Faux Raku Elephant by Lynda Dunham-Watkins

Faux Raku Elephant Lynda Dunham-Watkins - Polymer Clay TutorGallery (14 pics): “I can tell you, I had more fun making this elephant than any sculpture that I’ve ever made.” ~Lynda Dunham-Watkins

I read a saying once that said, “It is only the mediocre student who does not surpass his (her) master.”

Now I am not suggesting that I’m a Polymer Clay Master by any stretch… or that any student that has not yet surpassed my skill level is in any way mediocre. But the saying does seem apropos in this case… where the student definitely has surpassed the teacher (which btw makes me feel very proud and excited).

Let me explain…

Lynda Dunham-Watkins is an accomplished mixed media artist who makes art dolls and animal sculptures. She became a member of the PcT Library to enhance her polymer clay skills.

In a recent email, Lynda shared some photos of an incredible Elephant Sculpt that she created using the Vol-014 Deep Crackle Faux Raku as a surface technique for the Elephant’s skin. As well, she sent photos of a Sculpted Cat and Rabbit which incorporates the Vol-028 Art Sheets along with a few other techniques as well.

Faux Raku Elephant Plus A Couple Of Other Creations

by Lynda Dunham-Watkins (14 pics):

2012-06-04-01-elephant 2012-06-04-02-elephant 2012-06-04-03-elephant 2012-06-04-04-elephant 2012-06-04-05-elephant 2012-06-04-06-elephant 2012-06-04-07-elephant 2012-06-04-08-elephant 2012-06-04-09-elephant 2012-06-04-10-elephant 2012-06-04-11-art-sheet 2012-06-04-12-art-sheet 2012-06-04-13-cat 2012-06-04-14-rabbit


Here is what Lynda had to say about her work…

I should have sent you pictures before but just didn’t. I refer back to your tutorials more than any other reference materials that I use, well… maybe I use anatomy references more when I began a sculpt, but when I’m ready to finish, you are the site I go to and mull over the effect that I want. Most of my sculpts are figurative and I can’t use this with them, but I’m having so much fun doing these that I may focus on this type sculpt for awhile.I have visions of other animals and people, too. And, I want to make some drop dead beads also.

When I first thought about an elephant, the crackle paint thingy was in my mind for his skin, but then I remembered the Raku technique, and I couldn’t wait to get to the point of making his skin. I can tell you, I had more fun making this elephant than any sculpture that I’ve ever made. Some places I tore the clay, and others, I used most of an entire sheet. Early on, I had a problem with curing the clay to the proper point. I was using a heat gun. When it didn’t crackle, I rolled it thin again, backed it with the black clay and re-cured it… worked in places that I needed a subtle effect.

I had already made the cat and the rabbit. I used the art sheet for the cat’s underskin and then made a cane using an Amish quilt pattern for the final layer, adding copper Premo to frame the turquoise chips embedded along his back. The skin itself was so pretty… almost hated to cover it up. The rabbit was the first sculpt I made using this idea, and I love him! I’m including photos of the art sheet that I used to cover it with, and I’m not sure which colors I used, everything I had!! LOL! It doesn’t seem to matter which colors of ink you use, the result is awesome.

They are all sculpted of Darwi which is a stone air dry clay on a strong wire armature fleshed out with foil. I coated the dried sculpt with TLS before applying the ‘skin’ made with Premo and your technique and then baked it, embellished with more PearlX powders, sanded it when appropriate, polished it, and sprayed it with Donna and Doug’s fantastic PYMII spray that I use on all my sculpts. Whew! I had fun. Oh, the work in progress on the elephant, the cat, and the rabbit are all documented on my blog which I’ve provided the link below. Thanks so much.

~Lynda Dunham-Watkins

Web Site: www.lyndawatkinsartdolls.com
Blog: www.lyndadunham-watkins.blogspot.com

By the way, if you did not get a chance to see the last special Gallery feature, here is a direct link: Rose Garden Earrings

Open Mic: Please feel free to use the comment section below as a forum for discussing whatever is on your mind. Ask questions… post tutorial requests… share stories about your latest creations… or just say HI! This is your community! The more you put in, the more it gives back.

Cindy Lietz SignaturePolymer Clay Tutor
  1. Monique U, 04 June, 2012

    Cindy, thanks for featuring Lynda’s wonderfully sculpted animals. I was thrilled to return to her site (hadn’t been there since March) and view the fascinating step-by-step chronicle of her latest creation. Thanks for sharing the link; I forgot to follow her blog last time so I corrected that this morning! Hope everyone checks in there… she also details some of the creation of “Harvey” and “Bastet”. Love your work, Lynda, you are truly talented! Hope you are settling in after your move and that things are improving for your daughter. Thank you for taking the time to share with us here.

  2. Lynda Dunham-Watkins, 04 June, 2012

    Cindy and Doug,
    This is fantastic! Thank you so much for featuring my work. I’m honored to be here and thanks again for all your inspirational tips and techniques that you share with us weekly.
    Monique, thank you for visiting my blog and for following! This move has taken up so much time, but I plan to be back sculpting soon, and in the meantime will be sharing some home renovations!

  3. Melinda Herron, 04 June, 2012

    Oh My Cookies!!! (OMC at my house)….. Those sculptures are so so so cool!!! That’s all I can say…. so cool!

  4. Lynda Dunham-Watkins, 04 June, 2012

    Thank you, Melinda! Love the OMC!

  5. Jocelyn, 05 June, 2012

    Cindy and Doug, you must feel so proud, congrats.

    Lynda, your work is amazing and I cannot thank you enough for sharing it with us!

  6. Lynda Dunham-Watkins, 05 June, 2012

    Jocelyn, thank you so much for your kind words! It’s such an honor to be here.

  7. Dixie Ann, 05 June, 2012

    Lynda the beautiful work that you do is amazing. I’m sure Cindy is beating her chest with so much pride right now and she should. She is such a fantastic teacher and someday some of us hope to be able to graduate to higher forms. I have not seen your work before but am headed to your place right now. Thank you so much for sharing your talent and Cindy thank you so much for sharing the links to this amazing work where we can oo! and ah! and dream about being better clayers.

  8. Lynda Dunham-Watkins, 05 June, 2012

    Oh Dixie..how sweet can you be!! Thank you so much for all your kind words and for visiting my sites. If I can ever be of assistance…any questions about my work…please feel free to ask.

  9. Patricia R, 05 June, 2012

    Lynda, your sculptures are amazing! Thanks for sharing with us!

    Cindy, thank you so much for letting us see Lynda’s amazing work.

  10. Lynda Dunham-Watkins, 06 June, 2012

    Patricia, thank you so much for taking the time to visit my work. Cindy is such a dear for having me on!

  11. Lupe Meter, 05 June, 2012

    WOW…this elephant is amazing!!! Absolutely beautiful!

  12. Lynda Dunham-Watkins, 06 June, 2012

    Thank you so much, Lupe! So glad you like Roman, the elephant!

  13. Ken Hamilton, 05 June, 2012

    WOW!!!!!! I looked at the sculptures on your website, WOW, that’s all I find myself saying.

  14. Lynda Dunham-Watkins, 06 June, 2012

    Ken, thank you so much for you kind words and for taking the time to visit my website! Sculpting is such fun, and I’m eager to get my hands back in the clay,

  15. Cara H, 06 June, 2012

    These sculptures are amazing! Off to check out your website.

  16. Lynda Dunham-Watkins, 06 June, 2012

    Thank you, Cara! Hope you enjoy the website!

  17. pattw35, 06 June, 2012

    Thanks Cindy and Doug for sharing. Lynda -congrats on you site. Much fun to visit. Hope you will continue to show us all you do !!

    It is always gratifying to see others works. It kicks THE MUSE -and stimulates us to do more.

  18. Lynda Dunham-Watkins, 06 June, 2012

    Thanks so much, Pat! I also love to see what others are doing…always serves as an inspiration to me!

  19. Peggy Barnes, 06 June, 2012

    You have really found your talent and a way to speak amazingly through your art. It is absolutely amazing the way you have taken Cindy’s lessons and turned them into you. What a creative artist you are with a wonderful imagination. Thank you for sharing.

  20. Lynda Dunham-Watkins, 06 June, 2012

    Peggy, thank you so much. Your words warm my heart!

  21. Lawrence, 07 June, 2012

    Thanks to Cindy and Doug for sharing Lynda’s work with us.
    Lynda, these sculptures are amazingly beautiful as are the others on your site. I can truly appreciate all the thought, time and effort that has gone into each one of them and look forward to seeing many more in the future.

  22. Lynda Dunham-Watkins, 07 June, 2012

    Lawrence, I truly appreciate your thoughtful and kind comments on my work. Everyone has been so kind to take the time to check out my pieces. Thank you all so much. Thank you, Lawrence.

  23. Angela M, 08 June, 2012

    Lynda, your work is impressive and absolutely beautiful. I love your detail work. I’m visualizing your elephant as a showpiece in my home-how lovely it would be :)

    Thanks, Cindy and Doug, for sharing it with us.

  24. Lynda Dunham-Watkins, 08 June, 2012

    Angela, thank you so much for your kind words. As an artist, to have someone see that work in their own surroundings is indeed a lovely compliment. Thank you again.

  25. Lynda Dunham-Watkins, 29 July, 2013

    Hi Cindy, Starting some prehistoric type sculptures and need help finding cave-wall type colors, striations,etc., even precious metals, jewels, etc., that might have been found in caves, etc. I’ve looked through past tuts but know I’ve missed bunches. I seem to remember a beigey piece that had darker striations and a tad of color but can’t remember what stone it is. Age…memory! Yuck! Can you help me find any what I’ve so inadequately described? LOL!
    Thanks, Lynda

  26. Cindy Lietz, 29 July, 2013

    Hi Lynda, nice to hear from you. Your project sounds intriguing! DO make sure to show pics when it is finished. I am not sure which tutorial you are thinking of, but are any of these them?

    * Faux Bone, Faux Ivory Technique
    * Faux Jasper Cabochons
    * Faux Agate, Domed Coin Beads
    * Faux Wood Cane Video
    * Faux Burl Wood Pens

  27. Lynda Dunham-Watkins, 29 July, 2013

    Thanks, Cindy! This has been a great review looking back through the tuts and the list you have are some that I’ve looked at. Thanks so much! Will get back later.

  28. Monique U., 29 July, 2013

    Hi, Lynda, glad to hear you are working on interesting projects! I don’t know if either of these corresponds to what you are searching for, but you could check Video 012-1: Faux Pebble Beads and Video 025-3: Faux Agate for a starting point. Don’t forget to try plugging in key words into the “Search” feature top right to review discussions of your topics of interest. Hope to see more of your wonderful art!

  29. Lynda Dunham-Watkins, 29 July, 2013

    Thanks Monique! Good starting points.

  30. Chris C, 31 January, 2014

    Hi Cindy,

    I was wondering if you have ever used aluminum foil & wire in between polymer clay?

    I want to make a wind chime & wondered if the foil would be good as a filler within the wire shape and then covered with polymer clay. I have seen pictures of sculpter’s using foil & wire for figures but there isn’t much information. I wanted to use heavy armature wire, not sure if foil or maybe mesh wire would be useful.
    Thank you in advance for any information you may have. I just love watching your videos & learning all about working with polymer clay.


  31. Cindy Lietz, 02 February, 2014

    Hi Chris, yes you can use wire and tinfoil for armatures inside your polymer clay sculptures. You can also wrap that with masking tape or floral tape, to make it smoother before you wrap in polymer if you like. Metal screen or mesh is fine too. As long as it can handle the low temps that we bake polymer clay at, it should do just fine as an armature. Hope that helps!

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