Lifecasting the human form is often a means to an end in the prosthetic industry. The casts are used to build upon with clay when creating creatures for film. An accurate cast of an actors face or body is also used when creating prosthetic wound applications. But sometimes the cast in and of itself is the final creation. The human body is a beautiful and malleable form which, through a life cast, can be captured in a moment in time. At our studio we’ve done life or body casting for athletes and models wanting to preserve a physical sculpture of their hard work in shaping their body into a desired form. We’ve also cast pregnant women who wish to retain a sculptural memory of their bodies during a magical and fleeting phase of life creation.
Because your model is required to sit still for such a long period and because the process is relatively intricate, there are several things to keep in mind in order for the end resulting sculpture to look and feel as the mind might imagine it to.
These are my 3 top insights to master in order to create and ensure beautiful life casts.
1. Composition is everything
In an artistic lifecast it really is all about composition. The pose is so important, as a slight adjustment can turn a soft pose into something quite sensual. So, it’s vital to know exactly what mood or feeling your client wants to capture and portray with their cast form. Consider placement of the hands and delicate arranging of the fingers before you even mix your materials if you want a smooth flowing process and no additional sculpting and recasting work on the final piece.
2. Be flexible when ‘freezing’ the human form
One must also bear in mind that not every pose is doable. While we humans can get ourselves into perplexing and beautifully complex poses, in reality we only hold those for moments. The weight of the moulding materials, the silicone and gypsum cast, add additional weight to the body and therefore holding a taxing pose can be incredibly tiring on the model if held over several hours. It’s critical to choose a pose he or she can maintain comfortably for about an hour.
3. Nothing ruins a good cast like a bad paint job
When it comes to the final finish or paint effect on your positive cast, practice on something else before transferring it onto your final piece. Make sure you have it perfected before doing your final touches. Popular and very effective paint techniques for lifecasts are a bronzed paint effect as well as stone, particularly white marble or granite.
Recent lifecast step shots of Angie Snyman, South African International fitness model sponsored by USN. Angie was placed 3rd in an international competition and wanted more than a photograph to capture her physical accomplishments and efforts. There is something transient and timeless about a three dimensional form that a photograph in all its detail isn’t able to capture.
Hopefully this little piece inspired you to the potential of a beautiful life cast. For any further queries or requests on creating your own captured form, or pregnant belly bump – get in touch with us for a lifecast quotation. Our studio is always warm and our music choices, excellent.