For years, cosplayers have been using thermoplastics to create amazing armor and props. With a heat gun and some patience, you can design just about anything. The most common of these textiles is Worbla, which is malleable when heated. When it cools, you end up with a hard surface that can be painted. However, it’s not without some flaws. Worbla has a rough surface that needs to be sanded down and primed with multiple coats of wood glue to make it smooth and if you’re not careful, overheating it can cause irreparable bubbles. Also, it only came in tan.
Photo credit: Emily Chesley
But no more! Worbla has unveiled an exciting new thermoplastic called “Worbla’s Black-Art” that will revolutionize cosplay construction. Simply being black can be a huge time-saver, but the new material also offers a number of additional improvements over the original. Black-Art is more flexible, reaches malleability more quickly at 195 degrees Fahrenheit, has a smoother surface, bonds easily with other thermoplastics, and is easier to sculpt. Black-Art is designed specifically for artists and crafters.
Photo credit: Erza – Cosplay
I can’t explain just how excited I am for this (maybe because I’m really caffeinated). The thing is, I’m a novice cosplayer who has only used Worbla once to help my friend make her Lady Thor chestplate. It was incredibly slow to shape. Black-Art’s flexibility will speed up the molding process, plus, the smoother surface will also cut down on the amount of sanding and priming required. Being black, you can even leave it unpainted. Do you get how amazing that is?! You. Don’t. Have. To. Paint. It.
Erza – Cosplay released this video showing Black-Art in action to make the bracer pictured above. You can see how she easily sculpts and bonds the plastic together. To see more Black-Art in action, check out Kamui Cosplay‘s video below where she tests it out by remaking one of her breastplates:
Black-Art isn’t available just yet, but it will be soon. You’ll be able to purchase it through Worbla.com and pretty much anywhere else Worbla’s products are sold. Don’t expect this to be any less expensive–however, being able to re-mold scraps more smoothly means less throwing away your dollars.
To quote the great Phillip J. Fry –
Feature Image Credit: Erza – Cosplay