Sideshow Collectibles have released a video featuring painter Chie Izuma as she demonstrates the techniques she employs to bring statues to proverbial life. The piece in question is a Premium Format Poison Ivy which you may recognize from our initial announcement about its pre-order release, last month. It’s a near-definitive rendition of the character and that’s partially thanks to Izuma’s incredible colour work.
Poison Ivy’s costume has been through numerous redesigns, but incredibly it seems that the one she had for her initial appearance way back in 1966 in Batman #181 remains her most iconic. The leafy bracelets may have morphed into opera gloves over time, but that leafy bodice and those pale green tights remain almost identical.
In this statue, designed by Richard Luong, she’s accompanied by the mutated Venus Fly Traps seen in the Injustice video game. The creepy smiling flowers and the broken Gotham City Police Department sign and police uniform hat are reminders not to be seduced by her appearance. There’s a reason former Poison Ivy writer J.T. Krul described her as a “bastion of Mother Nature and a psycho eco-terrorist.” Don’t test her.
Chie Izuma has been gracing the Sideshow Collectibles catalogue with her stunning work for a while now. Amongst her DC pieces you can find Harley Quinn and Joker, Black Canary and recently Zatanna. This new video focuses on her painting of the top half of the Poison Ivy sculpt, the upper body and hair, which means we get to see the subtle skin shading work.
The first thing that struck me is how fine the spray paint colours are when blending. Izuma starts with the lightest shade first and then adds shading with a series of colours that are so fine it’s almost impossible to see the changes its making. She explains that she mixes a lot of alcohol to make the colours so thin – just think of the aroma in the workshop!
Slowly, almost imperceptibly, the different colours that make up the shading begin to bring depth and muscle tone to the sculpt. Then comes the real magic as Izuma sets to work on the face. For me, the real mark of quality in a statue is in the eyes. Aside from ensuring that the eyes are focused on the same point, there are so many tiny shades of colour and refracted light in an iris that getting it right is to near as breathe life into something inanimate.
Chie Izuma At Work:
I think I was practically holding my breathing watching Izuma’s steady hand make tiny strokes of a brush for eyelashes. or dabbing dots of paint on sharpened wooden picks. Watching her put faint lines on the lips for skin creases made me realise that so much of the work she puts in is effectively only noticeable on a subconscious level, but it builds an overall impression of quality.
Aside from any fascination, or meditative effect of watching the work that goes into painting one of Sideshow Collectibles Premium Format statues, it certainly gives you an idea of what you’re paying for. It’s one thing to admire the paintwork on a statue, but it’s a real treat to get the opportunity to admire the craftsmanship that goes into it, so that you can fully appreciate the reasons why it looks so great.
The Premium Format Poison Ivy statue is available to pre-order here.
What do you think of Chie Izuma and her incredible work? Please let us know in the comments section.
Materials: Polystone , Resin
Product Size: Height: 18″ (45.7 cm)Width: 11″ (27.9 cm)Depth: 10.5″ (26.7 cm)
Images, Video and Press Release Courtesy of Sideshow Collectibles