I’ve had more ideas about how to proceed from the previous session than I can ever conceivably pull off, and what I ended up with wasn’t actually on my list anywhere. It just sort of happened.
I started off by wrapping the body of the toy with some wadded up trace paper, to protect the wires and components, and to fill out the body so it didn’t look weird when I put a new skin over it.
I have a bunch of cheap tube socks lying around, for use in other projects, and I used several socks stuffed inside another sock to start forming a long, fish-like body. The open end of the stuffed sock easily stretched over the base of the plastic toy. Then I cut some scrap denim (read: old jeans with a ripped seat and paint all over them) into a more-or-less eel-like shape, fit it over the sock, and started basting it together.
I left a gap in the belly so I can replace the batteries; this will need a better solution in the final model.
When I got to the head, I wrapped more trace paper over the existing wire and foam head, and then played around with how to wrap the denim around to make an appropriate fishy face.
I did not exactly end up with your typical fishy face.
What happened was, as I was playing around with all the excess denim in the head area, some of it flopped forward into a long thin snout, which I kind of liked. And then I thought I could cut it into multiple strips, like tentacles. And then I tried forming a normal sort of fish head again. But the tentacle idea wouldn’t leave me alone.
But I’ve also tested out some more arm-like appendages, and I think that’s where I’m eventually going. They look a little better scrabbling against the floor than the fins do.
Speaking of scrabbling, poor Pork Chop can’t really pull himself along the floor the way Dead Ed could. Too much weight, or drag, or something.
I am now in possession of materials for covering the squid-eel, including some lovely pearlescent paper (kind of plasticized paper), and thin foam for the tentacles.
I still need to replace the switch with one that is magnetically activated, and build/buy/trash-pick some sort of cage.