My cosplay of Flame Fury from Darksiders was one of the most challenging costumes I’ve ever done! I had to learn so many new techniques and try so many new things!
Fury’s whip was one of the most challenging things on the whole costume – how to make it glow and still move like a normal whip? How to make it durable enough to withstand neverending movement and bending? How to make it convincing, eye-catching and simply how to make a good prop? How to make the blades hold on it? So many questions!
I decided to share with you my 2 progresses, because I made 2 version of the whip together with advantages and disadvantages of those 2 options 🙂
1) 3D PRINTING
I added screws in Meshmixer 3D software to the model of the whip made by Vertvixen to be able to unscrew the whip on 2 places and remove or exchange batteries/powerbanks in the whip easily. I printed it out in black filament, covered the screws with tape and primed and sanded it.
I also 3D printed the gemstones modelled by Vertvixen, primed and sanded them and made 2 different types of molds to cast them from red resin. For the biggest gem I’ve made a border from lego pieces inserted the gem inside and poured the silicone around it. I let it dry, got rid of the border and took the gem outside the silicone and used the mold to cast my gem from red gedeo crystal resin. For the smaller gems, I’ve made the mold from Siligum, which is a type of rubber silicone, that you mix 2 parts together, wrap around the item and let dry for 10 minutes and after that your mold is done.
Then I casted the gems from red gedeo crystal resin and let them dry for a day. When they got hard, I took them out of the mold and sprayed them with transparent varnish for better look.
I’ve casted my gems a little too dark red and the dark red color doesn’t allow a lot of light to go through. If you plan to lighten up your gems, use only a little of red resin and mix it with transparent resin, so your gems can shine bright. You can also use resin inks, but always try to keep the color light.
In this video, I’m making siligum molds for all the gems (later I’ve done the silicone mold with lego pieces becuase the quality of the siligum mold wasn’t good, since siligum wasn’t flexible enough to take the gem out of the mold and it cracked). I’m also 3D modelling the screws into the whip and painting some armor pieces:
2) PAINTING THE HANDLE
I painted the primed and sanded pieces with acrylic colors and car varnishes. I’ve used Motip Skoda 9152 and pearl black airbrush color by Createx for dark shades on my armor and Motip Skoda 9157 for lighter places on my armor combined with Tamiya chrome for highlights and basic brown and black oil colors for weathering and shading.
I wrapped the handle in some rests of brown leather I had lying around from my Xena cosplay. I bought the leather as a leather jacket in second hand store for very cheap. I wrapped the handle very unevenly, so it looks more „Darksiderish“ and I glued it with contact glue Pattex Extreme. Then I used black and brown oil colors to weather the whole whip including the handle. (oil.jpg) Be careful, oil colors can do very good shading effects, but get dry very very slowly. And the handle was done.
4) LIGHTING UP
I added a small 1 LED light circuit with 3V battery to lighten up the gems. I installed the circuit into a small piece of foam dowel to be able to exchange battery easily and switch the circuit on and off easily. When I was done with the circuit, I glued the circuit inside with hotglue and I glued the gems in the handle with transparent epoxy glue.
I had 3D files for the blades modelled by Vertvixen, so I remodelled and cut out the lower part to fit them onto the middle part of the whip, printed them out, smoothened them with primer and filler and sanded them. Lukoprene mold was made in 2 parts, that hold together with plaster.
I decided to use casting foam for the blades, because just 3D printed blades from hard plastic filament would be very dangerous for people around you. I decided to use the hardest casting foam – FlexFoam IT 25, because I didn’t want to have the blades wobbly and gooy, but I think maybe you can go even for FlexFoam IT 14 to make them hold the shape well.
Casting the foam isn’t easy, because the pot time is really short and you have to work very fast. But if you are successful, the outcome is very nice.
I think you can also use normal foam, that you sand down and cut or print the blades in flexible filament, but both of those ways are very time consuming and not a perfect solution.
For painting, I do not recommend priming the FlexFoam with PlastiDip or similar products, because they don’t go together very well and it will peel off (It happened to me and I had to scrape the paint off the blades and repaint them.) The best paint, that holds very well on Flexfoam is Tamiya modelling color – I’ve used Tamiya Gunmetal for mine.
In this video I’m working with expandible foam and casting it into the molds:
I made the final blade from Poly props CF100 foam, sanded it, primed it with black HexFlex primer and base color and painted it with Lumiere colors. I also glued other blades from Flexfoam IT 25 painted with Tamiya colors.
If you want to make this final blade, download the pattern HERE
6) THE WHIP – VERSION 1
For my first try of the whip, I took 2,5m long red rope and I painted it orange and yellow for fireish look.
Then I glued the blades onto the whip with hotglue and sewed them inside the rope.
After that, I added fairy wire lights, that you can buy for a small amount of money almost everywhere. You can power them with USB or 2x3V batteries. I recommend USB and small round powerbank, that you can insert inside your whip – it shines much brighter.
If you want to use more light strands, I recommend batteries, because you can hide even 6 pack of batteries inside of the whip, but only 1-2 powerbanks. I glued the lights with hotglue onto the rope.
The rope is fastened inside the handle with a ring foam piece glued with hotglue to the rope.
Advantage: Flexibility, movability, sturdiness, easier to make
Disadvantage: Not as eyecatching as LED lights strip, wire in the lights can get broken
7) THE WHIP – VERSION 2
Because I wanted to make my whip to look more like a flame and make it more eye-catching at THQ Nordic booth, I decided to remake it with programmable LED strips. I’ve used Arduino Nano clone for programming, downloaded the software from Adafruit website, downloaded NeoPixel and FastLED library and tried several different Flame and lava effects. Finally I installed the famous Flame effect from Mark Kriegsman called Fire2012.
I reprogrammed it a little, because it is very energy-consuming and the circuit had troubles powering it up – keep in mind, that for the best effect, you have to use 2 LED light strips.
To connect the LED strips to the Arduino, you have to solder the 5V, GND and signal wire to the LED strip and solder 5V wire with 5V marked hole, GND wire with GND marked hole and signal wire to one of the numbered holes according to your programm (in mine the programm refers to pin 6, so you have to connect it in the hole marked „6“) You connect the arduino through USB to computer and in your Arduino IDE free software choose the right device (Arduino Nano in my case), the right port (COM4) and the right processor (written on Arduino), then copy the programm inside the software. You have to also install FastLED library (or Adafruit Neopixel for other effects and „strandtest“) from Sketch>Add library>Manage libraries.
Then you can upload your code inside the microchip.
I’ve used 120 LEDS on each side and my whip is 2m long. I’ve used 60LEDS/m 5V WS2812B LED light strip. Be careful on the direction of the LED strip when installing it – the signal has to always go in the direction of the arrows on your LED strip! I inserted both light strips into a transparent garden hose, that I wrapped in red modistic tube – a kind of net used for making hats, so my whip is always red even when it isn’t switched on.
I also drilled a hole inside the upper part of the whip handle, so I can insert a switch for the LED’s, because I knew the effects is consuming a lot of energy and I wanted to be able to switch it off/on very fast and easy. Even I reprogrammed the effect to be less power consuming, I need to exchange my powerbanks 3 times/day.
I glued and taped the circuit inside the upper part of the whip handle and the powerbank goes in the middle of the handle. I glued also a chunk of foam onto the garden hose, so it doesn’t move away from the handle.
If you want to use Flame programm, you can download it HERE
WATCH THE FULL PROGRESS WITH MORE PICTURES AND VIDEOS IN MY INSTAGRAM STORIES COLLECTIONS:
And if you like this stuff I do, you can support my work by donating on my PATREON, because their donations made this tutorial possible.
And if you want to know more about this awesome Darksiders project, visit our #Darksiderslegion website full of useful info!
Published: 22.10.18 8:05, Pacific Standard Time