Celebration Studios
How are our sculptures made?
Sculpture:
ArmatureArmatureClient concept is developed via subject matter research that evolves into preliminary drawings, which may remain rough or proceed to finished and highly-detailed. After final design is approved, Ron and Cynthia map out the physical space the clay sculpture will occupy on wooden platform(s), fine-tuning by trial and error exactly where figures/objects will be located.  Ron assembles iron and steel pipeworks and assorted wooden supports that will sustain the poses of the clay statues as they grow around the armatures.
Early ClayEarly Clay Cynthia then inserts Styrofoam or other lightweight packing material to large areas to minimize clay weight and bulk, moving on to applying layer after layer of clay to the forms.
Late ClayLate ClayLate Clay Actual sculpting process takes approximately 3 to 6 months, depending on the scale and/or complexity of the piece.
Molding:
Early Molding Early Molding Plaster Molding
Technicians apply a chemical to the clays to facilitate their release from the silicone/polyurethane molds. Cut lines are made, metal/thin cardboard shims are inserted throughout the work forming seams for the molded sections. Molding material is brushed on the clay in multiple coats, drying in between, until adequate thickness is achieved. A heavy plaster coat is then applied to support the shape of the mold, once it is removed from the clay. When dry, the mold can be pried loose from the clay work, cleaned and prepped for wax. This stage takes at least a week, usually more.
Metal and finish:
WaxWaxWax/metal phase takes several weeks. Heated wax is poured into the mold, coating its interior. After cooling and hardening, mold is removed and the wax sections are chased and assembled to the desired degree of finish.
Metal weldingMetal welding Successful wax pieces are gated and sprued for metal pouring, dipped repeatedly into a "slurry" (liquid adhesive and increasingly fine sand) until a thick, hard, ceramic "shell" adheres to the entire surface of the section. Individually molded pieces are heated to remove the wax from the inside and consolidate the shell. Liquid metal is poured into the mold.
Finished WorkFinished WorkAfter all sections have cooled and hardened and the ceramic shells are broken off, the metal pieces are cleaned, fitted together, welded and chased, and the artwork is finished with a patina and protective waxing.

Final touches may include mounting on a base, pedestal or platform.