Sculpting tutorials on the
Bernie Wrightson MINE! artwork sculpted by Mr. Shawn Nagle
The first time I became aware of Bernie Wrightson's artwork was many years
ago, actually in the 1970,s . I then sported a full head of
hair and a shirt with a butterfly collar, but that's another
story! KISS, the legendary rock band was in their prime, as
were monsters, D.C. Comics and Swamp Thing, one of Wrightson's
creations. All were featured in illustrated magazines like
Creepy and Eerie and I lived for them. It was in these
magazines that I first saw Wrightson's artwork. I was amazed
by his drawings because they contained so many different
dramatic elements such as lighting, shape and design.
In my opinion, Bernie Wrightson is one of the best artists around, but I
don't want to limit his artwork to just the comic field- not
to slight comic artists in any way. I think they are some of
the best talent that the art and illustration world has to
offer since basically, they can do everything. A lot of other
people who consider themselves artists have not mastered the
technique of drawing, yet along have the imagination to create
the wealth of images that Bernie has. He can do it all and has
proven this with his artwork and illustration featured books,
comics, movies and television. Vist the Official Bernie Wrightson
With all that said, now on to the sculpting article. I have documented my
sculpting techniques on one of my creations which is a
werewolf sculpture that is based on one of Bernie Wrightson's
creations. Since realistic hair or fur can be a tricky
technique to sculpt, I will focus on the hair patterning of
1. Make sure that you have
perfectly silhouetted the sculpture from the artwork. Study it
from every angle. It is very important that you do this, since
if you don't it will not look like the artwork.
2. Once the original
sculpt has been baked, it will give you a steady foundation to
work off of. Now you can start shaping out the flesh.
3. Now that you have
fleshed out the sculpture, you can start to focus on the fur
4. Since I couldn't find
the exact tool that I needed to sculpt hair, I decided to
create one myself. First I started with a small lump of clay,
then I inserted a few straight pins into the end of the clay
lump. be sure to take pliers and bend the pin heads so that
they can't slide out of the clay. Next I glue these pins in
place and then cover the whole thing with epoxy putty to hold
it all in place.
5. I use a sculpting tool
to make a wave like pattern on the clay surface.
6. Next I use the hair
tool I created to make a fur-like effect on the surface.
7. Using a #3 brush, go
over the patterning with a solution of 40% mineral spirits
with 60% boiled linseed oil. This will help to shape it as
well as clean it up. You can see in the photograph that even
though the sculpture is almost finished, I still have some
final detailing and refining to do.
8. The sculpture near
9. The next step is to cut up
the sculpture. I remove the piece from the oven. When the
sculpture cools down but is still warm, I find my parting
lines and cut them with an X-acto knife. I carefully cut and
pull them apart and then cut through the armature with a saw
or wire cutters.
I hope my quick tips will help you with your next
sculpting projects in the future. the most important thing is
to have a good time and keep on modeling!
note: this sculpting tutorial article appeared in
Issue 16 of
Amazing Figure Modeler