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About billn53

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    Huntsville AL, USA

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  1. billn53

    At the Mountains of Madness

    Lest anyone think I've been idling chit-chatting away, the tentacle transplant is finished and the operation appears to have been a success:
  2. billn53

    At the Mountains of Madness

    At the risk of hijacking my own thread, I must admit that At the Mountains of Madness is not a favorite of mine. Lovecraft's prose can sometimes be a chore to read -- I can tolerate it in a short story, but Mountains of Madness is more novella length. That said, my favs include The Call of Cthulhu, The Shadow Over Innsmouth, The Dunwich Horror, The Colour Out of Space, and Haunter of the Dark (along with its prequel, "The Shambler from the Stars", by Robert Bloch). I also recommend checking out the offerings from the H.P. Lovecraft Historical Society, http://www.hplhs.org/ My votes for best Lovecraft-inspired films include "Dagon" (2001) and HPLHS's "Call of Cthulhu".
  3. billn53

    At the Mountains of Madness

    Progress on my diorama seems to be being made a few small steps at a time, but at least everything is moving forward, and eventually I'll see the light at the end of the tunnel. I textured the shoggoth's abode using a rattlecan sandstone-texture paint from the local hardware store, then weathered it with washes and dry pigments. Although it wasn't my intent, the resulting structure reminds me of a spider, which is appropriate for this horror-based diorama: It's hard to see the detailing on my shoggoth inside its lair, so I installed a LED: which was a great improvement: The shoggoth's bottom did not conform to the irregular floor of the lair. I fixed this by putting a layer of black Milliput on the shoggoth's belly, which also served the purpose of fixing the shoggoth in place. All that's left now to complete my shoggoth is add a few tentacles:
  4. billn53

    At the Mountains of Madness

    This evening's objective was to finish construction of the shoggoth lair. I added columns framing the entrances, made from rolled Milliput that I shaped with a file after the Milliput had hardened: I used CA gel to glue the columns in place, then filled and blended the gaps with Apoxie Sculpt: I believe this compares favorably with my reference model: Mr. Shoggoth seems pleased with his new digs! Keep coming back, there's still lots more to be done.
  5. billn53

    At the Mountains of Madness

    This update is a short "creature feature". The giant blind albino penguins are done. I wanted these guys to look rather mangy, after all, they've been living underground with only shoggoths for company: Speaking of shoggoths, mine is also finished (except for tentacles, which I'll add after the shoggoth is safely tucked away in its lair): The multitude of eyes were made using aftermarket decals for the irises, and UV-activated acrylic gel to form the corneas: Next up: finishing the shoggoth lair.
  6. billn53

    1/72 YF-105A Thunderchief Conversion

    Another Thud build -- Excellent!!!
  7. billn53

    At the Mountains of Madness

    Not to worry, everything will grow back. Remember, "That is not dead which can eternal lie"
  8. billn53

    At the Mountains of Madness

    I haven't been able to put in as much time this weekend as I would have liked, but I haven't been idle, either. For my shoggoth, I started with a wargaming miniature from Strange Aeons (www.strange-aeons.ca). It was a little on the small side, so I enlarged it with some Apoxy Sculpt. I also added a number of eyeballs made from leftover Apoxy Sculpt: What's a shoggoth without tentacles? Fortunately, I have a willing donor: The shoggoth's lair / city entrance started out as a plastic food container. I cut out the three entry holes and covered the entire piece with a layer of Milliput+Plasticine: I also did some additional weathering to my big, fat, beautiful wall: Last, but not least, I started work on the mutant albino penguins : That's it for now!
  9. billn53

    At the Mountains of Madness

    I have finished building "The Wall". I built a great wall -- and nobody builds walls better than me, believe me --and I built it very inexpensively. It's a big, fat, beautiful wall. For interest, I wanted the different parts of the wall to have a variety of textures. You can see that the texture of the rough-cut stones is much different than what's on the top of the big buttresses: Here's how I did it. Working one section at a time, I gave the foam board surfaces a coat of wall spackle. On the stone areas, I used the end of a stiff brush to texture the surface while the spackle was fresh and wet. After the spackle had set, I gave a light sanding with coarse sandpaper to remove the highest spots, then cut the mortise lines using my engraving tool. For the buttresses, I applied a thin layer of spackle, let it dry, and sanded it smooth. I then wet the surface with clear floor acrylic to soften the spackle, and stippled the surface with the stiff brush. After everything was dry, I did final assembly and sprayed everything with a base coat of Humbrol Tank Gray 67 "rattle can" acrylic. That was followed by a light, misty coat of Humbrol Gray 64, from the top at a very acute angle, so that the darker Tank Gray would show in the shadowed areas. U I think that worked out pretty well... take a look at the carvings on the buttresses: Next step is to add some weathering, and then break ground for the shoggoth lair! By the way, I posted a RFI a few days ago for the Ford Tri-motor, which will be the centerpiece of this diorama. If you missed it, you can find it here:
  10. billn53

    Savoia Marchetti SM.79 Lebanese Style

    Thanks so much for the lesson, it's been dutifully filed.
  11. billn53

    MiG-29 SMT - Zvezda 1/72

    That’s one very attractive MiG.
  12. billn53

    At the Mountains of Madness

    One more pic, just playing around with my photo editing software:
  13. billn53


    PayPal donation inbound. Thanks for hosting this excellent site with so many great members!
  14. Stunning! As others have said, your photos could easily be mistaken for an actual helicopter.
  15. OMG that's super! Magnificent job on an uncommonly ugly airplane, and the setting is lovely!