Monday, August 01, 2005

I Hate Being the Grown-Up

I haven’t given up on this space, it’s just that my hands have been full of paper and paste.

I spent the weekend working on the Hellmouth. It’s given me a new appreciation for what it must be like to be a dentist and see nothing of people except this gaping maw, forty hours a week. I now understand why they want to get chatty just as your gob is full of metal; it’s an attempt to connect with the human on the other side instead of a faceful of teeth.

I had been thinking of how to do the teeth. Since the Hellmouth is the arch you pass through on your way to the Hell section of the Afterlife party, I’m going to have to tweak the perspective a little. Molars are most recognizable biting surface on, but if I keep the canines and incisors in true anatomical position, all you’d see would be edges. I think I need to go viddy some art where the mouth is a gate (like Bosch, or some other medivalists, or at least that flavor) to see if putting the canines and incisors face-on (like when someone smiles at you) works in terms of what you perceive as opposed to what you see. After all, I don’t expect too many people to stand in front of this thing analyzing and picking it to death. That’s more my gig.

So anyway, I figured out how to sculpt the molars, and spent Saturday evening doing that (and trying to impress upon Vinnie that a little bit each night goes further than a whole honkin’ lot one weekend. Sigh.) Sunday I whipped up some paper mache pulp and coated molars. Got a little more than half done in a couple of hours, so now I’m hopeful that I can finish off the rest this week—a little at a time! They’re going to need as much time as possible to dry before we try to set them in place next Sunday.

I also want to whip up the canines in 3-d and put together some snaggly pointed incisors in 2-d—kind of rotating the teeth into their recognizable positions so the shift isn’t so abrupt. The eyes are more or less complete (tho’ I’d like to pulp the lids to make them “pop” more) and the nose is basically done (tho’ it needs pulping to smooth out the bulbiness some. Using masses of itty bitty balloons has its drawbacks.) Then, of course, everything needs to get good and dry before painting. Which in this miserable monsoon weather means three times longer than you’d think.

And that’s really the rub. If work progressed in bits and bites on this thing, then we could have it done and painted before the actual party. However, it feels like I’m the only one who wants to see it all come together and be done because the other two have chronic startitis. (I suffer form the condition, too, obviously.) And I’m really annoyed because I have stuff I’d rather be doing, too. I have projects that are important to me and to others in my life, and I don’t get the time I’ve invested in this thing back.

So all I can realistically do is keep slogging and keep saying, “Hey, could you give me a hand here? Could you do this one simple, specific task?” But I still really hate to have to be the grown-up.

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