Vanishing Point Featured Customizer
Sigma Six was not a high point of GI Joe. If there is one customizer out there who has made the concept seem cool it is the April 2012 Featured Customer, Vanishing Point. He's got all the skills you'd expect from a seasoned customizer, but since he dabbles in the 8" realm most people don't pay attention. Painting, he's got it spades. Parts swapping, probably up there with the best in the business considering the mileage he's gotten out of the existing tooling and the non-Sigma accessories he's had to incorporate. Style, and then some. IF you've never looked at his body of work, do yourself a favor and see all the awesomeness he brings to the table in the Gallery and in the Critiques Section. Heck you cna even see what goes into him creating one of his master pieces with his Sigma Sixtutorial
What do you enjoy customizing the most?
It adds fuel to my already out of control wildfire ego... actually it's not too far removed from that. I enjoy customizing because it allows me to correct mistakes or oversights done by the original provider. As simple as bad paint apps or as big as entire character omissions, this hobby allows me to create and not just settle for what's offered to me. It's my world. My biggest joy is sharing my creations with the community and getting at least one person to look twice at a series that they originally never would have given a chance. If I make one person buy a Sigma toy, make a Sigma custom or otherwise expand their horizons; then my corruption has taken root. Seek medical, psycological and religious aid immediately.
What brand of paint do you prefer?
I primarily use Citadel Paints by gamersworkshop, I found that with my brush style they go on much smoother and are somewhat more resistant to ware and fading than some other brands I've used before. Also their Silver actually dries... I have a Collosus figure I made in 1998 that is still tacky. I use Tamiya for translucents and chrome overcoats.
Where do you find inspiration for your customs?
I was a child of the Eighties, so all those things from my childhood are what I'd like to bring to the table in my customs, Centurions, Inhumanoids, Visionaries, Bravestarr, Transformers, Go-Bots, COPS, Spiral Zone, Captain Power... the list is endless. I scour the comics, filecards, the shows the movies for any little scrap of character I can for my figures, folding everything into one big 'verse. Renegades added a few new angles to some characters I am looking forward to adding. Some characters from other franchises can also find their way in too, Brock Sampson from Venture Brothers and Lt. Gibbs from Titan Maximum have already found their way in.
What do you consider to be your best tools of the trade?
A common and frightening phrase is in my house "have you seen my x-acto knife?" I have dozens of different blades for it, it's my main tool for so many aspects, sculpting, carving, paint touchups, adhesive scoring, package opening, toyshow price negotiating, I also invested in a countertop magnifying glass with built in light so I can get in close for certain details like painting eyes and little details almost no one sees.
What is your strongest area when it comes to customizing?
I'd say my planning, being able to take a character and look at them and decide what parts I need before I even go to the bins is a huge part of what I do. Always being on the lookout, I've based entire projects off single fodder parts I've found at rummage shows, I recently picked up a figure from the Skeleton Warriors toyline at a toyshow, I wanted the chest armor for CrystalBall, but looking at it longer. Then I got the idea to use the rest of the body to make Guillotine's sword and that bridges me into making the rest of the Plague
When I've gotten into a customizing frenzy in the past I have taken it into huge undertakings that are often very dated. I made almost 7/8ths of the entire cast of Marvel's Age of Apocalypse,that's a whole X-Men universe... I won one of Wizard Magazine's Homemade Heroes for my Generation NeXt set: Collosus, Shadowcat, Chamber, Husk and Mondo. Later I won again for my set of Mutant X's primary cast (the comic series with Havoc in an alternate universe not the TV show) I was very active among the Transformers community having emassed a large custom collection of Alternator's. My 76 individual characters vs Hasbro's 14. One summer a friend and I reconditioned and customized a USS Flagg into an Actionmaster (Transformer characters in GI Joe 3.75 styling) version of the Character Broadside, he had taken it to display at Botcon prior to moving back to Iowa.
Did You Know: Movies like Childs Play, SmallSoldiers, PuppetMaster or ToyStory feature toys that become animated or seek revenge ect...doesn't really worry me. I would hope my creations see the improvements I've made to them and herald me instead.
Random Note: Invest in a brush cleaning well that CANNOT be mistaken for any type of drinking or eating vessel.