Tuesday, 28 January 2014

Blood Angels 'Relief' Sculpture (in Sculpey)

Following from some brief experiments with different modelling putty, I decided to mix two of the better versions (Sculpey and Super Sculpey) to hopefully create a putty which has more definition but less brittleness, at least that's the plan. The internet seems to think this is possible, so game on!

With the White Sculpey quite brittle when baked (but great for detail work), and the Super Sculpey slightly translucent pre-baked (making detail work difficult), the two mixed together created a pleasing pale colour which was very workable while retaining details easily. This also meant I had to be careful with fingers and tool placement to ensure no mistakes showed in previously detailed areas. For a simple experimental 'relief' sculpture I chose a basic Blood Angels motif from inside the codex.

As you can see it was quite easy to work with the combined Sculpey, sections could be removed and 'mixed' back in to other areas, and had I the patience to work the material to correct relative height rather than contouring the edges for a perceived depth, a true three-dimensional sculpt could very easily be created. As it was I stopped at roughly this point (progress was slow) and was pleased to find the Sculpey just as workable two weeks later. This may not come as a surprise to most of you, but from years of green stuff work it was a newly enjoyable experience.

All packed up ready for the next available sculpting session

I have few pictures of the final product before baking, suffice to say it was baked on aluminium foil, in the oven, being careful not to burn myself when removing the tray and carefully peeling away the baked Sculpey. I say peeling, as it needed to rest at room temperature to harden, something I hadn't really noticed before. I had given up doing some of the finer details in Sculpey, instead adding these in green stuff after the piece had cooled down. I would hate to think of the fumes given off by baked green stuff, so for future projects I will have to remember to bake all the large sections before any detail work is done. Who knows, maybe with practice comes the confidence to scuplt the whole piece in Sculpey in one go?

In the end, it was quite difficult to photograph the finished piece due to the colouring of the sculpey and basic photography equipment and skills! Hopefully a lick of paint will bring out the details and hide some of the rougher aspects. In hindsight I may sculpt a more 'complete' model as the dark areas of the painting can't be easily replicated in putty!

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