Sunday, May 20, 2012

04 Modeling Nº 58

Everyone has a slightly different method of modeling a head in clay. There is not just One Way to do it. The important thing is the end result. I have been reading some of my books and watching some videos about modeling the head. I think it is interesting to see all the different ways that people approach modeling a head in clay.

These are some screen shots of a head modeling video by Joanna Mozdzen, at YouTube. She does not show how she constructed the armature for this head in this video. It starts out showing the head armature covered in clay, and looking very much like my oil-clay head looks. All the examples shown here are showing how the head is first modeled roughly with large block shapes. Details are added later. Click on any image to enlarge it.

1. The armature covered in clay.
2. Construction lines drawn; eye sockets hollowed out.
3. Nose, mouth, and chin added.
4. Cheekbones added.

In these screen shots from the video by Philippe Faraut, the left side shows the basic head form, and the right side shows the rough forms blocked in.

This is a screen shot from a video in the Jim Gion Sculpture Series, showing how he models a portrait head from a live model. Here again, the first step is to cover the armature in clay, making a rough head form. In the background, reference photographs of the model can be  seen, taken from many angles. This is similar to the way that Martha Armstrong-Hand used photographic references to make some of her dolls.

Some of the books I have been reading about modeling a head in clay include, Modeling A Likeness In Clay by Daisy Grubbs; The Portrait In Clay by Peter Rubino; and Modeling The Head In Clay by Bruno Lucchesi and Margit Malmstrom.

So this is what I am going to be doing first. I have already drawn a vertical center line down the middle of the face, and have also drawn a horizontal construction line to mark the location of the eyes. Next, I will add some clay to the forehead, make a rough nose, a rough mouth shape, and a chin.

One other thing I must remember is that the modeled clay head is based on the bony structure of the skull, which is very close to the surface. There are subtle differences between a male and a female skull, so when looking at anatomy books, it is better to find skulls that are labeled female skulls, to use as a reference.

Sculpting a female head in clay. Sculpting tutorial and demo. by Joanna Mozdzen.
Sculpting Geometric by Philippe Faraut.
Jim Gion Sculpture Series Videos

Modeling A Likeness In Clay.
Daisy Grubbs.
NY: Watson-Guptill Publications, 1982.

Modeling The Head In Clay.
Bruno Lucchesi and Margit Malmstrom.
NY: Watson-Guptill Publications, 1979.

The Portrait In Clay.
Peter Rubino. NY: Watson-Guptill Publications, 1997.

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