Wednesday, April 23, 2014

Novel Art Submission 2: Here Be Dragons...

Originally, I was only going to make the mermaid sculpture for Novel Art, but then I started conversing with the Director of the Ligonier Valley Library and I remembered her talking about a fantasy series featuring dragons.  Once the idea to make a dragon was in my head... it stuck!  (It wasn't hard.  I'm a fan of dragons as you can tell from HERE and HERE.)  I couldn't sleep that night and decided to get busy since there wasn't much time before the deadline.  My pile of work seems incredibly high at the moment (with the move and everything in the process), but I just couldn't help but make this sculpture.

I should preface this by saying that it's not finished.  The base is still drying and I need to stain and seal it before I can mount the dragon sculpture to it.

Like the mermaid sculpture, the concept is how reading brings fantasy to life.  I've integrated old book pages in patterns swirling over the body of the dragon and in the wings.  I constructed the body out of polymer clay over an armature of aluminum foil and steel wire.  I then painted, painted, painted, covered it in resin, stained it, highlighted the piece with Gilder's Paste, and painted it some more.  I had this idea that I wanted the coloring to be light and almost watercolor-esque to incorporate the text pattern more, but the more I kept touching it up, the muddier the colors got and the more paint I added.

Here's a close-up of the head and crown of horns.  For the eyes, I used dark blue, Swarovski crystal pearls.  I think it gives the eyes great depth.

Here's a detail of one of the wings.  The wings are actually hollow.  I constructed everything out of wire, covered both sides with book pages, dipped them in resin, and then glued on shredded book pages in an almost feather-like pattern on the wings.  I then coated them again with lots of spray fixatives and sealants.  Once everything was dry, I stained the wings and added some paint to bring out the structure of the wings.  I also added some iridescent spots.  I tried to keep the paint and inks as light as possible, so that the suggestion of words came through.  I feel like on the body, some of the word details were lost with so much paint.

I'm really happy with the result, especially since it was a last minute decision.  I hope that it raises a lot of money for the library!  Novel Art is such a worthwhile cause and I am so honored to be a participant!

4 comments:

Ann Schroeder said...

I love this sculpture and that it's partly made of book pages! Great cause. I think libraries are one of the best things going.

Diane | An Extraordinary Day said...

Andrew....your sculpture is amazing!! I love anything "book page" and so that extra element...especially for the library...really notches it up for me. I cannot believe your talent and your generosity I hope it brings a big donation!!

Best wishes!!

Diane | An Extraordinary Day said...

Andrew....your sculpture is amazing!! I love anything "book page" and so that extra element...especially for the library...really notches it up for me. I cannot believe your talent and your generosity I hope it brings a big donation!!

Best wishes!!

Shaiha said...

He is incredible and I especially like how you can see the words on his wings. It really brings home the fact that he is made from words and dreams.