BEFORE adding the pulp. Also try to keep the wooden skewer as straight as possible so when you join the two halves of a bead together later the holes line up enough to allow your wire or cord(s) to pass through easily.

Now using a pallete knife or anything thin, metal & smooth (here i am using a thin paint/paper scraper) smooth out the top surface of the pulp. The more you level out this surface NOW the less sanding you need do later when joining the bead halves together.

If the pallete knife etc begins to stick to the pulp dip it in water or better still some watery glue mix. Water WILL work fine to stop the pallete knife from sticking to the pulp but will also water down the glue in the surface of the pulp & potentially weaken it when it dries out if you need to dip it a lot. Dipping the pallete knife in a watery glue mix WILL ensure the surface of the pulp remains strong when it is dry & you come to sand it down if required.

Finally leave the pulp filled mold(s) to dry, air or radiator. When FULLY dry remove your bead halves. Pull out the wooden skewers trimming off any extruding foil as mentioned earlier. Sand down the flat side of the bead half again if required. Now glue two halves together making sure to line up the holes that run right through them. Paint & seal as you normally would.

Voila' custom made beads by your own hands with ready made holes right through them. Neat, clean & no tricky drilling of the holes later especially with any thinner more complex shaped beads you may dare to make.