24th August 2013: Completed, sort of. So I got Totoro completed for Aya (kind of), and got to walk him to the masquerade and wear him in it.
I couldn't get everything done on him that I wanted to though, and because of this he wasn't as easy to wear as I had previously hopped.
So what didn't I manage to get done;
The eyes only moved from left to right, and not by much. I bought 180° motors thinking that these would be okay. I then worked out that as the motors would sit in a central position that this meant they only had a movement of rotation 90° each way, which didn't translate in to a great deal of slide movement.
As for vertical movement, the Papier-mâché base just wasn't sturdy enough to take the torque from the motor, and caused the face to flex.
Staying with the eyes. For a camera I used one that is normally installed into a car for help with reversing. They're cheap and not bad quality, however, bad idea. Turns out the lens used in these camera are convex shaped, rather than flat. This means that I had a wider field of view, but it was distorted, completely screwing up depth perception and other things. I kept stopping because I thought I was going to walk in to people, but then be no where near them. Other than that, it worked well.
Speaker was a little too quiet, but worked overall.
Hands... I need to find a better way of doing them. They couldn't grip anything, so had to install two clips in to the hand. I think this may be the best way to do it even on Mark 2, but we'll see. I found another way of doing them, so I'll try that first before ruling anything out.
Damn, there are a lot of things I wasn't overall happy with on this one. I'll blast threw two more and then move on.
I changed the stomach from foam, to teddy bear wadding. This worked awesome for huggers as it was all nice and soft, but the fur kept wrinkling, making it look loose. This may have also been caused by the soft papier-mâché support though.
last thing, the fur connection to the head and legs. Well there was none. Which really spoils it for me. I wanted him to look like a plush, but those two things just make it look like a cheap costume (Which he was not!). I got to speak to some awesome fur suiters though, which game me some awesome pointers on how to sort that next time.
So over all, I enjoyed wearing him, My friends seemed to be impressed and excited by it, and from what they've told me (I couldn't see a lot) other people around liked him a lot.
I'm going to work on a couple of smaller things for Expo in Oct, couple of cosplays and some props that people seem to get excited about, then I'll start working on a bigger, better, more stable, and animated Totoro for the new year.
Thank you for reading all of this, if you have. More photos will be uploaded soon.