Who is Face Customs?
In this article titled Meet The Artist, we are going to have a look at the man behind Face Customs Studios. We shall also ask him the 10 most popular questions asked by followers of his work.
Meet The Artist
Face Customs Studios is operated as a hobby by Stewart Walker-Barnett. He has always been a massive Marvel fan, self confessed Comic Book geek, and artistically challenged perfectionist. He lives in Staffordshire in the UK, however often travels to the US. Stewart can be seen on many forums, social media sites and also posting on this website, with ideas, solutions and helpful articles on all things Marvel. It doesn’t just end with Marvel though, Stewart has also worked on some fantastic DC custom action figures.
So lets ask him some questions!
How long have you been customising Action Figures?
Since around March 17th 2012! I know the exact date roughly as it was when I opened my account on Action Figure Realm.
When did you realise you actually had this talent?
I have always been creative and made things, since childhood. I was that kid at school that was different to the kids making boxes and shelves in woodwork class. The teacher looked down in horror as I made the fully functioning lift from Aliens, for my Ellen Ripley figure. With hot glue for effects of course (Slime effects).
Have you ever started a figure and given up, as it was just to difficult to complete?
I haven’t actually. I have lots of projects on the go at once, as all figures have there own unique problems. These range from articulation, potential paint rub. Its best for me to put them to one side, take a break and come back to them another day. I love a challenge and would never give up on a figure.
How long does it take to complete a customised Action Figure?
This will very much depend on a number of factors. Size, character and materials mainly. I do allow myself approx a month for each figure, but it can take longer. Remember I will work on multiple at once, so will be working on several during this time.
I noticed that you actually customise the complete figure, so why are you called Face Customs?
Funny story this one. Haha. Its a long story but I have time. Its actually my nickname. Why is it your nickname? Well, when I was introduced to Figure Realm by another customiser (Shout out to Ben, Wingsstoke), we couldn’t decide on a name. My partner shouted out “Fat Face” as its like a pet name. So I shortened it to Face and just added customs. Face Customs was born. It’s a bit of an inside joke, as due to being a professional dancer for a number of years, I was always on a strict diet. My partner was horrified when I hit the buffet when out for dinner, like Pacman after a week of starvation.
Do you air brush or hand paint your figures?
I actually do both. I started off hand brushing, but as of about 2 years ago, switched to airbrushing. The majority of my figures will have both techniques. It really is good to learn both.
What is your main tool of the trade?
There are so many… My hands. I do so much sculpting, I would be lost without them. Also my eyes, lol. Kind of need them. If we are looking at non bodily objects, I would say my X-acto Knife set, and trusty old Dremel 3000.
Who is your favourite Character?
This is a difficult one. How about to make then? Wasp. She is such an amazing character with an array of costumes to play with. My favourite is the retro one, and once you get those wings on her, she looks great, And what about for reading? Psylocke without a doubt. She has some back story and British of course. She also fits into Alan Moore’s Captain Britain and Alan Davis Excalibur. These are both massively rich in history, and two amazing writers.
Of all the comics that you have read, which is your favourite?
Its a toss between X-Force and Guardians of the Galaxy.
What products do you actually use?
Many, many products. I like to sculpt with Aves epoxy, or ‘Green Stuff’. I make hair most of the time using procreate. Paints wise I like to use Vallejo, Tamiya, P3 and Model Masters. Some are better for air brushing with and others for hand painting.
OK, so we got to the stage when I was asking Stewart a number of questions, when I decided that I wanted to ask one of my own. Its a perk of being the interviewer I suppose. If you would like to know more about me, head over to Mark OnaBlog. This is a shameless plug!
So the final question Stewart. I notice that you do mostly female characters. Have you ever thought of doing more male ones?
I actually started doing female characters as at the time Toybiz didn’t actually make that many. This is why the females characters became more frequent. I also like to do horror as well, and have made many male characters. More recently I think that has happened though, with my recent Machine Man, Longshot and I am also currently working on a Jack Flag. I do have a Groot, that a WIP pic has been put out for. Maybe you can post it below this comment?
Sure thing. Thanks for your time Stewart, I know you are busy in your studio, and we look forward to seeing what you produce next!