Spotlight On: Vinylmation Custom Artist Cesar Diaz

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As part of today’s Star Wars celebration we have a very special Star Wars themed custom to show! Custom Vinylmation Cesar Diaz from California, who created a great looking LOST set, just finished a 9” Star Wars Tusken Raider. We talked to him recently about this design.

Destination Vinylmation: Tell us about the process of conceptualizing a figure like this? Does it start with a 2D drawing, or do you pencil right onto the Vinylmation?

Cesar: All the vinyls I create always start off as a drawing on paper. The final vinyl always ends up looking a tad different than the 2D version. More detail it seems.

DV: There is a ton of detail in this figure. Was the idea always to add accessories, such as the horns and the weapon?

Cesar: Oh of course! In my head I always saw him that way. What’s a Tusken without his staff?

DV: What is the staff made out of?

Cesar: The weapon is a combination of wood, super sculpey and craft foam. Oh and a old black t-shirt for wrapping the staff.

DV: Why did you choose the Tusken Raider and do you have plans for more characters from the Star Wars universe?

Cesar: My original plan was to do a Sand Trooper. When I told my friend the idea he said a Tusken Raider would look so much better. And you know what? He was right! As for more Star Wars characters, I do plan to make more 9″ ones. I already made a 3″ Greedo to go with Han Solo.

DV: Even going back to the LOST series, you always seem to make fantastic use out of the Vinylmation’s ears. Was that part of the canvas ever a challenge for you, or do you enjoy using your creativity to make the ears work?

Cesar: I’m the kind of artist that believes in making things work with what you got. I will never alter the vinyl in anyway. If I ever do, it stops becoming a vinylmation. The ears are always a challenge. Part of creating something is solving the problems it comes with.

DV: As an artist, what are your first impressions of the new Vinylmation 3″ mold and do you want to see that form come to create your owns?

Cesar: I’m actually a bit disappointed in the new mold. I really hate the fact that the new mold has no nose and no buttons. It is now a semi looking Mickey. If they changed the hands but kept the same body, I wouldn’t have a problem with it. But I also believe in “Don’t judge a book by it’s cover”. I understand why they did it. And I am curious to try the new mold.

DV: What’s next for Cesar?

Cesar: Well….I have a grip of vinyls lined up to create. My next 9″, which I’m creating right now is going to be pretty cool. I wish I could create vinylmations for a living. But for now, customizing will do just fine.

DV: Cesar, thank you for you time today. Where can people see more of your customs?

Cesar: If anyone is interested in seeing the rest of my work, please visit my website at

About the author

Nick LoCicero

Nick LoCicero has almost 20 years experience in the media industry. He has worked on numerous Disney related media projects, most know at WDWNT for WDW News Tonight. He has been visiting Walt Disney World since 1982. After moving to Orlando in the late 90's he became a passholder, developed a fascination with the history of the vacation kingdom and has spent way too much money on park merchandise.

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Nick Jerabek
Nick Jerabek

I always get so excited when I first see all these great customs because I think they’re new vinylmations coming out. When I then read the heading to find out that they’re one of a kinds, I’m always a little dissapointed :-). They’re all still amazing though.