I Am the Mother of Sam the Dragon

Randomly, I said I’d build a dragon for GnomeCon, since we couldn’t keep the dinosaur. Secretly, I always wanted to build a dragon companion to Gigi. I always had one pictured as lying on it’s belly on a horde of gold, reading about Hording for Dummies. (yes, it will be forthcoming) But for GnomeCon it need to be big, a good eyecatching, door greeting beast. And I had to keep out of the cute arena. It’s true, I have a hard time not playing cute. I can do realistic, I can do simplified graphic action-y but I live in cute most of the time. So this meant I would go campy. Funny, but not cute. Hence the idea of the Gnome cookbook was born.

When I started it came down to logistics almost immediately. I had to gather stuff to build, I had a limited budget, which I added my own money to. I had to think about transport, I had to think about size. Some of these things got thought about later then they should have. So there’s a change in the hind legs he sits on, because I had to get him out my front door. I did end up taking the screened porch apart to get him loaded. (screen door smaller than front door; perhaps I need studio space!) You can see that in the slideshow. I did build him in pieces from the start, so he could get smaller for transport. I was specific about his infrastructure so he could be held and moved safely on certain parts of his body. In the slides you’ll see, I corrected an elbow after painting, I change his color from green to red and I added wings at a very late point.

Still I learned a lot: how to beat up cardboard and bend it to my will, how useful that plastic moving wrap is and why you should invest in styrofoam spheres. All in all, Samual Dominus, Eater of Gnomes, Master of Recipes, Keeper of Spices was well loved and well thought of at GnomeCon. I know a lot of photos (pro and fan) were taken with him!

Here’s a slideshow of him being built from pvc pipe and cardboard stack to finished installation. Enjoy!


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