• More progress

    Now that I’m mostly caught up on making and shipping casts people ordered the past 2-3 weeks, I am finally able to get back to working on this model again.

    I didn’t do much at all the last couple of weeks as I had other things to get done, and even covered in plastic and spritzed periodically, it’s gotten a bit firmer than I wanted, but as long as I finish it this weekend and not let it go much longer- I can hollow the back out and let it rapidly dry out.

    It is called “Endurance” 17″ x 28,” modelled after an original ca. 1928 design by Rene P. Chambellain

    It’s not as “flat” a design as it appears to be in the straight-on view, here it is from the side;

    I have 5 concrete casts I need to stain for a client and crate then ship them this week, so I’m not sure if I will start the 3rd panel in this series next weekend or the following week, I’d rather not set up the form and clay and then have it sitting for 2 weeks before I get to it.

  • D9 progress

    The second panel in this series is roughed out and a work in progress.

    This one is called “Endurance” and depicts the figure exerting pressure Atlas-like in an upwards movement, the effort of which is reinforced by the cracking, jagged and distorted lines surrounding him.

    Original low relief design (one of eight) ca. 1928 by Rene P. Chambellain for the two lobbies of the landmark Art Deco Chanin building in NYC.

    Model- Feb 2012, by Randall, 17″ x 22″ water clay.

  • First cast

    For aclient who wanted it in the bright gold finish, not easy to get a good photo as it is quite shiny, but here it is.

  • First cast

    I have begin casting this panel now, this one is for a client who plans an Art Deco bedroom.

    The panel was cast today and will take a few days to dry out, then it will get the bright gold finish which I think will look best.

    The color of the panel as shown is with special base tint added to the casting material so that the color is completely through the entire panel.

    Using a base color like this under the gold (or another color under one of my other finishes) serves two purposes, one is it tends to deepen the final finish color, the other is, should the unforseen accident occur someday of a chip on a corner, or scratch, with the substrait color being close to the finishes’ color, the damage won’t stand out like a sore thumb as it otherwise could.

  • D 8 mold started

    Now I found some time to start the mold for this panel, hopefully I will finish it tomorrow, but I did get a late start on the first application of silicone mold rubber, and it takes about 6 applications total, each an hour or so apart to build up sufficient thickness. Then it cures in about 6 hours, or in this case, over night before the plaster supporting shell can be made.

    Here’s the origial clay model laid flat on a board with the first “detail coat” carefully applied, very thinly over the whole surface to eliminate as much air bubbles as possible when it’s brushed on.

    Subsequent applications have a thickener added so it’s more of a mayonaise consistancy and will stay put on vertical surfaces as well as build up thickness rapidly.

    Without the thickener the material is more like honey, wanting to flow in a slow and sticky way to seek a level like water does.

    The final measurements of the panel is about 17″ x 21, meaning the original clay as it was has shrunk about one inch in width and about 1-3/4 inches in length.

    All clay shrinks as it dries, and this is about 6% shrinkage, so in order to gain a specific size that has to be allowed for in the original design.

    This also shows how damaged or missing terra cotta components on buildings being restored cannot simply be replaced by making a mold off an existing or undamaged element to make replacements- the final casts would wind up about 6% smaller.

    The alternative then is concrete “replacements” cheap fiberglass, or having a sculptor sculpt a replacement model about 12% larger if using water clay for the model due to the double shrinking, about 6% if using an oil based clay or other material such as carved and shaped plaster.