Tuesday, June 7, 2011

Jeanene's Stormwatch, the most difficult glaze job

This is Jeanene's Stormwatch, who was featured in an article in The Boat (the e-zine of Realistic Equine Sculpture Society) These process photos were shot in the workshop, where light is not ideal, but they do give an idea of what it looks like to underglaze a horse of this magnitude. The yellow is latex, the blue is painters tape. His light areas are masked off, then the body color is built up in underglazes. The dark areas are done first, to give the dappled effect. Then light colors are applied over the top, still raw. Let's take a peek...

A spray of French Brown all over, giving me something to dapple into.

Going between adding more underglaze color, and dappling off color with a typewriter eraser. Back and forth.

Dappling is finished, and any little debris is carefully brushed off.
Color is applied over the dappling, varying over the horse to give a shaded appearance.

The latex and painters tape are removed, and the edges are carefully gone over with an exacto and an eraser, to clean up and smudge the edge in some cases. Look carefully at the edges of the mane in the photo below. You can see that the mane tips are not cleaned up yet. There is still paint where it should be white. All of that is removed with an exacto blade... the mane alone took hours to do. The tail.... even worse.

He goes in the kiln at this point, to set these colors. Everything up until now has been worked on RAW, easily smudged, and difficult to see what has been applied underneath...

The hooves are detailed.

Tail is re-latexed, to allow spraying color on the leg. Reapplying the latex is an iffy proposition sometimes... it can remove color, or it may not match up.

Face is detailed, eyes painted, nostrils reddened, teeth yellowed...

Mane is now sprayed with color and shading.

Starting to spray the final glaze, which is going to be the clear glassy coating on top of the color. It is tinted green so that you can see it, and so that you can tell which glaze it is (satin or glossy, etc) The green is just food coloring and will burn off quickly.

At this point, with the glaze over the front end, I could hold the front end and spray color on the tail, though there is no photo of that part. I sprayed the mane and tail with varying yellows, taupes, and greys.
Bye bye color! When you reappear, it will be too late to fix anything... fingers crossed...

Success! His name is Enki, because like most Stormys, he is named after a weather god.

If you do this sort of work, you will know how sweaty under the armpits I was when I put him in the kiln, and what a sleepless night I spent waiting to see if it worked. :)And it did work. Enki was a record breaking price at auction.

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