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Thread: X-men's polaris

  1. #9

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    Josh..I was having a bit of fun! Someday...make a sculpt of a super-hero gone to seed, LOL! You know, paunchy, wrinkly, boobs down to there.....

    Did you go to art school? Or are you one of those people who is born with their talent? I am not saying people who have an innate talent for something don't still have to work at it. I have friends who are just naturally talented at painting or sculpting. They went to art school after high school, too, though I tried to convince them they didn't need it.

    I am still convinced to this day that artists see things better than most people...the ability to realistically transfer what you see to another medium is not a skill attained without a great deal of struggle. Some people have that ability from the get-go.

    I work with clay and make mug sets that have leaf impressions in them. People seem to like them, I give them away or give them to charities to be auctioned off. I also make little clay cats while I'm sitting and watching tv, it's good physical therapy for my left hand. I really do need to take an anatomy class someday, to help with the musculature bit. I do wheel-throwing and hand building, and I like hand building the best because really the only limit is your imagination. And if I don't like the results..I just squish 'em!

    April
    \"People place their hand on the Bible and swear to uphold the Constitution; they don't put their hand on the Constitution and swear to uphold the Bible,\" Jamie Raskin, to Senator Nancy Jacobs.

  2. #10
    swords's Avatar
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    No, I never took any serious art schooling because my subject matter was always junk according to the teachers. I was always doing creatures, dinosaurs, warriors, ghosts and other fantasy things they wouldn't show in the student gallery. I've never thought of it as art and never thought about any schooling, just messing with stuff until I figure it out. Nowadays there is a school for toy design but it doesn't teach toy sculpting, only basically the "business" end of toys and toy marketing. There's still no action figure/collectible statue sculpting school.

    If you're already doing clay cats and crafts that's a great start! Do you use Polymer Clay (super sculpey)? That's a standard for action figure sculpting (now being replaced by wax by most studios) and the art doll scene. It can be obtained at just about any craft store. Make sure it's the Super Sculpey product sold by 1 lb block in the green box (it's all pink). Mix it with a color cube of Sculpey Premo which will make it easy to see the details in your clay and make the baked super sculpey project less brittle.

    It will help you to get some good anatomy books which show you the surface (or superficial) muscles. This book is tops in my anatomy stack, you can read the description/order at amazon WAY cheaper than the hardback version from the bookstore!
    Visualizing Muscles by John Cody

    I have a ton of anatomy and reference books on specific subjects like wrinkles in fabrics, hands, heads, wax, animal anatomy, etc. There's a great number of them which I've picked up just at Barnes and Noble and Borders. Books on drawing work as well for sculpting. Christopher Hart's series on drawing Extreme Anatomy /Cutting Edge Comics is a very good for doing heroic men and women in comic style.

    Like everything it just takes practice along with using your reference books while you're sculpting. With polymer clay the project won't go bad if it isn't finished in one day (I've had sculpey projects on my shelf since last summer and they're still sculptable) so all you need to do is go back the next day and work it some more. You'd be surprised how your work progresses if you can plug away day after day until you feel the project is "done". Take a digital photo at the end of each day's sculpting then when you are "done" and have baked your figure go back and look at each days photo and you'll see the forms becoming clearer and sharper. Taking breaks before finsihing any project is a plus because your eye will be able to see imperfections when you go back the next day that your eyes will have learned to "ignore" while looking at your sculpt the day before. Also having a mirror at your sculpting area is helpful to look at your figure in reverse. This will let you see crossed eyes, lopsided cheeks, one arm shorter, etc.

  3. #11
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    I went to art school, and you probably know 90% of what you would have been taught there. I guess the only thing missing might be historical context (I don't know how your art history is)... but sometimes that really just works against it, like it did for me. [img]http://www.**********.com/iB_html/non-cgi/emoticons/new/smile.gif[/img]

    I'm guessing you also have a photographic memory, which helps a lot. If not I'm even more impressed.

  4. #12
    swords's Avatar
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    Our teachers took us to art museums and showed us videos and books and things about the history and different styles of art. But I dislike "fine art" sculpture and paintings. I never understood why people liked that classical stuff or considered the makers of it "masters". Maybe doing it first get's them the title of master? Some of the romantic period's paintings and statues were decent but usually rather stale subjects (kings, queens, angels) in lifeless poses/portraits. I prefer to see art that replicates life (or a fleshed fantasy) as closely and vividly as possible, including action and emotion.

    As a kid I always enjoyed going to the annual wildlife art show with my mother (who drew pencil portraits) but they don't hold them here anymore. I know the nature stuff isn't acceped by the "art world" any more than skateboard designs or fantasy statues. To me it's weird considering 90% of the work on a fantasy or wildlife painting/statue is taking it from the finished "fine art" stage (rough figure) to an replicated actual person or animal. To me that's where the art comes in... The devil in the details! My teachers always said I wasted too much time on detailing when I should be starting new projects. I figure doing one good drawing in an hour long class was better than seven pointless ones. My Polaris would get a C or D and the kid next to me would have a shapeless stick figure with a golf ball for a head in the same pose and get an A. I never could get what they were telling me with that sort of grading.

  5. #13
    endparenthesis's Avatar
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    I saw a sculpture in London somewhere... I forget the artist/period/whatever, but it was a woman carved out of stone. I was standing literally two feet away from it and could look at it from every angle... and I swear my brain thought at any moment she could open her eyes. I knew it was stone, but I saw very pale skin. The hair even looked like it could move if there was a draft. Usually you would think if it was just in a picture taken from far away, that's when it would be most deceptive... but I could have only gotten closer by touching it. There has to be some mastery in there somewhere. [img]http://www.**********.com/iB_html/non-cgi/emoticons/new/smile.gif[/img]

    And some of these guys were the original action figures...

    (I had a different one like this in mind that was more dynamic, another serpent battle, but now I can't find it)

  6. #14
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    Don't get me wrong, I'm not slamming everything. Some of the old statues and books are very nice Rodin & Michelangelos statues are very nice. I've got a compilation of 1500 pages of DaVincis anatomy studies. But the stuff they showed us of art history in school was mainly the paintings which were early abstract and the modern "junk pile" sculpture. I was just trying to say what pushed me away from art class.

    My teacher would have likely put a C on that piece there... [img]http://www.**********.com/iB_html/non-cgi/emoticons/biggrin.gif[/img]

  7. #15
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    Yeah, most modern (technically post-modern I guess) art reeks of people desperately looking for new ideas. Plus I've noticed it's usually hard to appreciate without an explanation attached. Once you hear the explanations you come upon something brilliant every once in a while, but I usually don't "get it" on my own.

    And some of it is downright intellectually/morally bankrupt if you ask me. [img]http://www.**********.com/iB_html/non-cgi/emoticons/new/smile.gif[/img] If I were to take an old ragged couch off someone's front curb, and put it in a show with a long statement about America's habit of constantly running away from decay and sweeping the old under the carpet in order to make room for the new and our wastefulness and gluttony and yada yada yada, and then someone buys it for $5000... well, I'd say the real art there is how much money I've made suckering someone into thinking I'm brilliant.

    Anyway, you'd probably like the Baroque stuff, if you don't already.

  8. #16
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    We're on the same wavelength! [img]http://www.**********.com/iB_html/non-cgi/emoticons/new/smile.gif[/img]

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