I think i must be getting old. It's taken me a while to get back into London time after all the travelling- Devon one day, Hong Kong and China the next day. Traveling to China sounds extremely glamorous but i assure you the 12 hour flight time is as long as it sounds!! It's one of those trips that you go to sleep numerous times and every time you wake up your still travelling!
I've just returned from another visit to the Copperfox Factory, to check on the models and to make sure they are all behaving. It was a great trip and I'm pleased to report that they are being extremely well behaved and perfect guests at the factory, although are eager to get onto a boat for their journey to the UK.
Whilst i was there, i took a few pictures of the models during production which i thought you might like to see. A little behind the scenes look:
Above: I love the look of the blank models, just after they have been polished and are ready to receive their colour. It always shows the beauty of each original sculpture in it's rawest form before the detail and depth that colour brings. It's also the best chance to see our little logo. Every Copperfox Model bears our Fox Logo, in addition to our name. In the image above you can *just* see the discrete airhole that each model has too.
Above: Each Copperfox Mode is polished completely by hand, using sandpaper and files, which as you can imagine is a very long process. Polishing is where any excess created by the moulding process is removed from the mould, for example seam lines. Why do we polish by hand? The simple reason is that each horse is an individual and we are striving to preserve as much of the original moulding as possible. Polishing by machine can remove too much plastic; it can flatten areas that need to be rounded or in extreme circumstances remove details.
Above: I *love* this picture. It shows the scale of how many models we are creating. These models are Irish Sports Horse after polishing and there are around 200 in the picture- just under a complete run of Finnigans. There are 250 of each model/colour produced, and this little herd will complete the run of Finnigans (or Fabio). (The other 50 Finnigans, for example, have already been completed and air freighted especially to the UK for our Tour Events).
Above: This image is of Celtic Warriors, just after they have received their last few top coats of black. I really love this model without any white markings. Maybe a model for the future? All of Celtic Warriors leg and face markings are hand painted, so this little herd of models will be off to that department next.
Above: Quite a cool picture that shows the process of building colour on each model. This is the layer underneath the black/brown top coat on Celtic Warrior. This is where those chestnut and lighter highlights come from.
Above: Hand Detailing is one of the last processes to happen on most models, with varnishing being the last final paint stage. In this picture Bertie is getting his tail painted. He would have also received his white blaze and pink nose. Trifle has crashed the painting party and Henrietta has just wandered in too!!
So as you can see, there are so many elements to creating a Copperfox Model Horse with many processes and stages. The horses that I took pictures of mid stage, like Celtic Warrior for example, will be finished by now, and will be sitting waiting for their final, final check. I'm back to the factory next week (cue lack of sleep!) to personally inspect each and everyone before they are shipped to the UK, so be sure for more pictures very soon!
Time to stock up on sleep!!
P.S: Want to learn some Chinese?
This symbol is displayed throughout the factory, in different places. It is "horse" in Chinese :)