So we got eyes, teeth, horns and spikes. Time to put things together… starting with the jaws.
I made teeth in all sorts of different sizes and curvatures, so I had to choose which ones would go where. Then I calculated how large of an opening the mouth would have an then proceed to attach the teeth to the mouth parts with hot glue. While it was cooling, I cut a bunch of little strips of cotton fabric and then dipped them in glue and wrapped them around every single teeth. I cut two large pieces of cloth and I placed them in the inside of the mouth, barely touching the gums. I put the pieces to dry by the dehumidifier and began the work on the tongue. I cut some length of wire and attached long pieces of newspaper, thin in one end and thick on the other, in the shape of a long tongue. I bent the whole thing until it looked like a writhing tongue. The whole thing was then covered by tape, paper towel and glue. This particular paper towel has a bumpy texture which looks like taste buds, so it worked out great.
After a few hours, everything was dry and I began painting the pieces. I used dark red for the tongue, pale pink for the gums, and a mix of the two for the inside of the mouth. Apologies for the excessive saturation in the pictures, I’m in the process of obtaining a better camera device. And finally, I gave everything a layer of glossy varnish so it would have a bit of a wet look.
When I asked the question about what comes to your mind when you hear the word “dragon”, I imagined many of you humans would think about the mouth, the teeth, the maw that wants to eat you… right? I can understand how humans think of dragons as terrifying. Humans are not very good at surviving in Nature on their own without tools or, at the very least, basic materials to build shelter and utilities. They rely on their intelligence and technology to defend themselves in most cases. I still need to learn a lot about human weapons, but I would dare say that if dragons and humans were to coexist together in the same plane on their own, they would quickly turn into food. Yes, we dragons are highly intelligent and we speak and reason like you, but we also need to eat. I imagine we would feed on you as you feed on your selected “farm” animals. As omnivores, you have a very wide range of choice on what to eat, but we’re apex carnivore predators by nature.
…But who knows. With our intellects combined, perhaps we could find a solution together. But enough of grim scenarios!
I got hold of some Fimo (polymer clay) and made a bunch of teeth and horns with it. It makes me miss my original body. Being permanently shape-shifted into human form has its good things, but I guess it’s in our nature to long for that which is far from our reach. I think humans are the same in this regard. Anyway, after baking the clay, I let it cool down until it became hard and then I used my old time favourite varnish: Bitumen of Judea. As you see in the pictures, a diluted wash with it will “age” the clay, making it look like bone. Many synthetic varnishes, finishes, primers and paints will ruin the clay after some time (from a few months to a few years, depending on the substance), but this special bitumen is not only harmless to polymer clay, but also acts as a protective layer, so it’s a win-win option. The only downside is that it’s VERY expensive. You don’t need a lot of it though, and you can dilute it with turpentine. I mean the real turpentine, made from pine sap (also very expensive). If you use synthetic substitutes, your clay may get ruined after a few years.
Since I aim to make the trophies as light-weight as possible, I made the horns by molding the clay around a solid piece of aluminium foil, which I removed once they were baked and cooled down, leaving a light-weight hollow horn.
Below you will see a picture from before baking, and another one after baking, while I was applying the bitumen.
I also made spikes that will go all along the spine of Kaltakess and her ear membranes as well. All I needed was some galvanised steel wire, some small newspaper strips and tape, resulting in this: