Must admit that I feel very pleased with the hour's or so conversion work and easel construction that has produced this totally unique vignette, which must now be base-coated and painted. The easel itself wasn't that difficult, but gluing it together without getting adhesive everywhere, or all over my fingertips required considerable breath-holding. Not easy to do when you've got a cough and slight rattle in the chest.
The really tough part was converting the "artiste" from a contentious guy with a flintlock pistol into a painter, holding a brush in one hand and a palette in the other. After carefully trimming away the pistol from his right hand, destined eventually to wield a brush instead, it was time to work on his left arm and hand, preparing both to accept the envisioned painter's palette. That required some forethought and surgery, two things that long-time visitors to the GD of S blog will recall I usually avoid like the plague! No matter. We're made of stern stuff here in the Grand Duchy, especially when mildly mind altering over-the-counter cold and flu medications are part of the equation. Tally ho!
Using a dangerously dull hobby knife blade, I first cut a small wedge of metal from the inside of his left elbow, which made bending his arm somewhat easier, though not as much as you might think. These Blue Moon chaps are made of some kind of tough alloy! Once that was done, it was time to gently pivot my painter's left hand about 45 degrees, using needle-nosed pliers, so that it could hold the small cardboard palette with the thumb poking up over the edge, just as thumbs do in full-sized, real life. More breath-holding since I didn't want to twist said hand off at the wrist in the process. And too much additional twisting would have done just that, I'm sure. Whew. Glad everything went smoothly.
Finally, I used my pin vice and a larger bit to drill a hole into the painter's right hand, which formerly held a the pistol, and finish things off by inserting a carefully whittled down piece of toothpick, which, once painted, ought to resemble a paintbrush pretty well. Voila! The hot-blooded young man in the pirate shirt open almost to his navel already looks like a temperamental artist hard at work while he is barraged with all kinds of inane questions from his dilettante patron in the background, one Georg Mikael Biedermeyer von Spiesburg.
Finally, the easel was made from a few pieces of trimmed toothpick, two tiny reinforcing slivers of balsa, and a cut-down scrap of illustration board for the canvas. For added strength, the canvas is part of the structure and glued into place, so (sadly) there will be no swapping in and out of different canvases as was proposed in a comment on my previous post today. A fine idea, but strength and durability win out this time. Now, if I can simply shake this darn bug, I'll be able to finish my musicians in the background, fix these Blue Moon conversions on an irregularly shaped base, slap on a coat or two of white acrylic gesso, and climb back into the painting saddle once more.