Varner Studios was founded in 1979 by sculptor Steve Varner. Steve was formerly a senior sculptor at Mattel Toys and prior to that a sculptor for the motion picture and television industry.
For more than ten years Varner Studios has been employing digital methods for sculpting our prototypes and offers complete services to produce any kind of 3D product art. We offer our own in house 3D scanning service and use several 3D model on our own in house Objet and Thermojet 3D printers. This is all combined with our in house molding and painting to offer a truly one stop shop.
Steve Varner has been a trail blazer in the toy business for over 30 years. He initially made a name for himself in the 1970's creating beautiful, life-sized portrait sculpture and working on the 40-foot tall gorilla for the 1976 remake of "King Kong". He then accepted a job at mattel Toys, sculpting portraits for celebrity fashion dolls, learning many techniques preparing sculptures for toy manufacturing.
Steve opened his own studio in October, 1979. Projects that would later become favorites in the toy industry included Mego's Star Trek figures, Kenner's Star Wars and Strawberry Shortcake, and Mattel's Big Jim.
In 1986, Varner Studios became essential to Playmates Toys and the phenomenal success of their "Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles" line for the next 15 years. In addition to the Turtles, Varner studios continued its production of high-quality toy sculpts with Wildcats, Exosquad, Star Trek, and dozens of McDonalds Happy Meal toys. In 1991, Steve was hired by the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences to produce a life-size bronze portrait sculpture of Mary Tyler Moore.
Steve continues to set new standards of quality and creativity in the industry. He is recognized for his ability to sculpt accurate likenesses and for his particular talent of sculpting beautiful female figures and dolls. This is reflected in projects such as Lara Croft, Buffy the Vampire Slayer, Seven of Nine, Baby So Beautiful, and his own personal toy line- Bleeding Edge Goths.
Steve lives in Torrance, CA with his wife, 3 children, and their dogs, Sophia and Bjorn.