Tuesday, December 22, 2015

#112, James Dean bust

James Dean sculpture
James Dean, plaster 18 inches height, 2015

60 years after the death of James Dean, he is still regarded as an icon and with 2015 being the 60th anniversary of his death I decided to make this life size bust that will eventually get cast in bronze. 

When I was young I used to watch James Dean movies and study photographs of him. He was such a unique, beautiful person and I remember trying to figure out what made him so alluring, so different. This was a few years before I began listening to Elvis Presley's music and playing the guitar. I will never forget the day when I was 16 years old I became discouraged that I couldn't sound like him. My mom saw me really upset and told me something along the lines of "Why do you want to be Elvis or James Dean when you get to be YOU". We had a long discussion and argument about this but those words stuck with me over all these years. From this moment onwards I started to look for my own talents and tried to build on them rather than trying to be like someone else. 

The James Dean bust I sculpted was inspired by the film East of Eden and Rebel Without a Cause. He is wearing a collared shirt under a sweater, one that he wore often in East of Eden, and I wanted his expression to be calm yet with the unique glare that he often had in the few movies he made. A glare that seemed to speak volumes. The bust is 18 inches tall and is currently cast in plaster. 

Saturday, December 12, 2015

#111, Master Swimmer installation

Master Swimmer, bronze and concrete, ©2015 Sutton Betti Sculptures
Last Wednesday we permanently installed my bronze and concrete sculpture titled Master Swimmer in front of EPIC (Edora Pool and Ice Center). The 1 ton sculpture is not yet completed as there will be (2) 3/4" turquoise colored glass and (2) concrete "caps" that will sit on top of the large columns shown in the photo. Final completion should be around the end of this year when the glass is completed.

EPIC is the regions premier ice and aquatics facility and has an indoor 50-meter x 25-yard pool as well as two indoor 200 foot x 85 foot ice surface and serves the entire community with a variety of programs, classes, events and activities.

The sculpture was a gift by George Thornton to the city of Fort Collins. The unique design came about as my client didn't want the traditional "museum mount", which is stainless steel rods connecting the bronze to the base so I had to come up with different solutions. After about a week of designing and drawing I met with George to show him my concepts. The approved design consists of two 1/2 ton columns cast in colored concrete (to mimic sandstone) and glass sandwiched in between each of the columns to indicate the level of the water. The model for this sculpture was my brother, good job Mo!!

Tuesday, December 8, 2015

#110, Sleeping Child relief

Although busy with large scale work, I have been finding the time to complete some relief sculptures. This 9 inches x 11 inches aluminum casting is of a sleeping child and is a commission that I needed to have done for Christmas. I decided to keep the textures and edges loose which gets your eye to focus on the child face. The patina is done with various chemicals also helping to create a focal point using  dark outer edges and lighter center area.