Mangee Primula, the Compedition reporter

Third of the figures displayd with Spire of Tradition is Mangee Primula, the journalist reporting from Speeder Bike race. Idea of media presence was part of the series from the beginning, but it ended up being (so far) the last thing I built. We made a long trip around Finland in July and some principles for this was thought out during it, including the hair and the equipment. Initial idea included lot of dark azure, but it was ultimately stripped out to belt and stockings above boots.

The first part I actually built was the hair, which uses dark green "ski" Bionicle feet from Karzahni, known as great Bionicle parts pack. They are accompanied again with cut-out corner 1x2 curved slopes that form short side bangs. There's also a vibrant pair of earphones, essential part of journalist's gear. The back of the head is somewhat flat, and I used lot of time trying to solve it, but making it bigger made the ponytail point too far to the back. Those Bionicle feet require substantial space for connection, and I wanted to have a heavy band (dark red is used) dividing the hair. Fortunately the earphones hide the flatness on most angles.

Colours are in focus on this series, so I wanted to utilize colours I don't use often. One of them is dark purple, which I'm not usually big fan of - old purple and magenta are just more vibrant - but which subtle elegance has grown on me, at least a bit. So there's a micro jacket in dark purple and its complimentary colour yellow, and dark pink shirt consisting of layered flower pieces around it. The flowers have bar connection, so connecting them in different heighs is possible, if not the sturdiest of connections. But it works fine, as they're very light pieces and are not pulled by any external forces. he pattern is nicely fluffy, contrasting with clean, streamlined jacket. 

The skirt gave me lot of problems - getting the angle with the belt right while leaving enough room for some posing of the upper legs. MANEUVER-STRATAGEM IV was earlier build that used similar structure and its solutions were used here. The final design ended up being quite short on the sides, but I guess it's all right; the CCBS shells on the sides actually connect to the same axle as the hip joint, but it doesn't cause any major issues. The upper legs are very usual, but I finally managed to get my hands to some 3x3x2 cones in dark azure, and white lace trim fitted them, as well as the fluffy shirt. The boots were more challenging. The first iteration were very high heels with crazy bat wing motif and gold buckles, and they used Star Wars Ultrabuild leg armours, but they didn't fit the colourful aesthetics at all. The new version was cheerful lime green and dark teal composition, almost like some rubber boots; CCBS knee armour is not perfect, but hides the joints. The extra layer of brick under the sole was added later, as Mangee turned out being just a bit too short (due to abandoning the bat heels, maybe), and adding baby bows on the caps gave them some nice shape.

Finally, I made a interview gear with small portable recorder and a microphone. They're not super modern, as I enjoyed contrast between somewhat vintage, "proper" electronics and bright, colourful clothing. Having actual wire makes them feel more functional, too, adding another binding element to the composition. The microphone uses one of Parts Festival elements from last autumn

So - is this the end of speeder bike contest? Well, I don't have any new builds for it unpublished, nor under construction, but there's still some group shots to be published, at least. A while ago I had a talk with fellow builder who complained that he had lost of play and fun of building; part of by play of bricks is posing and shooting, posing and shooting these characters. It doesn't necessarily include elaborate backstories, but body language can tell something about them (unknown to me, too, or generated during the photographing) and there's fun in finding out who your characters actually are. Shooting multiple figures emphasized this, though takes more time (it's sometimes tricky to literally balance them!). I know I should also take photos of the whole set-up, figures and speeders and spires and all, but my current "studio" in not big enough. I might try something, who knows. As a complete piece of brick art, this was supposed to be displayed in series of LUG shows, but no one knows when that will be possible. In the meantime, I might build some additional characters - there's something that makes me tick in these bright and radiant characters. It's part of breaking the assumption that it takes a weapon to define an action figure.



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