Roger Smith

Extraordinary bronze wildlife sculptures

A look at the process

  1. A wood and wire armature for a life-size deer Every sculpture begins with an armature that is as simple as a wire stick figure or as complex as this wood and wire one for this life-size Deer.
  2. A clay and wax model of a deer Non- hardening clay is modeled over the armature. Wax is used for some parts such as antlers on this Deer.
  3. a plaster and a rubber mold A flexible rubber mold is made over the clay model and a rigid plaster mother mold over the rubber to hold it’s shape.
  4. A wax duplicate of a sculpture Hot wax is poured in the rubber mold to produce a hollow wax duplicate. One wax duplicate is required for each Bronze.
  5. the wax sculpture being chased to remove flashing and irregularities The wax is then "chased" to remove mold flashing and correct any irregularities.
  6. chased wax with sprews attached This shows a chased wax with sprews attached.
  7. the wax is dipped in silica The wax is then dipped in liquid silica…
  8. the wax is dusted with powdered silica …and dusted with powdered silica…
  9. hollow mold for sculpture …alternately up to seven times to build the proper thickness. After drying this is put in a kiln to melt out the wax and leave a hollow silica mold.
  10. molten bronze being poured into silica molds Molten Bronze (1960-1980 degrees F.) is poured into the silica mold.
  11. silica encrusted bronze sculpture After cooling the silica is chipped off the Bronze.
  12. bronze sculpture, with sprews The sprews are cut off…
  13. metal chaser working on a sculpture …and the metal chaser then welds the parts together and chases the seams to match the original texture.
  14. bronze sculpture is sandblasted After metal chasing, the Bronze is sandblasted to prepare it for the final step.
  15. heated bronze is colored using different chemicals The Patina (color) is created by applying different chemicals to heated Bronze.

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The newsletter provides information on on the wildlife depicted in Roger's sculptures, and provides occaisional information on sculpting.

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Copyright © 2005 - 2012 Roger Smith, Bronze Wildlife Sculptor