Today’s guest post is by Nick Allen, a journalist who somehow found the time to build this fabulous T-Rex out of items scrounged from garbage bins. I love the bumps on her back. Nicholas tells us how he made her below…
And now, here’s Nick:
© 2011 Nick Allen — I made the T-Rex model using a simple interior wood frame, then shaped the rough body shape with chicken wire and packed it with polystyrene blocks, then filled out with building foam and carved off the excess until the body was formed.
I made the tail out of a pair of old wooden skis, cut and fixed together with metal jubilee clips. I also used these to fasten the wooden toe struts together. The studded spine was done with rows of bolts with their edges rounded off with plaster.The entire body was covered with a heavy layer of gritty wall primer for solidity. The eyes, acquired from a taxidermist, are those of a wolverine and the teeth were all hand carved from bits of wood and set in resin. It is mounted on an old Soviet sports machine, which like other materials like the skis and wood, was retrieved from garbage skips in Moscow as a recycling project.
For all her faults (stumpy legs owing to miscalculation of the frame, slightly unauthentic structure of skull, plus other niggling glitches I could cite), the model named ‘Marusya’ (affectionate form of Maria in Russian) has stood in Moscow’s Darwin Museum of Natural History since November 2006. I was recently told by a friend who visited the museum that schoolchildren pose by her for class photos, and that she was surrounded with small gifts at the New Year. What more could I hope for?!
Nick will soon be making a life size Tyrannosaurus head using a similar armature to the one he described above, and covered with paper mache clay. I can’t wait to see how it turns out. This is inspiring, and I’m very glad he agreed to let us all see her.