Friday, December 23, 2011

Wax Chasing & Lessons learned

I worked on the first two wax castings of "Ascension". The folks at Art Castings were very helpful and Mac did some good work on the chasing. However, he was working blind, as he got her in pieces and had no real idea how she went together. Can't imagine doing that! So I learned that it's a good idea to provide a series of photos for them to work from.

Another issue was that there was some confusion over how the bronze was to be mounted onto the base. Since they didn't have a photo, they thought it was one way and realized that there wouldn't be enough metal to support the floating woman.  In reality, there was, mounted the way I had planned. So I had to go back and carve out all the wax that they had added.

Never worked with wax before so after a few hours at the foundry, I decided to pack her up and take back to my studio, since it was taking longer than I thought. You can see my desk with the various tools. The hot tool that is plugged in on my desk proved much too hot to use on the sculpt much. It vaporized the wax and melted much too aggressively to be much use to me. So I kept it on and placed my metal tools on the hot tool to heat the metal carving tools. That worked much better, overall.

It still took many hours, but that is mainly due to my inexperience and I'm sure it will go much faster next time. I may even chase the entire wax next time to gain even more understanding of the practice and to familiarize myself with what casts easily or harder to incorporate into my next sculpt. After finishing her up I took her back to Art Castings. Luckily for me, Jeanne too a look at the photoshopped image I had made explaining the mounting process - she didn't think it would work - that the stone would chip!

So I buzzed over to the Base Shop and spoke with Brian. Thanks to Brian and Jeanne, we were able to come up with a solution that will enable me to mount the sculpture as I had planned, with a bit of extra effort, and another lesson learned!

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