When you are drawing and painting main characters you need really detailed miniatures for reference. It’s worth putting a little extra time to sculpting these “hero maquettes” until they look just the way you want them.
As reference model for the Protoceratops Bix, I sculpted the maquette above. I made this one out of Sculpey and painted it with acrylics. The head is a separate piece and attaches it with a swivel joint so that it can be set to any angle.
My favorite Bix maquette is this one (above), sculpted by Jim Henson’s Creature Shop. It’s about 36 inches long (about half the size of a real Protoceratops), cast in resin from a clay original.
It has wonderfully expressive glass eyes. The Henson sculptors are masters at capturing a creature’s charm and personality.
The Henson shop also created the hatchling character “26” for the Hallmark miniseries, which was done as a remotely controlled animatronic puppet. It weighed about as much as a watermelon. They handed it to me on the set at Pinewood Studios in London, and all at once it started wiggling its feet, blinking its eyes, and moving its jaws. I almost thought it was alive until I saw two or three guys in the shadows with radio control sets.