I created the "Valley of Shame" page to show off the worst customs that I have every made, so this page is to serve as a counterbalance. This page showcases my favorite kooky and cool customs that I have created over the past 5 years! I selected several customs from each from my entire run from 2006-2011 It was just too hard to choose as there are a lot of great customs from each year. I based the selections on originality, photos and craftsmanship (Depending on where my skill was at at each given year). Most of these are not front page worthy but I feel they deserve to be shown again. So let's get started:
THIS PAGE WAS LAST UPDATED ON 6/2/11!
Best of 2011
KOTOR Mandalorian Super CommandoBefore the planet of Mandalore became best known as the tainted school lunch soft drink capitol of the galaxy (Thanks Clone Wars Cartoon!) they were more known for their super super soldiers. I occasionally like making distinct Mandalorian customs and wanted to work with the new EE Rohlan Dyre figure to make a KOTOR era one. I thought this figure came out pretty sweet and the paint job is one of my favorites.
Rodian Mercenary v2Like my first Rodian Mercenary from the previous year, this one was also inspired by the art from the miniatures game that showed a bunch of Rodians fighting with each other. This is a color and gear variation to my first custom that will help build up a squad of these green goons to reenact the battle and populate the shady shelves in your collection! Ooota goota!
Pasty Dathomir Witch Goth ChicFact: All Dathomir Sith Witches love and shop at Hot Topic! I like making these pasty ladies of the coven, I try to make them all different so they do not conform to normal society. Because if they conform with other Dathomir Witches they will lose their Goth status...
Sir Alec Guiness in convention attireUnfortunately Sir Alec Guinness passed away about 11 years ago and never attended fan conventions. He was quite open about his regret for being in Star Wars but it still would have been great if he did attend them so we can see his disdain for fandom first hand! This is a totally made up custom for fun to depict him as he would appear. Since he was knighted he would most likely would look Britishly dapper in a designer suit! I had a lot of left over Indiana Jones parts and an old Obi-Wan head that fit perfectly on the body so my inspiration was a pure accident. For odd ball customs like this I like going the extra mile and created a realistic photoshop image of Alec as he would appear at SDCC! (BTW - I love the dead lock stare expression on his face!)
Rebel MarineThe Rebel Troopers as seen in the OT were pretty casual looking soldiers. Outside of the Hoth & Endor most of the Troopers looked like they were wearing plain clothes with the occasional helmet. Not very menacing. I thought it would be cool to make one that was more armored up for a major battles. I could see the Alliance using old Clone Trooper armor left over or salvaged from the Clone Wars since most of their gear was stolen or hand me downs. I really like how this figure turned out and thought he deserved a spot in the archives.
Female Twi'lek SenatorThis custom Twi'lek head came together by pure accident and turned out pretty nice. I combined the old POTF2 Oola lekku with the comic pack Assaj Ventress head. I really liked how it turned out and wanted to use it on a body that would bring all of the attention to the head. Using the ROTS Mon Mothma body was the clear choice for me as I was hanging onto it for a long time waiting to find the right use for it. (I also really wanted to get rid of it so it was a win-win.) While this custom is not overly complex it's pleasing to the eye and was a nice way to mix up my batches of customs to include characters I never make - Senators!
Best of 2010
KOTOR Twi'lek Jedi KnightIf there is one thing certain among every Star Wars fan its that they love Twi'lek females, especially ones that are Jedi. I always love when I stray from the typical brown robe look that most Jedi sport. Between the green and purples this custom looks as tempting as a bowl of mixed grapes and she was one of my favorite customs of 2010.
Rodian MercenaryRodians have a really bad rap in the Star Wars universe, they are always deemed as bad guys thanks to Greedo. You know Greedo, the alien bounty hunter that tried to kill Han Solo in the Mos Eisley Cantina. Han shot Greedo first once he got cocky and threatened Han. (Hopefully this truth will be restored in the Blue Ray edition. I am not holding my breath.) I was inspired to make this Rodian Mercenary after I came across some art from the miniatures game that showed a bunch of Rodians fighting with each other. I love this figure and would love to have some generic alien thugs released by Hasbro to threaten the inhabitants of my collection. The Jedi really need to fight something other than Sith and Droids.
Asajj Ventress Pre-DarksideI really loved the 2003 Clone Wars micro series that showed the origins of some of the most popular Star Wars characters. Combining the lore of the comics and the series I created a "what if" look for a Pre-Darkside Asajj Ventress. This figures head sculpt is really nice especially when you paint it other flesh tones to bring out the excellent sculpt. I even attached 'wigs" to it to make her normal, well, depending on what your definition of normal is.
Kraura Loft - "The Crypt Raider"I loved making generic Joe knock offs and this one is no exception. Inspired from that video game franchise that features the busty British babe. I dubbed this Joe the teams relic hunter, the Joe team could use one as they often found themselves in ancient temples in the cartoon. Kraura Loft is ready to to find powerful & ancient artifacts from around the world in crusty crypts before Cobra does!
I made this "Grumpy Green" Jedi Master with parts from a Grinch figure that was in a fodder lot I purchased on feebay. I made just about every Star Wars alien into a Jedi so why not make the Grinch into one too? Like many of my joke customs I like going the extra mile by creating so photo realistic image to complete the creation. The...the JEDI!!!
"The Grumpy Green Jedi"
"The Grumpy Green Jedi"
Gammi the Slave DancerJabba had a lot of slave girls over the years, unfortunately most were fed to the Rancor after Jabba got bored of them. I thought it would be interesting to start making some generic dancers to fill out my Palace diorama scene. I love how this figure turned out and as you can see she can look great in your own Jabba place diorama! I periodically keep this custom design in my eBay rotation so LMK if you want to purchase one. (On a side note, the Legacy Slave Leia is actually a more versatile figure for customs than most give her credit for.)
Jabba had gobs of Muppety creeps to carry out his thuggish will during his tenure as the premiere Tattooine crime lord. Most of these Muppets met all kinds of horrible fates, yet Jabba always seemed to have an endless supply to replace the open job slots. Maybe Jabba has a generous benefit package. (From the looks of the maws of the inhabitants at his Palace it's quite obvious that dental is not part of it!)
Random Jabba Guards and Goons
Random Jabba Guards and Goons
Best of 2009
Team PredatorI was uber into making Joe customs in 2009. One of my first ventures was the bad ass commando team from Predator. Worth noting on this set is that I made the front page of Hisstank.com with this group, it was an honor and I still get requests to make these. I may go back one day to update the formulas and paint ops as I have progressed since then. Still, these were some of my favorite customs that I ever made. From what the Hisstank guys said at the time, I was the first guy to tackle the whole team together.
A great hero of trailer park lore and the co-star of the Patrick Swayze classic "Road House", Sam Elliot/Wade Garrett graced screens by kicking the crap out of the local thugs at the county bar. Sam Elliott kind of plays the same character in every film he is in but the fact is no one really cares as he is that awesome of an actor! He was in the the Golden Compass, it was a terrible mess of a movie that should never have been made, not even Sam Elliot's awesomeness could salvage it. The one positive result of the film is that it gave us a very accurate Sam Elliot cowboy figure in its floptacular toy line. Unfortunately for the figure he had a 10 gallon hat that was glued to his head. Even when you removed it he was scalped with no hair sculpt to the top of the head! Thankfully there is something called greenstuff sculpting apoxy that allowed me to resculpt his hair as seen in Road House. Grab you can of bud, smokes and a free cigarette Nascar shirt because here comes Wade Garrett!!!
Sam Elliot as Wade Garrett from Road House
Sam Elliot as Wade Garrett from Road House
Chuck Norris as Walker Texas RangerChuck Norris has the mightiest beard in the universe. What more can be said?
Zombies!A staple of horror movies and a must for any credible gory B-movie these unfortunate souls roam the world in search of sweet tasty brains that make the pain go away! What G.I.Joe fan does not want to have their Joes blow apart mindless Zombies? I have made a lot of zombie customs over the years, the best part about them is even if you mess them up you can just slap some more gore to cover the mistakes! It's also a great way for customizers to clear out their bins of unwanted parts!
Inspired by the crappy & campy Kung-Fu flicks of the 70's these Feudal Fury Warriors are ready to prove their martial arts prowess with deadly precision! Enter Sifu Zao Zun, Komodo King Killer and the White Tiger Thunder Ninja! These warriors are the guardians of the Ancient Artifacts of Kung-Pie, each has an animal spirit that represents their martial arts style! (Make cheesy Kung-Fu fighting sounds after you read this!)
Feudal Fury Warriors of Kung Pie
Feudal Fury Warriors of Kung Pie
Best of 2008
Ithorian Bounty HunterMy favorite Star Wars figure when I was a kid was always Hammerhead. He was given the name Momaw Nadon in the 'EXTREME" 90's but everyone knows his real name is Hammerhead. (It's like the MOTU Classics Hordak "real name" is Hector? Dumb just call him Hordak or call Hammerhead "Hammerhead"!)In the 2005 Clone Wars Micro series we were graced with the first Ithorian Jedi Roron Corrobb and he was given an official figure in 2007. It was a great figure and is superb for custom fodder. I used that figure for my Ithorian Bounty Hunter as I really would love more figures from this beloved species.
Marrissa Sunbeams - Tattooine TraderI bet you are wondering how she got her name. I am a huge fan of background denizons of the Star wars universe especially Tattooine. It's especially cool now to look at all of the bell bottoms and 70's mustaches that many of them sport. It really makes it feel like a galaxy far, far away because the 70's are now far, far away!. This lovely plastic lady came together nicely as Mos Eisley's resident sexy trader that uses her good looks to get bargain deals that would make even a Ferengi blush! I liked the simplicity of the figure and plan on making one for my personal collection soon.
Jedi Master Shaftwin RoundtreeJedi + Shaft + Afro = Awesome!
Yakora Jedi Master Jo CamillaOne of the dumbest looking aliens in Star Wars are the Yarkora. The most famous Yarkora is Yakface because he was one of the rarest Vintage SW figures. A new Yakface figure was released in 1997 POTF2 line. It was an ok figure for that series but even then he was lacking the fine details and looked too smooth. (He desperately needs a modern resculpt, most of the old POTF2 era figures are not holding up to the test of time!) I retired 95% of my POTF2 figures so I used my Yakface for custom fodder which led me to make him into a Jedi Master. To keep the elongated torso look of the 97 sculpt I used the ROTS Mas Ameeda body for the upper body. I really like how this one turned out. For those of us who grew up in a less stuffy and politically correct time (A.K.A. before the pussification of America) you will remember the Camel cigarette spokesmen Joe Camel. (BTW - I am not or ever was a smoker and like Joe Camel. So I can make desicions without having some egghead advocate tell what I cannot have or see.) Yakface was pretty much the same thing or may have even been inspired by him so I felt the name Jo Camilla was perfect. After viewing this custom I really have a desire to redo him at my current skill level.
The "Goons" of Mos Eisley Battle Packs 9The first ones that started them all!)One key staple that I am known for on my eBay custom auctions are my Mos Eisley "Goon" Battle Packs. These quartets of creeps always have a new name for the group and feature baggy eyes and haggered detailing. The auction title goes something like this The ______ of Mos Eisley Battle Pack. The blank is always filled in with some descriptor that sets the mood for the group. These packs are made from the lefover parts of my main customs but they are parts that are too good to put into figure fodder lots. This is a great way to deliver value to my customers and help fill dioramas quickly and on the cheap! These are extremely fun to make because I always try to throw together cool and off the wall part combinations for some hilarious results. I thought it would be nice to showcase the two lots that started them all.
The "Goons" of Mos Eisley: "Sammi Scumarelli"Once my goon packs were established the crazy custom combinations just kept on coming and this guy was no exception. I have read comments from a lot of customizers saying that the Evo Palpatine head had limited custom uses, I could not disagree with that more. I have made several great custom figures with that head including the Toxic Avenger as well as some Deathtroopers. Another custom that I made using that head was "Sammi Scumarelli" the Mos Eisley bar fly extraordinaire. Who would have guessed that painting a mustache on him and giving him a 70's car salesman outfit would make this guy the quintessential bar fly. The cigarette hand really put this guy over the top and made him one of the most memorable goons that I ever made. (BTW - I made a lot of goons!)
Best of 2007
Jake the Galactic JanitorIf you visited my Valley of Shame page you may have seen this master piece of a Trandoshan Jedi that looked more like Kermit the Frog than a heroic Jedi warrior. After seeing that train wreck of a custom you may have wondered what ever happened to the rest of the Bossk figure that was used to "craft" that magnificent figure. (Well let's pretend that you did wonder for the sake of this write up.) I do not like to waste parts so I put it to good use with this hilarious custom. Now something that you actually asked yourself is who in the galaxy kept all of the Imperial space station floors so shiny and clean? Well, I wanted to help explain how with Jake the Galactic Janitor! Jake is ready to put the sparkle back in space while fighting off the occasional Dianoga monster menace that grew in the Imperial septic system! (BTW - He likes to drink and dream of busty Jedi babes).
Aayla Secura Slave DancerFor those who do not know, Aayla Secura started out in the Dark Horse comics and not in AOTC. She was included in the movie due to her popularity with fans. If you read the superb Dark Horse comic series there was a period prior to EP2 where Aayla Secura's memory was erased and she was taken as a slave girl. How "Oolaish". (SW always seems to go back to some kind reference that parallels the movies. The occasional original theme would be nice but that is expecting too much.) I am a huge Quinlan Vos fan so I thought it would be cool to make some supporting character figures from some of the issues he appeared in. This was a perfect choice and I thought came out pretty cool for the time! (After seeing this old custom I will have to go back and redo it soon, I would love to bring it up to my current skill level.)
eBay lot of extra Palpatines, Mace Windus, Holo Vaders, Helmets and ShadesYou may be wondering why I am putting this lot of crap in the archives it's not a custom. I have to buy a lot of parts to make custom figures on a weekly basis. At the time I had an abundance of this particular stuff and decided to sell it in one lot. in order to improve my chances of moving it I decided to get creative with how I would market it. It still cracks me up when I look at these pictures. Some of their gear like cloaks and sabers were used on my customs so I can consider them eligible for the Archives of Awesome. This lot included: 6 Palps, 6 Mace, 6 Helmets, 6 Shades and 6 Holo Vaders. (BTW - This lot did sell on the first pass!)
A Mexican Wrestler or a Jedi? It's Jedi Master OrlandoI used to take on a lot of personal commissions back in the day but so many of them were more trouble than what they were worth. Some guys just got way too picky not realizing what goes into customs and the projects just became too time consuming to deal with. There was one commission that was absolutely enjoyable, so enjoyable I made him twice! Enter Jedi Master Orlando, a huge Star Wars fan from Mexico who created his own Jedi outfit complete with a Luca Libra wrestling mask. This masked avenger is ready to take on any Sith warrior with the Lightside of the Force! Alas, he had no action figure to battle the evil in his toy collection with so I was asked to help. How could any serious customizer pass on this commission once you look at the real Jedi warrior you were asked to make? You can't! You also cannot stop laughing, he is awesome! This is one custom that I nailed the accuracy on and is one of my legendary figures. So Legendary that I am going to make him again for all of my buyers soon! Long live the Legend of Jedi Master Orlando!!!!
Bounty Hunter: Mungor "The Mugly One"This guy has a mug only mother could love. (Even that is questionable.) I love making bounty hunters and this one was no exception due to his freakish nature an unique head. I used the Evil Dead Undead Witch head on the McQuarrie Chewbacca body along with some other parts that made the brutish Mungor a memorable custom. The towering size of this custom really added an imposing feel that made him look like a fearsome warrior that you would not want to cross paths with.
Arc Trooper Delta 1977He is a Clone. Clone customs are boring. I have only made two Clone customs in my 5 years.. For the time he was ok but the comic I made for him was much cooler. I figured why let the great comic go to waste rotting in my digital archives. (FYI - Please be advised that this mini custom comic is rated PG-13 due to the graphic violence. This disclaimer is here for the PC police. It's fantasy in the context of the toys, so relax! (They were really evil aliens that would continue to threaten the galaxy so it's best they were offed.))
Best of 2006
Willrow Hood, the Bespin Ice Cream Maker Guy4 years before the official figure was made of everyone's favorite Galactic Ice Cream Maker I tried to fill the void with my own custom version of him. One detail that Hasbro did miss on their willrow was the ear Commlink that he sported, many fans miss this detail and are unaware of it. When I shot the custom I tried to also fill in the story of what took place after he was seen escaping with his Ice Cream maker in hand....
Krayt DragonThis simple repaint was part of a Chap Mei medieval figure pack. I purchased this set primarily for the Skeleton figure that was included, the big blue dragon was nothing more than an accessory to me. I sat on it for a long time until I cam across some Krayt Dragon art. I was surprised at how close this sculpt was to the official reference so I decided to repaint it making it the fearsome creature that roams the sands of Tattooine in search of the tasty moaning mummies that carry Krayt Dragon sized toothpicks.
ROTJ Emperor PalpatineIt's amazing that as of 6/11 the classic Return of the Jedi Emperor still has not been resculpted to the modern standards. Sure, great prequel era versions of him have been released since 2005 but not the crusty lovable one from the original trilogy. The last version of the ROTJ Emperor released was 2003 version that was just so utterly awkward looking that you actually pretended it never existed. If you were/are able to look past the atrocious hood and focus on the face it was not a bad sculpt at all, it actually had a great likeness. I broke the figure down and placed the head/hands on the Evolutions Sidious body. I hope that Hasbro gets the message and updates this figure again with a new head and set of hands. Also use a different cloth for the robes and you have an instant winner!
Baby Plo KoonLate at night, bored and plenty of leftover parts, that's the only way I can explain this. My best friend's kid went absolutely nits for this figure at first sight so at least it made someone happy. (That's the best compliment of any work!) You have to love the big feet on this guy, very fitting for a funky alien like Plo. He was off the wall enough I had to add him to the archives.