Horse Sculpture – Project #7 from Paper Mache Book

Paper Mache Horse

This horse sculpture is the last project in my new book Make Animal Sculptures With Paper Mache Clay. (The video was made before the book came out – it is now available on Amazon.com)

In the video you can see how I reinforced the legs so the armature is strong enough. A larger horse would need heavier wire, of course.

Now that this series is done, I get to play a little. Since my very first blog post, way back in November of 2008 was a paper mache dragon, I think it would be fun to make another one, using the techniques I’ve learned in the last 14 months. And maybe I’ll try a bit of whimsy, while I’m at it. I’ll take some photos to document the new dragon, and I’ll let you see him just as soon as it’s done.

I’m always a little surprised when I look at my stats, because that first dragon post is still one of the most popular paper mache tutorials on this site. It was made using the same materials and techniques that I taught myself to use about 50 years ago (yes, it’s been that long). Although it will be a lot easier to make my new one with an inside pattern and paper mache clay, (like I made the horse sculpture in today’s video), instead of paper strips and paste, the old methods definitely work.

‘Till then, enjoy.

African Elephant – Project #6 in New Paper Mache Book

Paper Mache Elephant

Get a fast start on your next paper mache project or hand-made gift with Jonni’s easy downloadable patterns for masks, animal sculptures and faux trophy mounts. The patterns help you create a beautiful work of art, even if you’ve never sculpted anything before.


This video is part of a series showing the projects in my new book Make Animal Sculptures With Paper Mache Clay. (The video was made before the book came out – it is now available on Amazon.com)

This video is a bit longer than normal, because I wanted to show you how the paper mache clay is added to the armature of the elephant sculpture, and how you can add textures to the clay.

Only one more video in this series, and I should have it finished tomorrow. I decided to make the horse the last project in the book, because so many people seem to be intimidated by them

The elephant sculpture in this episode is obviously a lot smaller than the baby Asian elephant I made a few months ago. He was also a lot easier to make. The size isn’t really an issue, since larger sculptures simply take more time to do – they aren’t necessarily harder to make. The big improvement was the paper mache clay.

The bigger sculpture was covered in many layers of traditional paper mache strips and paste, and each one needed to dry. Then I had to form the features, and cover them with another layer of paper. And lastly, the wrinkles had to be added with one last layer of paper strips and paste (because it isn’t an elephant without wrinkles!).

The small elephant was made with only two layers of clay, as you see in the video, so many of the steps were eliminated. And the clay itself covers any irregularities in the underlying armature. Way easier. And more fun.

On a slightly unrelated note, I found out yesterday that my paper mache clay butterfly tutorial is being put to good use. Models are being made to show the life cycle of butterflies, and the finished models will be on display at the State Arboretum in Virginia. I’ll post a link so you can see photos that show how they turned out as soon as I hear back from them.

I’m also starting a list of links over in the right-hand column that point to artists who are starting to use my paper mache clay recipe in their work. If that includes you, or someone you know, please let me know so I can add a link to my blogroll. (Hey – why pass up a free link!)

Begging Dachshund – Project #5 in New Paper Mache Book

Paper Mache Dachshund

Get a fast start on your next paper mache project or hand-made gift with Jonni’s easy downloadable patterns for masks, animal sculptures and faux trophy mounts. The patterns help you create a beautiful work of art, even if you’ve never sculpted anything before.

This video is part of a series showing the projects in my new book Make Animal Sculptures With Paper Mache Clay. (The video was made before the book came out – it is now available on Amazon.com)

In this video I introduce you to the fifth project in my upcoming paper mache book. The begging dachshund was designed to show readers how a flat pattern on the inside of an armature can be manipulated so the final sculpture has an interesting pose.

I borrowed the colors of my dachshund from one of the dogs living down the street from me. This breed is so popular I think almost everyone knows someone who would like to receive one of these sculptures as a gift. The sculpture itself doesn’t cost much money, (probably less than $5.00), but she’s precious because of the time and love that goes into making her.

She is a little hard to photograph because I designed her to be looking up at you. When she sits on a coffee table you look down at those big brown eyes – no wonder so many of these dogs end up being overweight…

Spring is happening all of a sudden here in our valley. I have a big shipment of hedge plants coming in the second week of April, so that means I’ll be out digging in the dirt. Fun stuff. But don’t worry – I’ll still be working hard to help Jessie to get this book finished.

Spotted Piglet – Project #4 in New Paper Mache Book

Paper Mache Piglet

Get a fast start on your next paper mache project or hand-made gift with Jonni’s easy downloadable patterns for masks, animal sculptures and faux trophy mounts. The patterns help you create a beautiful work of art, even if you’ve never sculpted anything before.

This video is part of a series showing the projects in my new book Make Animal Sculptures With Paper Mache Clay. (The video was made before the book came out – it is now available on Amazon.com)

In this video, I introduce you to a spotted piglet. He’s the fourth project in my upcoming book Make Animal Sculptures with Paper Mache Clay.

In case you’re wondering, the term “KuneKune” refers to a rare breed of miniature pigs from New Zealand.

I took the dogs out to run on Mt. Emily this morning, and I discovered that I’m even more out of shape than I realized. I broke my toe a few months ago, and it slowed me down for quite a while. At my age, a month of being really, really lazy can make muscle tone disappear fast. I suppose I’m lucky that the dogs are as out of shape as I am, so it wasn’t hard to keep up with them.

When I got back I worked on my new email notification system – you can sign up using the form over there on the right of this page. Don’t miss out on a single video or tutorial.

Now I’m off to the hardware store, my favorite place for art supplies. Today I need to find some heavy wire or thin metal rods to use in the series of large horses I plan to make in the next few months. Wandering around a hardware store makes me happy – so many weird and wonderful things in there, and nice people, too. I hope your day has something fun to look forward to, as well.

Enjoy.

Emperor Penguin Family, Project #3 in New Paper Mache Book

Penguin Family

Get a fast start on your next paper mache project or hand-made gift with Jonni’s easy downloadable patterns for masks, animal sculptures and faux trophy mounts. The patterns help you create a beautiful work of art, even if you’ve never sculpted anything before.

This video is part of a series showing the projects in my new book Make Animal Sculptures With Paper Mache Clay. (The video was made before the book came out – it is now available on Amazon.com)

In this episode I show you how the emperor penguin family is made, using patterns, some Styrofoam cubes and a hot glue gun to attach the legs, and paper mache clay.

I suppose you’ve already noticed that I did some Spring cleaning on my blog. With all these new videos, it seemed like a good time to fix things that were broken with the latest WordPress update, and to give the old girl a new design. If you find anything that still needs to be fixed, please let me know.

Now, about these videos. As soon as the first series is done and you’ve seen all the projects that will be in my upcoming book (Jessie says we can expect the book to be available in May), I’ll start some short how-to videos. I can’t do an entire project — I don’t know how to make the tape run really, really fast the way Dan Reeder does it — but I can show you the individual steps and techniques that I use to make my paper mache clay sculptures. Things like applying the clay to the forms, making the forms, etc. If there’s any specific thing you’d like to know about, please tell me in the comments below. I’ll compile a list, and I’ll try to get to as many suggestions as I can.

Clownfish – Project #2 in New Paper Mache Book

Paper Mache Clownfish

Get a fast start on your next paper mache project or hand-made gift with Jonni’s easy downloadable patterns for masks, animal sculptures and faux trophy mounts. The patterns help you create a beautiful work of art, even if you’ve never sculpted anything before.

This video is part of a series showing the projects in my new book Make Animal Sculptures With Paper Mache Clay. (The video was made before the book came out — it is now available on Amazon.com)

Sorry about the cat – very unprofessional of me. But at least she wasn’t making as much noise as usual…

 

Vintage Chicken – Project #1 in New Paper Mache Book

Vintage Chicken

Get a fast start on your next paper mache project or hand-made gift with Jonni’s easy downloadable patterns for masks, animal sculptures and faux trophy mounts. The patterns help you create a beautiful work of art, even if you’ve never sculpted anything before.

This video is part of a series showing the projects in my new book Make Animal Sculptures With Paper Mache Clay. (The video was made before the book came out – it is now available on Amazon.com)

You haven’t heard much from me in the last three months, because I’ve been working so hard on the new paper mache book. I think it will be called Make Animal Sculptures from Paper Mache Clay. I’ll let you watch the video first, and then I’ll tell you a bit more about the book and what I hope you’ll learn from it in the section below the video:

As you can see, (I hope I’m obviously still trying to learn how to focus the video camera!) the first project in the book is fairly simple. I call it the practice chicken, because that’s exactly how I hope readers will use it.

(I actually thought up the idea of using videos in my posts because people claim it’s so much faster than writing. Hah! This one took me all day yesterday, and all morning today. I do hope they’ll be easier, and better, as I learn how to actually do it right. Wish me luck!)

I tend to buy lots of how-to books, and I think it’s frustrating to read a book all the way through and still not  feel that I know how to use the skills the author tried to teach me. That’s why I think it’s so important to start off learning each required skill by doing a real project. I think the best way to learn is by doing. I organized the book so that each project will be just a little more challenging, but all the projects will use the same basic skills so readers get lots of practice. I also encourage readers to try the new skills with their own projects. After all – the true success of any how-to book comes when the reader takes what they’ve learned to create something entirely their own.

Writing a book like this has been an incredible adventure. I’ve learned the value of doing things over (I used to hate doing things over – now I actually enjoy seeing how much better things turn out when you get a bit of practice…).

Just as soon as Jessie (my book designer/typesetter/general book-creation expert) is back from vacation – she took a bit of time off the book project to prepare for the exhibit of her oil paintings – I should have all the chapters completely written and all the photos taken. Then she’ll take over and turn it all into a book, which should be available on amazon.com by the end of April.

Since my part of the book is almost all done, I’ll spend my free time learning how to make videos. After you’ve met all the characters in the book, I’ll start some short how-to videos to show you the basics of applying paper mache clay, building armatures with patterns, etc. Since I’m very  new at this video thing, feel free to offer advice on how I could do it better. (Yes, I will be working on the focus problem! )

And if there’s anything you’d like me to show you how to do (and if I can do it in about 6 minutes or less), your suggestions will be more than welcome. As always, I value your comments.

My Paper Mache Book Project, Suggestions Please…

This morning I received a comment from a reader who has been searching for a pattern she could use to make a monkey or gorilla in paper mache, like the patterns I’ve been creating for the elephant, panda, and others here on this blog. Unfortunately, I haven’t made the pattern she’s looking for yet, and as far as I know, this is the only place where you can find them. I may be wrong, but I believe I invented the idea of using patterns for papier mache sculptures.

For months now I’ve been intending to write a book that includes some of the patterns I’ve already created, with updated instructions using the less-messy paper mache clay instead of laminated paper and paste.

Read moreMy Paper Mache Book Project, Suggestions Please…