Daily Sculptors Page

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

Paper Mache Chihuahua
  • Tell us about the project you’re working on, even if it isn’t finished yet.
  • Ask for advice if you need it.
  • Help other readers find answers to their own questions about paper mache.
  • Show off your projects when they’re done so we can see how they came out. We love to see what other paper mache artists are doing.
  • And tell us a bit about yourself. We’re glad you’re here. Welcome!

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.

13,948 thoughts on “Daily Sculptors Group Page”

  1. Now I have my first clay. I’ve started with the “original”. Get on with it until I find the right amount in relation to my toilet. Still a little hard to translate your units of measure to measure Transcript in Swedish. The first clay was amazing wonderful to work with, tried both thicker and thinner layers. Tried to also carve designs in the “bowl” which I also sandpaper. The next step is gesso.
    [img]http://ultimatepapermache.com/wp-content/uploads/2012/04/Picture86.jpg[/img]

    • Looks like a great start Gisela. What I noticed in your picture is the uniformity in the thickness of your bowl. Is that all clay or is there a form underneath. I’ve realized with my own application of clay that I go too thin sometimes.

      Rich

      • Hi, I have begun to add paper strips into a bowl shape. Then I’ve built on the edges, front and back with pieces of cardboard. The clay I have the relatively thick in order to emulate a carved wooden bowl, and to splice the pattern. At my cat that I work with are clay very thin. So far it works but I’m worried about the final finish, but yet I am not there.

        * Gisela

    • It’s looking great! Have you tried Google for your unit translation? For instance, you can put in the search bar “1 us cup to ml” and it spits out the answer. I know those of us in the US are terribly backwards when it comes to our measuring units, but we seem to be rather attached to them. 🙂

      • I have recently found that page and it turned out that I was on the right track. Has re-measured the toilet paper. It turned out that it contains almost twice as much as your reel.
        And I must say that your measurement units over the original ours are strange. Operates on with my cat. The details paws, tail and head takes time, but it is so funny. * G

        • Hi Gisla

          I like your pot
          I live in Holland and have trouble with the messurments myself
          Thats why I bought a messuring jug with both cups and ml in one.
          I have to use the milliliter /cup messurements for all the ingredients (flour and suger as well as water and paper and Joint compoind)
          It would be handy if we would know the weight of products like flour and filler and hopefully someone will translate that for us Europeans 😉
          Here is what I use in the meantime :
          · 1 cup = about 250 ml
          · 1/3 cup = ca 80 ml
          · 1/2 cups = 125 ml
          · 1 tsp. vinegar = ca 5 ml
          1 tablespoon = 15 ml
          1 teaspoon = 5 ml
          1/2 teaspoon = 2,5 ml
          1/4 teasoon = 1,5 ml

          Hope this will help
          I have a question for you Gisla, what brand Joint compoined do you get in your country ( it is Sweden if I recall..) and you mention the first version , do you mean the one with the PVA glue? if so what glue do you get?

          I make a combination of version 2 with the flour and the home made glue from Rich and Knauff Stuc pasta.
          I will buy ceremic clay this week and try the real Ultimate version Jonny caly 2

          Bye for now
          Gea

          • Hej Gea!
            Sorry to slow in response. But here I am sending pictures of the joint compound I bought here in Sweden and the glue I used to J?nniClay original that I’ve tried. I have found this link _ http://www.infoom.se/omvandla-konvertera/ _ converter on the net., And your measurements seems to be good.
            Has a lot to learn in every moment and take a clay at a time so I do not get too confused. Hope you got an answer to your question, good luck
            [img]http://ultimatepapermache.com/wp-content/uploads/2012/04/IMAG2824.jpg[/img]

  2. Wow !! So excited, and I need this push. I find excuses everyday not to work, but this challange I need. Cant wait to be part of a working group..I paint in acrylic and color pencil, and work in polymer clay as well as the mache. I did after a day of errands go into the work room tonight and made 3 small poly figures. My poly figures can become inspiration for my mache figures and vice versa.

  3. I got busy today, and had a lot of fun. I used some of the things I’ve been learning about human anatomy to start creating a human-like figure, a “garden helper” person. I liked the paper mache version that I threw together with toilet paper rolls for limbs, and a dixie cup for the rib cage. But then I realized that someone with such gloriously large feet wouldn’t want to wear the big clunky boots I had in mind for her – she’d want to go barefoot, even in the rain. Since I didn’t pay enough attention to her ankles I figured I should start over, so I’m now using the original as a model, but using wet clay over a wire armature. She seems to be more alive in the new version, although I’m still at the very beginning stages.
    [img]http://ultimatepapermache.com/wp-content/uploads/2012/04/gardenhelper1.jpg[/img]
    [img]http://ultimatepapermache.com/wp-content/uploads/2012/04/gardenhelper2.jpg[/img]

    • Jonni, that’s looking nice! You notice my own figures tend towards the macabre…there’s no need to worry about “proper” proportions there! Maybe you were subconsciously creating a Hobbit. Throw some hair on those feet and it would be perfect!

      Rich

      • Hobbit – I like that. People have such specific ideas about what various “people” look like – the gnomes, fairies, trolls, etc. I wasn’t sure I could fit her into any of those boxes, but I was thinking about the “hobbit people” who’s bones were recently found in Indonesia. It’s fun to think about scientists “discovering” a whole new race of humans that the local people have known about for centuries. They probably didn’t have big feet, though… 🙂

  4. Today was a pretty productive day. I’m pretty much finished with the silk screen press so it’ll be time to shut up and start printing finally.

    I also worked on the Cauldron Creep, putting on the two coats of Monster Mud. Once it dries fully — within 24-48 hrs. — I’ll paint it and seal it with two coats of deck sealer. I also finished painting the cauldron itself, aging it and rust it. It was a bit of a marathon as the painting took several hours to complete, but I’m pretty happy with the overall look of it.

    The last bit of work, which I may save for some time closer to Halloween, will be to run some PVC pipe under the cauldron so I’ll be able to attach a fog machine to it and give it that “bubbling” cauldron look. I’ll also be adding some LED lights in his eyes and gluing some stringy hair on the skulls head. The real challenge will be figuring out where I’m going to store it!

    Rich
    [img]http://ultimatepapermache.com/wp-content/uploads/2012/04/042112171713.jpg[/img]
    [img]http://ultimatepapermache.com/wp-content/uploads/2012/04/042112185517.jpg[/img]
    [img]http://ultimatepapermache.com/wp-content/uploads/2012/04/042112185444.jpg[/img]

    • Wow – the detail and aging on that cauldron is incredible. And the creepy guy – do you just do these for your Halloween display in your own yard, or do you show these in a gallery somewhere? Amazing work!

    • Rich ! I am a fan and I love your cauldron !
      The copper/bronze look its amazing and looks so unbelievable real , who would think this is paper mache!
      Your scary skelleton Creep is absolutly WICKED

      Gea

      • Phenomenal … and is this cocoa rust or paint? Love this. And with fog bubbling out it’ll be wonderful. Great job Rich!

    • Thanks, all. These will just be displayed in my yard, Jonni. And b, this was just paint. I was so engrossed in doing this and vlogging it for my YouTube channel that I forgot to try the cocoa powder. Next project I’ll do that…if I remember!

      gea, thanks for the kind words. I’m sure it was way more detail and effort than it was worth, since most people probably won’t even notice it come Halloween, but I’ll know!

      Rich

      Oh, and I’m being bad today. No plans to work on any projects. Instead I spent the day with some friends and discussed the possibility of doing a pro haunted house. Doubt it will come to anything since the laws in NJ are super strict following the haunted house fires at the Jersey shore in the 1970’s, but it’s fun to imagine. Now THAT would be a fun job to have.

      • Thanks! With all the pieces needed to actually print a shirt finally finished, I can start printing. Just have to complete on a couple of details on the Cauldron Creep so that I can store it away till Halloween, then I can start printing t-shirts. Sometime this week I imagine I’ll make my first attempt!

        Rich

          • I’ve been toying with some designs though I need to finalize them. A friend suggested something along the lines of a motorcycle club patch but for haunters, and I like that idea since I used to ride with a club (though some called us a “gang.”). So that’s where my designs are taking me.

            Rich

  5. [img]http://ultimatepapermache.com/wp-content/uploads/2012/04/DSC00034.JPG[/img]
    Hola a todos!!! Estoy muy contenta porque encontré la forma para subir las fotos.
    Este conejo lo hice siguiendo los pasos de Jonni.
    Ahora voy a poder seguir mostrando mis trabajos.
    Cariños
    Mònica

  6. Well, I worked all day yesterday and part of this morning on a small relief sculpture, and then it ended up back in the clay bin. I’m starting to figure out shoulders, but eyes still have me stymied.

    Do you even feel that if you could just find the perfect tool, or the perfect material, or the perfect book or DVD, that sculpting would suddenly become easy? I keep having that delusion, but I’m trying to ignore it.

    • Hi Jonni

      I have been searching the net to find inspiration and tips on how to paint eyes and faces because I want to paint my little heads but want to practice first
      I found this Japanes /chineese sculpter HANANO001 and he or she makes it look so simple how to create a face and the body.It might be what you are looking for 😉
      This artist has a lot of films on youtube and also a film on how to make a ball joint doll!
      This 39 sec film is amazing:
      http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0qNtljBAnKE&NR=1&feature=endscreen

      And here is the first of the serie this artist has done:
      http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=eRqgG-16cdc&feature=related

      I have made pictures of my things but now I have to figure out how to upload them 😉
      Do the photo’s have to be a certain size? if you have simple tips That would help me that would be great !

      Gea
      (or is it c

      • You find the most interesting things! Thanks for the links – I can see I’ll be spending some time on YouTube today.

        Yes, the photos have to be small enough for the system to accept them. The easiest way to achieve that is to set your camera to “save for the web.” That would be about 72 pixels per inch. Some cameras will do that but still make huge photos, (I’ve received some by email that would require a 55 inch wide monitor to show them full sized!) That won’t work, of course. 600 to 800 pixels is about as wide as you want to go. If your camera won’t do that automatically, you might need to edit them using image editing software. Do try it – I know we’d all love to see what you’ve been working on.

  7. Hi Jonni

    Can you explain why I can only read your last comment and the last 2 of Rich?? where did the other 185 coments go or is it my pc?

    SMILE
    Gea

    • No, it’s not your PC. The blog is set to allow only 50 top-level comments (plus all replies to those comments) per page. Once it hits 50, the system automatically moves the comments to the comment archives, and the new ones continue to build up on the original post.

      This keeps the load time to a reasonable level, but it does make it seem like all those comments have somehow disappeared. But they’re still there. Click on the link to “previous comments” up above, and you’ll find them all. 🙂

  8. Oops! Cats out of the bag. Yep, that’s what I’ve been doing ever since I retired from the police department. As I used to say about being a cop, beats working for a living! 🙂

    Rich

  9. While the back was better today — no pain, yay! — I didn’t get around to Monster Mudding my Cauldron Creep. I was finishing up a few more details on my silk screen press. I built the screen holder rack today that comes in two different sizes should I get really ambitious with my printing. I also added the microtuners to the screens, but I think they’re going to need some micro adjustments themselves. I’ll be opting for wooden blocks instead of the plastic draw glides I installed because there’s a little too much flex in them.

    Monster Mud tomorrow, so long as the ran holds out. I may begin painting the cauldron tonight though. No promises, however.

    Rich
    [img]http://ultimatepapermache.com/wp-content/uploads/2012/04/042012183729.jpg[/img]

      • Yay for no pain. And the set up looks great. Jonni, what in the post/picture clued you in to stock analysis? : )

        • The “clue” was the link on Rich’s website that says “Read Rich’s Investment Articles!.” 🙂

          I think it would be a lot of fun to learn more about some of the things we all do outside of paper mache. Sort of complete the picture, and see more of the real people behind all the wonderful creations that are being added to this page. Would anyone else like that?

  10. I’ve been feeling a bit out of sorts lately – at loose ends. And I finally realized that it’s because I don’t have a specific goal in mind, a specific project that needs doing. I’m always most involved and intensely focused when I’m writing a book. I know what needs to be done to get to the finish line, and I know all the steps I need to take to get there – even when I really don’t know in advance how the project will come out. Since I’m not writing a book at the moment, I’ve been in “learning” mode. Which is important, but just not enough.
    So, today while I was on my morning walk with the dog I committed to a new project. Not writing this time, though. I will be making a series of small portraits (30 is the arbitrary number I’ve assigned myself, so I’ll know when the project is “done”). If they turn out OK, I’ll throw them up on an Etsy.com page. I really like Xan’s idea of doing art for a good cause, so I think I’ll donate part of the proceeds (if I actually sell any) to the local shelter for abused kids. I haven’t actually talked to them about it yet – I just came up with the idea this morning.
    I think it will be fun. And it already feels good to have some more direction. I’ll keep playing with the figure sculptures, too, of course.
    Nothing to show yet today. I hope to have something done, at least enough for a photo, this afternoon.

    • This sounds like a great idea. Both the ‘giving yourself a set number and goal’ and the giving a portion to something you care about. Nice!

      — b

      • But then this morning, as I was reading a book about creativity and how epiphanies happen when your mind wanders and you think about something else, my mind wandered. And I think I figured out why I haven’t been having fun with my learning projects lately. I’ve been trying to be too serious, and I’ve been trying to get paper mache to be something that it’s not. So I’m going to start playing around a bit more. Still doing the 30 things, but maybe not exactly the way I thought I would yesterday when I wrote that comment. Wish me luck.

        • Yes, fun is key. I was painting yesterday and got so engrossed I ended totally cramping my hand (holding the item I was painting) … I love that I can lose time like that when exploring with paper mache. It’s the experimentation and trying new things … and it’s frankly one of the reasons I adore paper mache — because I’m willing to play with it. The medium is made for that. We make it art, but it was trash when it started, and I figure the worst thing that can happen is that I fail to transform it, and it’s still trash when I finish. I can live with that kind of risk. 🙂

  11. Here’s another new piece: “Party tonight, sailor?” It a polyglot of materials but mostly Jonni’s paper clay. The figure open backed and was molded over a clay plug. The size is: 14.5″ x 17.5″ x 4″ and hangs.
    [img]http://ultimatepapermache.com/wp-content/uploads/2012/04/PTS-1web.jpg[/img]

  12. Once again it was work on the screen press and the “Cauldron Creep” prop. Things took a little longer to get done today because as soon as I bent over to start working my back started spasming again. And it was fierce this time, but I literally just gritted my teeth (and cursed a few times) but worked through the pain.

    So I built the screen stretcher today and tried to take video but my camera’s memory would suddenly fill up so I’m not sure how much usable footage there is. I did take a couple of stills of my handiwork just so I can share them here.

    I also attached the skeleton to the PVC frame of the Halloween decoration so now it looks a little more of what he’s supposed to. Depending on how the back’s doing tomorrow I may start Monster Mudding his robes. I’ll also be adding the microadjusters to the screens so that I’ll be able to precisely dial in my registration marks and get perfect prints time after time (or so they tell me).

    All in all, though, I was happy with how the screens turned out. Using chiffon instead of regular screen material looks like it will be a viable, inexpensive alternative for certain applications.

    Rich
    [img]http://ultimatepapermache.com/wp-content/uploads/2012/04/041912180918.jpg[/img]
    [img]http://ultimatepapermache.com/wp-content/uploads/2012/04/041912174601.jpg[/img]
    [img]http://ultimatepapermache.com/wp-content/uploads/2012/04/041912174347.jpg[/img]

  13. Spent time painting today. I’m trying to match a finish I did about 6 months ago. It was an accident at the time, and while I knew I should have written down what I did I was running short on time. So now I’m trying to recreate it.

    Ever done that?

    The photos don’t capture it exactly — it’s more pearlescent, than is showing through. But it’s close. And I’m pretty sure I dry brushed the piece with black — which is what creates those spider lines.
    [img]http://ultimatepapermache.com/wp-content/uploads/2012/04/mache257.jpg[/img]

    I tried something similar on another piece, in purple this time. And it’s not quite right.
    [img]http://ultimatepapermache.com/wp-content/uploads/2012/04/horn-paintingdetail.jpg[/img]

    I know that I need more contrast, that’s part of the problem. The purples were darker than the blues on the original. I think I used more pearlescent pigment on the blue piece as well. And it may also be that the texture on the blue was rougher. This is the 3rd paint job on the purple piece, and the edges aren’t as sharp, surely. I like it on its own. But it’s not what I was trying to do.

    I just have the final details to go on my fish, but this is one of them, so I need to figure it out before I can totally finish.
    [img]http://ultimatepapermache.com/wp-content/uploads/2012/04/cathyfish-paintingdetail.jpg[/img]

    Pretty pleased overall. 🙂

    • The finish looks great. And I do things accidentally all the time – so frustrating when something really works but you can’t remember how to do it again.

      I spent the day on a small clay bust, trying to learn how shoulders work. I don’t really feel like I got much done, even though I spent many hours on it. And I’ll probably do the same thing tomorrow.

  14. Today I bought calcium carbonate, joint compound and boiled linseed oil to my clay. Unfortunately I have some difficulties in translating the unit of measure cup to the Swedish deciliter measurements. My toilet roll containing approximately 1 liter of wet paper and I’ll have 1:24 cups. Hard to figure out. Now I’m really tired after reading so many recipes that I hardly know what to do.

    Have a nice evening * Gisela

  15. Put a varnish undercoat on the first fish, and made a couple more test batches of smooth clay. Narrowing things down, I think. More tomorrow.

    — b

  16. Did some more work on the screens for the press today. Actually I just finished coating them with the polyurethane, lightly sanding between each coat. While waiting for the coats to dry, I did some work on the actual prop that the cauldron goes with.

    The prop is a PVC frame onto which a skeleton is attached. It will look as though it’s hunched over stirring the cauldron with an oversized stick. However the head will be independent of the body and will move up and down as if it’s looking into the cauldron and then up at the people walking by.

    Getting the head movement right was the tricky part. A small vent motor — such as the one you’d find in your car for the AC or heat — controls the head movement (a wiper motor will control the stirring stick motion). Finding the right attachment point for the motor held me up, but in the end I think I got it just the way I want. Then there was cutting the PVC parts to size.

    You can see how it’s progressing in the picture below, though it doesn’t have the skeleton attached yet. At the bottom you can see what look like exceptionally long PVC feet. Those pipes will actually sit underneath the cauldron locking the entire prop in place so it doesn’t fall over in the wind (it looks more impressive — and complicated — in person 🙂 ).

    I also built the screen stretcher today, having gone to Ikea last night like I said (and Home Depot, Lowes, and Harbor Freight Tools, too!). So tomorrow I should start stretching screens and hopefully be printing by the weekend (I keep saying).

    Rich
    [img]http://ultimatepapermache.com/wp-content/uploads/2012/04/screenshot-3.jpg[/img]

  17. I made an armature out of wire and aluminum foil and started working on my figure sculpture. It will be fully clothed in an old house-dress, cardigan and wellies, but I do want the basic form to be close to human. Just as soon as I started to add paper and tape, it felt “right,” like I was coming home. No scary expensive armature inside to worry about (I am using the stand that came with my Truform armature to hold the lady up – I like it.)

    By the way, does anyone know anything about the material called “Japanese paperclay?” This doll is made with it, (the doll is gorgeous).
    [img]http://ultimatepapermache.com/wp-content/uploads/2012/04/armature2.jpg[/img]

    • This is looking very good Jonni I like the shape of her body and love to see what you come up with!
      Soory I cant show pictures yet… I will try and load up some pictures this weekend of the things I have been making . Some of the writting and pictures on this page have inpired me to make some little heads to try and sculpt without tape or armature. To make some caracteritic faces and realy enjoyed doing so. I seem to have trouble making miniture feminin faces but for now the old men’s faces are fine 😉
      I have made 4 out of varois recipes but the last one is in the oven now ( jonni caly-1 with rich’s glue) and its amazing…. I was able to make a joung boy with ” a real haircut” by cutting into little tin sheets of the paste 😉

      At my work there was a puppet show with handdolls and paper mache heads. They were wicked and the children loved the show even the 9-12 year olds..I might try making them my self and the miniture heads might become finger puppets..

      B maskmaker was mentioning sticky handpalms and leaving a coat on them. I have that problem too. I have tried many different recipes but cant seem to win that challange it does look like cooky dough that you have to scrape of your hands and fingers !
      Tried putting in more flour , les joint compoined ect… I can still work with it and learn and experiment but perhaps the clay version 2 with the powder clay will work for me or Rich his monster clay! ( by the way Rich is that recipe on your site?? could only find it on youtube 😉 I will have to wait for PAYDAY first hihi

      The link of that pretty face on etsy is a seriios challange as well as painting my objects… A part from my tree, non of my items have a paintjob jet!
      I am still a bit unsure about the technics, the paint choice and if there wont be any fungus for I spotted funges on the edge of one of my containers with the clay ;-( Holland is verry wet and my ingredients must be different then Jonni’s

      If anyone could give me tips on how to store and what paints to use that would be great

      Bye for now

      Oh by the way; I have made 2 masks as well tonight from plaster bandage. One of my face ( I paniced a bit so its not as nice as it could have been and on e of my daughter how had Angela Jollie lips 😉 That turned out well. I will be using those masks as fitting or molds of the masks I still want to make

      Love the idea of creating something everyday and It’s making me feel good
      Bye for now
      Gea

      • Hi Gea. It sounds like you’ve been really busy.

        Since you have a problem with mold, you might want to add a teaspoon of household bleach or some clove oil to your clay when you mix it up. That will slow down the fungi. Keep it covered, and if possible store it in the refrigerator when you aren’t using it. Your sculptures will dry faster if you put them in front of a fan. If they’re completely dry, the mold can’t grow on them. I use acrylic paint, and completely seal the sculptures with an acrylic varnish.

        I can’t wait to see some photos of your work. Do you have a website, by any chance?

    • Love the armature! And it kind of makes the other one re-usable. I’m curious about the stand. Looks like something I could make … could you you show it a little more or talk more about it. Is it just threaded rod on a base with another rod extending into the back holding the piece up?

      — b

      • Yes, that’s pretty much how it works. I think it’s a fairly standard design, because it looks like the support stands shown in some of the sculpting books I have here in the house. You can get a better look at it on the Truform site. The pipes and nuts and the threaded base thing that bolts to the bottom board can be found at a hardware store, but the thing that connects the two pipes looks kind of expensive. I just now found an instruction video for a lighter stand that would work really well, and it looks like it would be less expensive to make.

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