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  1. #1
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    How do i get into Sculpture?

    After watching the lord of the rings: two towers, extended dvd, I really want to break into sculpture.

    anyone know a good way to break in.


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    It's funny, I just took a break from working on my sculpture and this is the first thing I saw.

    I'm pretty new to the medium myself. But what I did is buy the two DVDs offered at the Gnomon Workshop to get started. They are very helpful and are really good at explaining how to begin and what materials you'll need. From what I gathered, it's not too hard. In theory that is. Execution is something else. I can tell it takes a lot of practice to make the clay go and act like the way you want it to. But the same thing can be said for drawing as well.

    From my experience, if you have a well defined plan, or sculpture goal, then the pieces fall right into place. You first make a armature map of the character you want to sculpt. Then the wire frame. After that it's a matter of roughing in the primary forms, then roughing out the other major shapes. Down the line you add the details and refine it. I'm taking a break from sculpting the eyes right now.

    That's the process, I know of, in a nutshell. But I highly suggest getting those two DVDs. They offer so much information that I keep going back to them. Also, there was a sculpture forum link someone posted not too long ago that had a lot of links, demos and information. But it's been down the last few times I checked it. Maybe they are switching servers? In the end, I think the way to get into sculpture is just to do it. Buy some clay and work on a project. The thing I’m working on now is really kicking my ass but I’m learning as I go and I’ll take that into my next project. I hope this has helped…

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    I'm currently in a 3-demensional design class and honestly, what I've done this semester sums up all of my experience in sculpting. It's been a great experience though. Of course, like with anything, I'd recomend finding a class. In any case though, buy yourself a couple blocks of plasticine, an oily clay that never hardens, and just go nuts with it. It's great stuff for playing around with and people tell me you can make molds from it. I also think it gets a lot of use from the film special effects scene. I know that's what all the original creature models were made from in the Alien movies. It goes for about $5 a block. Play with it, Make mistakes and Learn as you go. It's like learning to draw all over again.

    Also, some good medium guage wire is good to. Plasticine is great for maintaining it's shape for details but for larger forms, it's good to have some wire to support the inner structure. A lot of sculpture is the ability to caniblize materials like that. There's a lot more problem solving involved in 3-D than when imposing a 2-D image on to a plane.

    Good luck.

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    sounds great, i'll get some plasticine and check out those dvds. I'm afraid if i look for a sculpture, i'm going to be tought so many things that i don't want to learn, i'd rather find something that is completely what i'm interested in. No clay pots for me buddy!#!@!(&

    anyways thanks again!

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    Originally posted by davi
    No clay pots for me buddy!#!@!(&
    We lost another one to plasticine. Damn you plasticine, damn you!

    What do you want to learn from sculpture?

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    Originally posted by davi
    I'm afraid if i look for a sculpture, i'm going to be tought so many things that i don't want to learn, i'd rather find something that is completely what i'm interested in.
    i think with everything you need to learn things that you necessarily dont think you are going to need or want to learn. i had to take classes in lettering where i had to use rapidograph pens to shade in letterforms. i thought it was all bs, but i realize that it taught me some patience and craftsmanship. never doubt the process and go for exactly what you think you want to learn/do. that is why people go to school to learn. if everyone had the capacity to learn on their own, there would be no need for schools and teachers.

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    Originally posted by Redder
    We lost another one to plasticine. Damn you plasticine, damn you!
    Infedel!

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    hehe, i'd like to do creature design. I want really get into sculpture because... as many know i'm not the most dynamic person... i'm very stiff with my figures... i've been told that's some what how a beginner sculpture would model and once i understood actual shape and form better i could bring that to my 2d level.

    I also really have always enjoyed sculpture, i worked with real clay years ago in highschool but my teacher found every way possible to break my projects and tell me that I did something wrong....

    and one more reason being... no one has seen a piece of my art work that hasn't been digital for the last year...and there is a reason for that... i've basicly done nothing but digital. I really need to turn off my computer once in awhile and do something alittle more hands on. I think digital expresses the artistic side of someone to a certain point... but i have a feeling if i get sick of doing 3 hours of digital art, i'll be just fine moving to a different location/medium and continue being artistic... so... the more creative i can be in a day the better!

  10. #9
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    Originally posted by Exo
    Infedel!
    Ummm...

    infidel n.

    1. One who doubts or rejects a particular doctrine, system, or principle.

    plasticine n.

    1. A synthetic material resembling clay but remaining soft; used as a substitute for clay or wax in modeling (especially in pre-schools)

    2. A clay like substitute used by sculptors who are to lazy to learn the traditional ideas of sculpting (metalwork, ceramics, installations, woodworking, and other forms).

    Eat my terracotta!

  11. #10
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    terracotta n.

    1. Something "crafty" soccer moms use when their children are at school and husbands are off at work. Also see quilting, scrapbook making and macaroni neclaces


    lol
    Last edited by N D Hill; November 24th, 2003 at 10:30 AM.

  12. #11
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    Re: How do i get into Sculpture?

    Originally posted by davi
    After watching the lord of the rings: two towers, extended dvd, I really want to break into sculpture.

    anyone know a good way to break in.
    LOL...yea dude, i bought the Gift Set with the Gollum Statue and i must say, i wanna do some sculptures...

  13. #12
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    I started taking an anatomy class on the weekend. The majority of learning the anatomy has been through sculpture. It has been an awesome learning experience since you learn the muscles and the human form in 3d. If you're just starting out with sculpture I'd try doing either some anatomy sculpts or bust sculpts. The best would be to sculpt from a live model. My school does that, but sadly I work full time now so I can't join in the fun on the weekdays...

    Then once you get up to speed with the techniques of sculpting then just go crazah!

    I know what you mean about the forums being flooded with 3d. I gave it up almost a year and a half ago since that's all I do at work. Now I just want to draw and sculpt. I enjoy working with my hands a million times more than plugging myself into a computer for hours on end.

    Here's a link to a good sculpting site for tools and whatnot:
    Complete Sculptor
    I use Roma Plastalina clay and it's been real good to me.

    Good luck!

  14. #13
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    I just remembered i have used plasticine before...and i hate that stuff...it was a nightmare to get out of my clothes and fingernails..

    In the Joe Kubert School they had use super sculpy which was much more fun to use...

    And that's what i think they used in lord of the rings for most of the figure and bust statues...
    Last edited by bRyaN; November 25th, 2003 at 09:57 AM.

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    here davi i found this link here on CA.org it should be pretty interesting for you to see and maybe give you ideas on how to start and finish. look at it here http://www.nimin.net/how_to/page_01.htm enjoy

  16. #15
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    Originally posted by bRyaN
    ...And that's what i think they used in the of the rings for most of the figure and bust statues...
    No, they actually used butter. If you pick up the past issue of Cinefx that covered Lord of the Rings, there was an in depth article explaining how the creatures and digital effects were made. Peter Jackson and Wetta had to build everything from scratch and being so far away from Hollywood they had to improvise a lot. In part of the article it states that early on materials were scarce so they used a sort of crude butter to fashion some of the maquets. It was a really good article. I suggest any fan of the films try and track it down. Cinefx also covered The Two Towers so I assume they'll cover the Return as well. You can pick up the magazine at almost any book store.

  18. #17
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    Originally posted by Exo
    lol
    LOL abbr.

    1. laughing out loud; said by people who are to lazy to get their fat --- up and type out the words "laughing out loud", usually these people are digital concept artists who sit around the computer slothing all day long


  19. #18
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    sculpture

    I would grab something easy to work..waterbased clay is probably the best....it has all ranges of hardness...and one can get it to a finish much faster than other clays. it takes a while to get used to the mushyness. there's a good waterbased clay used a lot in the fx industry...its called 'WED' clay...it's put out by laguna clay company...call number em-217. it's not too different than other clays accept it takes to detail a bit more, and it packed full of glycerine so it doesn't dry out your hands as much.
    I would start doing studies of your libs. Probably the best thing to start with is the hand....it's simple enough....then off of there...move onto the head....

    think about the bone structure first off...thats the key....map out where the bones are then build out every thing you know. I'd say try doing everything out of your head as long as you possibly can...get it to a finish quite nearly....then take reference and see how close you are.

    study all varieties of anatomy. sculpture is the best way to learn how to draw.

    -bay

  20. #19
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    i found a box of super sculpey, is it worth playing around with?

    i'm going to give it a shot... not use of it's limits and such... i really need to get proper sculpture tools... right now i'm just looking around my room for stuff....
    so far i found fingernail clipers, thumbtacs...

  21. #20
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    I personally think so...

    I have a working knowledge with super scupley..and i liked it far better than that oily stuff...

  22. #21
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    Well it really depends on what you gonna do...

    The armature adds a "skeleton" to figure sculptures...it's there for helping you balance out the figure and creating a pose...

    If you are gonna do small things i honestly don't think you'll need one..
    Last edited by bRyaN; November 25th, 2003 at 01:01 PM.

  24. #23
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    Sorry bro, i meant to say try doing small busts(humans..and creatures..etc..)...i have done those without the use of any armatures....

    and their hella fun to do...

  26. #25
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    ah ok, what do you suggest for throwing together a quick armature? i remember using like...foil when i was in highschool for something... would that work fine?

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    use styrofoam davi. check out this thread on cgtalk about sculpture here
    he goes into a little detail about how he starts the process somewhere on page 3 i think... just create a basic structure in the styrofoam then file it down to the simple forms of what you're making then lay the clay down. good luck and post some when you're done!!

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    Yea i heard about the styrofoam, but never used it....

    I would think using the Aluminum foil would be less work then using styrofoam...

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    For a bust I'd suggest styrofoam like Capt.Harlock referred to.
    If you're doing a figure I'd use copper or aluminum wire then put
    epoxy resin around that to strengthen the structure even more.

    I haven't tried the aluminum foil method for an armature.
    I was taught the styrofoam method at my school so I'm used to going that route.

    I haven't used super sculpey in years. I'll have to give it a go again and see how I like it.
    I kinda like getting messy anyways, so I don't mind getting the roma all over my fingers.

    Awesome orc link Capt! Thanks!

    Davi - right now on eatpoo there is a head sculpting activity... you could give that a go as well.

  30. #29
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    I'm working on a project that uses styrofoam as a base and water putty for "applied mass" around the styrofoam. I never use styrofoam with terracotta because of problems with firing it in the kelm.

  31. #30
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    great stuff guys, big help. The closest art store with decent clay products is awhile away, so won't be doing much than just fiddling now...

    where do you get styrofoam from.. hardware stores?

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