Saturday, May 21, 2011

resin casting workshop

at long last the stars aligned and sue latta offered her resin workshop on a weekend that i could take it. after seeing several of sue's shows incorporating her photography with resin in really cool ways i wanted to learn from her and am so glad that the timing finally worked out.

as is usual with workshops, the day started with the basics- terminology and such. then off to play.

here is sue building the walls for the mold. nifty way to do it- the sides are completely adjustable to whatever size you need and clamp right together. the bottom seam is sealed with potter's clay. (i have to confess at this point that when i went to get my notes to make sure that I have detailed accurate info they seem to have disappeared. and i am afraid that means that one of the dogs got back at me for being gone all day. damnit! so i'll do the best i can and send a request for another copy of the notes.)

like so many processes, mixing solution a with solution b is what causes things to happen. this is sue mixing the mold material. "a" is a different color than "b", so you can tell when it is mixed- and it must be thoroughly blended. harder than it sounds.

the instructions said to bring something small- 4x4 inches or less- to make a mold of. miss literal thought that meant one thing- i brought 3 hoping that one of them would work. many of my fellow students brought baggies full of small items- which was a better idea. some of the items were complex, some bulky, so we got to see the challenges with different shapes & how to work those out. the molds capture an amazing amount of detail, and with care and a bit of ingenuity all sorts of items can be used.

i am kind of short on imagination, however, so i brought a shell, a wishbone & 1/2 of a walnut. waiting here to be drowned in rubber.

here's pam pouring the rubber molding material over some of her items.

me pulling the seashell out after the mold cured. we used student grade product, which cures fast (if i had my notes i could be more specific. not like half an hour fast, but not 2 hours long) but isn't terribly durable.

mixing the resin also involves "a" and "b" to create the chemical reaction. differences in the resin include curing times (some really quick, some really slow) and color (transparent, tinted, opaque). colors can be added at different steps to create different effects- if you add to solution "b" before mixing it with "a" it is different from adding color once the mold is poured.

the quick drying resin dries really quick- waiting too long gets you something like this. it heats up when the chemical reaction starts, and that's when it's time to start pouring.

here is a resin cast made from my mold. cool, huh? i added the red after it was poured by dropping some pigment on a skewer & swooshing it around.

some of the other creations-

it was a great day and generated lots of ideas. i want to pour resin over my mixed media, to play with transfers and pours over photographs, to experiment with making textured pieces and rubbing paint and glazes into them to bring out the texture. yep, it could get scary!


Diane said...

So funny....when I saw your 1st pic I thought.....YUK...I would never try that. When I got down to the shells & then the camera I was singing a different tune. Those are so COOL! I love them!

Pam McKnight said...

Great job on the blog! I just finished my abbreviated version...

becky said...

Oh, your workshop looks like FUN! A friend of mine once casted my hands for an art project he was doing- cool stuff. I like that casted camera. Can't wait to see your upcoming experiments w/ resin!