Thursday, 28 March 2013

Shane Foulkes 1/18 Ceratosaurus

This 7 piece kit (head, body, 2 arms, 2 lower legs, tail) fit together extremely well, with male7female keyed joins so tight that puttying was almost unecessary. Furthermore, there was hardly any flash and there were no casting blemishes whatsoever.
 The exquisitely fine skin detail on Shane´s 1/18 Ceratosaurus makes it a favourite amongst my finished pieces. Intended to be paired with an accompanying Kentrosaurus kit to represent a potential prey-item, I mounted mine on its own to portray a less predatory behaviour - scratching an itchy flank up against a lakeside tree trunk. The lake has receded leaving a dry bank, some flotsam and a damp, muddy border indicating that water is not far away. Bakker´s 2004 paper on the possibility of piscivorous habits among ceratosaurs was influential here.

Finished in 206/2007, with some updates to the tree in 2009.

Rader 1/18 Baryonyx.

With my special interest in Dinosaur remains discovered in England, heightened when I´ve been fossil-hunting myself in the very clay-pit where the type-specimen fossils of this animal were found, Jon Rader´s Baryonyx kit was a "must" for me. He lists it as a 1/20th scale kit, but animals don´t come in fixed standard sizes so I have no qualms about calling it 1/18 to fit in with the rest of my collection. In contrast to some of the heftier reconstructions of  "heavy claw", Jon portrays a very lean and svelte animal with quite a heron-like quality to his "Fisher King". I re-skinned my kit, making the speckled colouring easier to achieve.

Fossilised fish-remains and a juvenile iguanodont bone were found in the gut cavity of the holotype-specimen, suggesting that Baryonyx may have had quite a generalised diet. I´ve attempted to portray an animal that has found an indeterminate meal at the water´s edge and is moving away to a safer spot before gulping it down. Gloss varnish roughly applied to the snout, arms and legs represents wet skin and water droplets, indicating that the beast has recently left the water behind it.

Here´s some images of Baryonyx as a nocturnal animal.

Finished in 2007/2008 ..... I think.

Alonso 1/24 Cryolophosaurus

The way Juan Carlos Alonso tucked the arms up on his 1/24 Cryolophosaurus sculpt had me sold from the start. I promptly bought one of the 7 piece kits, sadly now out-of-production, and despite the lack of keyed joins it was soon pinned, built, puttied and ready to paint.
 I painted the crest twice - first in a bold "lava-crested" pattern and then later in a colder "ice-crested" version as a visual pun on the genus.

Finished in 2004?

Tuesday, 26 March 2013

Alonso 1/24 Tyrannosaurus

Juan Carlos Alonso´s 1/24 scale kit of a running Tyrannosaurus kit has been out of production for some years, so I´m both glad to own one and also sad that I didn´t get my hands on its "companion piece" depicting a standing animal gulping down a large chunk of deceased hadrosaur - seen here in an old image from Sean Kotz´s Creaturescape fanzine.
The kit consisted of 7 parts :- lower jaw, body, 2 lower legs, 2 arms, tail; and it went together pretty easily with minimal putywork to disguise the joins.
Slightly exaggerating the height of the lacrimal horns on my Alonso 1/24 running Tyrannosaurus with some modelling-putty, I made it resemble something much closer to my interests - a Daspletosaurus in 1/18. These horns were painted in light creamy and blue-grey tones to accentuate them and re-inforce the impression that they would have been useful for visual signalling under shady forest canopies of the Campanian. Making them stand out even more, the rest of the animal was painted in a colour scheme combining elements of a Doberman Pinscher or Rottweiler and a Cockrel.

 An old chopping block served as a base, with a scenic setting modelled to represent the damp, leafy ground of a forest clearing on a fluvial plain. Having spotted something more than a little interesting, the animal is hurriedly skirting a dead, fallen tree and some still-water brimming with algae.

Finished 14.05.2005.

Wednesday, 20 March 2013

Tony McVey 1/18 Gorgosaurus

Tony McVey´s sculpts have an instantly recognisable quality. I´m very pleased to own some of his rare pieces. This is one of my favourites. A 6-piece kit (tail, body, lower leg, lower leg attached to base and 2 arms), it was keyed with male/female joints and went together like a dream. The upright running pose was altered into this more aggressive, forwardly leaning lunge  in order to portray the animal just about to snap up an unfortunate juvenile lambeosaur ( - as yet to be finished).

A fossil-hunting trip to Gram clay-pit, where the remains of  Miocene whales have been found, provided me with a suitable background for photographs of a thirsty Gorgosaurus hurrying down to water for a drink. 

Finished 01.10.2004.

Shane Foulkes´ first 1/18 Iguanodon.

This was the first ever Dinosaur model-kit released by Shane Foulkes and his Cretaceous Creations of America back in 1995 - 5 years before I even became aware of the Dinosaur modelling hobby.
I know I was very lucky to get hold of one of these 7 piece kits (lower jaw, body, 4 limbs and tail, plus a base) and it still pleases me to see it amongst my collection.

The old kit was completely re-skinned to give it a more pebbly-scaled hide and the separate middle three fingers on the fore-limbs were altered to unified "mitts", bringing it a little more up-to-date.

A "tail-flash" was added for visual communication with other Iguanodon, at the same time livening up my otherwise predictably dull colour-scheme.

This Iguanodon has slopped her way across a treacherous marsh to get at some tasty greens. Her hands and feet are mired with the black ooze that will later bog her down on her return journey - depriving her of life but ensuring that her fossilised bones will be found on the south coast of England 130 million years later for us to wonder and marvel over.

Finished 01.11.2005.

American Theropod´s baby T. rex

This limited-edition one-piece casting of Jun Huang´s sculpt has unfailingly proven most popular at shows.
Squatting just 17cm high, those big eyes seem to be looking up imploringly and even we humans find this appealing in a tyrannosaur. The over-sized and gawky feet are a juvenile feature and I painted them in slate-blues and greys to make them stand out even more. Offseting the cuteness of that upward gaze with the slight cock to the head, a few bones were scattered near the feet - is this youngster looking up in expectation of some tender care ... or some tender meat ....?

Finished in 2004.