Thursday, October 31, 2013

#70 Waiting, relief

Waiting, 20"x16", bonded sand and oxides

This relief was supposed to have been finished a long time ago to go just outside of Jessica's massage room at a local day spa. It's the very first casting using bonded sand and oxides that I am satisfied with and I will use this casting as a reference point for casting other reliefs.

So, today while talking with my studio mate about reliefs in general, we discussed how solving some problems in relief can sometimes be solved through admiring and studying figure paintings. For example, how to crop and leave an area unfinished can be very tricky to pull off, but if painters can pull it off than so it can be done on a relief sculpture. I sometimes don't like to include the entire figure in my relief sculptures and the latest relief "Glancing" (post #67) was one of most difficult ones in making the cropped leg look natural. After agonizing over it over the last several days, I finally just slapped some clay around the area of the cropped leg and left it. This was done mostly out of frustration but after letting it sit for a bit it started making sense. 

Monday, October 28, 2013

#69 patina on Remembering

Remembering bronze
raw metal after sandblasting

Remembering bronze
sulfurated potash

Remembering bronze
sulfurated potash

Remembering patina
sulfurated potash

Remembering bronze patina
rubbed back sulfurated potash

Remembering finished patina
finished patina before lacquering. Sulfurated potash and ferric nitrate patina with highlights

 Patina day on the statue Remembering. Chad Quam did the patina at Art Castings and he spent the morning and part of the afternoon putting on the liver of sulfur and ferric nitrate, highlighting here and there. After talking with the client, who was leaving the patina choice up to me, I decided that a french brown with a little contrast between the skin tone and the clothing would work best. Tomorrow I will be delivering the sculpture to the photographer Jafe Parsons and the sculpture will then be ready for delivery to Nebraska.

Thursday, October 24, 2013

#68 Plaster cast reliefs

I have sculpted and molded (using urethane rubber) around 20 relief sculptures in the last year. These reliefs were originally designed to be cast in aluminum. However, in the last 2 months I have been evaluating the casting quality of aluminum and it pains me to think that I cannot continue casting aluminum. The last several reliefs that were returned to me were of poor quality! They were either short poured or filled with air bubbles that I could normally be able to fix on a three-dimensional sculpture, but on a relatively flat surface it is very difficult. So, in my free time I have been spending time trying to find another option for casting.

For the 10 years I have become familiar with casting in resin. I have used resin for casting models for public art competitions, trophies, even for mother mold making. More recently I began experimenting with adding powders such as bronze, stone, sand, terracotta, cement, etc. to see what kind of look resin offers. Most of the time these experiments were eye opening. Sometimes they were discouraging and made me want to give up. In the last month I've been focusing my free time in developing a look for casting the reliefs in resin and I believe I have found a beautiful look for these mid-relief sculptures. I'm calling it "bonded sand and oxides". Although it's much more than that, I'm leaving out my formula so as not to bore anyone. However, to get these castings means that I have to remold around 20 or so of my reliefs. They are almost all molded with a urethane resin. The problem is the "bonded sand and oxides" formula uses urethane resin which will bond to anything urethane including urethane rubber. The four reliefs above are plaster casts that I will seal with acrylic spray and johnsons paste wax so that I can remold, this time using tin cured silicone.

Tuesday, October 22, 2013

#67 Glancing relief

"Glancing", 16"x12" clay for bonded sand with oxides cast, 2013

The latest of my relief sculptures is this 16x12. This is the second relief I've done of the model Tabitha ("Awakening" was the first). I generally start my reliefs by establishing the highest point on the artwork followed by the lowest points. This, I believe, makes the process go smoothly as I'm constantly making sure not to go higher or lower than the established points. Most of my new reliefs are raised 3/4"-1" at the highest point. 

Thursday, October 17, 2013

#66 Remembering assembly

Remembering the Fallen bronze

Remembering the Fallen welding

Remembering bronze

Remembering bronze statue
Getting the metal assembled at Art Castings today. Although we had to fuss with the rifle on his back it came out well. This sculpture will be delivered and installed in Norfolk, Nebraska on November 1, 2013.

Thursday, October 10, 2013

Sunday, October 6, 2013

#64 Remembering bronze before assembly

These are the first few castings of Remembering, a life size bronze soldier that will be installed at Norfolk Veterans Park in Nebraska sometime in November 2013. Art Castings of Colorado is casting and assembling the figure so I will post more progress pics in the next few weeks.