Behind the Scenes

Since taking a break from maps to play around in the virtual world and creating my new website, I've had to face reality again, concentrate on the day job and get some serious mapmaking in.

I've had a couple of world map commissions to complete, which has been fun - but now they are safely shipped off, I am running low on the handmade animals I use on the maps and I have been restocking the menagerie of animals. 

Below are some pictures of the making process - most of the animals are carved from foamcore board, legs are normally beads and horns, ears and antlers etc are usually butchered parts from plastic flowers and plants (which are an ideal source material for animal extremities)! The tooth picks help to keep my grubby fingers from smudging the paint while I work on the tiny bodies. 

Stocking up again on animals for the maps - each one is hand carved and painted - the toothpicks come in handy for painting really small models without getting smudges all over them...

Stocking up again on animals for the maps - each one is hand carved and painted - the toothpicks come in handy for painting really small models without getting smudges all over them...

Okapis, giraffes, turkeys and dodos...

Okapis, giraffes, turkeys and dodos...

And here are some of the birds (and bats) that I've just finished - these are made from beads, wire and paper.

Macaws, toucans, cockatoos, bats and eagle

Macaws, toucans, cockatoos, bats and eagle

birds and beads