Jump to content


Photo
- - - - -

help pls: how to void clay figure before firing?


  • Please log in to reply
4 replies to this topic

#1 mongraffito

mongraffito

    Newbie

  • Members
  • Pip
  • 1 posts

Posted 18 April 2013 - 03:00 PM

hello hippies,
Im a painter but recently (1 month ago) I took to clay modeling and love it! Im a figurative artists so my small statues were heads or whole body subjects. Till now I used self drying clay (Das and Darwi, that's what I found here in Holland).
I bought M Farraut's video and understand how to void a head. All my full body statues were built on an armature. Long story short...
How does one make a clay statue (20 inches max) which will be fired? I cant see how to extract the armature and was thinking to mold the clay around a wax " armature", that would eventually melt. Im sure there are other methods and I hope anyone here will take the time to send me a link to the answer or describe in a few words.
Sincere thanks!
Mon

#2 neilestrick

neilestrick

    Neil Estrick

  • Members
  • PipPipPip
  • 2,744 posts
  • LocationGrayslake, IL

Posted 18 April 2013 - 03:33 PM

The armature cannot be anything solid, unless it can be removed while the clay is still wet. This is because the clay will shrink as it dries and will crack around anything solid. You have several options:

1. Make an armature out of loosely crumpled newspaper and tape. It will compress as the clay dries.
2. Build the figure solid, then hollow it out from the bottom before it dries completely.
3. If you can't hollow it out from the bottom, cut it in half, hollow each section, then join the halves back together.
4. If the figure can't support itself without an armature, build each section/limb separately using the methods above, then join them when the clay is leather hard.
5. If none of this will work, build the pieces separately, then epoxy glue them together after firing.
Neil Estrick
Kiln Repair Tech
L&L Distributor
Owner, Neil Estrick Gallery, LLC
www.neilestrickgallery.com

neil@neilestrickgallery.com

#3 Denice

Denice

    Advanced Member

  • Members
  • PipPipPip
  • 685 posts
  • LocationWichita, Kansas

Posted 18 April 2013 - 04:27 PM

hello hippies,
Im a painter but recently (1 month ago) I took to clay modeling and love it! Im a figurative artists so my small statues were heads or whole body subjects. Till now I used self drying clay (Das and Darwi, that's what I found here in Holland).
I bought M Farraut's video and understand how to void a head. All my full body statues were built on an armature. Long story short...
How does one make a clay statue (20 inches max) which will be fired? I cant see how to extract the armature and was thinking to mold the clay around a wax " armature", that would eventually melt. Im sure there are other methods and I hope anyone here will take the time to send me a link to the answer or describe in a few words.
Sincere thanks!
Mon

Here's an answer from a old hippie, the armature I made consisted of a 1' thick board at least 1 ft. square ( particle board sink cutout with formica on one side). Locate the center but toward one edge and screw a pipe flange on to the board then screw a piece of pipe into it about 12" long. The pipe should be the same size thread and diameter, the length of the pipe is determined by the height of your sculpture, then you will use an elbow on the top and then screw another short piece of pipe ( 4-6 inches) into it, kind of a upside down L. I would keep several different lengths of galvanized pipe around so that the pipe sticking out would end up just below the shoulders on the figure I was sculpting. Start building the piece by adding clay around the pipe, when your finished and ready to clean out the excess clay the back is a good place to start. I only clean out the head and main body when I sculpt figures that small. Another book you might look at is Modeling the Figure in Clay by Bruno Lucchesi, he has you model a figure from the bones up adding the different layers of muscles, skin and hair I found it very encouraging . By the way a turn table under this armature helps tremendously. Denice

#4 Idaho Potter

Idaho Potter

    Learning all the time

  • Members
  • PipPipPip
  • 400 posts
  • LocationBoise, Idaho

Posted 18 April 2013 - 06:39 PM

Both Neil and Denice have given you excellent advice. I will add that if you can get your hands on Bruno Lucchesi's other book TERRACOTTA he shows one of the best armatures I've ever used. It is similar to Denice's pipe armature except it is adjustable with a wing nut on a rod and has two prongs that are inserted into the lower back or buttocks of the figure. This works best for figures not exceeding 24 inches in height. I had a friend with welding skills make mine for me. I particularly like the ability to adjust the height as the figure dries.

The book was published in 1977 by Watson-Guptill Publications IBSN 0-8230-5320-2 Original price was $19.95. Hope this helps.


Shirley

#5 TypicalGirl

TypicalGirl

    Advanced Member

  • Members
  • PipPipPip
  • 97 posts
  • LocationAngels Camp, Ca

Posted 24 April 2013 - 12:50 PM

I usually use paper in my sculptures. Occasionally I'll use skewers for sticky-out parts. That *can* crack the clay, but not always, and far less so if you use paper clay.
I have a FaceBook album that shows my process if you would like to take a look. Perhaps it will give you some ideas.
https://www.facebook...68547878&type=3
Cathi Newlin, Angels Camp, Ca
box49@caltel.com
http://www.CNewlin.com




0 user(s) are reading this topic

0 members, 0 guests, 0 anonymous users