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This dragon bust tutorial was submitted by our friend Tony. He’s known as the Great Big Sword on YouTube, where he creates videos related to Dungeons and Dragons. Thanks, Tony, for showing us how to do it! I’ll let him take it from here …
Dragon Bust by “Great Big Sword”
This dragon, affectionately named “Crooked Horn” was a return to the papier-mâché world for me after being absent for some time. I initially made this dragon sculpture as a decoration. I wanted something to represent my Dungeons and Dragons channel (Great Big Sword on YouTube). Thanks to what I’ve learned from ultimatepapermache.com and Jonni, I was able to make this cool piece.
Step 1: The dragon head sketch.
I usually draw a sketch or a diagram before I start a project.
Step 2: The Base and Clay Model.
I started with cardboard and masking tape as a base. I built the framework using Sculpture House Roma Plastilina Modeling Clay – 2 lb, White, Medium. The horns were made with curled up cardboard I had cut from standard paper towel rolls.
I tried to make the details big and deeply set in the clay so when I add the papier-mâché it wouldn’t lose some of the nicer contours.
Once I was happy with the clay model portion of the piece I covered it with Vaseline petroleum gel. This didn’t allow the papier-mâché to stick.
Step 3: Covering the Clay Dragon Model.
Then I mixed a ready-made papier-mâché product I had never used before, CelluClay, and covered the model carefully with it. I used a plain old butter knife and made the layer a little more than ¼ inch thick. It took about a day to dry. Removing the deeper parts of the dorsal fins was a bit tricky. Make sure you use plenty of petroleum gel to prevent this.
Step 4: Sanding the Dragon Head.
I sanded the surface a little bit to smooth it out. Once I was happy with the finish I primed it with Gesso. I used acrylic paints to finish up the piece since acrylics dry nice and glossy.
Step 5: Making Dragon Teeth.
I made the teeth out of Polymer clay. I molded and baked it in my toaster oven on aluminum foil for 75 minutes.
Step 6: Dragon Eyes.
I purchased the eyes on Etsy from an artist named JP. They are painted glass. Very striking if you ask me!
I use a hot glue gun to stick on all my teeth and eyes accessories. Crooked Horn is now hanging proudly on my wall.
I hope this inspires you to make some awesome artwork!