First Dog and Horse Sculptures

Made by Dee Janelle

First, thanks Jonni for all you do to help other artists. I couldn’t have done this without your books, instructional videos, and patterns. I am a lifelong artist—painting and mosaics—but those mediums didn’t satisfy my desire to create in 3D. When I decided to try sculpting I had very specific ideas, and headed to Amazon books for answers. There, I found ‘Make Animal Sculptures’ and ‘Paper Mache Dogs’, which pointed me to Ultimate Paper Mache.

Using your instructions I made the dog sculpture first and covered the armature in Silky-Smooth Air Dry Clay. Sentry (12” high) sat around my studio for several months while I studied repoussé metal embossing on aluminum cookie sheets. After lots of practice I covered him in hand-embossed aluminum and copper metal tape. I quickly discovered metal tape doesn’t adhere well to tight curved lines. I had to hand glue the tape to the dog. After that, I scaled up all my sculptures and now the adhesive works great.

The horse sculpture Curiosity was my second, and stands nearly two feet tall. To achieve stability at greater heights I modified the armature to include a 1/2 gallon recycled plastic jug for the body, and empty paper towel tubes for the legs—which are weighted. I shaped card stock for the hooves, neck, head, and ears. For the tail I used a long piece of armature wire covered in card stock. To fasten the tail, I wrapped the long ends around the hindquarters to support the tail, then taped everything before covering in the clay recipe. Like the dog, Curiosity’s final layer is hand-embossed metal tape. Thanks for the opportunity to share.

Horse sculpture with hand-embossed aluminum and copper tape
Horse sculpture by Dee Janelle

13 thoughts on “First Dog and Horse Sculptures”

  1. Parabéns! Uma obra magnífica! Estou inreressado na técnica de cobertura com alumínio. Obrigado por compartilhar.

    • Hi Lee ~ Thank you! The metal tape has adhesive, but I encountered difficulty with the glue (on the tape) adhering to tight curves on the dog. The tape kept peeling off. It adheres wonderfully to larger sculptures with broad curves and flat surfaces. In answer though, I used a spray adhesive (I can’t remember which one!) and reapplied the tape. That solved the peeling problem.


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