Thursday, March 27, 2014

Deconstructing the Construction of a "Meat-Filled" Zebra Piñata - Part 2



Only a few days left until showtime and our Baby Zebra Piñata is virtually completed, save for a few final finishing touches and the stuffing of various meat-treats (generously provided by Big Chief Meat Snacks) and candies (for you non-meat eaters).

(And if you’re wondering why we’re hosting this crazy ‘Meat-Up’ event (get it?), read this.)


When last we left our Zebra Piñata, it was just about to be assembled. Piñata Experts Heather Ilsley and Derek Mah from ThePinataProject.com have been working furiously over the last couple of months to complete it in time for our “Meat-Filled” Zebra Piñata party this Sunday, spending at least 100+ hours on this project. We’re so grateful for the thought, effort and most importantly time they’ve put into this project on our behalf, and we hope you’ll support their efforts by joining us this Sunday!

And now on to the photos.



Here is our fully assembled but yet-to-be-decorated Baby Zebra. The head has already been mounted to the body and the whole thing has had mâché applied as well as a layer of white tissue paper to give it some uniformity. The ears were constructed out of white cardboard and the ‘feet’ are styrofoam balls.



To give you an idea of the scale of this thing, here’s Heather as she presents our piñata to the world. As you can see, it’s half the size of Heather and twice as thick. Or in other words: This thing is HUGE! The black markings on its body are where the stripes will be applied.



Heather as she applies the Zebra striping. The stripes were created by taking black and white paper streamers and folding them in half, then feathering them by making quarter-inch cuts perpendicular to the folds. It results in a great effect as it gives the piñata a bit of texture. Simple to do, but very time consuming to create; converting an entire roll of paper streamer can literally take a few hours. The stripes are then applied to the piñata using white glue.



Derek as he applies the googly eyes to the Baby Zebra. They initially thought to create their own as they were uncertain that they’d be able to find eyes at the correct scale, but in the end, they were able to find something close. To make the eyes look bigger than they actually were, Derek added some black striping around the eye sockets.



The snout and the feet are decorated with black and white hockey tape, to give those parts of the Zebra a different texture and look. Much thought and consideration has been put towards the visuals as the piñata takes more and more damage throughout the night, and a conscious decision was made to use different materials for the feet as Heather and Derek want to see them fly off as it takes more and more damage from the evisceration by our ‘lions’ for the evening.



We wanted to give our Baby Zebra a bit of an attitude, so we decided to go with a multicoloured mane and tail rather than a plain black one. Heather shows off the mane she created by taking multiple pieces of different coloured tissue paper, folding them over and feathering them similar to the way the zebra stripes were feathered using the paper streamers. To hold it all together, she broke out her sewing kit and stitched the tissue paper similar to how a book is bound to its cover.



Heather and Derek apply the mane to the piñata using hot glue. We decided to give our Baby Zebra a bit of a mohawk as well by attaching it closer to the forehead. The tail was created by taking various pieces of tissue paper, twisting them together and splaying the ends. It was attached to the piñata by poking a hole in its backside and securing it with more hot glue.



And there you have it, our (mostly) finished Baby Zebra Piñata! Isn’t it cute? Just needs a few more finishing touches and to be stuffed with candies and jerky-treats and then it’ll be ready for showtime!

If you're interested, more photos from our Baby Zebra’s construction can be found on our Facebook page.


In order to accommodate the interest that seems to be brewing in the public eye for this project, we’re extending the hours by opening the doors at 6 p.m. rather than 6:30 p.m. That way, if you want to have your picture taken with our piñata before the festivities start, you’ll have some extra time to do so. Make sure to take plenty; once the evisceration starts, there’ll be no going back!

So the final agenda for the evening now looks like this:

Agenda:

  • Doors and “Last Chance” Piñata Photo Ops at 6:00 p.m.
  • Eulogy at 8 p.m.
  • Zebra Evisceration at 8:20 p.m.
  • Lamentations, Reminiscing and After Party at 8:45 p.m.


A BIG THANK YOU to Heather and Derek from ThePinataProject.com for helping us with this project and for generously sponsoring our piñata. They’ve spent over 100 hours of their free time on it, bankrolling everything from the materials to the candy stuffing themselves as an official piñata for their piñata project for this year. It’s a beautiful piece of art (the very nature of this event will highlight its transient nature) and we certainly couldn’t have created such a magnificent beast on our own.

And another shout out to Big Chief Meat Snacks for their generosity in providing the jerky-treats that will be stuffed into our Baby Zebra, as well as for the meat-treat platters that we’ll have on display that people can enjoy before and after the evisceration. Without the support of this local Calgary company, our event would not be “Meat-Filled” at all.

As always, all of our events are free and open to the public. Hope you can join us this Sunday evening at Endeavor Arts and feel free to bring your friends. It’s going to be AWESOME!

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