Showcased here is a painted Penguin hardcopy. The piece is cast in resin, a characteristic shared by all hardcopies. The colors are incredibly vibrant as the piece is entirely hand painted. It's very enjoyable to see such fine craftsmanship on a prototype like this one!
Hardcopies are produced using a silicon mold (this mold is created from the original wax figure sculpting). Once it is removed from the mold it may serve a number of purposes. It might remain unpainted and ultimately serve in the creation of the steel production mold. In this case the hardcopy is referred to as a "tooling master" or "tooling hardcopy". An hand painted internal first shot version of Penguin may be viewed here.
Extra hardcopies are also poured as a precaution, should something happen to the tooling master. These extras would remain unpainted. If a hardcopy is not destined for tooling or backup, then it will more than likely be handpainted for use in catalog photography, trade shows, or as a paintmaster. Many hand painted prototypes for the Super Powers line are cast in a milky white proto plastic (commonly referred to as internal first shots or protomolded pieces), however some like Penguin have surfaced in both resin and protomolded plastic.
Above we see a view of the hardcopy in its disassembled state. Notice the head and limbs attach to the torso via small dowels. The hand craftsmanship and ability to disassemble hardcopies make them one of the premier prototype stages to collectors.
Finally, we see a hand painted prototype umbrella accessory piece. The two paint swatches at the top of the picture indicate exactly which color should be used on the painted portions of the umbrella top during final production. A yellow swatch likely wasn't necessary since the umbrella was cast in yellow plastic on the production toy.