Friday, January 17, 2014

Plan: Alistair from Dragon Age Comics

King Alistair
Along with the Grey Warden Warrior armor, I wanted to recreate King Alistair's armor as featured in the comics. As a character in the game, Alistair really did not have what I would call an iconic suit of armor like the characters in Dragon Age 2. This is kind of the downside of any Origins cosplay, save for Morrigan who does have a distinct costume at least in portions of the game. Thus I chose the comic armor because it was distinct, but the downside of course is that not everyone reads the comics. I could have chosen concept art too but it looked overly complicated and ugly to me.

That's it for my philosophy on the matter, now into the pre-production phase!

REFERENCE HUNT

So all my references had to come from the comics which unfortunately does not have any concept art or character turn-arounds like the game does. I have to recreate it myself using shots from comic at different angles. Since I own all the comics in both digital and physical format, I have pretty good references on hand at all times.


From these references, I pieced together my own sketches.


DECONSTRUCTION

The next step is to break down the costume into its various parts and figure out how they work as a whole. This takes some imagination on our part since we don't have exact references. Part of the issue referencing a drawn medium over the 3D game is consistency. Not everything looks the same panel to panel and even issue to issue. Normal. But on the plus side, that means we can interpret them how we like.
I tend to do things in a layer by layer fashion when it comes to armor.  Or Piece by Piece if the design calls for it. This is definitely a project of layers.
  • Layer 1: Clothes/Under Armor
  • Layer 2: Armor: Torso
  • Layer 3: Armor: Limbs
  • Layer 4: Accessories
  • Layer 5: Optional Cloak

Here is my break down sketch of all the parts:
I talk to myself in my own notes...and tell myself bad jokes.


You'll notice that for the clothing layer, a lot is left to interpretation due to the armor covering up a majority of it. My guess work is based on later images in the comic and a bit of how I want to approach it.

BATTLE PLAN


For almost all armor pieces and clothing I will have to make my own patterns or adjust ones I find online. When I make each part I will post my pattern. 

Here is my current plan of approach for each piece.

UnderArmor: Exercise pants and long sleeve shirt.

Knee high boots (owned)

 Collared and sleeveless jerkin/doublet/tunic thing: Making my own pattern based on doublet patterns and sewing it with cool brown/tan colored cloth. Lining with wefts of sheep skin or possibly rabbit fur. Undecided.

Armor Torso: Cuirass/chest piece. It's splint maille. For this I'm going to have a cloth backing, a thin foam base for stiffness, then making the splints out of foam then connected with studs. Spray painting it brown, may have a more coppery spray for the splint pieces.

Armor Thighs: Cloth based with thin foamy strips. brown paint.

Armor: Knee/Legs combining these pieces even though they may be all individual. For the knee, using a cardboard base and layers of thin foam. Same cloth used in the tunic/doublet for the leg pieces. May use thin foam base for stiffness.

Armor: Shoulders: Thick foam base, thin foam details. Brown paint.

Armor: Elbows: Cardboard base, thin foam layers, brown paint.

Armor: forarms: Thin foam base, thin foam layers.

Mantle: Thin foam, fur lining. Alternative: Hide-based fabric with fur lining.

Belt: Owned

Sword: Owned

Cloak: Owned

Boots: Owned

Now the battle plan is subject to change as I begin each piece and do more research into materials.