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Project Solar Poodle

November 2, 2015

Resin cast items for the home are readily available in a wide range of purchasing venues, usually for much cheapness because they are easy and inexpensive to reproduce.

Everywhere from the dollar store to high end gift shops will offer you any number of resin cast decorative knick knacks in shapes and sizes only limited by the constraints of the designer’s imaginations.

Unfortunately, no matter where you find them, 99.9% of these  items are painted with little to no regard of highlighting or paying any sort of relevant attention to the detail that was put into the original model.  I don’t know how most people feel about this, but I do know that it’s a fact which has a sneaking tendency to crawl up my butt sideways.

The thing that a lot of people don’t realize is that the figure isn’t ruined just because someone didn’t paint it correctly the first time. In fact, regardless of what sort of sloppy paint job has been applied to the item, it’s still sort of a blank slate.

Repainting  resin cast figures is easy, fun and incredibly rewarding.

Below I have detailed some simple changes I made to a relatively inexpensive novelty item, which not only improved its appearance but also made it into a completely unique, one of a kind gift once completed.

Most recently I found this little solar poodle. It’s about 5 inches high and fits into the palm of my hand. When the panel on its back is charged and it senses that it’s surrounded by darkness the insanely huge, (somewhat) creepy eyes light up.


When I saw it in the shop I was instantly put off by the paint job, but there was something about the underlying composition of the strange figure that made me look twice. I’m not a dog person myself, but I have a friend who is very much in love with all things poodle, and she had a birthday coming up so I decided to buy the little guy to attempt a repaint.


Besides the poodle being poorly painted with a blackened muzzle, blackened toes and pink shadows that made it look like there were bald patches between its fur, it also had a tiny stump of a tail and a tiny hole in one of its toes.


The tail stump bothered me because poodles, at least all of the poodles I’ve ever met, have redonkulously floofy tails and therefore, I knew that before I readied my paintbrush a floofy tail must be sculpted. The floofy tail also covered the tiny toe-hole so I killed two birds with one stone, and by “stone” I mean one lump of air dry clay.


I let the tail dry for a couple of days before I moved onto painting to be sure that it had properly set. I chose air dry clay instead of polymer clay because this figure could not be put in the oven to cure given its electrical bits and pieces.


After the tail dried it did shrink slightly and separated from the resin, but that was sort of good because it meant I could glue it on more securely and file it a bit to smooth out any rough edges.

I have to admit that the before and after photos I have provided don’t really do justice to the changes that I made, but try as I might the stubborn thing wouldn’t photograph in any more detail. The shading is subtle, however overall it does make a huge difference to the appearance of the poodle.

Once I was ready to paint I primed the whole thing in a couple layers of white acrylic and after that dried I reapplied the shadows in purple instead of pink so that they didn’t look like bald patches of skin anymore.


Next I repainted the nose and mouth and applied a pearly overlay to make them look moist. Lastly I painted the dainty little toenails back on.


Originally I had intended to make the eyes a bit more soulful and less soul devouring, however it didn’t really work out and in the end, I sort of like it’s manic wee stare. Something about it just says, “love me, or face the consequences, damnit”.


I haven’t sealed it with anything because I don’t really think it’s necessary. It’s no longer an outdoor poodle and since it’s not a toy it won’t be subjected to heavy handling.

Very soon it will be journeying to its new home, where I’m guessing it will take up residence in the conservatory as a semi-amusing novelty.

Hopefully the living poodle in residence won’t be intimidated by its awesomeness.

If you would like to see another example of a cast resin repaint I documented in my blog click Here.


Before & After

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