Art: Vulgar Dragon's Sculpture Gallery- Snapping Turtle

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  1. #1
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    Wink Vulgar Dragon's Sculpture Gallery- Snapping Turtle

    Hi, I'm Mike and welcome to my sculpting thread. I have been sculpting on and off since I was a kid, starting with play doh and modeling clay. Up to until recently, I was sculpting with modeling clay and regular sculpey. I am looking to improve my skills and also get acquainted with other sculpting medium and techniques, including mold making and casting. And sell lots and get rich...(I can dream, right?)

    I am starting this thread with my current project, a model of Triceratops. This is my first time I have made anything this detailed.

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    Last edited by VulgarDragon; January 4th, 2010 at 10:43 PM.
    -Mike Cross


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  3. #2
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    from what i see its pretty good so far. can i ask you why is the head grey? is it diffrent clay or did u make it eralier and burn it?

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  4. #3
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    Very well done, though I'm not sure what to think of the extremely saggy skin. Also, I have a feeling that mammalian willy shouldn't be there. Dinosaurs being bracketed by crocodylians and birds, a bog-standard cloaca would be more appropriate.

    ...which is only my opinion.
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  5. #4
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    @Gonzossm:
    I made the body under there first out of regular sculpey and then added some grey super sculpey over it and baked it...I am putting pink clay over it for the skin and texture. I will be covering the head up last.

    @Vermis:
    Yeah, I know...a lot of people might not like the idea of a penile sheath on dinosaurs. You are probably right about that dinosaurs had cloaca...but nobody really knows for sure. Considering how big and massive they were, and with that big tail in the way...they may have had some kind of adaption for reproduction that is different from birds or reptiles. Oh well, no big deal...it can hardly be seen unless someone turns the sculpture over.
    I am modeling it after Indian rhinos, that have their skin wrinkled and folded to look like plate armor. Hence, the saggy skin. I will be adding scales and bumps soon.

    Keep the comments coming...I appreciate it.

    Last edited by VulgarDragon; August 24th, 2008 at 08:59 PM.
    -Mike Cross


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  6. #5
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    Quote Originally Posted by MCross View Post
    @Gonzossm:
    I made the body under there out of grey clay and baked it...I am putting pink clay over it for the skin and texture. I will be covering the head up last.

    @Vermis:
    Yeah, I know...a lot of people might not like the idea of a penile sheath on dinosaurs. You are probably right about that dinosaurs had cloaca...but nobody really knows for sure. Considering how big and massive they were, and with that big tail in the way...they may have had some kind of adaption for reproduction that is different from birds or reptiles. Oh well, no big deal...it can hardly be seen unless someone turns the sculpture over.
    I am modeling it after Indian rhinos, that have their skin wrinkled and folded to look like plate armor. Hence, the saggy skin. I will be adding scales and bumps soon.

    Keep the comments coming...I appreciate it.
    nice little technique. ima try that.

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  7. #6
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    I think the saggy skin will look good once the head is completed. Kudos on the neck, thats a ton of detail. I have my own sculpey creature to decide what reproductive organs to throw on there. Great work man, lets see it finished!

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  8. #7
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    Sigh...it's been a while since my last post. I had too many things going on lately, and the poor thing sat on the shelf for months and the sculpey had dried out. It developed ugly cracks all over and is leathery hard. Well, I am trying to fix it as best as I can and finish the darn thing. Here are the progress shots of it so far. I am currently working on finishing the texture and the scales on the body...the tail and head will be worked on last. I am letting my imagination run a little wild here and taking a liberal approach to its appearance. Crits and comments welcome as always.

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    Last edited by VulgarDragon; August 24th, 2008 at 08:57 PM.
    -Mike Cross


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  9. #8
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    this is very nice, love the texturing and your sense of design. keep it up, can't wait to see more.

    Maddmaestro

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    Thumbs up

    I think it's looking sweet. Keep it up. I like the artistic license you've taken.

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    Beautiful! I've always been a fan of the triceratops and this is an awesome sculpture! Keep it up, can't wait to see it when it's finished!

    /Sabrina

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  15. #11
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    This is awesome. So much detail and he is so massive looking. How do you smooth out all the little bumps on the skin? Every time I try it, I seem to mash them too much...but I don't want to leave the tiny hard edges or little clumps. I cant wait to see him all done and painted!

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  17. #12
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    Soulwraith- I used a mix of technique to make the bumps. Some are little balls of clay randomly placed and then flattened slightly. I brush some alcohol on it to melt it a bit, so it will blend. Most of the other bumps were made either with a homemade stamp tool or hand-drawn with either a needle tool or a dental pick.
    It's tedious work...I spent few hours on it last night and was only able to finish part of one side.

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  18. #13
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    Thanks so much! I will try alcohol...I have been using mineral spirits. I would love to sculpt a dragon of some kind...and I want to try to add more detail to a different baby sea turtle...or one of the castings of my finished one.
    Lora

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  19. #14
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    hmm

    alcohol will smoothen the surface a bit? what type? Rubbing Alcohol or actual drink Alcohol?

    Regards,

    Sanjay

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  20. #15
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    Just any solvent will work. 91% isopropyl alcohol, lighter fluid, or tuperoid are commonly used to smooth the sculpey (helps get rid of the loose clay, fingerprints, tool marks, etc.) Hell, vodka might work...although I haven't tried that. Which solvent you want to use depends on how strong you need to be. I think lighter fluid is pretty strong...have to be careful not to use too much or it will melt your details too much. Also, be sure to let it dry out before putting in the oven pld:

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  21. #16
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    I think its looking good. I like the idea that its an interpretation of what a triceratops may have been like, as we are not really sure just what they were like.

    Nice thick and droopy skin folds and nice big thick, meaty anatomy.

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  23. #17
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    A small update. Starting to work on the tail.

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  24. #18
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    Looking as good as the rest of the piece Mike. Keep it up, bro!

    Maddmaestro

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  26. #19
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    I am also looking forward to the completion. Nice work.

    -Yeti

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  28. #20
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    I LOVE the way this guy is looking. Incredibly cool!

    Troy

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    "It seems like once people grow up, they have no idea what's cool." - Calvin, Attack of the Deranged Mutant Killer Monster Snow Goons
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  30. #21
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    I had a hard time with the body because it wasn't baked and sat on the shelf for months, so it developed cracks. I had to rework the belly, by filling the cracks with clay and blending it in the best as I could. Now that I am done with the body, I can begin to work on the head. As you can see, I am taking it farther than most paleo-artists would. While on the fossil Triceratop skulls, the epoccipital bones are little more than bumps, I am exaggerating them to give him a more fearsome appearance. Probably not likely they looked like that in real life, but it is possible...some reptiles have exaggerated scales that are large and hard like crocodiles, iguanas, and horned lizards. Perhaps I should call it a Fell Triceratops or Dire Triceratops.

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  31. #22
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    Looks good. With the tail, and the head, and all of the spikes, it has more dragon type look to it. Looks powerful and almost fantasy-ish...... nice work.

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  32. #23
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    Like the folds of it's skin and how much the scales/bumps protrude.

    "In subtle ways you can shake the world"
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  33. #24
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    How Do You Do Those Amazing Scales!!!!!!!!

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  34. #25
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    This is pretty sweet. I don't do a lot of 3D work, and part of my anatomy sense fails when I try to put in 3D sometimes because the work is making the sculpture looks perfect from all angles instead of one. xD;

    My DeviantART; My avatar is drawn by myself and depicts Nokami, one of my original characters who also takes on my internet alias (closely related anyways).
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  35. #26
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    This is looking pretty sweet indeed.

    Do you mind if I ask what the armature looks like underneath? I've tried in the past to make some four-legged beasties (or, well, anything that isn't human) and haven't had much luck in making an armature that works or is sturdy. How did you set yours up?

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  36. #27
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    Quote Originally Posted by Gorgonzola View Post
    Do you mind if I ask what the armature looks like underneath? I've tried in the past to make some four-legged beasties (or, well, anything that isn't human) and haven't had much luck in making an armature that works or is sturdy. How did you set yours up?
    I made a outline of the body (minus the tail) on thick cardboard, bent some coat hangers for legs, and duck taped them to stabilize them. Then I bulked it out with aluminum foil...it was basically sculpting the body with foil by crumpling wads of foil where it is needed and then wrapping it up in sheet to hold in place. Then in the last step I covered the whole thing with regular sculpey (that cheap nasty stuff). Probably not the most typical way for most sculptors but it worked for me.

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  37. #28
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    wooow, the texture of the skin is incredibly good!! the pleats of the hard skin are perfect, I love the dorsal horns and the mouth. I am wanting to see more advances. The finished work will be spectacular...

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  39. #29
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    OH! Mike....now I know your secret! It is those vanila wafer things! lol

    He is looking great! I love all the detail you are putting into him
    Lora

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  40. #30
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    So you mentioned duct tape. When you bake it does that cause a problem seeing as how tape melts? Looks amazing btw, very inspiring!

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