Friday, February 27, 2009

Warriors - Adding Foam and a Face

Added foam to the third horse today and added muscle to the skull of the second horse. TODAY'S VIDEO

Photographs of the horses head.

Be Back on Monday. See you guys then.. or, actually, you'll see me.... well actually, you'll just watch a video of me, not actually in my studio, physically watching me... that would be silly.. Ok.. time for me to sign off.

Thursday, February 26, 2009

Warriors - Composition Choreography

Choreography, yep that's the word for today. I'm Composing the composition. In some respects, I'm setting up the Choreography of the figures. TODAY'S VIDEO
More tomorrow...

Wednesday, February 25, 2009

Warriors - Third Horse Started

Started the third horse today. Today's Video

Some horse movement photos. This is the general movement I'm probably going to use. The Photograph I took several years ago next to the Madison River here in Ennis Montana. The drawing is my scribble... lol

Back at it tomorrow.

Tuesday, February 24, 2009

Still Researching

Spent the day, visiting several book stores, in Bozeman for anything on the U.S. Calvary out west in the 1870s, and haven't found anything yet. Lots of books on the Civil War, but nothing, on what I was looking for.
If anyone out there is an author.. you might consider fill this niche with a book. Could make you rich.
Well tomorrow I'll be back in the studio. I will probably have to move the time frame up to the 1860's. Just because that's the only time frame I've been able to find anything on.

Monday, February 23, 2009

War Stories - Calvary Gear Research Today

Spent this whole day researching and trying to find information on Calvary Horse Tack. Not much on that. Did find a couple of dated pictures of horse equipment. By dated I mean, period. Mostly from the 1860's. I still have to do some more research. Here are a few photographs I was able to gather.

Horse Type
I did find this photo of Comanche. The only survivor of the Battle of the Little Big Horn in June 1876.

Comanche was a 15 hand bay gelding, thought to be part mustang and part Morgan. He was bought by the U.S. Army in 1868 in St. Louis, and sent to Fort Leavenworth, Kansas. He was a good looking horse, and instead of being kept with the regular cavalry, Captain, Myles Keogh, bought him for $90 to use as his personal mount. He normally rode his horse Paddy on marches, Comanche following with the other extra horses. Comanche was the horse Captain Keogh rode into battle, the horse being fresh because he was only mounted at the last moment before the fighting began. He was a war horse. Indians had their war horses as well.

A few illustrations I found.

I'll be going to Bozeman tomorrow, to see if I can find anymore material at the bookstores there.

Saturday, February 21, 2009

Taking Chance

Tonight on HBO was a movie that I was a featured extra in. I happened to have looked exactly like the uncle of Marine Chance Phelps, who the movie is about. So they had me shave my goatee and put on a suite so I could look like the uncle, Bubba. Yeah Bubba.

That's me on the left. On the right is an artist friend of mine, Todd Connor, who was an extra as well and in the center is Todd's dad Terry Connor.

This is a photo of Kevin Bacon being prepared for a close-up during the funeral scene. I took this picture.

Taking Chance
Based on real-life events, Lt. Col. Michael Strobl (Bacon), a volunteer military escort officer, accompanies the body of 19-year-old Marine Chance Phelps back to his hometown of Dubois, Wyoming. The scenes of Chance's town of Dubois Wyoming were shot in Ennis Montana where I live. The funeral scene was shot at Boot Hill in Virginia City Montana, about 15 miles from Ennis. Filming of the Montana and Wyoming scenes were shot in August of 2007.

The scene that I was in... kinda...

Taking Chance Trailer (HBO)

Taking Chance: Conversation with Lt. Col. Michael Strobl and Kevin Bacon (HBO)

Well just thought you'd like to see this.. The movie is well worth your time. Have lots of Kleenex around though.

Friday, February 20, 2009

Warriors - The Rider, and a New Idea

Today I worked on the Indian rider, and was given a possible idea for the story of this piece from Daryl in Oklahoma. One of this blogs viewers. It was a great idea. Now it's up to me to see if I can make it work. Click here for today's video
Final photographs of the day.

I'm taking the weekend off. See you Monday

Thursday, February 19, 2009

Warriors - Horse to Indian Today

Today I finished sketching in muscle on the rest of the body of the horse. Then as a final, I started the figure of the Indian on the horse. Click for Today's Video

Final Photos of wax today.

Wednesday, February 18, 2009

Warriors - Adjustments and more Muscle

Just figured out how to name the link instead of just pasting the whole address... I decided to give you a link to my YouTube video. You can click on the full screen tab to see the video even better. One True Media, doesn't have that option. So click to view the video. Today's Video - Adjustments and More Muscles I'm a slow learner... lol

Final photos of the day.

Continued tomorrow..

Monday, February 16, 2009

Warriors - Muscling Up

Mondays are Mondays. Got started late but accomplished a lot today. Click on the link for the video.

I may have to go to Bozeman in the morning. So depending on the time there, I'll not promise I'll be in the studio tomorrow. Will be there Wednesday for sure though.

Thursday, February 12, 2009

Warriors - Muscle and Bone

I went into my studuo for a couple of hours today. I had issues on being able to even get to my blog, so was online with a computer teck most of the morning and afternoon.
Video for today. Just click on the link...

Some detail photos

Back at it tomorrow..

Wednesday, February 11, 2009

Warriors - Two Heads

Today, I spent creating the two horses heads. I sculpted them separate from the horses because it was easier. Once finished I cut the current heads off at the wax, and then taped on the new ones. Click on the link below to see the video

Here are the final photos of the day.

More tomorrow...

Tuesday, February 10, 2009

Warriors - Bones out of Wax

Today, I worked on creating the skeletal structures, of both horses today. Click on the link for the video.

Final photographs of the wax today.

Question from Daryl,
I just watched the blog for today. I am curious why you chose to use wax,is it cheaper? How did you get the wax to work like that, has it been under the lights warming or is it a special kind of wax? One last question....I notice you always start with the skeleton and then work your way up to the surface anatomy and I also notice that you always make the bones look as they actually would. Is it important to have the bones look as they would for the musculature added next or is it just your love of detail that makes you want to do it that way?

Wax: Do to the fact that I had to edit the video to be under 10 minutes for the web, I deleted that part of the video where I explained why I used wax and not clay. The simple answer is, I had more wax, than clay.
I do put the wax under lights to soften. For a short time it's very soft and pliable. You'll see this in today's video.

Skeleton: Yes I start with a skeleton. I also had to edit that out of the final video. I taught myself to sculpt horses and humans by doing the skeleton first. I go into detail on the bones, because the tendons and muscle attach to certain parts of the bones. I'm also a bit anal, that's the other reason I go into such detail.

Thanks Daryl for your question.

Monday, February 9, 2009

Warriors - Carving Foam - Adding Wax

Ok, today, I start to add wax to the armatures, but first I have to carve the foam from last week. Just click on the following link for the new video.

More to come tomorrow.

Sunday, February 8, 2009

Warriors - Figuring it out

I went to Bozeman today. On the way, I tried to work out in my mind, what am I going to have the two horses and the two riders climbing up and over. I looked at the landscape between Ennis and Bozeman. I took these photos of sudden rise in ground level, like you'd find in a dry creek bed. These two are just small sections of broken ground. I like the way they look.

Now these two are what I'm looking for.

Took these of the sunset over the Madison River, and of the moon rising above the Madison Mountain Range in my valley

I also tried to work out in my mind how I achieve the form of this feature in the sculpture I'm now working on. I think I've got that figured out as well. So I'm kind of excited to get back to the clay. See you next time.

Friday, February 6, 2009

Yes there is a title to this piece. At least the working title for now. WARRIORS
Here is the link to today's video.

I received a few questions from Daryl in Oklahoma this morning. I figure I'd share his questions and my answers. Just in case anyone out there has the same questions rattling around.

"....... I was wondering how you were going to go from that side anatomydrawing and pose the horse from it but I guess that is still yet to comeand I will just have to be patient.

It must be really cold there, I see you all the time bundled up when you are working and all the snow on the drives you take.....makes me glad Ilive in Oklahoma.

I had a question as I have been studying the finished "War Stories" piece.As I have said before I love detail but is it possible to put too muchdetail on a piece so that it is lost in the casting process?


My Answer;
Daryl, The side anatomy is only a guide for me to add anatomy to. As you'll see, I create this armature from a flat drawing. Kind of like laying the keel of a boat under construction. I hang all the 3 demensional anatomy on this frame.
It does stay pretty cool in the studio most of the time. When I turn up the heat, you'll see me in shirt sleeves.
As far as how much detail is to much. Never to much. The foundry costs go up the more detailed a piece is. as far as how much of the detail is lost... None of it is ever lost. Even my fingerprints come out in the finished bronze. That's how much detail the foundry can get.
Allen Funt, the guy who created the TV show, Candid Camera, bought a bronze from me. I was working on the clay at the time. He asked how much detail would come out in the bronze.
I had him make a rock for the base. I told him to put his thumb print in the clay of that rock. When he got his piece, I told him he would see that print there. The bronze was cast over 20 times, and everyone of those castings had his print in them. The bronzes title was "Prairie Dispute".

Well if any of you have any questions at all, just write me.

Thursday, February 5, 2009

Tuesday, February 3, 2009

Doing Research

Here's a video that shows a lot of Indian photos that I go through to get ideas for faces, clothing, hairstyle. Just some of them. It also shows at the end of it, the dilemma talked about below the link.

One of the pitfalls of doing research on Native Americans, are the old photographs that you find in books can't be relied on. Take for instance this photo of Sitting Bull.

Note the beaded pouch on his belt, the war club in his hand, and especially the split buffalo horn headdress. Now look at the two pictures below of another Indian.

Do you see the similarities? If you look at the above photo, taken in the exact same studio, you see the headdress first as being the same as the one on the head of Sitting Bull. Now you look closer and the beaded pouch lays on the floor near the base of the pedestal. Oh and the war club.. need I say more? It's so difficult to do accurate research when so many old time western photographers had stock outfits and headdresses that they dressed the Indians they photographed. A lot of times the headdress or the clothing was from a different tribe altogether. Can you imagine how these gentlemen felt as this photographer degraded them by dressing them in a way, just to sell photographs of them. Kinda like modern day advertisers... ain't it.

Well that's it for today.

Monday, February 2, 2009

A New Project - Day One

Not yet sure the final design. Sometimes you just have to start. It's kinda like writing a story. You just need to write that first sentence.

I'll be back in the studio on Wednesday. Have to run to Bozeman tomorrow. Groceries. You live in a small town, you never buy groceries there. Prices are way to high.