Transform your Collection with the ‘Gethsemoni: Shaper of Flesh’ Figure
“Hate me. Love me. Adore me. It matters not what my children do, for I shall always be their mother.”
– Gethsemoni, Queen of the Dead and Shaper of Flesh
Gethsemoni is Death’s paramour, the Queen of the Dead, leader of the Flesh Faction, and mother to all beings in the Underworld. She is intoxicating and fearsome, as she has completely given herself over to the mercurial winds of unfettered emotions.
Somehow, the Sideshow Design and Development team was able to capture all of the Queen’s feral charm, enchanting complexity and deadly drama in the Gethsemoni: Shaper of Flesh Premium Format figure. Read on for a glimpse into the process through which the team tackled this alluring and challenging character:
The Queen’s outfit has been completely redesigned. What inspired this new ensemble?
“I feel we mostly wanted a more organic feel to the overall design elements. A noticeable upgrade on her wardrobe is the textures, and her crown had to be ‘grander’ than her first one. Keeping with the basic pelvic bone design element was key, with more teeth and a heavier porous bone texture along with the little demonic faces blistering the surface. That’s one of my favorite parts of the sculpture.” – Mark Newman, Sculptor
What was the inspiration for her pose?
“I am a huge fan of classical sculpture and the contrasting figure elements, or contrapposto, is something I heavily focused on. I wanted to show a confidence in Gethsemoni’s body with a subtle smirk and play-coy attitude, as well as a small dosage of necromancy.” – Rachel Roubicek, Designer
“She’s in the midst of conjuring and shaping Flesh, as she does, and I feel her pose reflects the swirly, organic, earthy feel with the shapes and flow of the forms. It is based on the classic foundation of the contrapposto pose, but with a sexier temptress allure, swirling along and dancing with her conjured flesh goo!” – Mark Newman, Sculptor
What were some of the challenges of designing an already established character?
“Coming up with a pose that had a similar elegance as the first Gethsemoni: Queen of the Dead Premium Format Figure, but adding a new attitude. I found myself doing a very similar approach with the new Warbringer Kier and Eyes of the Queen Gallevarbe… approaching with different emotional and body expressions.” – Rachel Roubicek, Designer
“The main challenge is to try to keep both portraits identical in likeness, but with different expressions and attitudes. The base was challenging and fun. Sculpting total freestyle, designing the imagery and flow of the sculpt on the fly as you go is so much more of an organic way to work. If I had to follow a very specific line drawing design of this base, I would have gone freakin’ nuts trying to stay within the lines!” – Mark Newman, Sculptor
How long did it take to sculpt Gethsemoni: Shaper of Flesh?
“On my end, all said and done, ready for molding, around 8 to 10 weeks or so. I’m always going back and forth on updates and notes given and tweaking the sculpt. Much of this process is a lot of changing and re-designing as you go. All of the sculpt I made traditionally, except the bottom base element, which I sculpted digitally. This is what keeps the process alive as well. We all strive for perfection for the finished piece.” – Mark Newman, Sculptor
How do you achieve the appearance of writhing, growing flesh? Does the clay have to be warm to stretch that way, or is it purely sculpted to look like its stretching?
“I usually sculpt these pieces with Super Sculpey, a polymer clay you bake in the oven to cure or harden. This clay can be very soft and stretchy-like when it’s a fresh batch. It’s nice to swirl your tools through the clay creating nice fluid lines to follow. I do lots of sketching in the clay, much like loose under-drawing in 2D art, to find the nice organic shapes and flow. I regularly have to turn the sculpt and work the flow and swirls to work from that view. Turn and repeat many times until everything looks good from every perspective possible. Then going back through and refining areas, adding another layer of details and textures. The fluidity of the material is essential for this type of subject matter.” – Mark Newman, Sculptor
The Queen’s flesh colors are very cool and muted. What was the process of toning down her skin tone to be more Underworldly?
“Underworld flesh tones are always so much fun to paint! It’s a bit of a challenge to make something that doesn’t exist in real life look realistic, but to me, that’s an exciting challenge. Gethsemoni’s skin tones start off with very muted grayed-out colors. The base color is not a pretty color; it’s what I would imagine dead pale flesh would look like. In the highlights I add some more lively colors as if the life within is emerging; using brighter colors with more pinks and yellows. In the shadows, you’ll find more greens and purples to emphasize her underworld nature. I think the contrast of the rotted tones in her shadows and the more vibrant lively tones in her highlights plays to her nature and helps convey this balance between alive and dead that she embodies.” – Kat Sapene, Painter
There are some high-contrast blues and reds in the flesh that Gethsemoni is shaping. How did you decide on an approach for integrating these colors together?
“The thinking behind that was that Gethsemoni is supposed to be pulling from the spirits below her and transforming the spirit (blue) into flesh (red). So my thought was not only to transition the spirit colors into the flesh colors but also to have the spirit illuminate the faces within the flesh to tie the two together. You’ll see the teals of the spirit glow burn in the eyes and mouths of the faces of the flesh Gethsemoni is shaping. Compositionally this helps to bring the teals from the base up into the figure and to her crown where you see the teal again, drawing your eye up through and around the figure.” – Kat Sapene, Painter
The Gethsemoni: Shaper of Flesh Premium Format Figure captures the Queen’s radiance and power in a delicate, dynamic and disgusting glimpse of her necromancy. Her beauty may be blinding, but don’t let that distract you from the fact that there are only 300 exclusive edition figures available worldwide. Adapt to change and order quickly before your chance to add the Shaper of Flesh to your collection withers away.