The making of TOYOL……… After achieving the final prototype sculpture I had to perfect the finer details before I could move on to the next phase of creating the mold – I had to sand paper all surfaces to make sure the whole sculpture was smooth, only there after I could plan and place my carving design motifs and other fine details such as the eyes on the sculpture.
The rendering of the carving motifs had to be well thought out as it was a 3 dimensional figure and different pressure and tools had to be used to achieve the results I wanted. It took me a few days to carefully carve the fine details on the body of TOYOL. It was a fun process anyhow!!! 😀
Next, I moved on to the mold making process. This process was a tough process for me….. I failed this process for at least 4 times over the course of 2 months before finally being able to overcome all the obstacles in the mold making phase.
There was either a problem with the consistency of the “whatever RTV” silicone rubber, too many air bubbles, mold not curing completely or properly and I even encountered issues with my 2 piece mold sticking together – encasing my prototype completely… “All these failed attempts cost me aloooott of money…..” 😦
To overcome the air bubbles, I bought a vacuum chamber…. It was an expensive investment but since it would solve my troubles with bubbles I just went ahead and bought it – there was no way I am gonna give up halfway…. “I thought it was victory at my next attempt with my newly bought vacuum chamber which I was dying to try out…..” On the day of my mold making – I had a BIG smile on my face and super high hopes….. after waiting anxiously for a few hours for the mold to cure I slowly tried parting my 2 piece mold from the sculpture but AGAIN I was only crushed and disappointed when my mold was a total failure. Even with the aid of my vacuum chamber it still did not work. The silicone rubber that I was using was too thick and horribly difficult to work with that air was still trapped in my mold – “I almost gave up as I have used up lots of money and I was almost broke…..” 😦
“Internet saved my life…. I stumbled upon a website and finally manged to get a great product that professional sculpting artists used…. woooohoooo….. it was OMOO” 😀 The first try with this product was perfect – my mold was ready for the next stage of resin casting. I had to make sure my 2 piece molds were held together securely and perfectly to get a good resin casting – In order to achieve that, I used thin wooden boards on each side and secured it tightly with thick elastic rubber bands.
“The resin casting stage was the FUN part 😀 and with the help of my lovely girlfriend I experimented with the resin and catalyst mixture – Too much catalyst and it will get too hot, eventually eroding my mold with frequent usage or too little and the resin casting did not cure and would equal a sticky casting…. I learned a lot during this process and had to modify my mold to give it more air-ventilation to fix the initial problem of huge air bubbles at the top of my resin sculpture.
“I finally did it 😀 yayyyy……… I slowly mastered the casting process and was able and ready to produce my own artwork sculptures.”