Wk1 – Art Experience – Plaster Casting

This week I got to try plaster casting, an art form I’ve never heard of before. Upon some brief research, I learned that plaster casts are usually used to replicate works and are usually done with molds made out of a variety of materials including wood, terracotta, and rubber.

Since I did my art activity at my house, my steps were a little different because I wasn’t at the beach. My first stop was at the Lowe’s near my house to buy the supplies I needed. Here I bought a carton of plaster, a bucket, and sand.¬†Fortunately, I had the other supplies at home.

Not actually taken by me, photo courtesy of Jacques from Pasadena, CA on Yelp

After I got all my supplies, I found a nice spot in the backyard and spread out everything I needed for the project: two buckets, a shovel, bag of sand, plaster, stirring stick, and paint brush.

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plaster casting activity supplies ft. my dog, Coco running around in the background

The first real step was pouring the sand in the bucket. I needed a little bit of help for this from my dad because the bag of sand was 50 lbs! Once the sand was in the bucket, I couldn’t help but play with it because I almost never get to play with sand!

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Next, I got to actually making the mold. I dug a hole in the bucket using my shovel, stuck my hand in there, and then carefully took it out to reveal my mold. I tried to do a “peace sign” gesture with my hand instead of just a generic open hand.

Once I had the mold, I began to mix the plaster. I made sure to use 2 parts plaster and one part water and to mix quickly. I wasn’t quite sure what the consistency was supposed to look like, but I figured it wasn’t supposed to be too thick or too watery so I tried to find a balance. Once the plaster was mixed, I carefully poured it into the mold and let it sit for 40 minutes.

After 40 minutes had passed, I carefully took my plaster mold out and started dusting all the sand off of it.

In the end, my plaster cast came out okay. I’m a bit of a perfectionist, so I was kind of unhappy about how the fingers weren’t as long as they were supposed to be. Overall, I found the activity to be fun and interesting, especially since I has never done anything like it before. I look forward to the other projects we are going to be doing this semester and hope to experience even more new things!

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