Tuesday, November 20, 2012


Eventually at some point in my life I wanted to make some really big sculptures. When I worked in special effects there was nothing quite like being part of a team realizing a giant character sculpt, Mount Rushmore replica, and so on. I had been planning the 100 Robots Show at Gallery 1988 and thought it might be the perfect show for a really big sculpt.
The Revenge-Bot started as a sketch. The idea being that the creator built a giant dangerous metal monster to exact revenge on those who have wronged him. None of them probably deserved it. But it's the manifestation of an emotion, that is evil in a stupid kind of way. Taking the drawing and turning them into plans was the first step, just to visualize in my own mind how I was going to execute this piece and what materials to use. The way I had worked in the past is to build a strong armature sculpt it up in clay, them make a fiberglass mold for the casting, put the pieces together. This process is huge, one can easily go through 500 LBS of clay for something like this. My friend Julie B of Pretty In Plastic Studios was a huge help. She suggested doing the piece in sculpting foam with a resin coat. I have limited experience sculpting foam, and I knew that such a large piece is going to require a welded metal frame something I have no experience with. Julie put me in touch with Master Foam Sculptor (my title for him) Gerald Donofrio and Welder extraordinaire Erik James. Working with this guys and their ability to go with the project and improvise on the fly made the project much smoother.
Not coming form a drafting background most of the time when I sculpt I have a rough sketch and the rest is in my head. Erik and I talked about the project and I came up with an idea for the inner frame. The sculpture had to be able to come apart so designing the frame with sockets for the arms, legs and neck had to be figures out.
Also the 6 legs had different positions for a more dynamic pose with a slight lean to the body. I made a small sculpted mock up with wire legs to help figure out how to draw the right pose. Took a pic then sketched over. In the end it was just going to be better to come up with a way to make it work on the large scale where I could actually see the positions of each leg and foot.
The first step was the body. Erik did a fantastic job interpreting my really rough sketches and making the structure work. It seemed small but, not for long. Next stop the foam.

No comments: