Making statues- Part one: Irma

One often asks me, how do I make my statues and why not make molds?  Well, I have considered molds, but well.. when I create a statue, I make it a one of a kind piece, putting a lot of dedication into it even if I do it over and over again.  That way, whoever buys or offers a statue from me will get a one of a kind that no one else will have. 

It really does not take too long to make a statue.  I range from at least one to two months depending on how hectic my outside life can be.  Considering my life and the job I keep as well as my family (thank God I do not have kids because I just would not  the mother I would like to be due to all my hard time on myself), I just try my best to find the best time I can give myself and my work.  I enjoy making statues so I will not press the issue on how hard it is or how much it takes out of me.  If anything, it relaxes me on everything out there that I do not really like. 


Step 1.

Let’s get to the heart of the matter.  How do I create a statue, part one.  I put this in parts because I am still working on this piece I hope to sell on Ebay soon.  First off I look up ref photos and try to get what I want accomplished by not copying or taking too much from the photo due to copyrights.  I know that I am pretty much breaking down the barrier by taking the photos and looking at it, but I still want to say.. hey, this is my piece.  My art.  So I look for the refs, but I still accomplish my art style into the work I create.  So within the steps I draw and try to come up with what I want and how I want the statue to look.  So I create my own drawing and wa.. lah, I am onto the wireframe.

NO!  The whole statue is not made of clay.  It would be too much on my product,  too heavy, and way too much in the matter.  Besides with the bone structure, I can get what I want in balance and completeness.  So with aluminum wire and foils I come up with something thesibile to my sketch.  Thesibile?  is that a word?  OH Well..


Step 2.  Clay time

Okay, now that that is out of the way, I am now ready to put in the clay.  I prefer to work with Sculpey clay because it is fun and flexible.  If I have to have a back up it would be stradler, but they do not really make too much clay to work from that I find fun, unless I do my ball joint dolls.  But that is for a later journal.  I love this clay.  It’s plastic all and all.. I have a bad habit of chewing my nails so I love this clay.  It helps keep my fingers out of my mouth.  Anyway, I love the shape and form of polymer clay.  I can bend and flex it to what I would like to have and want.  Originally I used basic tools to make my statues and they became too bulky and not so much fleshed out, but then I found nice tools that I will post later, from Hobby Lobby and I tell you, they are a God send!  They help me focus on my details and not ruin so much of my statue.  The only thing I have been doing wrong or making it hard as I create statues is that I do not use an armature stand.  I do have one, but I just do not want to waste my bits on my mini statues.  I will in the future, but it is not hard for me to lay my stand ups and when I bake them.. yeah, they flatten a bit, but it won’t take much out when I sand them.

I will post all I am talking about in future posts, ie tools and flat clay. 🙂



Okay, so I am not finished, but I am getting there.  I am finished for this piece in sculpting.  I have finally baked it in my basic oven.  WOW.  I remember the day when you had to have a kiln and you had to bake them there.  What a world now that we can do this!  Probably why I did not pursue sculpture.  I just did not think I could do it without the right tools, but now you can find the clay at Walmart and tools at Hobby Lobby, Why not?  Anyone can do this!  Again, this process only takes me a few days.  It is not too hard putting a frame together and to slap clay.  That was the easiest of all, believe it or not.  At least for me it is.  I am such a perfectionist that I have to make sure everything is in the right place.  Eyes, nose, smoothing, arms..  So I now get done and bake in the oven.

Then comes the hard part.  The sanding!  This is what takes me the longest.  I try to get the kinks out in the clay but it’s not always easy so when I get to the sanding, I am with my dremel 7200 sander.  I have the cheaper one because you do not need a heavy duty sander heavy in your hands while you are trying to clean up the details.  It is a very nice tool and glad I invested in it.  Sure, I use sand paper as well, but the dremel makes it more easier to get into the cracks and get every bit cleaned and right.. ready to paint!

That’s it for part 1 of my sculpting!  I hope you enjoy and never give up your dream.  More later!!

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *