A few years ago I began posting what was the beginning of a new performance project for street and corporate functions. I decided some how, for some reason at some point to become a good mythological faun. None of this cheese, fairy, sparkles, ivy stuff, but a Narnia-esque warrior princess, straight from another world. Silent, strong, and straight from the wardrobe into your venue – walking around and experiencing humanity for the first time, as if they were the strange, other-worldly creature.
It’s a few years later and progress was slow for a while. Faunus went through different incarnations and prototype legs, but is finally piecing together into a full and rounded character.
Let me show you my progress…
This was my first attempt at reverse stilt legs. I could prop myself up into them, but taking a step was impossible. It looked cool, but was a horrible, horrible, horrible design. But it was a start.
At the height I wanted my legs to be, I had to keep lengthening and widening the base until I was a giant, cartoon-hooved monster. It was still a little unstable and I was bound to break something if I ever mis-stepped. …OH, and built out of wood, each leg ended up weighing in at 20 pounds. It was completely un-maintainable. On the upside, this prototype gave me something to begin costuming.
Finally. Good engineering. I’ve invested in Digilegs (http://www.digilegs.com/)
I had to sacrifice the height I so desperately wanted (I wanted to be well above any given crowd), but I knew that I was making too many sacrifices to the design and illusion if I were to insist on that extra foot of height. So, instead of being 7 feet tall, I decided 6’3″ or so would do just fine. With horns, hair and a headdress I’d still be noticeable.
Digilegs are surprisingly easy to adapt to. It’s just a matter of becoming natural at it — rediscovering where your toes end. (PS: I think my fly is open in that last photo. How embarrassing.)
Horns and a headdress.
I made a feather mohawk for my extra height and royal warrior princess persona. Knowing some of my costume would be hooking together in the back, I created extra hair and decoration to mingle in with my own hair and cover most of my back.
I discovered by accident how to made dreadlocks out of fake hair, while I was gathering loose bits to clump up in matted balls and throw in the garbage. Ta da! Dreads. Braided through some brown yarn and matted up some more – it matches my real hair pretty closely.
I created a top out of a second hand leather coat and purses. Purses have the best buckles. I traded a frankentoy to an Etsy craftsman for one of his metal bras and then passed it onto animation co-worker, Jason hall who had begun making me genuine, hand crafted armour…
And right now I’m working on re-costuming the digilegs and building new hooves that can clip back with spring power, when I lift my legs.
So. these are the pieces. Theyr’e slowly coming together, but I haven’t been able to put them all together at once yet. I hope by December I’ll be able to show off and advertise Faunus as a fully developed character and be able to focus on WHO she is. Then look out for a warrior faun at festivals and events near you.
I haven’t updated my site in ages. There are far too many reasons to explain. One of those reasons (and one of the reasons I don’t care to take the time to explain) is the first of two carpal tunnel surgeries. I shouldn’t really be typing. …Oh, and I’m not. Right, right. I’m pounding my face against the keyboard and it’s just pure Shakespearean-chimps-at-typewriter chance that words and coherent sentences are the result. It’s really creepy.
Anyway, I want to share at least a peak at what’s developing in my world of busking. Pavement art is getting progressively hard on my body… So, I’ve decided to start building an other-worldly walk-about character who will surely help me ruin the remaining parts of my body left undmanged by chalk. So far, I call her “Faunus”.
I’ll let the photos do the typing now, but stay tuned for a finished, full body faun, late in 2011…