Studio Notes 27/06/20 - It's been a long time coming, but this week I finished the 250 pewter coin, and with it, the first phase of my money artworks.
It’s been a long time coming, but this week I finished the 250 pewter coin, and with it, the first phase of my money artworks.
The process of teaching myself to cast pewter started in 2018 with a lot of breaks and diversions, because that’s just how I work. This blog has covered a lot of my ideas about how to go about making the thing, and also documented some of the pig-dog ugly versions I’ve worked on along the way, moving through stylised representations to more a realistic one.
The small casting flask I made was the final tool that helped me to cast the outsized coin after spending way too much time trying to get the right results with high-temperature silicone. I’ll save the silicone for smaller pewter projects.
One trick I found useful for registering the cope and drag was setting washers into the surface of the sand on each side with a dowel inserted into the middle of the washer on the cope side. Lowering the dowels into the holes aligns the boxes perfectly, and the washers stop the dowels from sinking into the sand where they may touch down in the wrong spot.
Photographs usually do a better job of explaining, so I’ve put some pictures together to make the entire long, somewhat tortuous process look like it was easy.
You can see that the surface of the sand wasn’t perfect after separating the cope and drag to remove the coin positive, but it was far enough away from the casting area that I couldn’t be bothered to start all over again. Or should I say yet again, as I had to start from scratch a few times with ramming the sand and taking the positive out without ruining the resulting void.
And now I have a work of art that accurately represents what I was aiming for, and will set the tone for the pieces to come. It’s been a long journey, but what the past few weeks have taught me is that I should just go ahead and pursue my ideas without worrying. The outcome is better than the fear of getting it wrong.
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