Paper Mache Raccoon Final – Features and Fur

The paper mache raccoon is done! Well, almost done – I need to let it dry for a few days before giving it a few coats of matte acrylic varnish, but for all practical purposes…

If you’d like to make a raccoon sculpture like this one, you’re welcome to use my pattern. Click the button to download the PDF.

Paper Mache Raccoon

This raccoon was an experiment to see if we could use the blue shop towels with a paste made with corn starch. It worked, but I much prefer the joint compound and glue paste with this kind of paper. That said, this is now one of my favorite sculptures, and the pattern has been downloaded by many of my readers for their own raccoon sculptures.

To see the other posts in this series:

To see all of the videos on one page, click here.

Because of all the experiments, I really wasn’t sure how well this fellow would turn out. But now that he’s done I’m really happy with him, and I learned a lot in the process.  I’m very happy with the fur, and I would definitely do that again. However – next time I’ll use the joint compound and glue paste. You can find the recipe on this page.

The clay I used for the features is actually called Apoxie Sculpt, not what I called it in the video. Nice stuff. And as I mentioned in the video, the paste I made with corn starch takes forever to dry in humid weather. Other than that, though, it’s a nice paste.

And now – on to my next experiments!





22 thoughts on “Paper Mache Raccoon Final – Features and Fur”

  1. Hi Jonni,
    What a nice surprise. When you say you will answer e mails ….you really do, and before I forget what I asked. And thank you for removing my email address. I can only imagine what would happen if you were not so carefull with your fan mail. My eleven year old neighbor said I am too old for social media. He may be right I’m 86 and am so pleased I found your web sites. And you thought older people wouldn’t be interested in what you create. You are giving a lot of us something to do beside reading and watching tv. Thank you so much for all you do and the many lives you affect. Sincerely, F. Mae Reed

  2. Hi Jonni,my raccoon is finally almost done. But will you please tell me what color tissue paper you used on top of the black tissue on the raccoon. You mentioned transparent, cant seem to find a color like lt.
    Keep up the great work, we are all looking forward to you next project.
    Thank you,

    • Hi Freda. I believe I used a light grey over some of the black areas, but some of the black was left totally black. All of the tissue paper I used, except for the black, became somewhat transparent when they were covered with the acrylic gel. The company that I bought the tissue paper from is no longer selling it, and I haven’t been able to find a good source since then. If you find one, please let me know. Also, I hope you don’t mind that I edited your comment to remove your email address from your public comment, to protect your privacy.

  3. Hi !
    I’m French, and I would like to tell you that your work is absolutely wonderful. I’ll try to follow some of your tutorials (but I have to translate a lot of things !). Your website and videos are the best I’ve read, and you’re a great teacher ! Thanks a lot, and good luck to you ! 🙂

  4. Hi Jonni, The strangest thing has happened recently. Whenever I’m on your website and try to watch a video I don’t get any audio. If I go to YouTube then every thing works just fine. I was wondering if others are experiencing the same thing. Also your site isn’t the only place where I have run into this it’s happened at one or two others. Any ideas what is causing this? Lianne

    • That is weird! It doesn’t happen when test it on either IE or Firefox. I, too, would be very interested to know if anyone else is having this problem!

  5. Wow, Jonni! I just love how your raccoon turned out! The pose is dynamic and the texture [both physically and painterly] are wonderful! It’s my favorite piece of yours! Thanks for all the tips. A raccoon is on my list of animals to do!

  6. How wonderful!! I would like some more information and tutorials on that cool apoxy sculpt. I am continually looking for some way to add details after I have finished paper-mache-ing something and that looks like it would be perfect for what I need!!
    As always your finished guy looks great and I look forward to more videos from you!!

    • Hi Carrie. This is the second time I used the Apoxie Sculpt, so I can’t consider myself ready to make a how-to video. Maybe in a month or two. However, this is the video I watched before I started:

      I had not seen anyone add the water before, and it made such a difference. The first time I tried using the product it was so disappointing that I almost didn’t bother moving the two little containers to my new house when I moved a few months ago. I’m glad I tried again, because this time it was actually be fun. It would be perfect for adding small details to masks and other sculptures. I’m embarrassed to say that I also bought this product last winter, after seeing a video of a dragon being made with it. When I read the label and saw that it really should be used outside, I put the box on a shelf and never tried the stuff. It looks like it would be similar to the apoxie sculpt, for half the price per pound. Maybe I’ll get it off the shelf and give it a try.

      • That is very interesting stuff, please let us know how it turns out if you decide to get it down and play with it! Thanks for responding 🙂

        • I will – I’ll check to see if the finished piece can go outside. I could use a pelican by the front door.

  7. Oh Jonni, he turned out wonderful! I would have liked to see every angle of this little guy-maybe if you get time, you can include pics from all angles. I especially like the way the fur turned out using the tissue paper. You are one clever lady and thank you.

    • Thanks, Eileen! I’ll try to find a place where I can get some good photos without all the busy background, and take some more shots. He’s sitting on my book shelf now, next to the dodo, and I find myself growing rather fond of him.

      • It is no wonder, he is a likeable guy! Doing a raccoon is really hard. I know from experience. I did not like the outcome of mine but I know where it will go….and it is not the trash bin. My little granddaughter (age 1 & 1/2) loves him. She just recently learned how to give kisses and when she was in my studio, she went over to kiss the raccoon. Suddenly, I saw it in a whole new light! When she gets past the stage of putting things in her mouth, she can have it for her room. She is my greatest fan, she loves all my sculptures. Is that how it is with your grandson?

        • Awww – that is so sweet! I think your granddaughter has great taste in art! Your raccoon will be one of her treasured possessions – maybe she’ll take him to college with her.

          My grandson is much older (he’s 8 now) but he’s a great fan of the whole family’s creative output – his mom’s paintings, of course, and his dad’s electronic signs. He was very proud when he saw my big dragon at the local ReStore, waiting for the recycled art auction. Mostly, though, he’s interested in the computer, and he already understands the technology better than I do.

          • I am glad he is appreciative and that is funny about the computer technology. He will be writing your blog one day, or at least helping you with the many glitches that you run across.
            Is your dragon still waiting or have they had the auction yet? He was a beautiful dragon but rather large to have to display in your living room. Did you have to move him when you moved?

            • Yes, he’s already helping with the computer stuff. I bought a Kindle Fire a few months ago and couldn’t figure out how to make the images bigger – so I asked my grandson. He knew, of course. And the dragon left the house last summer, and was sold at the ReStore auction. They say it went quickly, but I was afraid to ask how much they got for it. If they sold it for $10 I would have been quite disappointed, so I thought it best not to know. I gave them the baby elephant head that I made from the 3D pattern for their auction this fall.

      • Hi Jonni, the best way to photograph without a busy background is get at least 1 to 2 yards of black fleece and put it on a small table outside under the shade, or a large chair with the fleece over it. It will bring the racoon to the fore and you do not have to worry about backgrounds. the4 nice thing about fleece, you can fold fleece and just rub your hand over it and smooth it out. It also absorbs light and makes your sculpture or object stand out. It is cheap way to go and it can be used over and over again. You can also use it everywhere.

        • Excellent idea, Christine! I’ll get some fleece and give it a try.

          By the way, I recommended one of the Practical Paper Mache articles to a reader yesterday, and it reminded me of how much fun it was to put the e-book together. (I can’t remember why I called it a “reader supported” project. Maybe because “written by readers” sounds funny? Must find a better title next time…) Anyhoo – since you were one of the authors of the e-book, I thought I’d ask if you have any ideas for another one. Maybe about Halloween decorations, or gift ideas, or??? What do you think?

          • Hi Jonni, Halloween is just around the corner and masks are not the only thing that can be made for Halloween. But, I bet many of our readers/members will love to create pieces for the E-book. Christmas is also a favorite subject for many and other religious holidays fall close to Christmas and can be included. I have not done anything for Halloween and I do like the challenge. I am sure many would too.

            • Good ideas, Christine. I’ll mention the idea in my next post, and see if anyone would be interested. I think it could be a fun project.

Leave a Comment

Heads up! You are attempting to upload an invalid image. If saved, this image will not display with your comment.

Heads up! You are attempting to upload a file that's too large. Please try a smaller file smaller than 250KB.

Note that images greater than 250KB will not be uploaded.