For PAX East 2012 in Boston, and the Tokyo Game Show 2012 in Tokyo, Japan, Hasbro Games subsidiary Wizards of the Coast ran a special advertising campaign, to support their awesome game Magic: the Gathering™. They wanted to bring planeswalker characters Liliana Vess and Jace Beleren to life, to walk around at these conventions. They also wanted them to be realistic, and not look like costumes. To this end, Liliana’s armour needed to actually be made of metal.
Luke Apker, a long-time gamer himself, was selected to make the armour for Liliana Vess, played by the marvelous Kaitlan Welton. Each piece of her armour was hand-crafted in aluminum, and custom fitted to Ms. Welton, who was a joy to work with, a very patient and professional model. The client desired a prominently hammered texture, to give the pieces that hand-wrought, forged appearance, so the plates were all finished “raw” from the hammer. All of the decorative detail fluting is also hand-hammered in, and intentionally left unpolished. The pieces were all finished with a suede lining.
Once assembled, it was sent to artist Jennifer Shaffer, an expert at, among other techniques, weathering, wear effects, and patinas. She crafted and applied the purple treatment to the armour, accentuating the texture without concealing the hammer marks.
Below is our gallery of Liliana of the Dark Realms and her weathered armour, as well as several more galleries documenting the pieces through the progressive stages of sculpting.
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Click an image for the gallery