Doors and Yoga Balls

These are more set pieces for Opera North's production of The Magic Flute. These are the doors used in scene at the gates of the temple. The lettering is hand done, first in pencil and then with paint pens. I use to resist paint pens, thinking that using them meant that I couldn't do it the "right" or "real" way. I've gotten over that. They are a tool, that's all. I know I can do it by hand with a brush, but if a paint pen can save me time, then I'm all for it.








The wisdom door is only functioning door out of the bunch.

Another miscellaneous project was large 'yoga' balls painted with scientific symbols to be used in the scene with the Cave Drop (next post). The most difficult part of this project was finding balls large enough for what the designer specified. Spheres are expensive in any material; when you go above 24 inches the costs get astronomical. The designer requested balls that were 5 and 6 feet across. We ended up using large beach balls, but even then we had to settle for smaller sizes.

These are the larger balls...the smaller ones are the old fashioned beach balls of color segments. The trick is to inflate the balls, paint them, and keep them inflated. They have short rings of sonotube glued to the bottom with construction adhesive to keep them from rolling, especially since they will be on a raked stage. I coated the balls with a mixture of Flexbond, Sculpt or Coat, and tint. This give the balls a durable and flexible skin to keep the air in and will allow the paint to stick. I applied two coats of this.
balls in various states of completion

The next step was the solid base coat; a mixture of paint, tint, and Flexbond. The addition of the glue to the paint makes sure it will adhere to the surface as well as making sure it won't flake off. It took two coats of coverage to completely kill the colors of the beach balls. Then I projected the symbols on the balls, and painted them in.

Here's the finished product:

Magic Flute Balls

1 comment:

. . . Lisa and Robb . . . said...

Your work gets better and better!

I few months back, I got a phone call from another scenic, who was in a panic, because she had painted basketballs to look like watermelons, and the paint was flaking off when they dribbled the watermelons.

Silly painter had used a urethane sealer!