The sculpting process begins with an idea. Ideas may come from any number of places, such as real life experiences, stories, books, or pictures.
Then comes the research phase. Hours are spent watching video clips, looking through still photos, and dissecting anatomy diagrams of the subject. When possible, time in the field is spent actually watching the true movements and shaping the clay in front of the live subject.
After much research begins the actual shaping. A wire or pipe skeleton, called an armature, is formed to match this basic shape. The armature is mounted on a wooden base.
Throughout the process there is constant attention to measurements and proportions. The proportions must be exact for the skeleton and muscles, and the pose must be natural and life-like. Throughout the entire sculpting process the artist refers back to the research he did in the beginning. Sculpting in front of a live model allows the artist to capture the essence of the subject.
Finally, details are added. When appropriate, clothing folds, hair, muscle striations, fingernails, etc., are the final touches of realism.Next: At The Foundry