Thursday, August 20, 2009


For the past few days I've been experimenting with plaster and making reliefs. These are not easy to make without great effort it seems. My three main techniques are;

1. Pouring plaster into areas destined to be embossed. This requires fencing those areas off with a deep stencil. Result... imperfect. Plaster is not naturally self levelling which makes it hard to get an even finish, although that does make the strength and integrity of the stencil parts less important.

2. Casting a plaster slab or surface then carving. Ideal in many ways but time consuming. Carving is an art form in itself. Transferring the surface to be cut away is a skill too.

3. Making 3D objects from air dried clay, polymer clay, or anything else to make a three dimensional relief. This is time consuming too and the materials used each have advantages and drawbacks. Ideally a reasonably thick but flexible plastic (lino?) that is easy to cut and shape and it archival (won't crack or deteriorate) is needed.

There are many more options but those are the ones I've experimented with. In addition to the pros and cons, it's important to note basics like the surface, weight of the plaster, how well it adheres and things like that. I'm increasingly thinking that option two, a complete bas relief carving is the best solution.

No comments :