Week Three: Working with Wire....
The design for this horse, entitled "Ghosts of Saratoga", calls for the horse to be wearing a decorated blanket. Because the horse must be durable enough for outdoor display...the blanket will have to be sculpted with an epoxy clay.

Before I can begin sculpting....I need to carefully decide exactly where the lines of the blanket will fall on the horse. I want it to look as though his blanket fits him in a fairly realistic manner, but I do not want to cover more of the horse's body than I have to. I use a pencil to lightly mark the edges of the blanket.

Since real fabric would follow the contours of the horse's body....it will only be necessary to sculpt the portions of the blanket that would stretch across concave or hollow spots in the horse's anatomy. I create a support to bridge the clay over these areas using a fine wire mesh as an armature.

The wire mesh is very stiff, and needs to be attached to the horse in several stages so that it does not pull loose from the adhesive.

After each portion is glued, it is carefully taped for security and allowed to dry overnight.

The shape of the blanket begins to form on the sides of the horse.
The horse looks pretty good wearing his "hand-me-down" halter....I may have to construct a proper one for him!
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