The making of my new animal sculptures

In this post I am sharing with you how I created my new animal sculptures.

First up my polymer clay cats.

MY polymer clay cats.
My polymer clay cats.

 

I made all of these cats with polymer clay (Super Sculpey firm medium grey and Super sculpey beige).  I attached tails the  with a wire and I made the eyes with glass cabochons which I painted with acrylic paints.

 

Cat sculptures work in progress
Cat sculptures work in progress.

 

The white cat without fur.
The white cat without fur.

 

 

The white cat with fur.
The white cat with fur.

 

Two of the cats with fur and before curing.
Two of the cats with fur and before curing.

 

After curing I painted the cats with white Gesso first to make the acrylic paint stick better. And then I painted them with several layers of acrylic paints. I found the ginger one the trickiest to paint, because of the stripes.

 

White cat sculpture - front
White cat sculpture – front

 

 

Ginger cat sculpture

 

Black and white cat sculpture

 

Black cat sculpture

 

White & tabby cat sculpture

Cat made with air dry clay.

A few months ago, I bought some cheap air dry clay from Aldi – I also posted this video about the clay. I have never worked with air dry clay before and wanted to try it out. In the video I created this cat. It has the same type of eyes and is created similarly to my polymer clay cats – though I decided to keep the ears smaller. The cat had to dry for a few days before I painted him black, white and pink. I also used acrylic colours for him. I didn’t use the Gesso though and found that several layers were also needed because this clay absorbs paint quickly and still shows some clay. This is a one-of air dry cat, as I definitely prefer to work with polymer clay. However, for YouTube I have just recently filmed this tutorial for you to try out – it shows you how you can make beautiful Christmas tree decorations.

Black and white cat

 

 

Dachshund sculptures and Beagle sculpture.

Black dachshund sculpture - side

 

While I have had plenty of practice sculpting cats, I haven’t created many dogs. So, I decided to sculpt a dachshund and a beagle. For the first dachshund I used grey Super Sculpey. I noticed that their toe nails (or claws) are quite prominent and I wanted to show them in my sculpture. Adding them raw on raw clay didn’t really work so I sculpted them first and cured them. I then added the nails to the paws, which wasn’t straight forward as they take up a lot of space. After baking I primed the dog with white Gesso. Originally, I wanted to paint him in brown, but it didn’t work with the colour I had and I ended up painting him black. Once dried I also varnished the eyes and the nose.

Black dachshund sculpture

 

I also ended up sculpting a dachshund in brown. This time though I used brown clay and black clay for the dog and green clay for the base. This meant I didn’t have to paint him. I also used a different type of pre-baked eyeballs and I used pre-baked toe nails. After baking I highlighted the nose and eyes with varnish.

 

Brown dachshund sculpture

The beagle was more complicated and time consuming to make. I cured the legs and head first. Then I attached the front legs and the head and cured him again. Painting took a long time as I had to add several layers of the brown colour for a solid coverage.

Beagle - work in progress. Head and front legs were cured first.
Beagle – work in progress. Head and front legs were cured first.

 

Beagle - with front legs and fur.
Beagle – with front legs and fur.

 

Beagle with front legs - side view.
Beagle with front legs – side view.

 

Beagle with head attached - still needs fur added to cover up seams.
Beagle with head attached – still needs fur added to cover up seams.

 

 

Beagle sculpture

 

Beagle sculpture - side

 

The cheetah sculpture

The final sculpture of these bigger ones is my Cheetah. Again, I had to cure the front legs first and I also cured its tail first. I originally had the cheetah stand on a base, but when I painted the base I noticed it stayed sticky – this can happen with some acrylic paints or varnishes. I got rid of it and repainted the underside of the Cheetah. For the cheetah I also used the glass eyes I painted with acrylic paints. Painting the body of the cheetah took a long time – they do have a lot of spots!

Curing the cheetah's front legs and tail first.
Curing the cheetah’s front legs and tail first.

 

The uncured cheetah on its base.
The uncured cheetah on its base.

 

Cheetah sculpture with base.
Cheetah sculpture with base.

 

The finished cheetah sculpture.
The finished cheetah sculpture.

 

Cheetah sculpture - side
Cheetah sculpture – side view.

 

New range of smaller sculptures: hedgehogs, fox and otter.

My husband suggested that I should try and make smaller and simpler sculptures that don’t take as much time to create. So, I have started with these new designs.

Hedgehog sculptures
Hedgehog sculptures.

 

2 Hedgehogs, a small otter and a small fox. I didn’t want to paint any of them, so I used coloured clay. For the eyes I used small black glass beads. The challenge with the hedgehogs was to create an illusion of spikes without over complicating the design. So, I used two colours and created these two versions. I wanted the otter to have wet appearance and therefore decided to varnish him. The noses of the hedgehogs and fox are also highlighted with varnish.

Small otter sculpture
Small otter sculpture.

 

Small fox sculpture
Small fox sculpture

 

I hope you like my new designs. They are all available in my shop and as an option I sell them with adoption certificates which can be personalised.

Thank you for reading.

Helen x

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