TC's Collectibles

12" Custom Dolls
Bas Reliefs
How did you...?
Pirates of the Caribbean bas relief

For the first bas relief I've ever tried, of course I would pick something as complicated as Disneyland's Pirates of the Caribbean attraction poster.  I was staring at a reproduction of the poster in a book about POTC, and thought, "How could I recreate this?" Not with a good copy machine or pen and ink, but make it 3D?  Sculpting was the way, but with very thin, progressive layers to give the illusion of a fully-sculpted pirate.
For this first bas relief I used Super Sculpey arranged on a thick piece of fiberboard (8.5" x 11"). Each layer was the same thickness. The first layer served as the background, which in the poster was like a map's markings. That was baked. Then all other details were built up, one layer at a time and baked as needed.  Enough layers and... Hey!  A pirate!
I learned the hard way that for any bas relief that I intend to mold in rubber and cast in resin, I should not Super Sculpey, but a much, much stronger material, such as Aves Apoxie.  The downside to using the Apoxie is that it will air-dry, leaving no margin for error.  Because it is so much stronger than Super Sculpey, it's difficult to fix mistakes after the fact.  But it also means that the original won't be torn to pieces when demolding, like Super Sculpey pieces will be.

The poster that my POTC bas relief is based on. The lettering at bottom and on the side are meant to be painted on, rather than sculpted.  The reason is that sculpting letters at that size, especially with a material like Super Sculpey or even Apoxie, is very, VERY difficult.
Although the bas relief could be painted to match the colors of the poster, my plan is to leave it one color, but with the bottom/side lettering as black or some other contrasting color.

The Pirates of the Caribbean and poster image are owned by the Walt Disney Company.  It's not for sale!  It was made out of love!  No Cease and Desists, please!

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