Frank Zappa: Rubber Paint Mold Process
The first stage after creating the figure in clay is to make a mold or negative of the sculpture. The rubber mold will be used to create a cast of the sculpture in a permanent material like bronze, bonded bronze or plaster.

of the sculpture

Chop and Divide
Because of the size of the work I decided on making a rubber paint mold.
To make the mold design easier, the arms and guitar were removed and molded seperately. Metal flashing was placed around the circumference of the figure to later work as a divider between the rubber and plaster sections.
The Slime
Silicone rubber is mixed and painted all over the sculpture, making sure to get into all the crevasses. This first coat of rubber will pick up the details of the sculpture below.
Several layers are applied over each other. After one coat gets tacky, the next coat is thickened and added, filling undercuts and unifying the thickness to eventually 1/4".
Keys and Trimming
After 3-4 coats, rubber keys are added to the rubber part of the mold. These keys will help hold and register the rubber into the plaster mother-mold (shells) which support the rubber and keep it from distorting. When the rubber has completely cured (24 hours), the rubber is trimmed.
The next stage is to create the plaster mother-mold or support shells. This is a similar process of layering, only this time using plaster, burlap and conduit.

For more info about molds click on The Process page.

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