Friday, April 1, 2016

Starting a horse sculpture

Because I won First Place and Purchase Award with "Eleanor" at the Scottsdale Artists' School Best & Brightest Show this year, I received a scholarship to the school for a workshop.

This year I had decided that I wanted to branch out from purely portrait and figurative works to include animals and wildlife. It's always a good idea to try to learn and be exposed to new techniques and styles whenever possible too.

With that in mind, I chose a horse sculpting workshop by Rod Zullo. It featured new techniques in armature building, making a portable sculpting stand to take on location and sculpting using silhouette.

He recommends Jmac Clay in brown but as I had a lot of Jmac Tan in stock, I chose to use that instead. The bonus was that the cream color of the tan didn't absorb the Arizona heat like the dark brown clay does, so my work didn't melt and sag in the heat like the other clay. Happy accident. I simply like the lighter clay because it is easier on my eyes.

We started by building a simple but sturdy armature and then went on location for observing and sculpting horses from life. We were very fortunate to go to a lovely estate with some world-class horses to sculpt from.

After blocking in a simple straight silhouette form of the horse we selected a pose of our choosing and went to work fleshing out the work. While the photos may make the work look larger, this piece is about 22" long, I think. It is currently being crated and shipped from Scottsdale to my studio in Fort Collins so I can continue working on it soon.

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