PRODUCTION PROCESS - Oven-Bake Clay


This is about the making process of a whale figure using oven-bake clay. The example shown here is a sgray whale strap that is about 6cm long.


STEP 1:

The basic material is oven-hardening clay called "Premo! Sculpey". I usually use the one in white. The picture (sorry it's already opened) is the package of 454g.

STEP 2:

Cut out some blocks of sculpey using a cutter, depending on the size of a figure you would like to make, and then slice them into small pieces to make it easier to knead.

STEP 3:

Knead them until they become soft enough to be shaped into a ball. Make sure to put some smaller amount aside for shaping flippers.

STEP 4:

Knead the bigger ball roughly into the shape of a whale body, which looks like a rugby ball.

STEP 5:

Knead one end of the body into flukes. When I shape fine parts like this one, plastic sculpting knives would be very helpful.

STEP 6:

Shape the main parts of the body so that it looks like the species you're trying to make. In this case of a gray whale, note the conic snout and some small ridges along its back.

STEP 7:

Knead the small portion of sculpey put aside in STEP 3 into the shapes of flippers.

STEP 8:

Attach the flippers to the body. Make sure that they are sticked to the body firm enough so that they won't fall off.

STEP 9:

Draw the line of the mouth and blowholes using a fine sewing kneedle.

STEP 10:

Scatter tiny pieces of sculpey around the snout and the back. (Gray whales have lots of parasites and barnacles.)

 

Most gray whales are "right-handed" in feeding at ocean floors, so there are less barnacles on the right side of its snout compared to the left.

STEP 11:

Stick these tiny pieces into crusty "barnacles" attached to the skin surface.

STEP 12:

Draw the throat grooves (usually 2 to 4 lines) with a sewing needle.

STEP 13:

Embed the eyes (pre-baked sculpey or tiny beads with brown color).

STEP 14:

Stick a short eyepin into the back.

 

STEP 15:

Bake it in an oven. The instruction of Sculpey reads "130℃ / 30min (per 6mm thickness)", but it can vary depending on the oven.

STEP 16:

When it cools down after baking, color the body with acrylic paints. Then leave it for 1 day to let the paint dry completely.

STEP 17:

Paint the clear polyurethane at least twice (which means it takes 2 days) so that it forms firm coating.

STEP 18:

Finally, attach a strap and it's complete!