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Review 03-31-09 Review Armature and bending limbs: While discussing sculpting we stumbled on armatures. When do we need to use them? What's the benefit of being able to bend an armature after covering it with clay? It was time for a review. 
This is part of a post sent to CITY-o-Clay when discussing the use of aluminum foil armatures while sculpting.


I started using armatures to cut down the amount of clay I was using for bulky projects.

(Dworkin was made in 1999)

If we don't see what's inside the project then why use clay on the inside? We can use aluminum foil instead. Just compress the foil to get all the air out. Burnish the outside of the aluminum foil to smooth the surface. Bulk up the project to almost the finished size. Then cover with enough clay to sculpt the details you need.

You'll save clay that way.

Now if your project has arms to lift, legs to cross, other poses, it's easier to make an armature out of aluminum foil, cover with clay, and then strike a pose.

Polymer clay bunches up like a muscle contracting. Check the butt cheek of this figure after the leg is bent backwards...






Also when you bend a human limb, like a leg, the clay will bunch up behind the knee and when you unbend it there'll be a crack, a messed up area, smooth that out and you have the indentation you need behind the knee. Check out this section on making knees...


The same goes for bending the arm, making an indentation on the inner elbow.




A word of caution, even with an armature if a figure isn't propped up in the oven it can fall over because the clay gets soft when it is heated. I had hoped that this green man would be sitting upright, with arms making a circle for the PenPal lady to stand up in. I didn't prop him up and he listed over...


So she had to recline in a deep dip when they were done...
PenPals/LeafLady/Base-014.htm It was a lucky save, but it made my hair stand up on end when I opened the oven. In a panic I tried to straighten him up and cracked him in a few places and I had to do emergency repair and just keep him bent over. LOL

It's funny now. It was horrific then. YIKES!

I'm glad we're discussing sculpting. I might use this post as another review. Yeah that's how reviews are made.




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