The Catchup of Cthulhu

I’m a bit behind on the progress reports on the latest Cthulhu statue castings so I though it was time to do a catchup of Cthulhu post.

Number 12 – Stone Cthulhu

Cthulhu statue in stoneCthulhu 12, and I tried slate again. I don’t know what it is about slate, the powder is probably too porous or some such rubbish because even with careful mixing I get a sludge which holds the detail but goes black and blotchy when it’s pulled from the mould. I wasn’t overly happy with the final result so thought I would try something with it. The actual moulding was find so I dropped £35 and bought some Modern Masters Bronze paint, undercoat and patina. Big mistake. To be fair the effect sort of worked but the paint itself is too thick and sucks all the detail out of the casting. You have to apply two coats of undercoat to protect from the acid in the patina seeping through to the material underneath. Next you have to apply two coats of the bronze paint, the first needs time to dry but the second coat needs the patina acid applying as its wet. The bronze paint is quite thick but the acid is watery, cue much hilarity as the paint dribbled down the body washing much of the paint away and pooling in thick blobs in some places.

CrapNow I will give it some credit, the patina works. Its just for me it should be all over and really darken down the bronze. Instead we get streaky bacon and really bright patches. The paint is designed for walls, mirrors, drainpipes and other things that hipsters like to be aged to look “vintage” (gag, such a stupid concept. Hipster should stick to “aged” or “retro”) but it’s not quite as effective on funny shaped statues of ancient cyclopean evil.

So I tried again. I gave it a coat of bronze then added the patina and it still turned out blotchy.

Patina second tryThis time it darkened down the bronze in the paint much better (I did start to think I hadn’t put enough paint on the first time) but it still didn’t look even.

Cthulhu the stripperI gave up in disgust and dropped poor old Mr McThulhu into a bath of Dettol to strip the paint.

Copper CthulhuCopper CthulhuCopper statue of CthulhuHe then got a coating in some copper spray paint I had knocking around and then given a polish with metal fire-grate polish.

Number 13 – Aluminium Cthulhu

Aluminium Casting of CthulhuWhile all of that fun was going on I was working on Number 13. Unlucky? Not really. It came out well, polished up and apart from some annoyance when it didn’t want to come out of the mould, was no bother. Kind of boring when there isn’t a crisis isn’t it?

Number 14 – Bronze Cthulhu

Then last week a delivery arrived. Bronze. I’ve been wary of bronze after the failure of the previous bronze casting but I now put that down to not being 100% ready. I also bought a new release agent to replace the dwindling supply of my old stuff and this new one was a spray wax called Macwax. If anyone happens to pass by and is looking for a release agent BUY THIS STUFF its the best one I’ve ever used. EVER! No really. The casting popped right out of the mould without a murmur of protest, theres no buildup so no loss of detail and isn’t too costly (£9 a can).

right from the mouldLook at that, not a blemish. Right from the mould the castings look dull but thats due to the resin mixed with the bronze, a quick buff of Cthulhu and…

Bronze head of Cthulhu here comes the shine.

Bronze Cthulhu statue After a final buff down and polish its come out perfectly. Coming in at 1.7kg there is a good solid weight to the thing which adds to the overall impression that this is made from a solid lump of metal. Yeah, postage would be a bit high but I can cut the amount of ATH added to the backfill resin if needed. I may also add a drop or two of black dye to the bronze when casting just to darken down the overall finish.

I’ve updated the Picasa gallery with some more pics of these boys so for a cornucopia of Cthulhus, please wander in that direction.

So whats next? Well I have a strong desire to try copper. While not as costly as bronze its still pretty steep but I can add a touch of copper to the bronze powder to try and give it a warmer feel but that probably wont be until next year sometime. In the meantime I have three (yes three) sculptures that I’m working on. One is well underway but I need to be outside to fibreglass it and sand it down so that may end up being a summer job, one is currently in the “I have an armature so get on with me ya lazy git” stage while the last is still in planning but may be started soon. All of these may end up as castings and the last two I’m hoping to go for multipart kits. Stay tuned.

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