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Nov. 12, 2022

Ariel Bowman Checklist to Making Sculptures

Hey everyone here is a checklist created by Ariel Bowman to help you out with your animal sculptures. Hope this helps!

  1. Make sketches and maquettes in clay to determine best gestures and practice the forms.
  2. Slowly build up lumps of clay to create the basic form or work from a solid block of clay. For larger sculptures use an armature - I use galvanized steel pipe from the hardware store, along with dowel rods and or bamboo skewers.
  3. Use serrated ribs to compress the clay together and begin to refine the form. 
  4. Use modeling tools to continue refining the form, but leave out texture until later. 
  5. Let the piece get leather hard. 
  6. Cut the piece into small 3-4'' sections and hollow out one at a time before cutting more sections. Remove any armatures at this time.
  7. Hollow each section with a loop tool and compress the walls making the wall thicknesses as even and uniform as possible.
  8. Reattach all sections, slipping and scoring and using coils to reinforce attachments. 
  9. Add texture/detail/smooth.
  10. Leave vent holes for steam, and allow your piece to dry for at least one week before doing a slow bisque.

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