Sue Lee-Homework Process Photos

Hi guys. Sorry for the late posting! The uploading photo part takes awhile for me. Also, my baby boy came down with something like the chicken pox and I'm kind of like a zombie right now.  Anyway, I've been working on my HW whenever I can.  I am up to casting, but my model is away until next week.  So I am going to apply it on myself.  Hopefully it won't be too off and I can see what my losing battle with gravity will ultimately look like!

Here are my process photos, notes and thoughts. Feel free to comment, leave insight or ask/answer questions.

1. Made a contour map of model's face where the prosthetic will be applied. I used aquaphor (like vaseline) to help stick the saran wrap onto the model's face (as per Neil's suggestion) and it worked really really well.  Everything stayed taut.
*Notes: Neil said it makes more sense to get the right model from the start.  I think I chose possibly the worst model for this.  My model is in her 20s and had absolutely no wrinkles except the smile crease at the corners of her lips. She showed me a photo of her mom in her 40s and she looked like she was in her 30s.  For a film, I think I would've just done a stretch and stipple all over to age her 10+ years. This was super challenging...and I think I spent more time researching and looking up reference photos than I did sculpting...  

2. Transfer saran wrap onto an acrylic board and trace the prosthetic "contour map" 

Notes: The Aquaphor really helped stick this on as well.  I stick the saran wrap on another board and board the sculpting acrylic board on top.  I eventually added in rough markers for the eyes, nose and lips.  This is my first time and I had lots of trouble visualizing the sculpture just by itself, because I realized I wasn't going to sculpt in any wrinkles.  After my research, to age an Asian woman 10 years, I would just have to emphasize the sagging of the fat on her face from gravity.  The skin itself would be quite taut and pore texture wasn't as visible...just a few on the cheeks.

3. Sculpt appliance on acrylic board

*Notes: Sketching rough markers of the face really helped me visualize the piece.  It was hard to just sculpt the sagging skin with no wrinkles.  I have the eye bag, but I'm worried that even that is a bit too pronounced.  The entire time I kept imagining the face relief etched on a coin.  The thickest part of the piece is 3-4 millimeters. You can see from the side view it's not thick at all.  It also helped using an overhead light to check my shadows when I held the board vertically.

*Notes: After I got both sides roughed out, I traced the sculpt onto saran wrap and placed it back on the model's face to check placement.  Neill recommended doing this and I would agree, because I found tons of mistakes which I corrected in red.  Next, I placed the tracing  on top of my sculpt and dotted the corrected placement into the clay and continued sculpting.

4. Prep sculpts for molding

*Notes: I cleaned up my edges and feathered the edges out.  I think I spent another 30 minutes with the texture and just started fiddling with it every time I saw something.  I did not apply the Kryolan Fixier spray, although I wish I had just to try it out.  I had inhibition once from the clay (NSP Chavant Brown color) and the spray would've been a nice insurance policy.  However, we had an overrated snow storm here and I didn't get a chance to go out and buy it.  I held the acrylic boards up to the light to see how thin the edges were and that helped as well as Neill's finger method.  I also like to take black and white photos of the sculpts to check the depth since the color throws me off sometimes.  I also added a neck waddle (?).  I didn't get to see Neill's neck waddle, but I would love to see a photo of one he has done before.  I didn't know how much surface area to cover, so it should be interesting to see how it looks on the model.

5. Make first clay wall

*Notes:  I used Van Aken Protolina - Klean Klay Alternative (Soft). I got mine off of Amazon (link below).  I really like it as much as the original klean klay.  Had no problems with it.  The wall went super fast and no inhibition.


I get a bit frustrated because I find pieces of dust/small particles in my sculpture when there was none the day before.  Do you guys cover it with plastic wrap/a plastic bag?  I think I will start to.  It's just really annoying to see it after spending so much time on the surface texture. That white dot in the middle of my cheek sculpt is where I tried to get rid of a particle and made it worse...

Okay that's it for now with the photos; gotta catch some ZzZs.  I am up to the casting part, but I'll load the silicone molding photos later. I am using all Smooth-On products, so I'll list in detail what I'm using in case anyone who uses them wants to know. I know lots of East coast people use Smooth-On because they provide great customer service and they're more local; the shipping for silicone kills us!  Last time I checked I think I was looking at West coast suppliers and the shipping thwarted that venture, If anyone knows of an East coast supplier with reasonable shipping, then please let me know.  I'd like to try out the Platsil- Gel 25.

Night! ^^~


  • Options
    These pieces look amazing so far Sue! Can't wait for the finished product, and it's nice to see I'm not the only one applying the makeup on themselves.
  • Options
    Sue LeeSue Lee
    edited January 2015
    Ugh...I'm going to get alcohol in my eye, and look like a grumpy old woman.  Haha! 
    Post edited by Sue Lee on
  • Options
    edited January 2015
    Lol ooooh not good hopefully that'll keep out as much as possible
  • Options
    Your sculpts look fantastic, can't wait to see how the appliances turn out!

  • Options
    That's some amazing skin texture! I would love to hear a little more about your process. I love seeing what all my classmates are doing, very inspiring.
  • Options
    Your pieces look amazing! I can't wait to see the application :-)
  • Options
    Well done Sue... looking good so far! I would love to see what tools you used for your skin texture.

    Can't wait to see the end result!
  • Options
    Thanks for all the kind words and positive energy. My molds and castings went super well.  My sculpts are in tact in case the makeup doesn't match up on the face and I can tweak the sculpts to practice placement.

    Application on the other hand...was quite difficult.  Splattering with your eyes closed is definitely not fun.  The sculpt was for another person and the prosthetics came up a bit short on my face.  I'll explain my process in the photos.

    6. Inner mold

    *Notes: I used Mold Star 20, Shore 20A. The room was 76/77 degrees and the platinum silicone had a pot life of ~4 min and completely set up around 8-10 min. It set up even faster when I put it near the heater.  I brushed 3 layers before filling and added the keys in during the 2nd layer.  I did not use any sealant or release on the sculpture.

    Question for Neill: The perimeter key/trench was cut with an exacto knife with ease.  However, in some spot I think I tilted the blade at a slight angle.  It was not a problem until I was casting and popped the inner mold back into the outer jacket.  Some areas I had to fiddle with and those areas were the ones I had tilted the exacto knife.  Is there a specific reason for doing the overflow trench/perimeter key this way?

    7. Outer jacket mold

    *Notes:  Used the Eject It 33 release Neill used.  Worked great! Also sprayed 1 layer of Parfilm 3 on top.  

    8. Tint & prep casting silicone

    *Notes: I used the Factor II silicone pigment line.  I also added in a bit of flocking; I just wanted to try it out and see what it would look like. I used Smooth-On Dragon Skin FX Pro, which has a durometer of Shore 2A and is more fluid to reduce bubbles during pours.  I used Smooth-On Slacker deadener. 

    9. Apply Super Baldiez & pour silicone

    *Notes: I just sprayed the Eject it 33 release and 1 coat of Epoxy Parfilm Ultra 3.  I used Super Baldiez.  I wish I did 2 separate batches to fill and less silicone.  I barely was able to remove the excess silicone on the edges.  I had some edges I realized were not blending off as well, because there was a small layer of silicone still encapsulated.  I think the next time I do this...I will have it down.

  • Options

    10. Application time (before Photo)

    *Notes: I prepped my skin with toner and applied my skin with Derma shield (2 layers) for easier removal...and still had to wash my face 3 times to get the glue off my face.  The only different products I used were Mungle's Old Age Stipple "C" and my alcohol activated palettes were Skin Illustrators.

    *Notes:  Here are just the pieces applied with no cabo-patch or paint. I ended up not patching any edges to see how good the blending edges were. Also, I was limited with my peripheral vision.

    Since I did this on myself, the first cheek I applied was a little off.  (Camera right) The other cheek was better because I drew an outline of the piece, while holding it up in the light with a sharpie. I do the same thing on the waterslide paper for pros-aide transfers...so why not on this silicone mold.  The sharpie outline helped a ton, but I would need to figure out a permanent solution since it rubs off.  Any suggestions?

     Also you can tell my face was a bit longer than the model's since the eye bags did not come further up.  But I will be using this application as a test to prep for the real application when my model comes back next week.  I had a bit more brow than my model and some of my hair got in the way, beyond the dis-solvable edge of the forehead piece.

    *Notes: I applied the old age stipple first before the appliances. I thought it came out really nice, but I would not do more than 1 layer with the "C" old age stipple.  It was too wrinkly and did not match the skin texture on the appliances.  I may pick up a bottle of "A" for future use.  I really like Matthew Mungle's old age stipple.  It goes on light and stays on very very well.

    Please, don't mind the huge splatter marks.  Hah!  I was doing it with my eyes closed and didn't realize it was so messy.  At the end I took a makeup brush, misted with alcohol, and blended the entire face lightly.

     Here's the final look.  Applying makeup on myself was not ideal, but I learned so much especially about placement, that when I get to apply these on the model I won't be wasting too much time.  Super excited for it!  I'll post them here regardless if Neill has time to see it or not.  

    Thank you for doing the virtual workshop, Neill!  I have all your DVDs and if I lived in the UK I'd be taking your workshops all the time.  It's an honor to have your 2 cents and advice. I always learn so much, just from watching the pros work - 10 hours of live-time demo flew by real quick...har har!  Hope to see you at IMATS NY!


  • Options
    Great Job! Beautiful cheeks
    paint is great.
  • Options
    I love the Roundness of your sculpts.

  • Options
    Sue LeeSue Lee
    edited February 2015
    Regarding the texture for the sculpts, I use a pet brush.  Neill also mentioned it when he was sculpting.  Then I go over and over...over and over until all traces of the tools I used are gone.  I use various liquids when smoothing out.  I didn't do a thorough job on this one since we had a deadline. , but i normally use the following when smoothing out my texture in no particular order.  It makes a huge difference. 

    Various dilutions of IPA
    244 Fluid or Lighter fluid

  • Options
    Your application turned out beautiful, nice work!

Sign In or Register to comment.