Methods of Identifying the best likeness for Customs?
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Methods of Identifying the best likeness for Customs?

Posted in Custom Workstation

From the title, it sounds like I'm asking about how I can figure out how to find the best figures to use for customs, but that is far from what I'm asking about. As many here know, sometimes when customs need to be made, many often try to find the best likeness when it comes to the head, to serve as a the face for the figure as much, where as the body type are often easier to do.

I myself have been trying to practice finding the best faces that match characters or actors/actresses. Some of them I've been able to do by using pictures and actually seeing the figures in person. One such example is a Model Six action figure from the Diamond Select Battlestar Galactica line. Due to the lighting in pictures, it looks like the likeness is dead on, however when I found the actual figure, looking at the figure in profile looked more like Tricia Helfer, while looking at the figure straight on in the face gives more of a likeness similar to that of Kate Vernon, who plays the character of Ellen Tigh on the show. I understand that when it comes to some pictures of figures, they're often a previous sculpt that hasn't been approved for the final, but by looking at the pictures and the actual figure, I feel it helps me determine a bit of a baseline in the difference between the two.

I've also been continuing the above practice by looking more at figures in person. Most recently, I looked at the Plaster of Paris action figure from The Spirit movie figure line. Now, the figure's face itself looks nothing like Paz Vega (the actress who plays the character in the film), but the shape of the face to me looks more like a good enough base to use for the head of a Monica Bellucci action figure (or at least serve as the head for a figure based on her character Persephone from The Matrix Reloaded and The Matrix Revolutions or any of her other film roles). And I also came across a UFC Deluxe Mark Coleman Action Figure in which, from the picture alone, the head looks like a good base for a Riddick from Pitch Black action figure.

Of course, the reason for this post is like I said before, I'm trying to get into the habit of finding the best head for certain characters (and since I'm into film and TV shows, most of the characters I'm interested in are those film and TV based). So, I figured I'd toss the question out: What methods do some of you guys use in determining what is the right figure's head for a custom? Do you use your gut and your memory? Do you carry pictures of the character you're looking to make on your cell phone? Do you use another method? To you, what works best at determining the right head or the wrong head for the figure that match, or even come close to, a certain likeness?

Posted by CB2001
on Saturday, October 29, 2011
User Comments
RedRebelCustoms -
Monday, November 28, 2011
Awesome! I have been doing something similar only trying to make it into a character database for my site. I plan on using figure faces as the main icon and then links to other pics. Toy series and lines would be much more like figurerealms existing toy series archive. That would be a great place to start OJJ!
Ole Jade Jaw -
Monday, November 28, 2011
Funny timing here... Cosmic and I are kinda planning a photo reference thread for the site. My thought is a thread where guys post pics of factory figs grouped together with an I.d. below. They will be loose figs. with no flash glare and a brief character name and toy line. My priority will be newer, better sculpted items that we are looking for to use as custom bases. It would be ideal if other creators add to it with anything that isn't already shown.I like the idea of odd-ball, lesser known stuff with unique sculpt work (Neca, Mcfarlane ect...) and he may handle a lot of the ml line. The idea is to put a lot of photo reference in one place with no text between to help with this exact issue. We are hoping other's will add to the concept.
Once someone gets an idea for a match to what they are planning, they can then google away or check the archives here for more info on a particular figure. I know I'm not familiar with all that many different body shapes and styles so I think this will be a great addition to the realm. Now if we can just gitter done.
Anybody have any thoughts on this? Nobody thinks it would be a total waste of effort, right? Any feedback appreciated...
RedRebelCustoms -
Monday, November 28, 2011
Forgot to suggest real characters can be better likeness to like toys. Movie figs, WWE, BTVS, Star Trek, Battlestar, etc.. Yeah carry a pic- printed, phone, or otherwise toy the toy aisle to compare.
RedRebelCustoms -
Monday, November 28, 2011
Similar topic was covered in Koalas thread titled where do you get your ideas from. Check out the ideas there and then I would cross reference by using figurerealms custom search feature under description or base type in the name of the base or head you are using to see finished paints and better shots of the head you want to use! Hope that helps some.
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