Saturday, February 8, 2014

08 Joint Design Nº 455

I worked on the carving wax head some more, doing some work around the eyes, ears, nose, and mouth. Before I took the snapshots, I brushed the head with an old toothbrush and hot water from the faucet. That took a lot of very small carving wax shavings away, but left some very fine particles of something, I'm not sure what? Click on any image to enlarge it.

Here are some snapshots of the oil-clay head, as it looked after I took it out of the hot-pour moulage mold, which was used to cast the carving wax head. It has been sitting on the little modeling stand since 14 September 2012.

This is a side-by-side comparison of the carving wax head and the original oil-clay head.

Oil-clay is used to model the original figure because:
  • it never hardens,
  • it never dries out,
  • forms can be built-up quickly,
  • it is very responsive to the touch,
  • it is easy for beginners to use,
  • and it is reusable.
Oil-clay has some disadvantages:
  • it must never be baked in an oven,
  • it must be modeled over an armature, supported by a modeling stand,
  • it is too soft to use for test-stringing, and
  • it must be translated to another material for designing ball joints.
Carving Wax is used as the translation material:
  • it is inexpensive to make in the studio,
  • it can be melted and poured into waste molds, types of molds are:
    • water saturated plaster molds - may be used for more than one casting
    • silicon rubber molds (require a pressure pot) reusable
    • hot-pour moulage (a member of the alginate family) reusable
  • it can be welded to attach carving wax balls to limbs, for making joints,
  • it is homogeneous,
  • it can be sawn, drilled, cut, carved, and sanded glass smooth,
  • it is strong enough to test-string,
  • it does not dry out,
  • it hardens when cooled to room temperature,
  • and it is reusable.
Martha Armstrong-Hand (4 July 1920 - 22 October 2004) recommended using oil-clay to model the original figure, and carving wax as the ball joint design material. She was introduced to carving wax when she worked as a professional sculptor, and she used it in her studio when making her sculptures. It is one of the most amazing 3D design materials I have ever worked with. It is easy to make, and easy to work with. I only wish that I had discovered it many years ago.

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