A friend of ours wanted to rock an “Axe Cop” cosplay to Wondercon 2011 here in San Francisco. Although he is new to cosplay he does have a good eye for costume creation.
The one thing he lacked was a garage and some pink foam to make an axe, after all an Axe Cop with no axe is just a…… cop?
Ok, on to the crafting. If you have read a few of my other tutorials you know I love this stuff (pink foam, of course!). Because we only had a comic book to work off, I free handed one side of the axe blade and used a stencil to reverse it to the other side to ensure an even look.
After I was happy with the curve, I cut out the foam with my vibratory cutter and left a bit of extra on all sides. I always prefer to sand down to my line. You can always cut off more but its a pain to put it back on.Time to sand!!
If you look closely you can see the mark I made around the front of the soon to be axe head. This let me know how deep to cut so that the blade will be even on both sides. Take your time and change the sand paper often. For this part I used 80grit sand paper to help speed things along.
Always stop from time to time and check both the angle of the cut and your tools. Make sure the paper is in good condition.
Ax head is shaped out but now we will need to cut the hole for the handle. We eye balled a good spot on the head and outlined it with sharpe to show use where to cut.
Using a hot knife, we removed the unneeded material and checked fit before proceeding to paint.
We wanted to make sure the foam was fully sealed before using spray paint, so that we would avoid any melting or damage to the foam which some times can react to the propellants in the paint. So, we coated the axe head in Gesso to achieve this solid base coat.
Time for the spray paint.
We used a good krylon red gloss and then with a little weathering added some chips and nicks to the paint along with a ground edge look to add the realism to it.
Final step was attachment of the head to the axe handle. Any glue would have worked here and I had my 2-part Epoxy sitting out already so we went with that.
Our good friend took this to Wondercon 2011 and made a very good showing.
Hope this simple tutorial helps out on your next cosplay creation, and check out our friend’s post on wearing his costume to Wondercon!
Was totaly guna ask you what kinda paint to use on foam to get a gloss or shine. Lol now I don’t have to. =)
I was wondering what brand of gesso you use and how many layers you apply. Do you sand it too? I bought some by a brand called Art Alternatives and had issues making it smooth. I know you can sand it, but I sanded ALOT and it still looked crummy. So I was wondering if maybe you had a secret to applying it, or maybe were just using a way better brand than me.
To be honest I had to go and look to tell you the brand. I have both Liquitex and Golden Brand on my shelf right now. I always apply with at least a 1 inch long bristled brush. I apply it pretty thick on the first coat; because I am normally working with pink form I make sure it fully covers the pink color.
If I am going to use it as a surface prep, 3-4 coats is a good start, but the sand paper is the key. Never go lower than 220 grit paper. Anything lower with just cut through it and remove too much material.
I was using a lower grit (180 I believe) so that probably caused issues. I’ll try one of those brands next time I need to gesso anything. Thanks for the info :)