Saturday, September 11, 2010

In The Frame / Process Breakdown

Start of the semester, but finally able to get back in the studio on Friday.

Most of the day spent painting and finishing the frame. Hard to patient here, because I'd like to get started and see if my imagined process is going to work, but I can't do that without having everything else perfect and ready to go. Which means 4 or 5 hours of sanding, painting, and prepping before I can really get "started".

The good news is that I finally did get to put some figures down on the frame, and it works just like I thought.

First, I spray-painted all the elements with a matte white automotive primer. This has two benefits. First, it makes all the color consistent, and protects the plastic from UV light, which yellows it.

Second, it creates a stencil, which I use as a map when it comes time to register the pieces on the frame.

It's slow going, but I think I've got the system worked out, and the end is definitely in sight.

The process thus far:

1) Make original figures in Super Sculpey
2) Bake figures
3) Carve and sand baked figures
4) Mold figures
5) Cast elements in plastic (From here, each step is repeated for each casting)
6) Soak figures in TSP to remove mold release
7) Brush figures with wire bush to scuff surfaces
8) Drill multiple holes into the back of each figure to anchor the brads
9) Glue brads into holes
10) Make foam "testing wall"
11) Cover wall with craft paper
12) Demarcate projected final dimensions on craft paper
13) Compose image, punching brads through craft paper into foam wall
14) Modify, cut, and crop individual elements where necessary
15) Make frame
16) Paint frame
17) Paint figures
18) Transfer sections of figures over to auxiliary foam board
19) Cut craft paper sections
20) Using perforated craft paper as a guide, drill holes in frame
21) Glue each element into corresponding holes

Looking at it like this makes me feel incredibly clever, and totally foolish. Like I've created an elegant Rube Goldberg machine that doesn't do anything.

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