The spring weather is all but gone and I am in my studio concentrating on my alternative portrait commissions.
In weather like this it is difficult to get the studio warm enough; I can wear layers of clothes, my client needs to strip off. She had several hot water bottles and the fire was roaring; I think she was fine.
I start my torso sculptures by making a body cast of the client and it takes at least an hour to apply the plaster bandages.
Once the plaster has set, I can remove what now looks more like an empty shell.
Which I soft soap and then fill with plaster
After the plaster has set, you can peel off the plaster bandages
And then comes the fun bit; you need to make a plaster mold from your plaster cast by pouring fresh plaster on top of it. The trick is to use industrial amounts of soft soap. And to make sure you build strong clay walls to contain the plaster flow!
Here is one I made earlier….
I never seem to get used to the sheer terror of pouring wet plaster on top of dry, praying that I’ll be able to separate the two chunks once they’re set.
Once all that technical stuff is over and done with I can start to be creative by adding or subtracting bits of clay, patterns and motifs inside the mold. I never tire of it!
‘Mermaid’ 52”x 36” , a smoke fired ceramic torso sculpture made to hang on the wall.