My most recent custom figure, Ragman, was the result of a collaboration with “Doc” Deane Aikins. He did the sculpting, and I did the painting.
I never realized Ragman’s look had changed so much over the years! For the most part he’s still the same, but his patches were more psychadelic in the early days, both in color and pattern. (FYI, his first appearance was in 1976.) Deane had sent along two reference shots that I used to develop my color palette.
The body is a DCUC blue camo Aquaman. The cape is from the Batman of Zur-en-Arrh figure. Deane sculpted the hood and long scarf/tie thing. I’m not sure what head he used, but he sculpted a mask over the nose and mouth.
First, I covered him in a light blue-grey as a base coat. It was going to be my neutral patch color. Next, I started filling in some of the more dominant patches on his suit from both reference shots, but I also let the muscle contours and articulation cuts create “natural borders” to define some shapes.
After I filled in all the patches, it was time to add some detail. Like my recent Zauriel project, I needed to do a lot of fine, detailed line work that would have taken forever with a paint brush, not to mention taking a toll on my sanity! I used a fine-tip black gel pen to draw the lines and stitchery all over his suit. I’m happy to say the black gel dried almost instantly, unlike the gold gel that had to sit overnight to avoid smudging.
The cape was originally purple, and I’m happy to say the acrylic green covered it nicely with two coats. After a flat clear coat spray, I’m confident that it would take a fair amount of horseplay to make the paint crack or flake off. I also painted the hood and scarf green. I glued the head, hood, cape, and scarf on permanently with a Thunderdome-grade epoxy called JB Weld. (Strong stuff.)