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Pre-Funk Presenter: Lance Dooley

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1 Pre-Funk Presenter: Lance Dooley
WAEA Conference Pre-Funk Presenter: Lance Dooley Topic: Armatures for Fun and for Sculpting

2 So what is an armature anyways?
An armature is a metallic or wooden construct that is used to aid in the construction of a clay sculpture.

3 After you create a metallic armature, you can add clay over it and slowly build up to the sculpture’s desired surface forms. In this case, you see this is a sculpture of a woman’s portrait + shoulders.

4 A little clearer now?

5 Two views of the clay sculpture in various stages of refinement.
Remember, underneath the clay is still the armature doing it’s job: holding up the clay.

6 New subject: Bald Eagle
Gesture: The overall dynamic appearance of lines, shapes and forms. Static – Appearing still, lifeless, and straight. Dynamic – Implying action or change. Armatures have a second purpose: mimic the gesture of the subject

7 Armatures may have to be structurally reinforced or enriched further, depending on the complexity of the project.

8 When using armatures for animals or humans, the application of anatomical knowledge becomes very important.

9 Chronological progression of a sculpture from left to right.

10 New Subject: Cougar Here we have an image of the skeleton of a cougar How would you begin a cougar sculpture??

11 Create a chart of the skeletal components of an animal and then add columns showing various scaled versions.

12 A one-sixth scale maquette is first made.
Then, the armature for the one-third scale is made with heavy gauge steel rod (3/8” inch diameter).

13 Cougar armature is enhanced with bendable aluminum wire and hose clamps.

14 Clay is added to create a block-in.
My favorite tools shown in foreground.


16 Example of a developed clay block-in

17 The start of a Lynx sculpture. Again, heavy gauge steel rod.
Blow torch and wire clampers to help grab and bend.

18 The 7 ft tall sculpture of ET Pybus, in various stages.

19 Clay being added over the armature for the ET Pybus Sculputre

20 Different views of an almost-finished clay sculpture.
(August 2013, it was really hot)

21 Initial armature and starting to block-in a human figure

22 A little further along with a half scale clay figure.
This is what is typically seen at Fine Art Academies

23 Starting an armature for an owl
Starting an armature for an owl. ¼” diameter aluminum wire is bent to shape, Over rigid 3/8” diameter steel rod.

24 Superimposition of the the steel & aluminum armature over a painting I completed of the same animal.


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