Saturday, April 28, 2012

Paper Mache Cow Work in Progress

The cow project had a setback this week. Last week I sanded the paper mache clay (which has joint compound in it so it is kind of like plaster). I am not going for a smooth surface but wanted to at least have all the jaggies gone.

I then sprayed the cow with gloss jet black paint, from a spray can made for car paint. The gloss in it turned out all splotchy so I thought a second coat would cover that but it didn't. The gloss was taking in some areas and not in others. It was all black but not all gloss.

It was only then that I realized I had not primed it first. DUMB! Here is what the cow looked like at that stage:

That was my setback. I decided now was the time to go back and fix my problems so I primed the cow with grey primer paint, let it dry and then did a light sanding all over.

The paint store told me hi gloss does not come in the spray cans so I decided I valued hi-gloss over an even application of the paint, so I got black hi-gloss acrylic latex enamel paint and covered the cow. Here is the cow getting covered up once again:
and here is the cow after two coats, which I was much happier with (and all the splotchies were gone):
In these two next photos, I have a close up of the surface of the cow to show how I actually didn't want to go for a glassy smooth surface. Oddly, in these photos, it looks like a chrome has already been added but, in fact, it is just how the light looks on the hi-gloss black. But it did give me a hint, of sorts, of how it might end up looking. I won't know until I actually do the chroming next week. I'll post results in the next update.

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Thursday, April 19, 2012

Paper Mache Cow Sculpture Continues

Its been a project I've been doing along side my painting and so has taken some time. I've really been enjoying learning to work with the materials and solve problems as they crop up (and boy, did they crop up).

He is a cow starting to stand up and get on his feet and I feel just like that as I move through the project, a little more and more confident and seeing this sculpture emerge.

It is 48" wide by 30" tall.

In this photo, I completed the paper mache process over the crumpled newspaper form. I had to do it in stages, starting with the cow upside down and doing the bottom, letting it dry, flipping him over and then doing the top.

In this photo, I complete the whole paper clay process which was the most challenging part. I learned getting the recipe right really makes all the difference. And patience. I couldn't do too much of a section at a time so it would "adhere" properly. I did also run into a mold problem on the bottom and had to scrap out a big hole after it was pretty dry and remove the mold and I washed it all with clorox and put a fan on it to dry more properly. That seem to fix it. I also went too fast with the head and didn't let the paper mache part dry enough before doing the clay and the whole underside of the face fell apart and had to be rebuilt - paper mache first, let it dry completely and then back to the paper clay. Fortunately, that worked and you can't even tell. The ears are really solidly on there now. The tail was hard to get the clay to stick and get it in the crevices just right.

I don't want any features to be too detailed but I did fashion some basic eyes and eyelids with the paper clay. A little hard to see in this photo but they are there.

Now I'm giving him an overall light sanding. I don't want him to be smooth but I do want to have the surface lightly sanded so it feels nice to run your hand over it. After the sanding is done, then comes the paint job. I'll keep you updated!

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