Friday, September 30, 2011

Customizing the model dog, continued

Hello again, with ongoing coverage of my custom model dogs!

I have no updates on the Irish Setter CM today, as I haven't made any changes to her since the last blog.

However the Breyer Labrador to Labradoodle custom is progressing well:

Click to view a larger image!
Click to view a larger image!

I have made some changes to her head, re-sculpting the beard and ears to make them stand out more. She has her tail, now, as well.

Click to view a larger image!

Click to view a larger image!

So she is now almost 100% re-sculpted. Only her nose and the paw pads of the right forefoot and left hind foot are from the original Breyer Labrador.

She should be ready paint soon, after I check over her one more time for mistakes!

And here are some other dogs in progress:

Traditional scale Bearded Collie, 100% original sculpture done in polymer clay. I've been working on her for over a year, now.Still a long way to go!

Click to view a larger image!
Click to view a larger image!

Click to view a larger image!
Click to view a larger image!

Custom Breyer Dalmatian to Foxhound:
Click to view larger image

Click to view larger image

Click to view larger image

Add caption

Will be for sale once completed!

And there's this poor little thing:

Formerly known as the Breyer Jack Russel Terrier, I'm not sure what she'll be next. I'm thinking a Havanese, or something similar.

Until next time!

Friday, September 9, 2011

Customizing the Model Dog, continued

Back again! First of all, I am announcing Dragon Ridge Studios new website:

It features my gallery of model horse and dog customs, commission prices, and lots more! Go check it out when you're done here. :)

Now, I know I've been away from the blog yet again, but still busy with the Irish Setter custom. Here is her progress:

Right after the last blog entry, I took some more off of her feathering:

And her most recent look:

Still a long way to go, obviously.

I'm hitting the interior pocket in some spots, so I will have to go and build parts of her back up with Apoxie.

In other news, I am working on other canine projects. Here's one of them: another complete resculpt, the Breyer Labrador to a Labradoodle:

I started by going all over the Breyer Lab body with a sanding drum attachment on the dremel, taking down most of the body (and filling in gaps where needed):

(she was a funny tan color underneath!)

This is so I can build the hair back up without making her look poofy or chubby:

See what I mean? If I had simply sculpted over the existing hair texture, she would have come out with a bit of a weight problem!

Still have the paws, tail, and some other spots that need work. Then we move on to a coat color! Probably chocolate, or a color that Labradoodle fanciers call "lavender".

That's all for now, folks. Until next time!

Sunday, April 17, 2011

Customizing the model dog: From longhaired to shorthaired

Welcome back, everyone! Looks like I've really been neglecting my blog. Almost a whole year has passed since I last posted here.

So to make sure I don't take another leave of absence, I shall give you an account of one my latest projects.

As you may have noticed elsewhere, I am now focusing on customizing model dogs. The model dog hobby is steadily growing in popularity, with online model dog shows, and even model dog divisions being held at some live shows. Plus, model dogs make popular sidekicks/companions to model horses!

There are many companies out there that produce fine dog figurines, but not all of them make pieces that are in scale to model horses. A few years ago, Breyer Animal Creations released a line of model dogs (as well as some other animals) called the Companion Animal line. One of these was a sweet little Setter in the classic "on point" pose.

Now as lovely as this little gal is, her breed options are limited because of her pose and coat. Now I've already painted one Breyer Setter(to orange belton), and am working on another (tricolor).

But I feel I can do more with this model, lots more.

Now usually when an artist does something more drastic, they take a model and add more to that model (e.g. add more hair/fur/etc). Say like, taking a smooth coated dog figurine and sculpting all over it to make it a shaggy dog. That sounds easy enough, right? Just whip out the epoxy and slap it on! (of course, a certain amount of sculpting and skill are a good idea).

I wondered how hard it would be to do the opposite: take an already long haired Breyer dog, say, the Irish Setter, and make it into a smooth haired breed, an English Pointer?

So I'm going to find that out, and I'll show you my progress along the way. Today I will share the first few steps.

Stage 1: Preparing the original finish Breyer
What I will be using:
-Breyer Irish Setter
-permanent marker
-small hacksaw
-Dremel, various bits, including the sanding drum
-sandpaper, the finer the grit, the better.
-protective goggles (bits of plastic will be flying everywhere!)
-reference photos (Pointers on point)

-First, I start with the Breyer Irish Setter:

-Then I take a permanent marker. This will be used to mark out where I plan to

-I use my reference photos to get an idea where the legs (esp. the
hind ones), the belly, and the tail are under all that coat. I also mark off the ears, which
will be removed completely and resculpted.

-Next, I use the small hacksaw to remove the ears and front leg feathering. This takes a lot of
elbow grease. I also make sure that I don't cut into the neck or legs, I want to leave as much
of the main body parts as possible(though I inevitably will have to fill spots spots in later on).

After I've removed her ears and as much leg feathering as possible, I take the dremel
(and put my goggles on!) to remove the rest, using either the sanding drum or a smaller metal
bit to get into the hard to reach places (like her raised front foot).

After that, I use the sand paper to smooth it all down.


And that concludes it for today!

Next time I will tackle the hind legs, the tail, and the underbelly.

Thanks for stopping by, and feel free to leave a comment, or give some

Tuesday, April 20, 2010

April 20, 2010

Hello, again! Apologies for not posting last month.

What's been happening in my neck of the woods:

This month was certainly an exciting month in the way of weather. Two hail storms, two days in a row. I was able to catch the second one on video as seen here:

Warning, VERY loud. Turn the volume down before playing, especially if you've got headphones on.

Thankfully, no serious damage was done, but some flashing on the roof had to be replaced.

The next day was beautiful, despite the nasty weather we had. Emily and I went out for a drive, and we stopped by a park in Riverside, Missouri to get some snapshots of some beautiful scenery. I took lots of photos, and have put together a little slide show. Enjoy!

(I have photos from another trip we took, which I'll post in a future blog.)

In model horse/dog news.

Currently my books are open! Nothing over $150!

Email me at for an exact

I also have lots of stuff currently for sale.

On Ebay, I have a customized Foxhound figurine, perfect for fox hunting scenes.

I also have many other model horses and related items for sale on Model Horse Sales Pages.

Customized Stablemates, including 3 of the 6 new 2010 molds, click either the photos or the descriptions to see the ads:

Customized Traditional scale models:

Peter Stone Arabian to buckskin tobiano

OF Breyers:

Well, that's it for now. See you next time!

Monday, February 8, 2010

February 2010

Hello again and welcome! Here's the latest as of February 2010:

Books are currently open for model horse and dog commissions, nothing over $150(for straight repaints, re-sculpting may be more, depending on the work needed)

Custom Orders in progress:

- Kathleen Moody Foxhound for CSM: 3/4 done, pictures soon.

- Rolling SM Draft Horse for LG: 3/4 done, pictures soon.

- SM Mustang Ornament: Started, will pick up the pace as soon as the above two are finished.

Customs for sale:

-"WBP Kalliel", pony gelding sculpted by Chris Jolly of Jahlee Designs. Done in pastels and acrylics to a shaded bay. Auction can be found here:

-Breyer G3 Stablemate Friesian with re-sculpted mane and tail, to a shaded chestnut. Done in pastels and acrylics. Auction can be found here:

Upcoming Customs:

-Custom Breyer Foxhound, repositioned into a jumping pose by Emily McFadden/Ghost Wolf Ranch. Will be repainted by me
-Breyer Impress Me Shannon/Zippo Pine Bar, straight repaint(no color decided yet, probably an overo pinto)
-Stone Chips Arabian straight repaint, possibly rose gray.

In other news:

Winter is still holding fast to our area, temps are a lot colder than normal, and they'll be getting colder before they improve.

Art feature of the day/Shameless plug:

Some digital flat art by me, click the image or the title below for a larger view:

Darkening Sky by ~Tephra76 on deviantART

That's all for today, see you soon!

Saturday, January 16, 2010

Jan 16, 2010

Happy New Year, again! One resolution I made is to update more here.

That being said, on to the updates!

Custom Orders:

My books are currently open! Email me at for
a quote!

All of my paint jobs are under $150(not including resculpting, which is extra,
depending on the work needed).

I produce NAN qualifying works, and many of my customs have top tenned at the
North American Nationals (NAN)!

Current Custom Orders status:

- Kathleen Moody Foxhound for CSM: Started. Primered, basecoated, ready for color.

- Rolling SM Draft Horse for LG: Started. Primered, basecoated, ready for color.

- SM Mustang Ornament: Started. Primered, basecoated, ready for color.

Customs available for sale:

Currently for sale on Ebay:

- A customized resin dog figurine, painted in acrylics and pastels to red merle.
Comes with his own toys and accessories:


Click photo or click here to go to his auction!

Also for sale:

- "Trenton", a G2 Stablemate Stock Horse, done in pastels and acrylics
to a bay tovero. He is, in my opinion, LSQ, and perfect for Performance,
as well as Halter! See his ad here at Model Horse Sales Pages for price
and more details and photos.


- "Uno Noche", a Breyer Smarty Jones, done in pastels and acrylics
to a black leopard Appaloosa. He has shown only once, and NAN qualified, placing 2nd in a
large class! He comes with his ribbon and NAN card.
See his ad here at Model Horse Sales Pages for price and more details and photos.


In other news:

We had a lovely trip to Chicago over New Year's. Went to see our aunt and uncle, as well as Cousin Brad, Craig, and Aunt Hellen.

My sister Emily took some wonderful photos with our new camera(a Christmas gift from Mom and Dad).

Sears Tower:
Photos from the car

Hancock Building:
Photos from the car

The Metra, which we took from Morton Grove to Round Lake to visit Brad, Craig, and Hellen:
Morton Grove stop

To see more photos of our trip, visit Emily's Flickr page here:

Custom of the day:


"Ambience", a Breyer Mini Whinny, done in pastels and acrylics to
palomino. From the Breyer Mini Whinny Painting Kit.

Wonderful detail, which is normally hidden by heavy factory paint.

Sold on Ebay.

That's all for now, see you next month!

Sunday, March 8, 2009

March 2009

A very belated Happy New Year to everyone. March 2009 has proven so far to be a roller coaster in the terms of weather. It snowed last weekend, then climbed to the mid 70's by the end of this week. Now we are back to the mid 30's this morning, after a night-long round of thunderstorms. And while it's feeling more like Christmas here in Western Missouri, Eastern Missouri is currently being hammered nasty weather this morning, they are under a tornado watch with multiple tornado warning. Stay safe over there, guys!

Customs orders are slowly but surely getting done. I have a Pope Firely resin here for Jennifer Buxton of Braymere Saddlery ready to go, I just have to finish her friend, a CM Breyer Lonesome Glory. Photos will be coming soon.

Other customs in progress are:

Little Bit Drafter, for a friend on DeviantArt- half done
CM Stablemate Drafter for Laura G.- still in the remake stages, but nearly ready to paint.
Breyer PIN Horse- being painted as I type.
SM Scale Arab Resin for B. Hook- finished, just need to hear back from you!
Repair job on a custom Classic Tbred- almost complete

Customs currently on eBay:

G3 Stablemate Drafter, with new mane and tail, to a gogreous bay tovero:

G2 Stablemate Stock Horse to a flashy roan sabino:

Both are LSQ, and you can have them at bargain prices!

Custom of the Day:

BlackJack, a customized Breyer Ideal, done in pastels and acrylics to a shaded black with bronze undertones. Sold on eBay.