Is that a 3-D Jaws card?

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Why, yes it is.

As part of my ongoing quest to finish setting up our house, I have found myself going through many things and trying to find a place for them.  This week, I was able to do a few things, so expect a couple updates within the next week.  Sorry these aren’t as Crafty as I would have liked, but if you stick them out, I did do a mini-craft that I will post.

On this site we are going to look through many collections that I have been putting together all my life.  One of the first things that I had to go through was my card collection.  I don’t mean greeting cards, or sports cards here.  Although I do still have a box of old baseball cards that I should go through.  And I didn’t include my Magic cards, as there are just too many, and I need to sell most of them.  Interested? Email us.

No, here I’m going to talk about my comic and miscellaneous, and random other ones that I had acquired, including some that I just bought last month.

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Here is my collection, or most of it, semi-sorted into groups.  We got some Marvel cards, X-Force, X-Men, Spider-Man, Heavy Metal magazine covers, Arthur Suydam artwork, some Marvel game, TMNT TV show cards, Archer, and even one lone DC card.  That’s right, Gangbuster, in all of his glory.

My original plan was to narrow done these cards to a core group that were the best of the best and represented the interests I had.  This didn’t take as long as I thought it would.  Many cards I eliminated just because I didn’t like the way that they looked (sorry X-Force).  Some because I just had no interest in them (Marvel game and Heavy Metal).  I mean, don’t get me wrong, some of those cards were cool, but I just don’t think that I liked them enough to put them on display.

Finally I got the ones that I thought were good enough, and diverse enough, to add to my wanna-be-shelf-porn library.  As you can see, I only got vertical ones, and I did include two sketch cards and a Magic card.  I thought that this would look good in a tasteful frame.

imageTop row, left to right, they are:  Archer (Sterling Duchess), the Deadpool card from the polybagged X-Force #1 (worthless, utterly worthless, even in the bags), a Groot sketch card from last year in Boston.

Middle row: Glow in the dark Ghost Rider, Arthur Suydam artwork, Avengers team card.

Bottom: Aces Weekly sketch card from Dubai Comic-Con, Marvel “comedy” card, MTG Dark Ritual card (not a rare, but a solid card to have in a black deck).

As luck would have it, I was able to find several nice frames at Goodwill, which was having a huge sale.  So I was getting frames for under a dollar.  These were nice, too.  You’ll see some of them in a later post.  Unfortunately, the sheets of cards would not fit. So I had to do a bit of cutting and re-arranging.  In the process, I switched out a couple of cards.  This was mostly done to make it fit, but I also think it looks a bit nicer now, with the horizontal cards.

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As you can see, I took out the Avengers card, the hilarious Marvel “joke”, and the Ghost Rider.  Looking back now, I think I want to put the Ghost Rider back in and take out the Magic card, but maybe that would just be too much Marvel.  In case you can’t tell from the glare, the two horizontal cards that I put in are the Jaws card, and one of Kraven the Hunter with a gunshot wound to the head, which isn’t in the original Kraven’s Last Hunt (or Fearful Symmetry for you snobs), I don’t think.

So where does this go?  Well, for now, it goes under my shelf of many things.

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Someday that will require updating, and so someday, that too will be an article here on Giant-Size Comic Things, your home for stuff about comics and things.  Think you got a better catch phrase? Leave it in the comments.

Paper Crafts (part 2)

Last time, in my small craft corner of this website, we looked at making Cubee Crafts.  They are simple, yet make great decorations, and of course, best of all, they are free.  Today I’m going to talk about something else you can make with paper, just as free, but a bit more geeky.

I’m talking about making dice.  Have played Dungeons & Dragons in my youth, I was familiar with many different dice, and as I still play a game of magic now and then, I have a few d20s still lying around.  Today I’ll show you 6 oversized dice I made, which are the most common ones used in gaming.

There are five platonic solids, the tetrahedron (d4), cube (d6), octahedron (d8), dodecagon (d12), and icosahedron (d20).  If you’re unfamiliar with platonic solids, they are 3D shapes that are made of regular polygons.  Regular polygons are shapes with equal sides and angles, such as squares.  Each vertex of a platonic solid is also identical to the others, meaning that the same number of sides always come together.  I found the nets for the platonic solids over at this website.  They also have nets to make a lot of other 3d shapes, but none that I would use today.  I have used several of them when I teach mathematics, though.  The last shape, a decahedron (d10), I found over here, is not a platonic solid.  Even though every side is the same shape, the sides are not regular polygons, and the vertices are not all identical.  Okay, that ends the math lesson, so I’ll get to the art side of things.

First thing to do is to print off the actual patterns.  Like the Cubee Crafts, I would recommend using a thicker paper, however, this time around I just printed them on normal paper to start with.

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I also got some different paper from my work.  It was thicker, colored, and also had a nice texture and pattern already, which I thought would look good on the dice.  I wanted to use the thick paper for the dice, but couldn’t get it to print onto it.  I chose the sandy brown color to do my first set on, as I had enough of it, and I do live in the desert here.  I think when I return to my home, I will make a few new sets in various colors.

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I then just stapled the patterns to the thicker paper.  This allowed me to cut out the pattern easily, without the thinner paper moving away, which would have resulted in some edges not being exactly right.

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After cutting out the patterns comes the harder step.  Not too difficult, mind you, but the hardest part of this project.  Folding.  I enjoy origami, and so it wasn’t much of a issue, but it can be challenging.  The lines that you would normally fold on are not on the thicker paper, so you have to try and eyeball where they would go based on the printout.  There are several flaps that need to be folded correctly to held hold the sides together.

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Finally, when it is all folded, you can start to glue.  I used superglue for some, and hot glue for others.  It doesn’t really matter, as long as you hold it until it dries.

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And then you’re done!

Here you can see my the other four of my five platonic solids, all completed.  I have the 3 triangle-based ones…

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and the pentagon-based one.

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And here is the last, non-platonic solid, but just as important, d10.  I actually added the numbers onto this one, although I’m not sure if I like it like that or not.  We’ll see what I do next time.

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I hope you enjoyed this small tutorial of making your own dice.  I don’t know if I’d use them for a D&D or Warhammer game, but I might keep them around on my shelf, make them heavier and into bookends, or even make larger scale models.  Our Nerd Home did a giant d20, which looked awesome, but I think you need the whole collection.

Paper Crafts (Part 1)

Do you like geek decorating?  Of course you do, you’re on a comic book website aren’t you?  So do I.  I love going over here and seeing all the “Shelf Porn” (don’t worry it’s SFW).  One thing that I get insanely jealous over though is the amount of statues or figurines that some people have.  Now, I like to have playable toys, (and I’ll say for my daughter) but still, the statues look awesome.  Now a lot of people seem to get those bobbleheads or minimates or whatever else is cool these days.  I’d like to, but I just don’t have the money to spend on those things.

Which is why I was so happy when I found CubeeCraft.  It’s all free, and there are so many to choose from.  You simply print off the designs (I suggest cardstock or thick paper), cut them out, fold them together, and BAM!  Awesome art to line your shelves with.  And what a amazing array of them too!  TMNT, Marvel heroes, DC heroes, Arrested Development, Star Wars, Doctor Who, Dragon Ball Z, Princess Bride, Mario, and the list goes on and on.  You can also print off blank ones, or design your own.

So today, I’m here to give you a little crash course in making your own FREE! paper statues.

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Here is what the design looks like when you print it out.  As you may or may not know, this is the prince from the wonderfully simple game, Katamari Damacy. Again, I use thicker paper, as it holds up better and makes folding it easier.

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Now it is all cut out.  I use an exacto-knife to do this, as there are some slits you have to cut.

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Here are the individual parts all folded.  Most of them follow this pattern.  Legs, torso, two arms, and head.  There are ones with extra bits or accessories as well.

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Now I’ve started to put them together.  I like to put the feet in first, and then the arms.  I bend the flaps inside the torso down so that they lock in place better.  If you don’t, they tend to fall out if they get moved.  The head gets put on last, and I do the same thing, folding the neck flaps inside before I put the top of the head into place.

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Ta-da!  Easy.  The whole process only took about 15 minutes.  The first one you do might take a bit longer, but it’s an easy groove to get into.  Not only that, but it’s an easy enough thing that kids can do it to.  The whole family can find some character they like.

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There are a couple my daughter did.

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And there’s some by my wife.  I was actually going to do a different paper craft today, but in our process of going through stuff as we prepare to move, I came across some undone cubees, and so decided to let the force guide me.  We had done a whole lot of these last year and taken then home with us.

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This is a small selection of some of my favorite ones I had made.  I hope you enjoyed this and I hope that you try making some of your own.  My next goal is to make some larger ones.

 

Harry Potter Wands

Last week, I talked about how my daughter and I celebrated Star Wars Day.  This week I’ll show you another craft we did.  This one wasn’t related to a holiday, and is actually not even related to comics.  But I think it’s okay to put some Harry Potter stuff on here too.  We recently finished reading the first book as a bedtime story and then watched the movie.  My wife was waiting for this day for ages.  Now, we could finally do a craft that she had seen on Pinterest a while ago.  Harry Potter wands.  And it was surprisingly easy!

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We started off with just some chopsticks, marbles, beads, and a hot glue gun.  Just gloop a whole bunch of glue onto the end you want for the handle (we chose the thicker end) and glue a marble onto the base of it (totally optional, but it provides a nice weight and makes it a bit longer).  When the glue is mostly cooled, you can shape it a bit by rolling it around and make the grip to your liking.  You can also add beads in the glue to give it more texture (or add a unicorn hair or phoenix feather).

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After the glue is completely dried and you’re happy with how it looks, you just add paint.  We used acrylic, since it dries quickly.  We had to put on a few coats of it to really make the color right.

And that’s it!  So easy.  I went over mine again with a lighter color on a dry brush to make it look a bit more worn and three dimensional.

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So there they are.  A close up showing the highlights on mine, and then the three of ours all together.  I also made another wand later, in an almost white color, but don’t have a picture of that.  These have already been used for playing some magical games and will find a nice home in our library when we move home.  One day, Our Nerd Home. One day we will be your equal.

So try it out for yourself.  It’s quick, easy, and fun.  You can make any sort of design you want, but just remember, the wand chooses the wizard, so let yourself feel the magic flow through you.

Oh yeah, check us out on Facebook too!

Star Wars Day Crafts!

Yes, I know.  May the Forth is a ways behind us now, but I’m not the best with uploading pictures to the computer.  Hopefully that will change in a few months when I start my own nerd home (those guys are a huge inspiration!).

Anyways, this is a small post to get started with some crafts.  There will be a couple more posted, maybe over the next two weeks, depending on how I get the pictures up.  No promises, anyway.  But a few weeks ago, my daughter and I celebrated the most holy of Fan-based holidays by watching a certain film and doing a few other Star Wars-sy things.

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This is an origami finger puppet of an Ewok we made.  (Did you know the word Ewok is never mentioned in the movie? Of course you did, you’re on a fairly geeky site already.)  It was actually remarkably easy to construct, and involved very little folding, but a little bit of tearing.  What is nice is that if you use origami paper, one side becomes the pattern for their clothing and the other side you can color to look like their fur.  We found the instructions on how to do this in a book my daughter has, Origami Yoda.  It is one of a series and we will try to get more of them when we venture back to our own Hoth.  But that’s not all we made!

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Look!  It’s Princess Leia’s necklace from the first movie!  Although, is she really still a princess?  Her whole planet was destroyed, so who would her subjects even be anymore?  Huh.  Anyways, this was a pretty easy make as well.  Just some string, aluminum foil, glue sticks and a bead for the end.  Just fold the foil into squares over the string, glue them down and make a loop with bead at the end to fasten it.  Here’s my daughter working on hers.

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And here are our two necklaces!  Don’t we look fancy!  If you want faces, too bad, you gotta pay for that kind of exposure.

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To top off our day, we also played with some of my Star Wars toys from my childhood.  Upon bringing them out, my wife commented that they were like Polly Pocket, which I cannot confirm or deny.  I know that they are cool and reminded me of Mighty Max toys from back in the day.

Each disembodied head opens up to display a little scene and a figure.  There were also a couple sets of figures without heads, such as a swarm of jawas and the cast from episode IV and VI.  This was before the prequels, so thankfully there was no Jar Jar head.

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And that was pretty much our day.  We also watched the first episode of the Clone Wars animated series, so that might be a feature on a Cartoons and Cereal at some point in the future.

Come back next week when we will do another craft, this time straight from the Diagon Alley.