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Daily Sculptors Page

Join the conversation and share your paper mache sculptures with our supportive community.

No artwork to share today? That’s OK, too… We’d love to hear from you. Just scroll down to the bottom of this page and use the comment form. :)

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15,310 thoughts on “Daily Sculptors Group Page”

  1. I have finally found a practical use for my Brother Scan-n-Cut machine that I bought years ago only to find it really did not serve my purpose. It will scan an image and cut it out directly from the image. I know nothing about Cricut machines so I’m not sure it will do the same but the SnC takes the tedium out of cutting out the pieces. I just print the pattern pages out from the .pdf document onto card stock but I’ve come to realize that old file folders work very well. They are slightly thicker than the cardstock I bought. I am working on the Elephant wall hanging and have found that if I print the trunk pieces on a different color from the cheeks, mouth, head, etc it helps me keep track of the assembly process. This may not be news to others more experienced crafters, but I wanted to share this shortcut. I am not advocating that people go out and buy a die cutting machine but if you have one collecting dust or find one on a garage sale …

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  2. Hello Jonni, I’m A newbie to paper mache, I really love your videos, And of course I Love, Love, all of your animal creations. I am attempting a project of my own, I have 3 dogs, which I am going to make a paper-mache sculptures to resemble each one of my baby’s (doggy’s). I have questions on the pattern, well not so much about the pattern but the result. I followed your video on your Kangaroo, I was wandering if you had completed in sculpting the Kangaroo? will it look like the others that were in the back-drop of the video, for example the pig, Is your kangaroo like the pig, or is it a different type of sculpture?

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    • Hi Gabriel. I didn’t finish the kangaroo – I really just made the pattern to show how to do it. The method is the same one I teach in my book about sculpting. The patterns that you make like the one in the video with the kangaroo won’t create all the shapes for you, like the ones I designed for the sculptures behind me in the videos. The flat patterns are made to create the outline of your sculpture. You can base them off a photo or a sketch, cut them out of flat cardboard, and then add crumpled paper or foil to create the rounded shapes. You still need to do the sculpting, but you’ll know in advance that you have all the proportions right. This is a good video series showing how that type of patterns are used. Have fun! :)

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  3. From Helen from BC–I think I solved my rubbery paper mache problem–it seems to have been the glue. I was using Lepages white wood glue, and I switched to Elmer’s white school glue and it is not rubbery anymore!
    Thanks to all who sent me advice!
    Helen

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  4. Hi Jonni,
    After seeing your Ogre mask, is there any chance you would consider doing a Quasimodo of Notre Dame figure?
    Perhaps it could be a full body (small size) figure, pulling on the bell rope.
    Just an idea!! ?
    Joël. Australia

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  5. Hi,
    I am from British Columbia, Canada. I am looking forward to trying some outdoor sculptures.

    I would love to try sculpting with the outdoor paper mache, but I am having trouble with the mixture. I got quikcrete from our local Rona store.,(That is what they gave me when I asked for portland cement.) I am using Lepages multi-purpose white wood glue.

    The toilet paper(water soaked and measured to 110gm) and white glue went together well, and mixed up just like what I could see on your video. As soon as I put in a bit of quickcrete, the whole thing went rubbery. Do you think it is the glue, or the quikcrete at fault?

    I am hoping someone may have some suggestions for me! I have a tinfoil rabbit all ready for sculpting!
    Helen from BC

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    • Hi Helen. Thanks for posting your question here – as you know, I don’t have an answer for you, but I hope one of our readers can help you out. Good luck! :)

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    • Portland cement is quikrete. It has sand gravel and stones incorporated into this “quikrete. However I do remember Jonni commenting about the glue. I honestly am somewhat concerned confused about the outdoor mixture. There are a lot of videos on you tube concerning the outdoor mixture . Hope you get good results. Sorry I wasn’t much help.
      Janet

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      • Just to clarify, Portland cement is in Quikrete’s concrete mix, but that brand may also sell the Portland cement by itself. We don’t use the gravel and stones in the mix, just the Portland cement by itself. Any DIY store should have it on hand. But it shouldn’t get rubbery when the glue is added, so I don’t know what’s going on.

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        • I think it will be some other ingredient in the quikrete. It is essentially concrete designed to cure fast hence the name. So yes, what you are looking for is pure cement. I don’t think the name Portland is important, as far as I know that’s related to the USA and that it comes from Portland. Just ask for cement and tell them you need pure cement and not a premix product.

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    • Hi Helen! Quikcrete is not Portland cement-sorry. That may be why it gummed up. Quick Crete has aggregate and sometimes sand already added in; Portland cement is a very fine powder, usually white. If you have a masonry company nearby, that is where you can purchase it-at least that’s where I get mine. My first time looking for it was at Lowe’s (big box store) and they tried to sell me Quikcrete too. Just be aware that the Portland cement comes in 97lb (44kg?) bags-you may want to find someone to share it with ?

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      • That reminds me – I found a small package of white Portland cement on Amazon here. There are other listings on that site, too, and some etsy.com sellers have smaller bags of it. I forgot to mention that earlier – thanks for reminding me, Maggie!

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    • It may not be 100% portland cement. There are different mixes – M, S, N, etc. You would need to find out which mix was used in the original recipe. I am sending a link that may help clarify this or totally confuse everyone. Also it may not be the cement mix but perhaps old glue. Or too much of the cement mix or the cement mix added at the wrong time.
      https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=elIccBkhm2Y

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  6. Hi all,
    I’ve made the elephant head and I was wondering if there is a way to turn it into a mask that sits on the head or attach it to something so it can be carried?

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    • Hi Aimee. I’ve never tried using the elephant as a mask, but some of my readers have adapted it to be part of a costume. Here’s a few links that might give you some ideas:

      This one was printed much larger, and the actor appears to be holing it up with a stick – I think fabric was used for the ears so it would move during the dance. The stick idea would work for an elephant that was printed the normal size, too.
      This one was also printed larger, but it has the regular ears and trunk. They came up with a creative idea for the rest of the costume, too.

      Elephant eyes are not in the same place as ours, so it would be difficult to see out if it was worn over the head – but it might be possible to cut holes and cover them with nylon stocking material, so the actor could see out. But I think the stick idea would be easier.

      Have fun!

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  7. Hi! We are working on costumes for a production of Finding Nemo Jr. The first thing I am working on is a seahorse headdress or mask and then a back/tail as well. I was wondering if one of your existing patterns can be modified to do this and I was thinking either the horse, dragon, or giraffe might work. Do you have suggestions?

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    • Hi Jennifer. Are you trying to make something like the orange headdresses that are worn in this video? If you are, I don’t have anything like that. Most of my Lion King Jr patterns have the cap part that sits on the head. However, each cap is designed to connect with the other parts of the lion or the mandrill, etc. I think the easiest way to make something very similar to the headdresses in the video is to use bicycle helmets. The ‘fin’ would just be a large piece of cardboard cut to the right shape, and you can make the nice radiating lines by cutting thinner cardboard and gluing it onto the fin before covering everything with a layer of paper mache. I haven’t seen the play, though, so there might be a different design that you’re looking for. When you do get your costumes built, we’d love to see how they come out!

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  8. Hi Jonni
    I am just starting to do the baby elephant wall sculpture. You say to cover front and back of card stock after you have put pattern on it. I don’t understand what this is for! Please addvise.
    Thank you
    Regards
    Norma

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    • Hi Norma. The cardstock is not very strong, so the plastic is added to make it stiffer and to prevent the wet paper mache paste from soaking into the paper and softening it. Most of my patterns now use cereal box cardboard instead, which is strong enough to stand up to paper mache. However, it may work if the elephant is covered with masking tape after it’s all put together, without the plastic, but I haven’t actually tried doing that.

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  9. Hi, on the elephant head have you used wire around the trunk or are the things that look like folds or rolls around it just the paper towel and clay folded to look that way? Thank you.

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      • Hi I’m so sorry for another question on the ears – piece e-10 does it fold backwards or forwards? Thank you :)

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        • Hi Clio. That piece will fold towards you, with its right sides together, so it covers a portion of the other ear parts. You’ll see on page 9 how it looks from the back, after the lower tabs have been taped to the head. The ear is the trickiest part of the pattern, but it will make sense once everything comes together.

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    • Hi Audrey. I don’t put paper mache outside, but one of our readers wrote a guest post where she told us how she makes her sculptures waterproof. I haven’t tried it yet, but her mushroom has been outside in Florida for several years, and she says it’s still fine. You can see her post here.

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  10. I am at my two week mark for knee replacement recovery and doing surprisingly well. My physical therapist has been a God send and I would like to make her a gift…this is where you wonderfully creative artists come in. ? I cannot think of something that she would like that relates to her field of expertise. Ideas? TIA

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    • Hi Carol. I’m so glad you’re recovering so well. And now you’ve given us a very interesting question!

      My first thought was a cheetah, because they move so fast, but a physical therapist tends to help people slowly improve – more deliberately and focused, I guess. But that makes me think of the caring part of their job – so the connection between any two animals would work for that. Two cats piled up in their bed, with one grooming the other’s ear? A bit too much?

      I do hope you get some better ideas from other readers. :)

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    • Hi Carol

      1 idea for you from me
      The Kneeler – with human feet (maybe a wall hanged and just half a front torso and in kick-mode) might be a nice “nod” to you therapist for recovering appreciation?
      They have great patience and are very fast moving ? and the obvious knee in the name ? that’s my contribution anyway ? have a wonderful day

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  11. Jennifer Good wanted me to post my question, has anyone used one of her recipes to make fairy houses with glass bottles or plastic bottles. I don’t use any wire, but I do use cardboard. I have been using paper clay. Thank you.

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    • I haven’t but it sounded interesting enough that I did a search to see what they might look like. It would be a very fun project. Years ago my husband and I made a fairy house using stucco over a wooden structure. We embedded smooth river rocks and small branches right into the stucco. It’s held up amazingly well in the backyard. Anyway, if i did something similar again I’d definitely use Jonny’s outdoor paper cement clay recipe. It would be much simpler to construct and a whole lot lighter.

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    • Thanks, Lisa! I’ve never heard of that bird before – but I just looked them up, and they are beautiful. I plan to do an Australian collections someday, and I’ll definitely put it on my list. Thanks for the idea! :)

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      • Australian Collection!!! Oh I hope you’re inspired to try an emu, ostrich or cassowary! Looking forward to whenever you start creating!

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        • Those would be challenging sculptures – but they sure do sound like fun. Especially the cassowary – they look like they should be living with the dinosaurs. :)

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    • Hi Sherri. I do hope to make a template for a bison head next month, but I haven’t even started yet. I have no idea how long it will take, so I can’t tell you when it will be available.

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  12. Hey, Jonni! I love the Trex so much! My grandson has claimed it to be his own….but when will it be finished gramma? ? Anyway, I’m ready to put the teeth in place and I wondering if you think it would be okay to use air dry clay? Thanks again for all your videos and patterns.
    Carol Brown

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    • Hi Carol. Yes, I think the air dry clay would work just fine. I’m glad your grandson likes it – and I really hope you’ll show it off here, too – we’d love to see how it turns out. :)

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  13. Hi I was wondering if your form for sculpting a head shape will work with Eva foam? I am looking for something that is very sturdy to build my face onto for like a cosplay design.
    Thanks!

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    • I have never used EVA foam, so I’m not sure. Some people have used my animal mask patterns with foam, but they usually print them larger and make really big masks for theater productions. I’m afraid you’d need to experiment with it to see if it would work.

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  14. Hi Jonni
    I love your paper mache patterns and videos. I already made the dragon and elephant.
    I live in an area that has Big Horn sheep. I want to make some heads and eventually make an entire sheep.
    Your patterns are amazing and would love to see what you could come up with if you would be interested..
    Thanks

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    • I’m right in the middle of making a pattern for a lamb – domesticated, though, not wild. I already have a big horn sheep head wall sculpture on my list, but the list keeps getting longer… If you make your sculpture, I hope you’ll let us see it when it’s done. :)

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      • I am sure you have many requests and ideas. Not sure if there is a big difference between domestic lamb and a big horn except size.if I get one done before you I will share.
        Thanks for sharing all your talents.

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  15. I don’t have any artwork to show today but I do want to share something that I have found that helps me and my very arthritic hands to continue to do paper mache. I love your paper mache clay recipe but find it difficult to squeeze out the water in the toilet paper. However,after much deliberation and looking around my home to find a solution, I found my old salad spinner. Once I’ve soaked the toilet paper in hot water I place it in the salad spinner and away we go. I have to drain the water two or three times to continue the spinning, but it saves my hands for the part I enjoy the most.

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