Sometime shortly after Halloween last year, I decided that I HAD TO go as a deep sea diver this year. I have always thought old diving masks and diving presses (the hard-exterior type, which can go deeper underwater) are really cool-looking. There are many many different types of mask designs and breathing methods, all created by different people around the world to serve the same basic purpose; keep a human alive while exploring the ocean floor!
Originally my plan was to build the entire thing out of closed-cell foam, but I didn’t realize that you can’t just buy that kind of foam at Lowe’s. I called the fantastic Cory Gilstrap, who was my mentor at the Museum of Outdoor Arts’ Design and Build internship. Cory is a puppet master and he taught me and the other interns how to build amazing things (giant puppets, carousel horses, etc) out of this foam. So I called him up as I was wandering around Lowe’s and he had a lot of great suggestions for me.
This is my helmet, early on in the process. Cory suggested that rather than try to make a dome using the foam (which it was too late to buy anyways) that instead I use a regular plastic witches’ cauldron and some PVC drains. I cut holes in the cauldron and stuck the drains in to be my ‘port holes’.
Bronze spraypainted the whole thing…
Here I am outfitted in the entire costume. I attached even more doo-dads onto a belt, and made “weighted” shoes out of cardboard boxes to drag myself down to the ocean floor.