Weighing Options

Studio View

The paper towel layer that I added yesterday had dried fully when I came in today, so I worked on creating a more specific structure on top of that layer. Using pieces of cut up sonotubes, I tried to come up with forms that would bring me closer to the facial structure.

Although I had fun working with the hot glue gun and the pieces of sonotubes today, there’s still a heavy doubt lingering in my head about these materials. I keep going over and weighing the pros and cons of paper mache vs. plaster.  There are so many physical and practical attributes to the paper mache that are really attractive to me:  the ability to create something that is very lightweight on a large scale, as well as it’s incredible strength and near indestructible quality. This technique is so strong that I could throw a head against the wall and it would come back unscathed.

On the other hand, sculpting with the paper mache is a new and uncharted territory, and it bothers me immensely that the technique isn’t conducive to working reductively, which is my primary method of sculpting. As much as I wanted to avoid casting, I have to also realize that sculpting in clay is undoubtedly faster, significantly easier, and would definitely produce the results I’m looking for. Then there’s the trade off: a large scale plaster head would be very heavy and fragile by comparison.

What do you think?  Is it worth learning,  pursuing, and troubleshooting this new technique when I know that returning to plaster would achieve guaranteed results?

Studio View

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