Who likes helmets?
Like, REALLY cool helmets with custom paint jobs?
When Season 4 of Star Wars Rebels introduced Ezra Bridger with his custom painted Scout Trooper bucket, man were we excited.
Until of course, the detailed realization that yet ANOTHER piece of Sabine Wren art will take some painstaking work.
But… it’ll all be worth it.
It all Starts with References
Once again now that the episodes were released there are plenty of reference material for me to collect!
The Hunt for Materials
This was just one piece so instead of a list I basically just needed a scout helmet, and the paints for it!
First things first. I got a Scout Trooper kit and fully assembled that. Once again, there are makers who have the kits for the animated version available. I went with the classic Return of the Jedi style because I always imagine most of the differences in animation as a stylistic representation, as opposed to a completely different model. This one was a little different from the stormtrooper helmet that I put together for that Kanan custom helmet (click here for details!) There were a lot more pieces involved and some hardware for the assembly to get together. Basically the dome is 2 halves, the visor is 2 halves, and the face is the last piece.
So 5 pieces altogether. Once they are assembled then I carefully bondoed and sanded the seams so they fit together smoothly.
Luckily with a custom paint job I don’t have to be as perfect as I imagine a clean white paint job might need.
So once the assembly is complete is when I start moving towards the Ezra paint job!
So… when working with difficult paint jobs the first thing is to track down the colors. Right away after checking all the references I realized there are like 3 different browns and 2 different oranges and some really subtle details. The thing about Star Wars paint jobs is those details that make the difference. So then, my usual workflow is to paint light to dark since it’s much easier to darken a light color than lighten a dark paint color.
I hit the whole helmet with grey primer and black inside, which help cut down on reflections and glare inside the helmet, then started with the base colors. Which was yellow, a chocolately brown, and some orange. Then some of the details I handpainted.
Then there are some details that I needed to do by hand.
The biggest cool factor thing on this helmet is the symbol on the sides of the visor. Just like Sabine and her designs, I knew getting a symbol to match, be symmetrical, and perfectly sized is very difficult. One thing that really came in handy this time is a new tool we have. Liz bought a cricut machine. Which I used to cut out 2 vinyl stencils. This made this part WAY easier than my old trick of hand drawing on a side, then carefully cutting the masking, then taking the cut outs to match on the other side to be as symmetrical as possible!
The finished product worked out beautifully!!
The last details I hand painted on and hit the helmet with some Sabine paint splatter!
Some final weathering. I use a few different techniques that I do my best to blend together. Black washing really gets into those crevices and brings out the details. Steel wool reveals the layers I’ve painted and really breaks up the paint in a really believable way. Finally, dry brushing hits the high edges and I use it to bring out those highlights and edges! Then I seal it all up with a clear matte coat and BOOM. Axel is ready for action!
“It’s how we choose to fight that matters.”
So here it is!
I LOVE the designs Star Wars Rebels gave us and I love taking them and doing my best to make them real! Axel is pumped and loves it!
Just one problem…
Axel outgrew his entire season 3-4 Ezra costume… I guess we have some upgrades to work on!
The work is NEVER done!