Monday, June 26, 2017

Balsa Wood Sculptures

Process



Title: Focal point, Repetition, Texture
Materials: Balsa wood, wood glue, paper, masking tape
Dimensions: 4" x 4" x 1",  2" x 2" x 5",  3.25" x 2" x 6"

Result

Focal Point

Repetition

Texture

Statement

          Focal Point: While there's a lot going on in this sculpture, I wanted to try and get as many of the lines as I could point toward the center of the ring. I used wood glue, balsa wood, and paper.
          Repetition: I took balsa wood shavings and delicately glued them together, starting from the middle and building outward. It creates a fountain effect, with the repeating lines and curves. 
          Texture: The center was a mixture of wood glue and balsa wood. The front in peeled back, revealing the inside, where the balsa wood shavings are stuck in the glue, creating a jagged texture. However, on the other side of the piece, those same wood shaving are encased in the wood glue and have a smooth texture. The disc in suspended by a rope made of masking tape, so it can be viewed from multiple angles. 

Memento

Process

          This actually took a lot longer to make than I originally anticipated. I wanted to make a sort of fake rock, so I sanded down a piece of scrap foam until it was an egg-like shape. Then, in order to get the hard and glossy outside, I used beeswax. However, beeswax is very pliable when held for a while and heated up by the hand. Unlike a rock, it has a warm feeling, and gets sticky after a little while. So I was forced to scrap the beeswax idea, even after spending several class periods trying to make it work.
          Instead, I coated the piece of foam in plaster and let it dry. Then I coated it in plaster once more to be safe. Afterward, I sanded it gently to make any new rough edges smooth. This not only created the smooth, rock-like texture I was looking for, but also make it slightly heavier (although not nearly as heavy as a rock would be), and it was it cold to touch, which it exactly what I was looking for. 
          Next, I covered the whole thing in blue ink. The ink absorbed into the plaster almost immediately, so I kept coating and almost soaking the "rock". Eventually, the plaster became softer, and I was able to squeeze the "rock" gently, causing some of the plaster to crumble off, creating random areas of roughness throughout the memento. After this, I held the rock in my hands and kept it moving as it dried in order to leave it as shiny as possible. 


Title: Pebble
Materials: Foam, plaster, ink
Dimensions: 1.5" x 1.25" x 1"

Result




Statement

        My grandpa collected rocks, and I collected rocks because I thought it was cool. I would hang out by the creek and fish out rocks I thought were cool. I'd walk around staring at the ground in case I saw a cool rock, and whenever I did, I would pick it up and put it on my window sill with all my other rocks. I'd arrange them and clean then, and sometimes I'd play with them. My favorite rocks, though, were the ones my grandpa gave to me, because, unlike me, he had a rock tumbler, and could polish rocks and make them prettier than any rocks I could find on my own. The rocks my grandpa gave me were smooth, shiny, and cold, and I liked to hold them because they felt nice. Sometimes they had little rough spots that added a little texture, which frustrated me back them, but now I think added a little variety to them.
          With this memento, I tried to emulate the sort of feelings I had with my rock collection, specifically with the rocks I got from my grandpa. Because I could only use three materials, I had to make choices about what was most important to me about this memory. There was the form of the rock, the hardness, the smoothness, the shininess, the weight, and the color. Eventually, I had to discard weight in favor of the color. I used the foam for the form, I used plaster for the hardness, and smoothness, and I used ink for the shininess and color. 
          I chose the color blue because I had a rock that was a very deep, almost black, blue, that had an egg-like shape, and was my favorite to play with because I liked to pretend it was a miniature dragon egg. I didn't want to make this black, however, and opted for a brighter blue color, because at the time blue was my favorite color. It was my favorite because it was my mom's favorite, and a few months ago her father, my grandpa, passed away, and I wanted to try and tie it back to him as much as possible. 

Artist Inspiration

Jenny Gilbert
Carina Bezzola

Robert Gober

Soap Sculpture

Process



Title: Soap Bear
Materials: Soap
Dimensions: Larger bear: 4.5" x 1.5" x 2.5" Smaller bear: 3.25" x 2" x 1.5"

Result






Masking Tape Shoes

Process




Title: Tape Shoes
Materials: Masking tape
Dimensions: 11" x 3.5" x 4"

Result





Map Relief

Map Relief

Process

          I began with two pieces of scrap foam that I found in a bin, and I glued them together using wood glue and wooden rods for support. Once I had a secure form, I used a small saw to create an organic shape, and sanded the corners to make it less angular. 

          Once I had my shape, I covered the whole thing in several layers of gesso to make it white and paintable. 

          Then I began working on the different sections. For the top, I rolled tracing paper very tightly and dipped it in a mixture of scarlet, orange, and brown ink to create a blood-like color. I would end up using this color for the veins painted on later. Once I had my tendrils, and they were dry, I began gluing them on. Note: The gel medium causes the ink to bleed. If anyone is planning on emulating any of this in the future, don't use the gel medium as an adhesive if you don't want ink to escape onto your surface. So instead of that, I used book glue I found in the cabinet. It ended up working perfectly, because it dries sort of rubbery and clear, which I quite liked.

          Before I could glue on section, however, I needed to make sure everything would work in the end, so I cut my window out of Stonehenge paper to use as a guide when proceeding. 

          The second section, not seen here, but seen below, was created by making small incisions with the X-Acto blade in number directions to create a muscle-like texture. I considered making it red, but thought better of it, and went with black/gray. I think I made the right choice.
          The next box, the veins, were painted on, easy-peasy. They were actually the last thing I added because I knew I would have the most options should something go wrong. 

          Second to last, I used high gauge wire and stuck it into the foam, then I gessoed them in place, and individual painted them with black ink. The trickiest part was making sure the entire wire was coated black, without getting any of the ink on the foam.
          And finally, the last second, which was the first one I actually made, was tracing paper which I hole-punched to death, then coated in black in, before cutting to size and gluing in place. 

Title: Pretense
Materials: Foam, Stonehendge paper, tracing paper, matte gel medium, glue, ink, gesso, balsa wood
Dimensions: 17" x 10" x 4"

Result

From front
From side
Behind paper

Statement

          The map relief project's goal was the create something that was not a map, and yet was a map. More or less, a nontraditional map, open for a lot of interpretation. I wanted to map a person's insecurities. I wanted to map a person who looks like they have everything together, but are really just as messed up and unsure of themselves as everyone else. I wanted it to looked graphic and organic at the same time. I wanted the front to look sleek and put together, and everything behind it to look messy and disorderly; the paper's peeling, the wood is crooked, etc. Hopefully I was able to achieve that effect. 


Artist Inspiration

Louise Nevelson

Carrie Dickens

Karen Margolis

Thursday, June 22, 2017

Masked Identity

Process

          This was a lot easier to do than I thought it would be. I wanted the mask to fit my head, so I had to do a lot of measuring, which was probably the bulk of the work to create the mask. The first thing I did was measure from the tip of my nose to the crown of my head. Then I cut a wire to that length and curved and taped it to create a loop. This was my starting point to expand upon. After that, I did one across the top of my head and in front of my face. Then I started adding wires down the sides of my face, creating a ribbed structure, making sure I measured each piece on my face before cutting. Because I made sure to measure everything, it came out fitting perfectly. Maybe a little too perfectly. If I were to do it again, I might be a little more lenient on the accuracy of the measurements, maybe giving a quarter of an inch here and there, so that I could put my hair up into the mask, or so other people could wear it. 

          After the metal skeleton was done, I added the tracing paper dipped in gel medium. I originally tried to measure out pieces, but soon found that was too time consuming, messy, and still didn't look nice. So I opted to eyeball most of it, come what may. I still wanted the surface to be as flat as possible, so I tucked and tightened everything I could until the whole mask was covered. 


          After one layer dried, I still wasn't entirely happy with the condition of the tracing paper, so I did another layer of tracing paper and gel medium. This time I made sure it was super flat, which was a lot easier to do this time around, and let that dry. Not only did it give the face a smoother surface, it also made it thicker and more durable.

          Once I was happy with the mask, I bought some reflective spray paint and went to town. And then I realized reflective spray paint only really works on glass, so I got a mirror from a friend, smashed it up, and hot glued the shards to the mask.

Title: Reflection
Materials: Wire, tracing paper, gel medium, spray paint, mirror shards, hot glue
Dimensions: 9" x 7.5" x 6"

Result









Statement

          The project was to create either a false identity with a mask, or to expose an identity. I wanted to do a bit of both, I suppose. I've found I often become a mirror of people around me. The events leading up the where I am now, the people I've met, the things I've heard and seen are all what comprise the person I am today. Sometimes I wonder if there's anything original or organic to "me" at all. So I wanted to illustrate that with a mask. The mirror shards, a nod to mirrors in classical paintings, are a literal representation of the idea of reflecting. The take what is around the person and reflect it back out, leaving the individual to have no distinct face, and causes its features to change depending on who or what it's around. The images in specific settings reflect ways I've found myself reflecting others throughout my life, and in recent memory. Coffee, makeup, and television are just a few of the things I've gotten into not because I've naturally gravitated toward them, but because I've consciously or unconsciously thought that people would like me more if I resemble them.

Artist Inspiration


Hector Sos

Nicholas Alan Cope and Dustin Edward Arnold

Sally-Anne Kelly

Balsa Wood Sculptures

Process Title: Focal point, Repetition, Texture Materials: Balsa wood, wood glue, paper, masking tape Dimensions: 4" x 4&qu...