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Blog This: Armor, anyone?

Posted by joeabbott on July 31, 2011

In the last couple of days I’ve found two web references to armor. Not in itself crazy but, let’s be honest, discussing armor isn’t really mainstream, either. So, I was delighted to see one of these references is from our past, and the other from our imagined future.

Ocean Armor

imageThe first occurrence appeared while reading a current-news magazine and I saw an image much like the one to the right with no other text on the page other than the website: http://oceanarmor.org/. I wasn’t sure if it was for a museum display, an upcoming game, or what, so I remembered the site and looked into it when I got to my computer.

Well, it’s a combination of things.

The organization sponsoring the art is the Surfrider Foundation: a group invested in preserving our ocean habitat and wildlife. They started out focused on protecting a particular California beach and realized a need to protect more than that one place. So, they solidified their group and stated:

Our mission is the protection and enjoyment of oceans, waves and beaches through a powerful activist network.

The gallery noted in the Ocean Armor site is the work of contributing artist who took on an ocean or waterway species and crafted armor for that animal. The tag line They Can’t Protect Themselves provides the theme on which a crane is adorned with feudal samurai armor, a dolphin wears 15th/16th century European plate armor, an otter is festooned within Greek/Roman plate mail, and a clownfish dons 8th century BC bronze armor.

imageimageimage

While the gallery provides a fanciful view of protecting these species, another section of the site says:

Marine life has several natural defenses such as speed, camouflage and schooling behavior. However, these defenses are powerless against man-made threats including pollution, ocean warming, and over-industrialization. To convey our need to protect these animals, this collection of life-size armor was born. Transcending cultural and regional boundaries, these artifacts are meant to inspire all to preserve the ocean and the myriad of creatures that call it home.

I’m not sure if I would have visited another eco-awareness site (as Janeane Garofalo says, “it’s not that I don’t have time for the environment, I don’t have time for you”), so I’m glad they found a clever way not only to draw me in but to encourage me to talk about it, too.

Wicked Armor

imageThe next armor reference I bumped into was noted on the Geeks Are Sexy “Tech, Science, and Social News” site. It’s mostly just a way to waste some time during the day but occasionally I’ll find something that makes me come back later when I have more time. Well, I came back for more after reading Amazing Mass Effect 2 Garrus Cosplay.

imageMass Effect 2 is a video game I wrote about earlier in the year in my Almost Out of My System post. It’s a space RPG (Role Playing Game) in which you need to save the world from invading baddies. So, pretty much like any other RPG out there. But, it’s really well done. One of the neat things about the game is the storyline and deep character development; and one of those characters is Garrus, a Turian.

The image to the far right is the cosplay (“costume play”) outfit that some super-talented, super-fanatical fan created for his own pleasure. The smaller image to the near right is an image from the game.

imageSo, upon seeing this amazing bit of artistry, I followed up and looked into the site My Wicked Armor and the amazing talent of Robert Rodgers.

I’m not quite sure how it is he does what he does, but he’s also not giving away too many details, either. From a page in his FAQ:

Q. Can you tell me how to make costumes like you?
A. No, I learned how to do this on my own, and I do not wish to reveal trade secrets that I learned at my own expense. Take solace in the thought that my skills are the result of many years of failure and frustration. Most people would have given up, but I had a passion for it. That’s why you see so many cool costumes here. Maybe someday I might lose my urge to create costumes, and if that happens I will likely publish a book on the topic to pass on everything I have learned.

OK … so I’m not sure how he does it, but he includes plenty of pictures of what he does! Such as:

imageimageimage

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

A departure from traditional armor, for sure, but I can’t put together a Testor’s model without it looking like a project in need of reconstruction fresh after I’ve completed it, so seeing what Robert can do puts me in awe.

 

But enough with the fawning, I fear I’ve already gone on overlong. That’s my contact with “armor” so thanks for looking in!

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