Monday, May 31, 2010

Jeff de Boer

While researching different styles and layouts of samurai armor I came across a rather unusual artist, Jeff de Boer.

He was born in 1963 in Calgary, Canada. His dad was a tin smith, so he grew up around metal working and all of the possibilities it allows. He decided at a very early age (5 years old) that he wanted to be an artist. He spent most of his time drawing, painting, and creating 3-D objects. He built his first suit of armor during his senior year of high school, a rather impressive feat. He took a few years off from school after graduating to further develop his craft, even learning from a local blacksmith. In '84 he attended the Alberta College of Art and Design, majoring in jewelry design. It was then that he merged his two skills to build the first ever suit of armor for.......... a mouse.

15th Century Maximilian Rat
Mouse Armor

He became an established artist shortly after graduating in '88. He developed 4 distinct bodies of work; armor for mice and cats, armor for executives, "exoforms", and space objects. in 1994 he had his first solo exhibition called "Articulation", including some 140 works. THis show travelled across Canada for 2 years.

He continues to work to this day, and even instructs at ACAD in Jewelry Design and Presentation.

Samurai Siamese
Samurai Cat

Dog Mask
Dog Mask

White Knight Cat
Cat Knight

Emergency Jet Pack
Emergency Jet Pack

So, who want to volunteer their pet?


  1. I LOVE IT. I was thinking the other day that you should go to grad school for metal working. Metal working is a bit more broad than jewelry. My friend Joe made a beard guard for his college metals professor... it was rad.

  2. Izzy would be fun to work with. I might try to make armor for my chinchilla as well.

    I've been thinking about grad school. Metal working is definitely a possibility, and has more possibilities than jeweling. I've been messing around with chainmaille recently. Sheet metal is probably not far away.

    The beard guard sounds cool! I can imagine it must have looked similar to the ancient Egyptian pharaoh's beards.