Saturday, May 14, 2011

Spring Giveaway tutorial Part Three and finished piece!

Howdy Folks,

How annoying was Blogger yesterday????  Oh well, I guess it has to go down sometimes, I just don't think it should be for most of the day.

Well here we are at part three of the tutorial......finally, and Julie should already have her sculpture by now.  You might want to keep an eye on her blog for her response.  My life lately has been very hectic and I haven't been blogging as much as I would like, but without further delay.....

PART THREE: sculpting and painting

Using my X-acto knife (#11 blade) I carve various parts to a
finished size and conformity
I carve definition into the smallest areas, like the fingers, and
basically "hack" them down to a general shape.
This is my basic shape after hacking at it.
Using these nail files by "Kiss" that I find at my local
Walgreen's drug store, I file and refine even further.
Now the fingers are smoother, more rounded and I've created
creasing in the palm of the hand.  I also use my hands dipped
in water through this process for further smoothing.
I used this product "TEXTIVA" for the wings
of the bee.  It's a fusible plastic that most polymer
clay sculptors use to make fairy wings.  Also
in this picture are the antenna I made using
white floral wire, yellow beads and glitter.
To make the wings I twisted white floral wire into the appropriate
loop shapes.
I put the twisted wire shapes in between two sheets of the
fusible film and with tissue paper beneath and above, I
then ironed with a setting of linen.  I held the iron in place
for a few seconds, and peeked to see if the fusing was successful.
I kept using the iron until my fusing was totally done.  I trimmed
off the excess film around the edges and used "diamond" stickles
(glitter glue) to create the veining and outside edge.  While
the stickles were still wet, I added "Martha Stewart's" white
tinsel glitter to highlight the glitter glue even further.  Once
the wings were totally dry, I sealed them with spray poly-
urethane to keep them intact.
After all the carving, sanding and final smoothing with water,
I let all the pieces totally dry.  I then cover each piece with
acrylic Gesso as a primer.
I assemble the pieces, using Aleene's "Quick Dry" tacky glue,
as it dries clear and very hard.
I paint the base using a gloss acrylic paint.  By this point I've
either added "feet" to the bottom (using wooden beads),
 or left it plain.  It totally highlights a piece to add the feet,
and I usually do this for my giveaway pieces.
Now the final painting begins.  I have my reference image
(see in the background to the right) and start the layering
of colors to bring the piece to "life."

At this point, I'm just about finished.
TA DA........we have a finished piece!  Aint it adorable???  Again, I fell in love with my creation, and found it very difficult to let him go.

He's completely, sealed with semi-gloss polyurethane, and as you can see, I also added a sweet little bunch of flowers.  Where else do bee's get their honey from?  I think it's appropriate!  Congratulations, again, to Julie, and I think she's really gonna' enjoy this one.

Now for a hint of the images that are my inspiration for something special:




These little cuties are a group I'm creating for a very special purpose, of which I won't share right now.  However, when I know more, I will definitely share what's going on.  Suffice it to say, they are about 1/3 the size I normally make, with an exception here and there.  It's something I'm very excited about, so I hope I can share before summer is over.

Have a great week!
Big Hugs,

Tuesday, May 3, 2011

Part Two of the Spring Giveaway Sculpting Tutorial

Hi Everyone,

Whew.......have I been busy.  It's taking me longer to get this spring giveaway sculpture done as life keeps throwing interruptions along the way.  However, I've got a little bit more of the tutorial here, which I'll call "Part Two" and hopefully it's a little more detailed for you.  Now the sculpture itself is actually farther along, but I'm not gonna' post the final product until it's finished and I'm done with this multi-part tutorial.  So without further ado.....

I start with a double twisted (14 gauge)
wire and create this "hump" with the
ends bent out to the sides.
I staple the ends (making sure they point
opposite of each other) to the wood base.

I place the cone of Styrofoam (which I
had already cut the top half off of)
over the wire form and push it down
flush with the wooden base.
I then cut the top "loop" of the wire form
and bend the ends away and over the
edge of the top.  This holds the foam
securely in place.
I roll out my first "rope" of clay!
I place the rope of clay around the
base as the first layer of the hive.
I continue placing ropes of clay,
stacking them,  all the way to the  top.
At the top, I add a small rounded dome
of clay to finish it off.
I twist and bend two pieces of 22 gauge
wire to create this length which will be
used  as the "arms" of the bee.
I've stuck a round Styrofoam ball on to
an egg shape using a toothpick.  This
is the body of the bee.  I then stick the
wire "arm" piece into the body, and
glue it in place.
I "stuck" the bee form into the
hive to give me an idea of the
scale and position of the final
piece.  Although it seems like
I'm making them permanent,
they are not.  I need to be
able to work on each piece
separately, so they will stay
this way until the end.
Here both pieces have clay on
them, and are positioned to
dry together for visual
Here I have let the pieces dry and crack
together.  I will then do repair filling and
proceed to sculpting.

Coming up next:  Part Three which will show some sculpting and shaping.  I should be posting part three in the next two days, so stay tuned.

I've also got a few other pieces in the works for a special project which I will tell you all more about soon.

Have a great week everyone, and if you all could send some extra love in the direction of "BrynwoodNeedleworks" for Donna who lost her beloved corgi Fezzik a few days ago.  He was exceptionally special to her and she's in need of prayers and love.  Thank you.

Big Hugs,