Sunday, February 7, 2016

Carved Moulding Update - VI

This Post will mainly be photographs of my ongoing moulding project. I have gotten quite a bit of work done, and have a lot of pictures to add, so I will minimise the text and let you enjoy the pictures. The project has a way to go, before completion, but it is reaching a point in which one can easily envision the completed product.

I had one more master carving to do to complete the cast mouldings for these
rooms. Here is the centre section of that carving, ready for the mould process.
I made this group in three sections for reasons which will eventually be clear.

Here the entire group is drawn and the cut-out process
has begun

Left leaf group finished; ready to begin the right-hand piece I always try to
push myself, to make each new thing more complicated than the last. I like
the challenge, and therefore, this set is more complex than any of my previous
carvings for this project.

To help with the moulding process, it is useful to add a finish to the parts
before applying the mould rubber

Detail of the leaves

Second layer of mould rubber applied

Third layer of rubber

One mould removed from the mother part.
A plaster reinforcement shell is needed to maintain
the mould in its true form.

For ease of handling, there are three separate sections
the blocks are added to fill up unnecessary space and
reduce the amount of plaster needed

The first set of leaves, assembled for a straight application (over the doorways)

The same set, rotated on the scroll ends, for use on an arch; this is why
I made them in three pieces. I will cut the tips off and re-attach them
to follow the curve more closely as well.

One of my "followers" asked me the other day how much plaster I have used in this project so far. That is not an easy answer to give, because I have been using several different types of plaster. Some of it has been for moulds, some for the mouldings applied to the walls, and some for plastering the walls themselves. I did a calculation yesterday morning, however, and I seem to be nearing the 200 kg mark. I know I will have to buy a couple more bags this week, as well.That is a lot of plaster.

Moulding the baseboard with black cement

The baseboard in this area of the house is made of polished black granite. Originally, there was no baseboard in the niches; the plaster simply joined the floor. With my reconfiguration of the wall, in order to achieve the double columns I was after, it was necessary to remove the short sections of granite base. I took the opportunity to make a new baseboard which would go right around the base of the columns and the niches. This would have been extremely expensive, and nearly impossible with granite, but I had the idea of making a form, poring in black cement, and then finishing it up to shine like the  stonework. In the picture above, you will see the freshly cast base as well as the unfinished columns. The plastic was used to cover the cement to trap moisture and prevent it from drying too quickly which would have caused cracking. I also put wet rags on top, before covering it.

In this picture can be seen the second niche with the
straight section of cap moulding already applied.
I had to do some more of my wet plaster moulding
as was featured here to create the cap moulding for inside
the niche. Also note the arched moulding, at the head of
the niche, as was featured in that post.

This is not a diorama of Stonehenge. These blocks will keep the form in position

A flexible form to serve as the wall of the niche, and a pivoting template to
create the moulding My Friend Thomas took some pictures and video of me
making this moulding, and if he puts them on You Tube, as he says he will,
I will add a link for it.

Completed cap moulding, ready for paint. (Note; the cement polishing process
is not yet complete) 

Niche 1

Niche 2

Detail of arch terminal (painting not yet finished)

One of the advantages of being a sculptor is that I am not limited to the forms which my castings have. I needed to add additional ornaments to the ends of the arches, so I re-purposed part of one of the castings I used for the frames, but it did not have enough 'weight' to it, so I added more plaster and free form sculpted the leaves on the lower side of the scroll for each end. No two are exactly alike, but they all look the same, in general. Actually, this is how original 18th century "stucco" mouldings were done; the plaster was applied wet and then sculpted on the spot. I have done a bit of it in a few other places, but it is even more time consuming than the way I am doing it with the moulds.

Here is a detail of the large centre ornament which I was carving whilst at my show
in York, (featured in my 20 December posting).

Detail of one of the small centre crests

When one is at the job every day, it does not always seem that much progress
is being made, but this is how the situation looked in mid November

Here is roughly the same view taken on Friday 5 February
(don't worry, these newel posts and balusters are up next for a change)

Another view under the stairs. The final treatment of the large wall
behind the stairs is still a matter of discussion, and thus not yet painted.

The clients and I were all getting sick of the paper on the floor here in the passageway, so I made a great effort on Friday (ie 14 and 1/2 hour day) to finish up enough to be able to remove the paper. There is yet more work to do, but not much mess to make, so a drop cloth will be used wherever I am working from now on. These clients are terrific with their patience as far as my working in their house every day, at the same time they are living there, is concerned. I have been in houses before where my welcome became understandably thin on long projects. Most people do not want their lives interrupted by strangers in their house, day in and day out, for months on end. So far, these clients are taking it in stride, for which I am very grateful.

Below are some additional photos of the work, as of Friday night.

No comments:

Post a Comment