smoothing clay sculpt question

inkmonster

Hunter
im starting to sculpt some of my own predator pieces mostly armor to start, then onto a full suit. what do you sculptors out there use to get the final smooth texture on say armor? ive heard some say to use sandpaper and some say paint thinner with a paper towel. im using wed clay dont know if it makes a difference on it being a water based clay or oil based if the method is different or not.
 
Well seeing as it's a water clay just use water to smooth. But you'll need to have raked over the surface with a variety of rakes to get a realy even surface before smoothing. For the final smoothing you'll find using sponges a god send mate. you'll need to go over your sculpt a good few times tough to get a glass like finish if that's the desired result you want. I've madea a selection of rakes to help with my sculpts over the time I've been sculpting. I made a large one from a stell clay cutter by cutting teeth into it. This really breaks the surface up and starts the initial levelling out of the surface. I've made other rakes from normal loop tools by cutting into the loop with a dremel to create the teeth, just becareful not to cut too deep into them mind. Just work your way down in rake size as you go. Simply Rake then smooth then rake then smooth then rake then smooth....you get the idea. It's a bit of a chore on large sculpts but well worth the effort for the final result.

Even then when I've cast up pieces and I'm not happy with the smoothed out surface, I'll make a flexible mold with a jacket and make a rigid armour piece that can be sanded and filled to get a really glass finish on it and then mold that up.

Long winded answer I know but I hope this helps a bit mate.
 

inkmonster

Hunter
actually it does help alot thank you. i know that carl uses that technique of making a hard cast of the product then use filler and sand till he gets the desired smoothness before molding. thanks again for the input i'll give it a try.
 
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