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Copyright © 1997 Mike James, Azimuth Design. The Bad Tabitha character, in whole or in part, likenesses thereof, storyline, costume and all related materials are copyrighted and registered intellectual property of Azimuth Design. All rights reserved, in any media.
Bad Tabitha Comic Book (No longer available)
Little Tabitha, a sweet, but neglected, young orphan, inheritsan ancient trunk. Inside it, she finds a teeny little "witching"outfit. Timidly, she slips into the wicked straps and soon discoversa spell prevents it from coming off. Worse yet, while wearingit, she is a slave to anyone's request. The kit comic tells ofher first spicey escapade as an endearingly inept novice witchwith a big problem.
Click on pages for full screen view.
Before beginning, let's do a partscheck. There should be a large torso piece, two legs,two arms, a head, two ponytails, and Tabby's stool. To assemble. . . put together.
Cleaning up the Parts
Ha ha, just kidding. Actually there is a lot of work to do beforeassemblage, because certain things are easier to do when the kitis still in pieces. Like grinding off the casting sprues and fins.And then the tedious little job of filling any tiny air-bubbleholes with putty (No, those two "big" cylindrical holesin her noggin' are NOT air-bubble holes. Leave them alone.
Attaching the Legs
Once all Tabitha'spieces are immaculate, you're ready to glue 'em up. First thelegs. It's pretty obvious which is the right leg and which isthe left leg when you hold them up to her torso. Proper "alignment"however, can be tricky, so we did something to make it easier.You will see tiny little scratch marks on the bottom of each thighwhich corresponds to scratch marks on the thigh sections of thetorso. Neat huh? With marks lined up, note how muscles and tendonsline up on top. As you can see, little Tabby's legs look strongenough to choke a horse. Nevertheless, we recommend further strengtheningby "pinning" the legs to the torso. Here's how. (Fig.2).
Let's do her rightleg first. Drill a hole about an inch deep into the center ofthe flat of the leg that will "snugly" accept a nail.Glue and insert a big nail, and clip off the end leaving aboutan inch sticking out. Then drill a bigger hole into the torsopart of the leg. Test fit. The parts should butt, resin to resin,but be able to slide around a bit for perfect alignment. Got it?Good. Now, fill the larger hole with 5-minute epoxy and set itdown for a second. Using Cyanoacrylite glue (super glue), slatherthe flat of the leg piece. Now, place the torso piece in a sittingup positon on the edge of your table and squeeze the leg on. Thisis your last chance to make corrections, so align it correctly.Make sure the thighs fit "flat" on the table - theyshould not rock. This is important to make sure your piece willfit flat on her stool. Hold and let set, then take a breath anddo the same for the other leg.
Puttying the Legs
Lissin' up! Afterattaching the legs we suggest taking the time to putty the seams,because you have complete access to all sides of the seams. Also,it is absolutely CRITICAL that these seams be "blended"well. We cannot stress this enough. They will be "highly"visible and only an absolutely PERFECT putty and sanding job willrender a satisfactory piece. (Don't worry, after this, it's abreeze.) We used auto body putty because it sets completely inminutes and makes quick work. We did 3 applications sanding downeach as if it were the final filling. Then we checked by sprayinga coat of primer on the seams. We found more to putty and sand,sprayed another coat of primer and sanded smooth to 320 grit.Take your time, and repeatedly check your work with primer. Don'tstop until the tiniest indication of a seam is gone. The lastthing you want, is to get started painting the flesh color andTHEN discover you can still see a line. It would ruin the kit.
Attaching the Arms
Again, pin botharms using the same method as the legs - maybe smaller nails though.The right arm is self-aligning. Glue the forearm to the lowerpart of her breast. (Yeah, we know, that breast looks really weirduntil you get the arm on.) For the stretched-out left arm, wehave again provided a little hash-mark on the underside to assistaligning (Fig. 5). Since the seam is at the glove border, youhave almost no puttying to do. (We're just so proud of ourselves.)But, if you DO putty, try not to fill in that "rounding"of the arms as they enter the gloves. That indicates the glovesare "squeezing" her arms. And of course, you have noticedthe odd little indentions in the legs to accomodate the thumband forefinger.
Attaching her noggin'
Can anyone say "hash-marks"? Well, it may require atunneling electron microscope to find them, but they're there,between two studs on the back of her collar and on the spinalarea of her neck on the torso piece (Fig. 6). Test fit, match'em up, and you should be dead on. But just to make sure you don'tput her head on backwards, check this. The chin should be directlyover the outer-most indication of the left clavicle. Not touchingit, but almost (Fig. 7). Okay, now guess what. Yup, "pin"that sucker! A tight hole in the neck of the head - a sloppy holeinto the neck of the torso piece. Glop on some epoxy. Spread alittle super glue on the flats. Presto!... Tabby's givin' youthe eye.
World's cutest ponytails
Les'see, two ponytails with posts, and two holes.... I wonderhow they attach...Duh! Not so fast there, smartypants. It's abit more complicated than you might think. First, there's somework to do. Get an appropriate sized drill bit and carefully drillout the resin in the inside loops of the ribbons. Little rat-tailfiles can thin the edge to get a thin-looking ribbon. Cool, huh?Uh, uh, uh, we're not ready yet. Before you start sloppin' onthe glue, we suggest you take a close look at the photos provided,to find out which is the right ponytail and which is the left.Clue. One ponytail has two pointy tips on the end, the other hasthree. The one with two goes over her back. It should be gluedin so that the big loop of hair almost touches her ear - abouta 1/16th of an inch (Fig. 8). The other dangles way away fromher head - about a half inch in fact. It should also be abouta half inch from the top of her right hand. (Fig. 9).
Well,...you're done. Now, did we lie? After that leg puttyingbit,
it went pretty quick didn't it? Now, it's time to prep littleTabitha
for some paint.
Before you get to do anything with Tabitha, she insists on a goodbath in warm (not hot) soapy water. And she likes Q-tips. Actually,the bath is to remove the mold release agent on her. Dishwashingdetergent and a toothbrush is what we use. Q-tips get in all thehard to reach places. After washing, dry thoroughly. Use a hairdryer (don't use hot setting) to blow out water clinging in crevices.
As any kit-building veteran can tell you, you MUST prime a resinkit before painting. Paints will not stick well to raw resin andsometimes oils in the resins leach through over time, ruininga paint job months later.
It's always a good idea to paint flesh colors in daylight. Itbecomes a MUST when your kit is 90% naked and at a huge 1/4 scale.We suggest setting up a table at a big window. There are manypre-mix "flesh" colors out there and they all stink.They are variations of Tan, which is brown and white, and looklike dirt unless doctored. We recommend using the following recipeto make your own flesh. Lots of white, equal amounts of pink andthat dirt color called "flesh", then add some dropsof straight orange, and more drops of yellow. In the right amounts,this will give you a knockout "peachy" color that brimswith life. If it looks too harsh, try adding white and a coupledrops of lime green. Never darken with black.
We've seen smooth flesh tones done superbly with a brush. Butoil paints were used, which can be blended well. Blending is thekey, and if you are using water-based paints, there is reallyonly one way to go, airbrush. If you regularly build kits anddon't have one, get one. They are pretty cheap nowadays and reallyfun. Now, take your custom flesh color and coat her solidly. Next,make a slightly darker, orangey version of your color, and a lighterversion (double the white). Lightly mist the muscle "crevices"with the darker version, and lightly mist the crowns of the muscleswith the lighter version. If you go too far and there is too muchcontrast, no problem, just evenly mist the original flesh backover the whole kit. We suggest a darker orangey-rose tonationto the apples of her cheeks and her buttocks. Now, seal your workwith two light coats of Testor's Dull Coat.
Airbrush a rich, dark, soft edged, red-brown oval all around hereyes, thicker above and thinner below. Paint top 1/3 of whitesgrey, as if in shadow. Gloss coat eyes, lips and nails (Fig.Aand B). It should look almost like twin "shiners". Usea rosey color and a brush and draw a light cresent to indicateher eyelids catching light from above. The upper eyelash shapesare pretty obvious - brush on straight black, following the sculptedcontours on top, then continue, drawing a thin cresent below thelower lids, tapering off before you reach the insides of the eyes.With black still on your brush, fill in that drilled hole indicatingthe pupils. Then paint the whole eyeball (except the black pupil)white. Choose your eye color and paint a "light" versionof it for the iris. Then outline that color with a "darker"version of the same color. Paint a very thin pink-flesh line betweenthe whites and the black lower lashes. People usually miss thisaccent.
Mix up hot-pink red, as bright a color as you can make. Fill inher lips and fingernails. For a real kicker, put a few drops offlorescent pink into your color. Take this color and hit the highspots on her lower lips. That brings out the pout. Draw a thinline in the crevice between her top and lower lips with dark red.Seal the face with Dull Coat. For blonde hair, mix yellow, flesh,and tons of white. Paint her hair solid. Then make a wash fromyour dark flesh and flood it over the hair so it gathers in thecrevices, and try not to let it run down the face. But even ifit does, the Dull Coat protects her face, and you can wipe itoff.
Metal and Stool
For Tabitha's tiny bikini "hardware", we suggest mixingmetallic silver and metallic gold to get a sort of white goldlook. Gloss coat the black rubber bikini (Fig C and D). The metalpart of the stool should first be sprayed flat black. Then thewhite gold color can be drybrushed on the high surfaces. Whenthat dries, put a turquoise wash over the metallic parts to simulatea patina in the cracks. The ball of the stool can be made to looklike faux marble by dabbing on various reddish colors with a sponge,(Fig. E) and then drawing a few craggy lines in a lighter pink.Gloss coat the ball when done. Ta-Da!
We have had a lot of illegal knock-offs of our
kits sold in foreign countries.
Remember, Azimuth Design only sells directly to the customer, not in stores. If your kit does not include
the Certificate of Authenticity below, with the Raised Seal and personally-inked signature of Mike James,
you do not own a Mike James original piece of art.
It takes a lot of time, skill and money to bring you these precious girls. Please support creators, not thieves.
Contact us if you suspect illegal activity, or if you see a Mike James kit or image being used for profit.
11" x 17" poster shown here comes with kit purchase.
Copyright © 1997 Mike James, Azimuth Design The Bad Tabitha character, in part or in whole, likenesses thereof, storyline, costume and all related materials are copyrighted and registered intellectual property of Azimuth Design. All rights reserved, in any media.