“Life as a Beach… Or constant change.”
Mass is represented as the earth and its mass of sand and water. The palm tree’s top also has mass to help balance the design, yet the slanted trunk gives a motion and direction leading the eye to the tag in the upper corner. The open area under the tree on the right side represents a house and home stable and solid. The left side open area is of fractured and broken material as life is often fractured but heading to the solid tree of life. The water with one specific wave is on the left side, directing the wind and tilt of the tree. The pebbly base of sand is the roughness of life, with tiny seashells representing signs of life and new beginnings. The tree trunk of glass beads showing the fragile, breakable glass of life and the roughness of the world. The tree itself – a bendable, flexible base with flowing fronds – shows the desire to be flexible, flowing yet anchored to the sandy earth even as the wind blows and tosses the fronds about. Although most of the shells are of subdued colors, there is a bright spot in the lower right corner giving hope for life. The two coconuts are symbolic of the two lives reaching for the sky, yet eventually, both will fall to the earth and wash out to the sea. Sharp edges speak of shattered dreams and cracking spaces, and smooth ones around the “home” space show a calm, secure space. Tiny scratches on the water are the bits of turbulence in the world and how they erode the earthly base’s mass. As the earthly beach is eroded by the rough water of life, small, some bright shells of life appear to delight the eye.
Rough and smooth shells, some shinny, some dull, some bright, some circles and lines, pointy and not. Flat and round, oval and spiral such as life.
I enjoyed doing this project once I figured out how to cast the negative spaces with the foam. Being able to carve on the material. What I would do differently next time, and there will be the next time, would be not to use as much glue when putting layers of foam together. Also to make sure to smooth the foam edges and perhaps even put a bit of angle, so they are more easily removed. I do think the thickness I chose worked well with the project. The plaster should have been thicker to start with so the pebbles on the bottom of the project did not slide around so much. I am happy with not using any paint and keeping the white material as part of the main design element.
Project: To create a 12 in by 12 in by 4 to 6 inches deep sculpture from plaster of Paris. This should show mass and open-air with found objects and have meaning to the builder/artist.
Materials used: plywood for the form for casting, hot glue, screws, foam board and other plastic, Murphy’s oil soap for release agent, Plaster of Paris and found objects.
Procedure: formulate an idea to be able to reproduce negative space areas in the final casting. Cut plywood for a 12 in by 12 in base and 4 sides 12 in long by 6 in wide and make a box. Using purple foam cut with the band saw to form the negative areas and hot glue to the bottom of the box (or sides if wanted) also hot glue all box seams. Slather the interior of the box with Murphy’s oil soap. Prepare to cast material by gently sifting it into a bucket of water until small island forms in the center of the water, mix, and apply to the interior of the box. Attach any items as the material sets up. Let dry for at least 48 hours. Finish with found objects, paint, resin, or in whatever manner you wish.