Ballerina Project 2 – Part 8

PREPARING THE PLATFORM:

During the project, before I chose the color of the actual outfit, I worked with the wooden plaque as raw wood.  Using a 1/4 inch drill bit, I drilled a small hole in an area for the doll to stand.  I chose a drill bit that would fit a common bamboo skewer.

Once I knew I would make the ballerina’s outfit pink with black shoes and she would have blonde hair, I then painted the stage a neutral gray that would not class with any other color.

After painting, in the next stage, I will be coating the stage with the resin coating so it will be  pretty much indestructible.

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Ballerina Project 2 – Part 7

THE BALLERINA HEAD/FACE RIGHT OUT OF THE MOLD:
ballerina push mold headThe Ballerina Push Mold, like the other push molds at White Gothic Studios, can be used right out of the mold, or you can make a bit of a “skull” out of it so you can sculpt our own unique face onto it. To the left you can see a gif showing you how this works.

It’s easy to use.  You can see the fast version by looking at the gif.  You will make the head or heads separately and put them on toothpicks so they can be applied later in the project.

Ballerina-Project-2-apply-ears-onto-headAs you can see from the picture to the right, the ears are applied separately.  The ears that the mold make are regular human ears.  But you can make fairy ears if you need to by watching this video.

I prefer to attach the ears to a baked face or skull, so you can add a hole on the side of the head before baking and then add a little Liquid Sculpey on the ear area and apply the clay ears to the baked head.  You have more control while forming, attaching and smoothing the ears.

MAKING THE MOLDED FACE INTO A “SKULL”:

ballerina-skulls2At some point during your doll making, you will want to make unique dolls.  These pictures will show you how you can cut into and remove clay so you can add your own features and perhaps add your own hand made or glass eyes.

Cut out eye sockets and you can change the shape and look of the eyes.  If you will be inserting glass eyes, push in deeper cavities to accept the glass eye backs, whatever they may be.

You can cut away the mouth/lips and even part of the chin so you can change just about everything.  By using the heads as skulls, you can reduce sculpting time in half.  By baking the skulls, you will be sculpting against a hard surface, which is much easier especially for beginners.

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APPLYING THE HEAD TO THE BODY:

Once your heads are fully sculpted, ears attached, you can then pose them on the doll’s body to get the right angle.  By keeping the neck section very skinny, you allow yourself plenty of space to attach the head onto the body and build up the neck so the pose is very convincing.

As a reminder, be sure to check the toothpick before baking.  Be sure you can twist it and remove it.  If you don’t do this, you may not be able to remove the toothpick and you don’t even want to know how disappointing this is at this stage in the project.

THE HANDS:

Ballerina-Project-2-hands-on-toothpicksThe hands will be done as usual, scrape off all of the flashing, make sure the fronts and backs are aligned.  Smooth out the connection lines, rub the fingers and stretch them to make them more thin.  Cut off any finger that gets too tall or out of proportion.

Keep in mind your ultimate pose.  While the hands are still on toothpicks, just “try them on the arm wires and make sure they are in a believable pose.  Reapply them onto the toothpicks.  Bake them, making sure to twirl the toothpicks before baking to make sure you will be able to remove them too.

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Ballerina Project 2 – Part 6

ADD BALLERINA BODY SUIT:

Using Sculpey III in the color pink, I added a very, very thin layer of clay and built up a body suit for the ballerina.  Try to get it as smooth as you can so you will only have a little sanding to do when you half-bake the doll.

SANDING THE DOLL:

You can sand each section as you go, or you can wait until this time to do your sanding.  I prefer to sand as I go.  Starting with 60 grit sandpaper, sand off any large bumps and lumps.  Then move to 100 grit sandpaper to create a smooth finish.  There will be sanding marks still on the doll after this, but it will be much smoother.

Using 220 or 320 wet/dry sandpaper, sand the doll smooth.  This grit will start to remove the sanding marks.  It will be pretty smooth using the 220 or 320 grit.

Then I finish sanding at the sink using a drop of water and a drop of liquid soap and sanding with 400 and 600 grit sandpaper.  This will give you the porcelain finish that you want.

If you need to sand the hands and head, you can do them at the same time.

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Ballerina Project 2 – Part 5

Ballerina-Project-2-apply-ears-onto-headBALLERINA HEAD & EARS:

Smooth out the ballerina head from the mold, and emphasize the features from the mold, poke nostril holes into the bottom of the nose, cut the lips apart with your xacto knife and put in two holes in the sides of the head in order to apply the ears after the first half-bake.

ADD THE EARS:

Then add the ears onto the half-baked head, and using your dental tool, impress in the ear channels.  You may have to cut some of the ear off if it is too big.  Since the head will be hard, it will be easier to form the ears while you do not have to worry about squishing the facial features.

If you have any problems with the ears sticking to the sides of the head, use a little Liquid Sculpey as glue to apply the ears.  This will hold the ears in place and help with a good and solid attachment.

Once the ears are applied, half bake the doll head again.  Be sure that you have poked a tooth pick hold into the head from the neck area so that there will be a hole present in order to attach the head onto the top of the ballerina body.

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Ballerina Project 2 – Part 4

Ballerina-Project-2-hands-arm-channelsARMS AND HANDS:

The arms and hands are also done separately, as you can see from the picture to the left.

Add a wire channel inside each side of the arms so you can easily put them onto the arm armature wife.  Then Ballerina-Project-2-smooth-arms-onto-wireBallerina-Project-2-smooth-arms-into-posesmooth them onto the wire and thin them out into nice arm shapes.  This is the time to pose the arms.

If you have extra clay, you can remove it.  Don’t worry so much about the shoulder area.  You can perfect the shoulder areas in the next sculpting session.

You can see how the ballerina is taking shape now.

THE HANDS:

Ballerina-Project-2-hands-on-toothpicksThe hands are done separately.  They are sculpted into hand shapes, posed and put on toothpicks for a half-bake.  Be sure to twirl the toothpick so that it is removable so you can add the hands onto the ends of the arms.

Be sure to make the hand poses believable on both hands.  Once the hands are half-baked, you can scrape the wrist areas very thin so that when you attach onto the arm armature wire, you can connect both with fresh clay.

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