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132: Invisible Man

September 29, 2012

I don’t know if you’re watching the clock, but I sure am.
I have less than 20 minutes to get this something up, or I’ve officially missed the deadline for the first time ever. So, here’s a short, quick post just to make the deadline. I’ll embellish it soon. [I fixed it.]


This week, I made the coolest thing in the whole world:


And when I say “I made”, I of course mean that Megan did all the work. Seriously. I couldn’t have even attempted this without her, and yet she is publicity-shy, so I can take all the credit. Thank you, Megan.

It was about noon today, when I said exasperatedly, “Welp, I think this is going to be the first week I don’t do something.” I’ve definitely come close a few times, but I always manage to pull something out last second, even if it’s terrible. I’ve been too busy with a large side project to even think about the blog. And last week, I just did a crappy animation, so I didn’t feel like a drawing was going to cut it this week.

Then I remembered the huge stockpile of packing tape I bought, recently. It was for the Tetris alley project, when I thought I would make my pieces out of cardboard, and cover them in tape to weather proof them. I made them from wood instead, and I have a lot of tape left over. So, let’s do this!

If you would like to make a clone of yourself, you’re going to need at least 2 things: Some tape, and a very helpful assistant. Your assistant will be touching you in private areas, so it’s advised that you be romantically involved.

Pu on your tightest shirt and pants (IT IT NOT RECOMMENDED TO DO THIS NAKED!) and get to wrapping…

Start by wrapping the tape sticky-side out all over an area of your body, then flip it over and cover all the sticky with another layer of  sticky-side in tape. Then just keep covering.

The idea is build up a hard shell of tape that will support itself without your fleshy, doughy body parts inside. This structural support happens somewhere between 3 and 20 layers. Figure it out.

Oh yeah. Like a big tapey diaper.

I cannot overstress the importance of sticky-side out on the first pass. That being said, you will still trap some hair. Such is the nature of tape.

Then you cut a slit in the back, and take it off like a giant cicada that outgrew its horrifying carapace.

You will, of course, have to seal up the cut you made. This gets harder and harder as you seal more holes, and have less access to the inside.

Then you do an arm, and add it on… Wait, how do you do an arm?

Like this!

It makes your arm all lumpy, but it’s fine. You’ll never notice in the end.

So, for the head you may need a third ingredient. I covered my head in plastic wrap, so tape wouldn’t stick to my hair. You could do that for everything, if you’d like, but it seems unnecessary to me.


I shouldn’t even have to say that, but yeah. Seriously. In fact, if you aren’t sure how to do this next part, just don’t do it. It could go wrong in so many ways.

Breathing comfortably from my nose hole, I received a message while Megan wrapped my head in tape. The cool part about the plastic wrap is that you can skip the sticky-side out step, and just stick the tape right to the plastic wrap.

Yeah, it gets hot in there.

When cutting it off, you don’t have a lot of options. The best path for the scissors to fit in is the back of the head, but that’s also where all your hair is. You might lose some hair in the cutting. I did, but only a little. Megan’s a pro.

Here I am attaching the head to the freshly armed torso.

Seems like it went well.

And the legs…

And the feets.

And then you pose for pictures!

I don’t know what to do with him, past this point. I mean, I have some ideas, but I need something great.

Something about this just feels so right.

So that’s it, folks. Make your own. It’s fun.

See ya next week.


UPDATE: I figured out what to do with it!

17 Comments leave one →
  1. September 29, 2012 11:48 pm


  2. September 30, 2012 7:52 am

    You could fill it with jelly beans!

  3. nathankoob permalink
    September 30, 2012 9:51 am

    How structurally sound is it? I ask since I see you hugging it and such. Does this come as part of the 5-20 layers?

    • September 30, 2012 11:19 am

      It is pretty flimsy. We could have gone with more layers (hence the suggestion of 20), but we ended up going closer to 5. The hug? Acting!

  4. September 30, 2012 3:07 pm

    I think it makes a good Halloween decoration, like a ghost, sort of.

  5. October 1, 2012 12:52 am

    I wish my last-minute projects were half this good. 😛

  6. Deborah Hepworth permalink
    October 1, 2012 4:19 am

    He looks so familiar….can I adopt him? Fill him with pennies!

  7. October 2, 2012 12:41 am

    You now have a personalized dress form for upcoming projects.

  8. October 2, 2012 6:40 pm

    I love Annie’s idea. Definitely the jelly beans!

    And like Becky said – home sewers have been doing this for years for their body doubles in duct tape. But I like yours since it’s clear and has the *whole* body. I may need one now… filled with jelly beans and outfitted of course!

  9. Fiona.q permalink
    October 3, 2012 5:27 am

    how to get the body off the plastic without destorying it?

  10. October 5, 2012 4:23 pm

    You are so clever

  11. October 7, 2012 9:50 pm

    Yep, I’m one of those who made the cheap-as-free duct tape body double for sewing. Just the torso, though (pre-wrapped in plastic wrap!). I stuffed mine with newspaper. But yours… what about that spray foam insulation? Although it would be a shame to lose that cicada resemblance.

  12. Jeri hepworth permalink
    October 10, 2012 3:29 am

    Magic. Your directions are as clear as can be.

  13. October 19, 2012 6:06 am

    Holy shit. This is spectacular.


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