From Duo to AQYLA and more. As painting materials are constantly developing, so is the variety of products available for hobby crafting.
However, as I mentioned in a previous article, all paints are basically made from a combination of pigments and mediums.
(「Pigments + Mediums = ???」https://pigment.tokyo/en/blogs/article/81)
In other words, it's the same whether it's for painting or for hobby crafting. There is no such thing as a no-no on using our products for plastic models or figures.
You can do anything you want when it comes to hobbies!
Experiment with different materials and try to master your own “hobby path”.
For those handcraft hobbyists, we highly recommend Vitrail and Fantasy Prism, from Pebeo.
Both Vitrail and Fantasy Prisme can be used on smooth surfaces such as glass and metal, as well as canvas and paper.
When the paint dries completely, it can take on a texture like this lacquer that shows on the picture below.
Moreover, Fantasy Prisme allows you to create a realistic, structured painting surface, just like the compound eyes of an insect.
Since oil-based alkyd resin is used as the adhesive medium, these products take about 6 hours to dry.
Due to its extremely high transparency, this kind of multi-layered expression is possible by combining Vitrail and Prisme, giving it a smooth gloss and tough coating result that cannot be found in water-based paints.
Therefore, PIGMENT TOKYO invited "WAGAYA KOBO"(My home laboratory), an alternative space in Tokyo that has been featured in previous articles*, to join us in this interview.
WAGAYA KOBO, hosted by writer Gigan Yamazaki, where he creates original monster costumes and soft vinyl figure.
This time, Yukayama Koutei, who is the director of WAGAYA KOBO, kindly gave us the opportunity to use Vitrail and Prisme on one of his collections.
I wonder what kind of work will be created from Kaiju and Creature’s hideout?
WAGAYA KOBO’s original creature, 「Demushiron the Blue Arthropod Human」
Left : original color / Right : unpainted version
(Primary molding color : Sky blue)
The creature is mainly colored with Nagashima's Sofvi (soft vinyl) colors.
And here's the form recreated by using Pebeo Vitrail and Prisme!
Compared to sofvi paints, it feels more lustrous and richer in color.
Beautiful and shiny results, all thanks to the unique luster of alkyd resin.
We interviewed the two members of WAGAYA KOBO about the concept behind the production of this project and their thoughts on the use of the paints.
ーWhat is the concept behind the creation of your work this time?
Gigan Yamazaki : Nowadays, sofvi Kaiju models, including the ones for children that are sold in toy stores, are very much like realistic ones, but up until the 70's, the mainstream models were rather stocky or deformed. The soft vinyl models in WAGAYA KOBO may be similar to the ones made in those years.
Yukayama Koutei : Normally, Demushiron’s colors are painted with molding colors because of the request from our leader (Yamazaki), but the paint we used this time is quite transparent, so we had to change our painting style.
Yamazaki: There is also the fact that the remaining Demstrone happened to be a marble molding color. Considering the impact of the base color, I thought it would be better to paint the whole thing in just a single color first. This technique is called "Kurumi Coating".
Yukayama: We went through a lot of experimenting, adjusting the viscosity in order for the paint to be airbrushed, layering gradients, and changing the primary color to begin with.
Several color tests were conducted on the elements before applying on the sofvi models.
ーHow did you decide on the color scheme?
Yamazaki: I suggested that in order to take advantage of the luster and colors that Vitrail and Prisme have, it would be better to simply limit the number of colors rather than have a bunch of different shades on them. He'd make it more and more colorful if we left him to it (laugh).
Yukayama: At first I was trying it with a silver undercoat, but the transparency of the paint made it look like a very pale shade. So I decided to paint it with another matching color and the result turned out to be more intense and beautiful! Both undercoats are sofvi colors.
Likewise, this is the part of the Demstrone that was used to try out the paint, which ended up being the theme color for this project.
ーWhat was the most important thing to you in creating this version of Demstrone?
Yukayama: I got my coloring idea from an insect called Osenchi-Kogane (Phelotrupes auratus), which is known for its metallic luster shield. The green part was painted in a mixture of Vitrail Apple Green and Prisme Emerald. I was hoping that by spraying some crimson on the edges, it would be possible to replicate the polarized texture that is unique to the Osenchi-Kogane.
Yamazaki: It looks a bit like Nijiiro-Kuwagata (Phalacrognathus Muelleri, a.k.a. the rainbow stag beetle), right? At first, Yukayama was going to use only Vitrail and Prisme, but we talked about how it would be better to use the usual paints in certain parts of the work as well, in order to create a richer overall effect. Specifically, the red for the eyes, the silver for the teeth and arm blades, the black for the legs, and the gold for the boots. Moreover, the coloring of the lower half body is based on the idea of Gel-Shocker* from the earlier Kamen Rider.
(*An evil organization that the members are usually wearing black tights and yellow boots.)
The colors look exactly like a scarab beetle and the shoulders look more beautiful with the shimmer of Prisme.
Besides, the eyes are painted with Mr.COLOR’s Clear red from GSI CREOS.
The underlying layer is a soft vinyl color gold, as well as the snakeskin part.
-If you look closely, Demstrone’s skin is actually painted in different textures!
Yukayama: I was able to create these textures as a result of layering different colors, such as applying the first coat of Vitrail gold and then spraying orange on top of it. Even the flame-like pattern on the abdomen is painted over with Prisme silver, unlike the blades on the teeth and arms. However, because of how our leader (Yamazaki) is picky about the colors, I made it seem less colorful upon first glance.
- But if you look at it up real close, you can see that they are actually different.
Yamazaki: If the product is designed for the monster maniacs and sofvi collectors, it might be just fine if you paint the character in all kinds of ridiculous colors. But this time, the work might catch the eye of the audience from different fields, so I tried to make it somewhat easier to understand. In other words, if the subdued tones of the lower half body seem to be enhancing the glossiness of the whole look, it’s a success.
Can you tell the difference in this exquisite shine?
This kind of delicate attention to detail can only be done by WAGAYA KOBO.
When layered alongside the sheen of Vitrail gold, the matte quality of the black stands out even more!
- Tell me how you feel about using these paints.
Yamazaki & Yukayama: To be honest, it’s harder than we thought haha!
Yamazaki: All I can say is, sofvi colors dry very quickly anyway, so one after the other, you can put a new color on it. On the other hand, this time it took six hours for the paint to dry before you’re able to touch it, so it took a lot of time to try and reach the green + gold color scheme.
Yukayama: After all, it took us three whole days to do the main work including the final decision of the colors. However, in the end, I think the final result was very satisfying. The use of these unique paints helped me to develop some new ideas for the Kaiju.
- Last but not the least, do you have any announcements to make?
Yamazaki: Recently, we've been doing more and more design collaborations with other companies, so due to the privacy regulations, we can’t really advertise our works openly, however, feel free to check out our online shop, WAGAYA SYOUKAI.
Sofvi Kaiju collections, stickers, paper files and other merchandise are available for sale. Also, we'd love to receive any requests for event appearances!
Figure making / Interview and cooperation
Founded in 2018 as a Tokyo-based alternative space specializing in Kaiju costume making.
It is led by freelance writer and editor, Gigan Yamazaki (left).
Yukayama Kotei (right), Ouchi Rider, Pashimi as the main members of WAGAYA KOBO.
- 「怪獣（カッコいい）はつくれる!!」(I Can Build a "Cool" Monster!!) solo exhibition, Tokyu Hands Shibuya Store, 2020
- Solo event, LOFT9 Shibuya, 2019
- The Lethal Weapons’ promotional video, 2019