Fetal Deep One Moldmaking and Casting 02

So last time, I told you about a tight seam line. Here is a magnified picture of a small area along the spine. The cleaner this line is, the smaller the seam will be which translates to less cleanup after. Attention to detail during the mold making stages is savings in work later.


These are the limbs with sprues attached in little small boxes of clay. The sprues are those little conical towers. A sprue is the part of the mold where the material is going to be poured into and continue on towards  the actual mold surfaces. They are molded into the model so it will be one piece. There will be a piece of plastic after casting which represents the sprue itself but that gets cut off the casting and tossed.


I changed my mind on the type of mold i wanted so i had to rework the walls on the body mold. The walls are now lower and closer to the model. These walls will act as overflow stops for the silicone rubber. At first, i wanted a block mold, meaning a big chunk of rubber with enough mass to hold its shape without distortion of the inner mold surfaces. Instead, i decided to do a thinner mold and use another outer stiff mold to support the thinner inner one. This outer mold is called a mother mold.

This the first half of the body of the model before the silicone. I am showing two views because top down can be confusing without some idea of depth.



This is the first layer of the silicone. Initially, it is put on very thin. I use a brush to be sure i get into every nook and cranny. The layer is kept thin which helps the bubbles to dissipate. As long as the important surfaces are well covered, i have no problem filling the outlaying areas by pouring the silicone rubber into the mold. This is done by holding the cup a bit above and allowing the rubber to be poured in such a way that a thin ribbon forms. This ribbon will not carry bubbles. This is poured into one corner and allowed to proceed on its own along the paths available. Those bubbles at the top area are where i dumped the a bit of silicone to show what happens when not following a good technique. Where they are means nothing but if they were against a surface of the model that would be bad. I dissipated them with a brush afterwards.


When the silicone is sticky but not leaving itself on the fingertip of the glove, a second layer is poured. This is  generally somewhere around 45 minutes to an hour. This time a thickener is added to the silicone which makes it act like cake frosting instead of a liquid. Simply spread with tongue depressor and serve in twenty minutes…..The small green piece of clay is a test of another type of clay to see if it is amenable to silicone.


The small parts (limbs) were done with an initial thin layer of silicone followed by a simple pour of more silicone about an hour later.



This is all now going to sit overnight and let the chemical reactions proceed. Next time, we will see things from a slightly different angle.


Fetal Deep One Moldmaking and Casting

I have been posting some pictures on Facebook of what i am doing regarding some mold making for a new sculpture I am calling  a fetal deep one.  As a few of y’all are watching, i thought perhaps a bit more commentary than my usual two word titles might be nice.  You will see a scalpel handle in some of these pictures. The handle is 6.5 inches so you have a sense of scale.

I created the fetal deep one with a mix of Sculpey and Super Sculpey, a 1:2 proportion. Sculpey is a polymer clay that gets hard if cooked in an oven. This piece has been in my dedicated toaster oven 17 times  due to a lot to the fact that I handled this piece instead creating it on a standing armature.

This first picture is of the near completed piece with the arms, legs, and gills separate. I will be casting those separately. It is just easier. The fin at the base of the tail needs some clean up still.


This picture shows the right arm and legs in place, visualizing how it will look. The gills are based on the unusual British moor frog tadpoles.


This is the piece being roughed in with clay. First, i level the object up on a couple of pieces clay and then begin using chunks around it to build a platform that will allow approximately half of it or so to show. From there it is close in work to bring the clay to the edge of the object at as much of a right angle as possible. This area has to be as clean and tight as possible as this where the seam is going to be. You can see the final tail fin shape has changed substantially. This is because I changed my mind on how it was going to be displayed. This allowed the fin to unfurl.


This is finished half. The box is about two inches deep. The sprue is where the resin will be poured to make a casting. The dimples are for making alignment ‘ locks’. This ensures exact matching of the two pieces of the rubber mold as best is humanely possible. I have decided to change the type of mold I am making. It will mean  some adjustments to the work I have done. I will explain that.  Next post, I will show you some close up pictures and the next step.



Cthulhu Africanus

Like so many museums, the Mausonian museum has more inventory in its basements, attics, and storage facilities than could ever be displayed properly. A fair amount is only cataloged as box numbers with annotations of date of receipt and country of origin.

Earlier this spring, the museum security patrol surprised an intruder in the basement storage area.  A number of large crates had been opened but the thief fled empty handed. The broken crates were all from a shipment from Nairobi dated 1893.  Shattered pots, masks and ancient weapons lay scattered across the floor.  The items were collected, assessed, cataloged and put back into storage. Of the many invaluable artifacts and cultural fetishes, one item stood out from the rest.

It was a statue depicting Cthulhu. The overwhelming stylization of various African cultures fixed its origin and created a mystery to the presence of this Polynesian demigod on the African continent. Obviously, a connection between cultures, unknown and unexplored. Initial assessment of the item describes a deity artifact, approximately seven inches high, four inches deep, and nearly 12 pounds in weight. Created from a lump of raw iron and wire,  it is riven by twenty two old nails. Age of the figure has not been determined though the nails are common construction items from the late eighteenth century. I found the piece to be a truly brutish vision and repellent to the touch.

It has been restored and now is on display in the Cultural Mythology wing of the Mausonian.

A one to one scale reproduction has been made of this unusual artifact and is available here or at this Etsy link.

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Nosferatu, Sea of Rats World Plague Tour Print

I have just completed an homage print to Nosferatu (1922), one of my favorite movies. It is an iconic flick and still has chilling powers regardless of its age. Many consider it to be the greatest vampire flick made.


Samhain 2015 Dance Salmangandi Flyer

Once again it is time for the Danse Salmagundi Samhain Spectacular 4! Information as below. Hope to see you there…



2015 Porch Correction and Cosmic Protection

The brute winter that just passed set its foot down on my porch and crushed it. I had plans to tune up the mortar work and such but it now went beyond a bit of chinking and plugging with mortar. We were required to tear up the entire surface as the mortar had vaporized into sand. Without boring you on materials and procedures, three days later we ended up with a bit nicer surface. It looks and feels solid but we will have to wait a few years to see how it all holds up. Inscribed cosmic protection finished the job.



Chinking out all mortar on first step produced this…yikes! There goes my Friday.



Masque of Red Death Mask

Recently completed paper laminate mask for Ameena for upcoming show. Definite Phibes/Mummy feel happening…must be watching too many of those old flicks.

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