…has been an ominous undertaking, YEARS in the making. Originally, I shelved the idea once it sunk in that I’d be sculpting 32 separate pieces, 16 of which needed to be fairly identical… ugh. But now, having spent years honing my skills at moldmaking I’ve returned to the idea. I went right to it, sculpting 5 little pieces to make my chess set.
They’ve been put aside (for now) only because they’re just too small. Each of these pieces is about 3/4″ – 1″ tall. Chances are good they’re bigger on your screen right now than they are in real life – I don’t know what I was thinking. Rather, I’m going to be using my time on the NEW and IMPROVED set! That’s right…
The key to this sculpting process – besides making the pieces BIGGER – is a GREAT design! Although I’ve had alot of chess set ideas, nothing has hit me as “great”… yet. The other excuse I use is: while I’m drafting designs, I’m not sculpting, and if I’m not sculpting, I’m falling behind because it can be a SLOW process. It’s an excuse and I’m drafting some ideas, so there.
[dropcap_1] B [/dropcap_1] esides excuses, I also have a facebook friend from long ago in highschool. The facebook friendship suits us since we never really hung out back then. My art was in the theatre; but in Mrs. Canosa’s art class, I remember Eric drawing on one page [highlight] in pen [/highlight] an entire rabble of freaky mutant monster things. He seemed to have an endless imagination for monsters.
This is the quick sketch he gave me of an idea he had in mind for the rook. “Like Bowser but cooler,” he says to me. I’ve started working on it and am using a combination of the Super Sculpey Firm and the “pink” Sculpey. My favorite part about his design is the shape of the turtle shell.
All the sculpting you see done here took roughly 7 hours to complete. The method to the madness involves 4 wads of tin foil crumpled to roughly represent the shell,body and two legs. I surrounded each piece individually with a thin layer of pink clay and just stuck the pieces together. I then filled in the spaces between and without smoothing, baked it for about 4 min. Any longer than 4 minutes and the thinnest portions of clay would have started browning. This gives a good solid foundation to build upon.
There is no good reason that I switched from pink to gray. It just allows you to see what all I added after the fisrt bake.
In general: the firmer clay will allow you to achieve much greater detail. I experimented with quite a few different looks before deciding on this turtle shell’s texture. It was achieved using a short bristle brush with turpenoid and swirling it on the plates.
More updates to come…