Tag Archives: sculpting with la doll clay

Close your eyes and think of carrots

When I was a young girl, my friends and I wandered in to the infamous occult store The Magickal Childe where I purchased a tiny yellow booklet titled How to become a Vampire in 6 Easy Lessons.  It came complete with ominous warnings and the author was simply Madeline X.  I was obsessed with vampires since birth.  It was my costume of choice for most Halloweens.  This was way before it was Anne Rice cool or Twilight lame.  Anyway, the idea of it being something one could accomplish in a few days was intriguing.  The steps included stuff with eggs, vinegar, coffin nails and some incantations that I didn’t much care for the sound of.  I, of course, knew it was total b.s. but that didn’t mean I would’ve had the nerve to go through with it if I did.   I did like having this odd little booklet and imagining it held this dangerous secret.  I held on to it for many, many years and at some point it disappeared I guess because I sure don’t have it anymore.  I just did a quick gooogle search and it’s out of print and very hard to get.  That’s probably a good thing.  Those Twilight kids would be pretty bummed if they found themselves undead, craving blood and not a twinkle of glitter anywhere to be found.

Today, I’m not going to show you the evolution of my newest finger puppet Zom-Bunny.  Now, if you choose to make your zombie rabbit, I’m not going to be held responsible for what happens. I will say this.   I hope you have a gourmet meat market in the neighborhood that sells brains.  Otherwise, you’re going to find yourself with an awful headache and insatiable appetite for gray matter.

Materials are clay, wire, aluminum foil and paint.

I used la Doll’s Premiere stone clay which is a nice sturdy air dry clay.  You can use whatever you want.

I find with clays like La Doll and Creative Paperclay it’s helpful to build a pretty decent armature to build on.  This is especially true of the paperclay.  If you are using a polymer clay like Super Sculpey, you might find you just need a bit of wire to help support the arms and ears.   Here’s what my armature looked like:

Next I added clay, piece by piece, smoothing it as I went until I had the general shape.  A bit more clay for the details and finally I dug into the semi-hard clay with a needle-like tool to create lines that indicate fur and also the brain bite and other wounds.  La Doll dries a lot faster than paperclay and doesn’t need to be baked.  If your creating a simple figure than it will be ready in a day…maybe less.  Because I make finger puppets there is a hole underneath that goes up to the head area.  This part of the clay doesn’t get exposed to the air as well, so I need to lay his little body on it’s side and really give it time to cure.  It takes days and days but if you wanted a zombie finger puppet as much as I did, you’ll be patient.

Here’s how he looked when he was nice and dry and ready to paint:

I always use gesso with my air dry clays.  I think it’s a great way to take the first step in sealing the clay and protecting it and also creates a nice clean base with a bit of tooth to add paint to.  Paint your zombie bunny however you like.  I used several washes of  winter whites and paynes grey and some sepia tones for antiquing. When creating wounds it’s nice to start with a dark tone first and then add your brighter bloody tones on top.  This gives depth. When you’re happy with the paint you can use a protective finish.  I seal mine with matte finish because I don’t really want a shiny zombie.  I do like a little shine to the eyes and mouth though so a bit of varnish is the final step.

Here’s mine:

Take this last step if you dare.  Dig a 6 inch hole in the earth by the light of a full moon.  Place a morsel of animal brain inside the mouth of the figure.  Fill the hole with a mixture of 3 parts cemetery dirt, 1 part  cloves and 1 part ground bone.  Brew a cup of chamomile tea using 3 teabags and 2 cups of water.  Pour this on top of your little grave mound at precisely 2:22 am reciting the following:

brains craver, flesh raver, rabid rabbit, boo
zombunny birthed at two twenty two

Keep reciting this until the clock turns to 2:23, then stop immediately.  In 24 hours, you’ll have yourself a zombie rabbit. No need to dig it out, it will do that on it’s own.  Have fresh brains ready because it will surely be hungry.  In fact, it will always, always be hungry.