Nicolas Pain
Marine Wildlife Sculptor

The making of the octopus has been a complex process so I thought that I would illustrate some of the key stages in the lost wax process.
Mould making
The original had to be cut into ten pieces with each forming a separate mould. Clay is then 'laid up' around the sculpture which is then covered with a plaster jacket. The clay is later removed and replaced with silicone rubber to make the detailed mould itself. The more complex parts of the sculpture have multi part moulds.
The main body being laid up with clay. It is protected by cling film. One half fully laid up with clay. The silicone in side the plaster jacket.
Each component is then cast in wax using these silicone moulds. These require quite a bit of clean up to ensure the most accurate reproduction. I chose to cast many of the suckers individually and reapply them to the wax model to ensure that all of the detail was fully preserved; these can be seen in a blue wax that is often used for the production of fine jewellery.
The main body and head. Tentacle cluster. Individual tentacles.
Investment and casting
Each wax is then sprued up with additional runners to assist the flow of the molten bronze. The waxes are then covered in an 'investment' jacket of a foundry plaster mix. The wax is then melted to leave a negative inside the plaster. This is then filled with the molten bronze.
The plaster investment can be seen around the suckers. The main body and head cleaned of investment and de- sprued. Superb casting.
Straight out of the investment the matrix of sprues can still be seen here.
Assembly and Chasing
Each piece has now been cleaned up and weled togther guided by the orinal model. The joints then have the detail 'chased' in by hand
The bronze is then coloured using chemical soutions that are fixed and devloped using the blow torch method

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