Here’s a close-up video of the eleven players on the “Football, circa 1890” monument. Still have months to go. Love the fine tuning process. As Rodin said about his “Gates of Hell”, “How can I finish it when I haven’t had time to forget it?”
I’ve taken inspiration from hundreds of vintage 1800’s photos.
Just spent an incredible weekend in Tucson, Arizona at Settlers West’s fall art show with Janette. We were guests of some friends / collectors and were able to visit, “Chiricahua Apache.” He is loved and well taken care of. There is nothing that touches my heart more than a work of art properly presented and displayed. Grateful to these folks who went “over the top” displaying this work of art.
Installed a casting of “The Trooper” a couple of days ago, outside of Santa Fe. We took the piece out of my pickup and loaded it into this 1947 Willy’s Jeep and maneuvered it into position. Good folks, fun ride. Nothing like nature’s vista to enhance a piece.
The city of St. George, Utah has a foundation called, “Art Around the Corner.” Every spring, for the past 12 years, they invite artists to display works on pedestals throughout the city.
This year, I chose, “All Her Chicks”. She has felt labor pains for more than a week now. Her mind is on hold, for it is her heart that is full…anticipating…loving…feeling. ‘Serving’ is joy, for this mother to be. how fortunate is the babe coming to a home where it is to be nurtured in kindness.
About six or seven years ago, a fellow artist gave me a photograph of two women. They thought I could possibly use it as inspiration for a sculpture. About a week and a half ago, I ran across the photo again, it struck my heart to see if I could pull off the idea in clay.
For artistic compositional sake…. I made the woman on the left taller and facing forward (to be the focal point). I arranged the wrinkles in their clothing to lead the viewers eye around the piece. Notice the subtle 5 points of entry, to bring the viewer into the sculpture.
Don’t you just love that hat! The double rows of cartridges on the gun belt?
“Of Proper Wit & Adventurous Spirit” Edition of 30
So….here’s part of the 100 “drill bits” order, lined up like soldiers for inspection at the foundry today. They are all headed to an oil company in Texas.
I occasionally sculpt “gift multiples” for companies.
“For Spain, Glory and Gold”30″ high x 17” wide x 16″deep. Edition of 30. This piece has been in the clay for about two years, and is finally comin’ around….maybe!
Then again, maybe it’s me that’s comin’ around.
This is fun to see. I love obscure history. Here’s some examples of authentic armor used for horse heads, hundreds of years ago. With my posting the sculpture of the conquistador, I thought I’d better back it up….for the doubters.
This piece was started about a year ago. Built it up…tore it down….built it up….tore it down. Got disgusted with it….researched rearing horses out the wazoo. Looked at 487 pictures of rearing horses. Set it aside for five months. Spent two weeks on it….set it aside again. Would sit in “my sculpture looking at chair” for hours, pondering this piece. Finally saw what was not working…..here is my best effort.
My patina man, Kike, working the color on, “With My Books Battalioned Around Me”. This one is shipping out to Settlers West, in Tucson, for an art show next week.
The color on this sculpture is very unique. We take nitric acid and put it over iron nails, to dissolve them. We them apply that mixture with heat to the sculpture. The iron mixture binds to the bronze. We call it “The Old Rust” patina.
Would it surprise you to learn that, during the sculpting process of every piece, I turn off the lights, and sculpt shadows? I learned this technique in 1992 from Mehl Lawson. If it’s pitch black outside I’ll use a candle. If an area is too dark I will add clay and if it is too light I will create textures that darken.
I still have two or three months to work on this piece, but it’s starting to have the magic I’m looking for.
Football (circa 1890)
It’s about 20 inches tall and 34 inches wide.
Painters face the ‘blank canvas’. Sculptors stare at an ’empty mold board’. What to do……
From my last post you’ve noticed I’m beginning an 1890’s, eleven man, football team.
Below is a video of the first draft of head #1. I go over each head 5 + times.
I’m going to let you into the inner sanctum of my approach to sculpting. COMPOSITION is EVERYTHING! A lot of it is instinctual but it has also become a rational decision making process. I’m starting a new mutual-figured piece. 1890’s football team. Having a blast researching it out. If you boil it down to very simple geometric shapes, one could easily make an abstract work of art out of the entire thing. If the composition, balance and design is not there…..I can guarantee you the piece will be weak and people will not connect with it. I’ve learned that people “feel” great composition, rather than see it.
Notice that in the above drawing are two large circles that intersect and create a vesica piscis. MasterCard uses that symbol for their logo.
There are a lot more geometric shapes than I’ve drawn. It’s fun to discover them as I’m sculpting. There are lots of figure eights, large triangles and diamonds.
So, I had the folks at the foundry begin a piece for me. They welded an armature together, put foam over it, trimmed the foam and applied the initial layer of clay. I arrived at the foundry (6 AM) to have them load it on my trailer. I figured it best to drive it to the studio in the cool of the morning. I’m quite certain this piece will be in the clay for about a year before it’s finished. It’s going to be a cowboy riding hell bent for leather on his horse.
I thought it be fun to pull over in Sardine Canyon, south of Logan, and take a picture.
So….. I’m often asked by people, “Do you ever sell the clay sculpture after the mold is made?”