Thursday, October 31, 2013

Happy Halloween and a tutorial- how to make a polymer clay pumpkin

Hello everybody!

Happy Halloween! 
I know, I know. It's a bit late to bring you a tutorial on how to make a polymer clay pumpkin. My fault. I apologize. But so far this has been a crazy week for me even if we don't celebrate Halloween in Portugal. 

I found this tutorial on Facebook and I thought it was great. The artist stated it was free to share. But even so I asked him if I could share it here on this new blog. 

I truly admire people who are this talented. Just watch the delicate step-by-step. But I was even more surprised when I realized who this sculptor was. His name is Jeff Stahl or Jean- Fran├žois Stahl. He's a french artist. I was already a fan of his digital painting work before I found this tutorial. 

Stahl is truly amazing. You can take a look at his blog called l'art blog de Jeff Stalh or at his Deviantart or you can follow his Facebook Page. He's a master of digital caricature but he also does oil painting like a God. Oh, you must think I am exaggerating? I am not. Jeff Bridges, Piaf, Lennon, Mandela. He captures everyone brilliantly!Whether he uses Photoshop CS5 with a Wacom Cintiq tablet and digital pen or a plain ink pen he always creates works of art. I like his sketches very much. I am not publishing here any works so you go there and see for yourselves. 

Here's the tutorial! I hope you enjoy it! May it inspires you to explore creativity!

(Photo and step-by-step by Jeff Stahl)

"1. What you need: polymer clay (SuperSculpey Firm used here, or FIMO), 1 toothpick, 1 small soft round brush, 1 very small brush, acrylic paint (burnt sienna, cadmium orange hue, cadmium yellow medium hue, cadmium yellow light hue), a twig, a paper towel.
2. Make a little ball.
3. Flatten the ball slightly and, starting from the top, imprint grooves by pushing the toothpick against the clay. Don't carve, just press.
4. Once done, it should look like this. Note how I pressed the toothpick a little stronger in the center, with the tip.
5. Create the outline of the pumpkin's "cap". I used a specific tool here but you can also do it with the toothpick or anything flat and thin.
6. You can start carving the face. Also push the twig into the "cap".
7. Add thin lines and other details to have a nice texture and lightly smooth everything out with the soft brush, as if you were painting. Remove the twig.
Bake in a regular oven (if you can, better use another oven than the one you use for the food) at 275 °F (130 °C) for 15 minutes per 1/4 in (6 mm) thickness (for SuperSculpey Firm.)
8. Once cooled and hardened, paint the base color, burnt sienna.
9. Once dry, time for the dry brushing. Drybrush technique means you barely load your brush with paint. Load some cadmium orange hue on your brush (don't use water) and clean it on the paper towel (see pic.10). Once the brush is almost dry, do a first pass on the whole pumpkin, as if you were caressing the surface. Don't try to cover all the brown base.
Repeat with cadmium yellow medium hue. The result should be subtle.
11. With the very small brush, add some cadmium yellow light on the inner borders of the eyes, nose and mouth.
12. Tadaaaa! You now have a cute little pumpkin that will decorate your Halloween table and impress everyone!
Feel free to share this tutorial with your friends and family so everyone can start making their own little pumpkins!"

This was the final result!

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