Over the years the foam latex on the TMNT Michelangelo mask had become fragile and had begun to crack, especially in the areas on the mask which moved like his mouth. This movement cause the material to weaken over time, which is not uncommon for animatronic, foam latex puppets and costumes. We should know, we’ve had quite a lot of experience restoring original Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtle costumes and props!
On inspection of the Mikey mask in our studio, we noticed that areas of the head had previously patched with a non-hardening clay which had to removed for the good of the piece. Once that clay was removed we began to stabilize and patch any areas which had cracked or were missing material. This is not only for aesthetics but more importantly because it strengthens the surrounding material helping to support the piece over time.
While patching the masks the artist make sure to match the texture of the new material to the texture of the original. It is this sort of precision. combined with proper paint matching that will help the patches to virtually disappear. Our paint is done conservation style, using “in painting” where only the repair is touched, leaving as much original skin and coloration from the television show prop intact as possible.
Even the display base for the Michelangelo was carefully thought out and hand crafted. The base was created with laser cut letters and cutouts to create the look of a sewer cover. Texture and paint are laid over that to create a realistic faux rusty metal look. The topper of the the display was also custom made to ensure proper support and would fit this particular mask perfectly. We’re always thrilled to work with Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles. Cowabunga dude!
Have an original movie or television prop in need of restoration or custom display? Email or call today and let’s discuss your project!