How’d He Do That?

Now that my show at Swarm is up and open, I figure I can share the stuff I’d been working on. I decided to build a sculpture for the Tall Tales show that was similar to the lighthouse-boat contraption in my Black Light drawing. Here’s a sort of step-by-step how-to…

I found some hi-density foam board in the free room at my studio and decided to use that as my armature base.

A mailing tube and duct tape would make a great lighthouse structure.

Sanding the foam was fairly easy but dusty/messy.

Skinning everything with Magic Sculp is a chore but well worth the effort…

Mixing your 2-part Magic Sculp thoroughly is important. It’s sorta like Bondo. You gotta mix it well so it hardens correctly.

Next day the MS is hardened. I even drew on it a little bit do work out some ideas.

Gluing some basswood to the structure for architectural details. Knowing that I’d pencil this badboy up, I opted to keet the sculpture shape super simple and let the pencil do the talking.

Grommets make good portholes. Dave Higgins is the go-to artist at the Hive for oddball stuff like grommets.

Nathaniel Parsons recommended that I look for miscellaneous hardware at the Ace down the street and try and find stuff that’d work with my boat motif.

Dowels make great masts. Of course my mast and rigging arrangement is totally made up in spite of a number of sailing lessons in my hometown of Swampscott, Massachusetts.

Dave soldered this little brass catwalk/crows-nest and the upside-down jar makes a good window.

Some white spray paint and pencil for detail…

I even made a few throwies to stick inside the lighthouse.

It seemed appropriate to me that the Black Light should call Salem, Massachusetts home port.

Dave also suggested the itty-bitty baby grommets for the flags and sails. Nice call!

Here she is at Swarm. Tomorrow I will put up some pics from the opening and show at Swarm. Stay tuned!

2 Responses to “How’d He Do That?”


  1. 1 Jason Thompson October 3, 2011 at 4:18 pm

    This is so awesome. Great job all around. Would love to see in person. And can’t wait to show Faye, she seems to love art-in-progress photos. Thanks for sharing.


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