With the decision and need for a new armature, Isolde's bad proportions, which had been forced by the first armature, were open for adjustment.
Since Liz was struggling so much with trying to work out a functioning pattern for a dress to fit Isolde, adding more pleats and length in places that shouldn't need them, I felt she would understand and welcome my intentions to go back and re-sculpt Isolde.
I told her I would spend two or three days fixing her proportions. I would then make a new mould, cast a new costume mannequin, and take the new mould to John Wright for the new armature.
Eleven weeks later I had accomplished this.
ADJUSTING ISOLDE'S PHYSICAL PROPORTIONS
|The white modelling wax doesn't melt down very well, so it doesn't really pour into a mould. I managed to brush and dab it in.|
|I sliced up one half cast (front half) as a three dimensional sketch,|
shortening her proportions.
I then brushed up a new full cast (front and back made separately)
and followed where I had cut and shortened the "sketch".
|New tool. I noticed that sculptors tend to use a rake-like tool|
to help keep the shapes clear and visible. I never studied
sculpture, so am constantly learning.
I made these two tools with sewing pins and polymorph.
|New work station.|
I know how artists are able to reach what others might describe as perfection, and then keep pushing things forward, sometimes losing that previous state of perfection and never regaining it again. Innocent bystanders see the work as what it is, every time they look at it. But often elements will either bother, or be lacking for the artist, who will keep pushing forward, unaware of the present successful state of the work. Often this means that the work changes dramatically and only a subtle ghost of that previous state remains.
The two images above are dated exactly one month apart.
I found that I would keep reworking things over and over again, even though the bystanders thought things looked good as they were. I would then look back at the pictures of previous states, and struggle to see what had changed.
|Legs were still too long. Then too short. Then too long again.|
|I tested my new mould concept, described in the previous entry.|
It looked promising.
|Yes, I started using Lego.|
|Feet are something done differently this time.|
She is on her toes to avoid verticals in the mould.
I also embedded nuts in the mould.
|Successful silicone master.|
|Quick resin cast from the silicone. Interesting how|
light behaves differently with a different material.
|Unfortunately one ear was crushed whilst I removed the|
rubber mould. I cast a new one from the rubber mould, but of course
nothing is so simple. Getting it to fit back in place is impossible,
so it required much work.
|Wax walls surrounding figure to leave flashing canals.|
I also brushed a thin coat of resin onto the face and some other
areas to protect them and force me to accept that they
|hands will be separate pieces of the top half of the mould.|
|As she had been sculpted in pieces, she came out in pieces.|
A pleasant surprise that she resisted much less than previous
figures. Nearly intact.
|My best mould yet. And by far the slowest.|
Because the resin heats up when it cures, I was advised to
keep layers thin, to avoid heating up too much and warping.
This made the process ever so slow.
|Costume mannequin armature. Wire and polymorph.|
|Silicone cast - costume mannequin. Flashing canals helped.|
|Isolde version I, and Isolde version II.|
Was it worth all that trouble?
P.s. her nose had an air bubble,
but being a costume mannequin I left it.