Thursday, February 26, 2015

Sculpting A Female Figure Sculpture in Clay post 3- Torso, Head and Shoulders

This is post 3 documenting a work in progress. (Read Post 1: Figure Armature)

Second session sculpting the figure from the model. (or, putting some meat on those bones)

At the beginning of a new session, I always want to double check what I did the previous session to make sure that I am not going off in some crazy direction. ( it happens!)

Right at the start is when both the sculptor and model are the freshest, so I try to utilize this time to evaluate the most important elements: proportions and gesture.  (more on proportions next post)

Here is partway through the session- the head here is giant! Head proprotion was one of the items on my list to establish today.


I do actually make a list sometimes to help keep me on track (also...I love lists!) Today mine was really just a quick scrawl on a scrap of paper: 

-establish head proportions
-standing leg > confirm placement
-raised arm > back of head transition
**mark out anatomy for reference 

And Timers!

I have a timer and keep track in 5-10 min increments: both to give the model a break (holding your arm up is challenging!) and to keep myself on task.

I switch views constantly and try to work only a couple of mins on any one area. This requires self-discipline. The BEEP BEEP often makes me jump, but I think of each alarm as the mental equivalent of giving myself a slap on the face. It stops me from focusing on detail, which is absolutely essential. 

Now I will rant about the death trap of detail too soon:

There is simply no point whatsoever in focusing on creating the perfect bellybutton when one has not finished establishing correct proportions!

In fact, it can be quite destructive to the process as you may begin to love what you have created (ie: that very bellybutton) so much that you stop questioning it... this often leads to denial of obvious inaccuracies. (trust me, I am unfortunately speaking from experience...)

It is the yogic equivalent of savasna without doing the asana sequence.
Or planing a door when you havent built the frame of the house.
Or salting an empty plate.

You get it. Anyways, I try not to do it. It's hard. That's why I like my mental slap.

Here's the end of the model session:

I usually work for a couple hours after the model has left and all the info is still fresh in my mind.

I try to be careful not to get carried away and destroy the observations I have left on the sculpture from referencing the model (marks and drawings on the clay= symbols of great significance).

Example- torso from observing model, and torso after working on it without model:

Here is where I finished up at the end of the day. I threw on some hair to play with (needs work!!) and described the face a bit more. I actually started to put an eye and get fiddly with it... so I ripped it out!