The “Purple Wizard” was a reference I already had on my phone for several years. I’ve totally fallen love with it it the very first time I saw this stunning artwork when it was not even complete yet: When the artist himself, my hero Wei Wang, worked on it at the Blizzard Headquarter in Irvine in 2011! Months later Blizzard published the final artwork for the Heroes falls, Darkness rise campaign. However it took me some more time until I finally decided to bring my 5th Wizard to life (if I count commissioned Wizards I made in the past, ha ha!).
When creating a new armor I prefer to start with the breastplate. This piece usually gives me an idea about the costume design and sets the final look of the costume. Having the breastplate as a reference helps me to build the rest of the armor in a similar, harmonizing style.
So, breastplate! You surely already know my Breastplate Tutorial on Youtube, but I just like making progress pictures, ha ha! As you can see, I built the boobie parts with some acrylic spheres I used for a cast and sanded them with a dremel nice and smooth. Since Worbla, the material I’m working with, creates a really rough surface if you stretch it that much, this step helps a lot to minimize the priming later.
Also check out my Pattern Collection if you need a breastplate pattern for your own armor. Our watch my Youtube Tutorial! As you can see, I worked a lot with Worbla leftovers for the details. Just heat them up, squish them together and use them as a clay while the material is still hot.
If you are curious, I even made some videos during this project! I know working with Worbla looks sometimes easier than it really is, so hopefully the Making of my Wizard Bracers will give you some new ideas for your own costumes!
And this was the end result. Check out my Armor Pattern Collection if you also need some base armor patterns and also need some bracers, helmets, breastplates or anything else. As you can see, creating some armor pieces is really not that hard. It just takes time, a bit of practice and a good heat gun.
My shin armor were made the same way. I printed out some patterns from my collection, changed the shape a bit and added here and there some additional details and Worbla stripes and leftovers. The material actually gets really hot, so better dip your fingers into some cold water or use gloves for that step. My fingers became pretty heat resistant luckily so the heat doesn’t bother me anyway!
And since I’m so well prepared for this post, I even made a Painting Video of the breastplate!
While I was still busy with creating the last armor pieces, I handed over my breastplate and other parts which where done for the paint job to my husband Benni. If you’re curious, he works with Amsterdam and Reeves acrylics, which are very covering and easy to handle. Benni paints everything by hand and goes from dark to bright colors. Also for priming we’re using different brands of wood glue, however standard Elmer’s glue also works pretty well. Just apply around five layers, dry each of them carefully with a hair dryer and you’ll get a nice and smooth base for your upcoming paint job. Check out my Painting Book if you’re curios!
Well, and this was the final result of the paint job! I absolutely adore the combination of purple and gold and Benni did clearly an awesome job on giving my armor some color. Meanwhile I was busy with making some gemstones for my costume. I made them all by myself by filling a silicone mold with resin. With some shiny nail polish in different colors the gems got their shiny and vibrant look which is pretty similar to the mana orb my Wizard has in the game.
Also check out my resin gemstone tutorial on Youtube if you also need some shiny stones!
I’m not really good in sewing, and so the fabric part is always very frightening for me. For the Wizard I was lucky enough to have the amazing support of my lovely and super talented friend Yaya Han. She made not only this gorgeous cincher for me, but also helped me a lot for choosing the right fabrics and in sewing the floating skirt of my robe. In addition, she was so fast that the skirt made out of several yards of dual color purple dupioni silk was done in just a few hours. Without her help if would have taken me some additional days since I’m always super slow with my sewing machine.
And… the first test! Wearing purple/gold the very first time felt pretty fabulous and I was really satisfied with the overall look of the costume. The Wizard was clearly one of my more simple costumes which was done in just one week, but the work and the crazy rush before Blizzcon was clearly worth it. I was also pretty scared of my sewing machine for several years and I guess, this costume was a step into the right direction. Plus it was small, comfortable and easy to transport. Now just a staff was missing!
I’ve searched trough my Diablo III artbook, checked some in game models on the Diablo website and finally Valthek’s Rebuke. When it comes to bringing a character to life I mostly search for a matching look for the overall costume instead of the right stats of an ingame character and I just liked the look of Valthek’s Rebuke. It was golden, had pretty ornamental details and a purple decoration – perfect for my Wizard.
Since EVA foam and Worbla are in general a nice combination to work with, I just used these materials to throw my staff together pretty quickly. In fact I finished the whole prop in less than two days. This was such a crazy rush that I even forgot to take enough progress photos. So please forgive me for the lack of explanations at this point. As an alternative you can also just check out my Prop Making Book for some helpful tips or the making of some other props I’ve build in the past.
Long story short: I cut the base out of EVA foam and glued several layers for different thicknesses together. Then I glued the foam to a wooden staff and covered it in Worbla. I added a bunch of ornaments, primed it with some layers of wood glue and asked Benni for a paint job with acrylics.
As you maybe can guess to ornaments were the most time consuming work step. Applying every single line symmetrical was really hard, especially since it was mirrored four times.
Since you’re surely curious about which colors we use: Just check out my link and shop collection to get the same stuff Benni and I work with! If you’re searching for some support for your own projects, maybe my Painting Book can help you out!
Well, and this was the final result! Took me and Benni around four days to complete the build and like always it was a pretty rushed job. However I’m really satisfied with the final result. In addition since the top piece is pretty flat and the rest of the staff are only wooden rods, it was really easy to transport Valthek’s Rebuke in my suitcase.
We packed everything in the very last moment and flew to California to Blizzcon. We arrived some days earlier and the stunning area around LA was just perfect for a photoshoot. A nature park looked just like the desert around Caldeum and Benni did a great job on taking some breathtaking photos of my Wizard. If you’re curious, our equipment is a Canon EOS 6D any my beloved Canon EF 50mm f/1.2
While I mostly edit Benni’s photos by myself, he also wanted to play a bit around with Photoshop. He even made step by step video of the amazing photo manipulation he created for me! Absolute love the result!
You can get this photo also a signed print from my shop!
So, how do you like my Wizard? Just leave a comment if you like! :)
I absolutely love this really comfy and – compared to other costumes – easily transportable costume! I had a wonderful time at Blizzcon and still really love the color combination of Wei Wang’s design! Hope you do as well!