Clay – Subtractive/Additive

Clay is a long-established medium for 3D work. In this class we will be working with oil-based modeling clay. We will be creating 1/2 scale self-portrait busts.

STEP 1: Take source images

You will photograph your face from the front, side, and top. You will carefully measure your head in terms of width, height, and depth so you can shrink your images to be 1/2 scale. You will print out these 1/2 scale images and use them to more accurately render your self-portrait.

STEP 2: create an armature

Using your source images, you will create an armature to support your clay sculpture of your skull.

STEP 3: build skull form in clay

STEP 4: rough in eye/nose/lips features

STEP 5: in-process crit

Peer feedback on everyone’s progress and recommendations for improvement as we finish the project.

STEP 6: work on shape of the head with flesh

This means adding and subtracting clay.

STEP 7: refining details

Working on nostrils, eye brows, eye balls, wrinkles, creases, etc, finishing and texturing

STEP 8:  Final critique – In-class Crit sheets


5 points – Craft: how neatly did you sculpt?

5 points – Accuracy: how much does the sculpture look like you?

5 points – Time management: did you keep up with the pace of the class, putting in time outside of class if necessary?

5 points – Effort: did you demonstrate a desire to do well? Did you continuously seek feedback from your peers?

8 pointsSelf-Reflection via online quiz. After the project is over, you will answer the following questions to revisit your project and review how you performed. [1.] Discuss your work in terms of the components of an artwork. (subject/form/content/context)  [2.] How does the work engage with elements and principles of 3D design? Make sure to mention specific elements and specific principles.  [3.] How was your project successful?  [4.] How could your project be improved?