Friday, February 26, 2010

My bronze mice can scare the crap out of toilets!

The HORROR......
A picture is worth a thousand words, so here's a two thousand word post!

For a better look at these scary beasts
click these links to visit my website... - Sculpture that loves you back

or my Etsy store, CritterVille

Saturday, February 20, 2010

My tree frog muse stars in his own killer YouTube extravaganza!

I had loads of fun making this video.
It's a horror movie, if you're a cricket!
It's my amphibian muse doing what amphibian muses do best:
Demolishing piles of bugs and looking awfully cool while they're at it!
Hope you enjoy it!

Friday, February 12, 2010

How this way of enlarging your work by yourself could save you time, money and headaches!

I've re-made a few of my pieces in different sizes.
I didn't know how to do it, so I just muddled through with a calculator and a photocopier and lots of scraps of paper.

If I'd known about this other way of doing it I'd have saved myself a bunch of time and headaches.

I wish I'd known about this right from the get-go!

It's based on the notion that the ratio of enlargement of the overall height from your model to the intended enlargement, is the same for all the other measurements you can make.
Same for an arm, a head, a nose (even a very long nose), whatever.

Like most things useful I find out about, it's as old as the hills and I reckon I must be about the last person on earth to hear about it. I found this method in a book 'The Sculptor's Way' by Brenda Putnam, published by Dover.

Just in case I'm not the absolute last person to hear about it, here goes…

The long line at the bottom (AB) is as long as the height of the intended enlargement.
With some calipers, measure the height of your small piece. Put one end of the calipers at the far end of the long line (B), and make an arc.
The radius of the arc is the height of your small piece.
From the near end of the long line (A), make a longer diagonal line that just touches the arc.
This line is what you use to figure out your proportions.

Say you want to find out how long to make the leg of your enlargement.
Measure the small model's leg with calipers, and make an arc the same way you did at the end of the long line, but this time it will be closer to the near end, somewhere between A and B. So you slide one end of the calipers along the base line until you can make an arc that just touches the diagonal line.
The caliper will only be able to do this at one point on the base line, C.

The distance from point A to your caliper point on the base line 'C' is the length of the leg of the enlargement (AC).
And so on with all your other measurements.
I suppose you could even use string to measure circumferences (lay the string out and use it like it was any other measurement).
If you did that you might have to extend the lines beyond your original arc, if you're making something very fat.

Pretty neat huh?
All you need to do is make the original triangle type lines on a big bit of cardboard or something, and you're all set.
You need calipers that are small enough to measure off your small model and others big enough to use for your large one, but getting them is well worth it for the grief you'll be saved!

And even better, you can reverse the equation to reduce pieces.
The radius of the first arc is how big you want the piece reduced to, the base line is how big your original piece is.

Of course you still have to do all the actual work!
If money is no object but you're short on time, do what a lot of people do and get a digital enlargement in foam to serve as an armature and finish it off with clay!
I have never tried this, but if I had to make an enlargement that was really huge, say a life sized elephant for example, I think I'd go that route.
This is the largest of my Senior Moments at about 20" tall (I made four different sizes).

Saturday, February 6, 2010

Mouse eats leopard seal! The continuing saga of Sir Ranulph Sprightly's epic Antarctic adventure...

Sir Ranulph Sprightly has been exploring the areas surrounding McMurdo station on Antarctica and reporting back with fascinating facts and some spectacular photo's. Here's what he had to say...

'Trevor, or Hocho as he's also known around these parts, has been kind enough to show me around before I strike out for the South Pole itself.
I've also been doing additional research and I've learned that McMurdo is populated by about a thousand people. A few scientists, and whole squadron loads of support staff. In fact they outnumber the scientists about 10 to 1 here.
I'll turn you over to Trevor now, who can explain what I've been up to lately...'

'Sprightly also ventured out to Hut Point on the edge of Ross Island.
This is where Scott built one of the first structures in Antarctica (1902). Scott's Hut served as a research facility, food depot and warm-up shelter. The building still stands today; the exterior has been refurbished a bit.
The cross was put up in honor of one of the crew members who died on a Scott expedition. That's me (Hocho) in the photo with black hat & jacket.

The decayed seal carcass is left from Scott's era: considered "historical" and will likely be there another 100 years! The carcass sits just outside Scott's Hut.'

'Thanks Trevor!
Of course what Trevor doesn't know is that to sustain me on my journey to the Pole I tore off a few strips of seal jerkey, after a little taster just to make sure it still made for good eating!

I can tell you for a fact, if my extended family did live around these parts there'd be no seal banquets like this sitting about for long.Add Image
Mmmm. Yummy!

I don't know why Trevor neglected to mention this, but Scott's team left another reminder of their famous expedition...
They decided to take advantage of the natural building materials and were actually attempting a world record attempt on the largest snowman ever made.

They abandoned the attempts after only completing the bottom section which you can see up the hill behind me, since they couldn't imagine how they would ever raise the head up on top.
Well, that's enough from me for now, if all goes to plan I strike out for the pole in a matter of days!'
Earlier Antarctic posts...
Sprightly leaves for Antarctica
Sprightly arrives in Antarctica

My website... - Sculpture that loves you back
My Etsy store, CritterVille