A good pair of horns is, quite frankly, a year round accessory in my mind. However, with Halloween on the horizon I couldn’t think of a better time to share the process of sculpting these. Follow along and learn how you can make a pair of your own.
This project was sponsored by WorX. Their MakerX tool is pretty incredible. It is a central power pack that you can attach a heat gun, angle grinder, airbrush, soldering iron, or rotary tool to. I used it for many parts in this project, though you’ll find the techniques are pretty general.
I started by creating the template. To do this, you’ll need to make the basic mass. Aluminum foil is perfect for this as you can just scrunch it up and it holds it’s form pretty solidly. It took a little trial and error but I got the shape I was after.
Once you’ve nailed the shape, cover the whole thing in tape. I’ve seen people use packing tape, though duct tape works just fine as well. You can then cut the tape off and it will serve as a perfect template for cutting the foam.
trace out your template on the foam, and then cut the pieces. You can angle your cuts a bit to reduce the bending necessary but it isn’t absolutely necessary.
Keep in mind that you’re going to carve this later so it doesn’t need to be perfect. Found a hole? just glue some foam in. You can’t see it in the video but ultimately I cut the tips off and just glued some stacked pieces on there to get the shape to be exactly how I wanted it.
A heat gun blasting on it can also help you form it into more of the shape you desire.
sculpting the main shapes
Using a rotary tool, just start taking small swipes at it. You’re carving into it and theoretically you can carve too much away, reducing the structural integrity. However, as I mentioned above, you can always cut chunks out and glue in fresh foam to repair things. EVA is very forgiving.
sculpting the details
For details, a soldering iron is incredibly useful. I have a sharp tip that worked perfectly for laying in these fine lines. You’ve got to push the temps up pretty far, but it sure beats trying to cut this type of pattern.
a hardened shell
painting a layer of mod podge, or wood glue on can provide you with a hardened shell that will help this not only be more rigid, but also look better. It isn’t absolutely necessary but it really helps.
I’m no expert when it comes to airbrushing, but I really like how well you can blend colors with one. Lots of layers of color make things feel much more real. In this case I had a base brownish red layer, then a grayish brown layer over that, then purplish brown in the lower areas of the underside. This all served as just the base color layer.
After that, it is time to start making it look more like something that has been out in the world for a while, so I did a dry brush of lighter grayish brown. Then, I did several black washes, letting the watered down black paint pool in the crevices. This emulates dirt buildup as well as natural shadows. Finally, I did a very pale dry brush over the edges.
There are so many ways to do a headpiece. I really wanted to do something low tech, not utilizing my 3d printers or anything like that. I chose some heavy duty wire and simply bent it into shape.
By including all the twists and turns, it made the whole thing much more forgiving of placement. I could bend things around to place them how I wanted, which worked out really well.