Here's proof that I love gators! I dug around in the attic to find this photo that was taken of me about 22 years ago. My wife and I took a vacation trip to Orlando, Florida. We stopped by the Gatorland Zoo to watch alligators leap 5 feet out of the water, and snatch raw whole chickens that dangled from a cable stretched across the pond. Pretty cool and scary!! I had to get my picture taken with one of the little guys (note that it's mouth is taped shut).
I've been reading up on some sculpture sites recently to find some techniques for making bumpy skin. I tried a few quick experiments...thought I'd share the results.
The first approach required a "bump stamp". I made a wedge of Sculpey Firm (the gray-colored clay), then used various sized stylist tools with the round ball on the end. I pressed in lots of holes, baked the wedge...then rolled it into some Super Sculpy. Viola...bumpy texture!
I also tried several other tools to make individual bumps. I created a "rake" from sewing pins stuck into epoxy...several passes in the clay makes some good wrinkles. I also used old paint brush handles...I ground out the ends with a dremel tool. A brush tip without the bristles makes a nice circle, too.
For little tiny bumps, I used an old razor-point pen...I pulled out the felt tip which left the hollow metal shaft. On the bottom row, I used a coffee stir stick. Another great way to make warty bumps is to roll up tiny balls of clay. You can burnish them down around the edges a bit.
Once you create a nice random pattern, you can brush on a light glaze of paint thinner to blend it smoother. Not too much, or you'll lose the delicate details.
This weekend, I hope to start on the detailing of Space Gator's head. When done, I'll post that next time.
I just did a web-search...yep, GATORLAND is still there! Here's a great image by Jason Cordoba from the site's 2009 photo contest. Mighty tasty chicken!