Last year I sculpted up a set of Troll Magnets that sold pretty well. (I only have two left at our store) I thought that I would continue the series with another ten designs. This set is a little larger and will have a different paint scheme than the last.
Last year’s set (original set):
On to the sculpting!
I start these magnets using a method I came up with myself through a bit of trial and error. I have a large number of tiny neodymium magnets that I’ve been using in these sculpts – 3 per troll. I start with making three indentations with the magnets in ten flat slabs of clay that I then bake. I use these as the base that I sculpt the troll on top of. I could just sculpt the whole thing with the magnets inside, but I didn’t want to take a chance and have the heat of the baking process affect the strength of the magnet. I know that a heated magnet looses strength, but I didn’t know if that carries on after it cools. Any science geeks out there know?
Anyways, this method works pretty well.
I also make a ton of eyeballs and teeth/fangs. Just really simple rough shapes that work well as teeth or fangs. I then bake those. Far easier to have hard eyes to sculpt around than constantly fixing marks and dents in soft eyes. And the plus side to having pre-baked teeth is that when you insert them, you have the gum area bulge around them as they do in a real mouth.
And here we have everything in the early stages. I used a mix of super sculpey firm and regular super sculpey. When I do a set of sculpts like this that I will be selling, I want to make sure that even though each face will be very different than the next, I want the amount of clay used to be uniform. So I start off with a ball of clay that I try to use all of. I overdid these a bit and ended up using maybe 85% of each. I still stayed pretty uniform across the board with how much I used for each sculpt.
My first stage of actually sculpting is mainly picking eyes and finding a personality for each troll character. I want them all to be unique. And I want each to be interesting. There’s a bit of going back and forth for a couple, but most come about pretty quickly. I really enjoy this early stage of sculpting because it’s where all the personality comes out.
After all the forms have been figured out (adding the teeth/fangs and ears along the way), I go back and refine the forms. And here you can see the rough designs for this new set of Troll Magnets.
In the next post I will show the next steps I take in making these critters.
More to come. Stay tuned!