My Sculpture Technique

My artistic goal is to capture the animals' spirit in clay, instill it with my own vision, and created a beautiful and moving work of art. Many subjects are Endangered Species, some of which are perched on bases depicting their shrinking environment. Each sculpture I make is built from clay, no molds are used. I study animal anatomy, take photos, make sketches, and use various techniques to make my subjects. I use coil, slab and pinch hand building methods, sometimes I sculpt animals solid, cut them apart in sections, hollow them out and reassemble. Details and textures are carved in the clay when it reaches a leather hard stage. Upon finishing, they will dry for 2 to 3 weeks, followed by a bisque firing in my electric kiln. I am currently using 3 firing modes; Electric, primitive smoke & wood firing in which several finishing techniques are used. I am learning glaze chemistry, making and testing slips, terra sigs, stains and glazes. Many surface treatments are explored, including acrylic patinas to achieve the finish I envision. These exciting methods offer an immense array of possibilities to explore.