A DREAM REALIZED
By Scotty Zod
My name is Scotty Zod. I'm 27 years old. My girlfriend Courtney and I have been building costumes and props out of our garage for about 3 years now. The Stan Winston School of Character Arts has had a big impact on our lives. We hope that through the school we can realize our dream of doing what we love for a living. Seeing the trailer for JURASSIC WORLD was the trigger that inspired us to build ourselves actual velociraptors.
INSPIRED BY JURASSIC PARK
The suits took us about 3 months to build. We watched the Stan Winston School Evolution of a Raptor Suit with John Rosengrant video countless times for our reference. We spent many late nights trying to design a practical way to recreate these incredible creatures that captured our hearts the first time we saw JURASSIC PARK many years before.
UPHOLSTERY FOAM & CARDBOARD
The suits are made entirely from upholstery foam and cardboard. It was very tricky to fit ourselves inside and bring them to life. Following some helpful tips from SWSCA instructor and foam fabricator Ted Haines, we learned to use a soldering iron to score the foam, creating the texture of raptor scales.
Pictured above: Scotty Zod creates a cardboard template for the head.
Pictured above: Courtney and Scotty Zod used standard upholstery foam as the main building material.
RUBBER SPRAY SEALANT FOR RAPTOR SKIN
Since neither of us had experience in latex or silicone, we used rubber spray sealant for the skin. Once sealed, we chose our color schemes. My co-builder Courtney wanted hers to resemble the original Isla Nublar raptors from the first film, and I chose the Isla Sorna alpha female from JURASSIC PARK III.
MECHANICS & PREPARATION
We used springs and rope to make the mouths open and close. We used filled water bottles inside the heads to act as a counter balance system to keep them from falling forward. After countless testing sessions we knew wearing them would not be easy. We used back braces to relieve the strain of the weight of the suit. Even with the braces, we had to hit the gym for a few weeks to prepare our bodies for the abuse they would endure (hahaha).
Pictured above: Courtney (left) and Scotty (right) testing the suits. Every piece was custom made and tested many times.
Pictured above: Velociraptors in the corner! Heads and claws are ready for paint.
Pictured above: Courtney (left) applies a rubber sealant for the skin. On the right, Scotty paints his chosen color scheme.
Pictured above: Another suit test. The head is ready; next step is to complete the body.
We found that we were able to wear the suits for 4 hours at a time before needing a break to rehydrate. JURASSIC PARK Raptor suit performer John Rosengrant was right when he said that suit performance can be very demanding.
Pictured above: A soldering iron was used to score the foam creating the texture of scales.
Once completed we took the raptors to Dallas Comic-Con. It was very rewarding to see all the fans' reactions. We received a lot of love from all the attendees.
Pictured above: Courtney and Scotty in their finished Raptor suits at Dallas Comic-Con.
We couldn't have done it without all the support and motivation from everyone. We would like to take a moment to really thank Stan Winston, his son Matt Winston, John Rosengrant, Ted Haines, Erich Litoff, Balázs Földesi, Shannon Shea and the whole SWSCA team for the inspiration and love!
Pictured above: Scotty peeks out from his awesome Alpha Raptor suit at Dallas Comic-Con.
Huge thanks to our family and friends who were there to motivate and support us in this memorable project!
Do YOU do stuff like this?
Hey, monster fans. These kinds of stories make us SO HAPPY. Send us anything you spot that you think would make a good fit on our blog. The best way to get in touch is to send private messages through our Facebook page, or on our YouTube channel! We'd love to see what you find.
- Balázs Földesi and the rest of the team at Stan Winston School
MORE DINOSAUR STUFF FROM STAN WINSTON SCHOOL:
- Make a Dinosaur - T-Rex Foam Fabrication with Ted Haynes - Part 1
- Make a Dinosaur - T-Rex Foam Fabrication with Ted Haynes - Part 2
- Make a Dinosaur - T-Rex Foam Fabrication with Ted Haynes - Part 3
- The Evolution of a Raptor Suit with John Rosengrant
- T-Rex: One man's survival story
- Sculpting a Full-Size T-Rex
- Animatronic T-Rex Comes To Life
- Building Animatronic T-Rex
- T-Rex - Skinning An Animatronic Dinosaur
- Brachiosaurus - Animatronic Puppet Rehearsal
- Triceratops - Puppeteering an Animatronic Dinosaur
- Building the animatronic Dilophosaurus
- Spitter attacks Nedry
THE LOST WORLD: JURASSIC PARK
JURASSIC PARK III