I am attempting my first life size portrait sculpture of my husband. It is so very different from my usual teeny tiny work where the head fits in my hand. Instead of using just my finger tips and miniature tools , I am now using giant tools and my whole body to sculpt.
I love a challenge. And this certainly is. I’m studying Philippe Faraut’s techniques. I bought several of his books and watch his You Tube videos. Most of the time I am measuring with calipers and observation, lots of observation. That’s what being an artist means- you look harder at something, zero in on its beauty and pull it out of the chaos to point it out to others with a twist of your own personality stamped on it.
I’ve looked at my husband – Danny’s face for 41 years, but now I am really LOOKING at his face. I mean I am crawling into his wrinkles, sliding down his perfect nose, digging around in his nostrils and spelunking his ears. He has recently been diagnosed with Pancreatic Cancer and lost 40 pounds. This drastically changed his face. The aging process has changed his face. It is a face I love dearly. I debated with myself if I wanted to sculpt him with the face he has now or his younger face. I choose the now face, which as you can see is a magnificent face!
I used 50 pounds of cone 6 stoneware clay. I will hollow it out when I’m done but right now it is solid. I work on it a few hours everyday. My family laughs at me and says it is creepy but I love it. There are moments when I push the clay in just the right way that it looks so alive! So they can laugh all they want, I love my head! And I think I’ll be doing more life size heads.
I’ve always loved Heads. I really don’t even see the rest of the body. Everyone is just floating heads to me.It’s where all the interesting stuff is located. All the emotion, ideas, love is right there in that neat hard ball. Heads just fascinate me. Maybe I never got past the baby stage of being fixated on faces.
I don’t know yet how I will finish this piece. Maybe fire it and then leave the natural color (white) or paint it to look bronze? I don’t know yet. Or maybe I’ll paint it realistic colors? Now that would be creepy!