Tuesday, July 12, 2011
Small scale full figure gymanst in water based clay
I started this same sculpt a couple of days ago using Chestnut - a highly grogged terracotta clay. The first attempt sagged so much that she kept having the weight press down on her legs and squash them. The clay is stiff and I had trouble getting it to twist when I wanted to move her pose a bit.
So after a day of modeling, carving, adding and fighting with it, I smashed it up and returned it to the bag for use in another project another day. Then I immediately started her all over again in the ceramic paperclay. This is much lighter and holds its shape on such a small scale, so I'm glad that I scrapped the first. I got twice as far in half the time on the second attempt.
The sculpt has an 'exterior armature', profiled in Bruno Lucchesi's books. The Chestnut clay was heavy and kept pulling out of the two prongs that are holding her weight. The papercaly is holding up better, but it may still need an internal rod added to her leg from under the base after firing to support the weight - time will tell. This sculpt has tiny fingers, so I'm hoping that it holds up well to sculpting and firing because in dance any gymnastics, the finger attitude means so much.
The legs are still clunky because I really need to mass there to support in the early stages. Then I'll start to refine and take the forms down.