I’ve never known anyone with more enthusiasm for sculpture and sculptors than Argentinean sculptor Alterton Bizarre. Alterton’s Sculptor’s Corner (http://www.thesculptorscorner.com) was the first online gallery I joined. Mr. Bizarre works in epoxy putty, the most unforgiving sculpture material known to modern man. You have to have the patience of Job, the work ethic of a stone mason and be fleet of hand and sure of eye to be able to beat the damn stuff into submission. He has all of that and a mode of expression that would make the entire crew of a pirate ship blush. In addition, he is a doctor of dentistry and orthodontics. But don’t call him Doc. He promises to “kick your fat ass” if you do. How he knows I have a fat ass, I don’t really know. None the less, ladies and germs, midgets and microbes, I give you, the one and only Alterton Bizarre! ~ Tim Bruckner
1: This was my first time working with this kind of control art. Mike Pavlovich did an awesome job creating the ZBrush file, and I was able to disassemble it in parts: shoulders, torso, head, etc. Having all the reference in 360 degrees meant I could examine the piece from every angle in detail. It was a big challenge, because there was no room for mistakes or “cheating” as everything was there, right in front of my eyes.
2: I started with a wire armature for pose and proportions and covered it with a fast-curing epoxy (5-10 min of working time) to get a rigid skeleton to work over. Then I used regular epoxy (45 min to an hour working time) to create the basic volumes and shapes. Once the epoxy was cured, I did some rotary tooling to compensate and accommodate the shapes.
3: One of my biggest concerns was the relationship between the belly and the gun. So once the gun was sculpted, following the digital file, I positioned it in place to see how it would work.
4: As some volumes were tricky, having to leave room for details, I used polymer clay to add volume to the belly and the hunched back. This allowed me to be a little more specific in adding/removing material. After the polymer clay was baked, I added some epoxy layers covering the clay. Pete Jirles' directions were really helpful and easy to follow to accomplish these proportions. Next, I cut the piece into parts with a jeweler’s saw for molding and casting purposes.
5: It was working!!! It was time to start adding armor shapes and volumes, cleaning and reshaping with a rotary tool. It was a process of adding layers of regular epoxy, letting them set, tooling, new epoxy layers, letting them set and tooling again and so on and so on, until the desired result were achieved.
6: Details followed the same process of adding epoxy layers and tooling. I did one side first to see how it was working. Once the client was satisfied I continued with the other side. For the gun I used some styrene rods and sheets, using heat and shaping blades, and adding thin layers of epoxy. And lots of filing and heaps of sandpaper to get those damned sharp edges!!7-8: To give a final smooth surface, I sprayed gray automobile primer in several layers, being very carefully not to smooth out the details, but enough to give a unified look and a continuous polished surface. The first layers of primer allowed me to see which parts needed more sanding and refining. Again, it was a process of spraying primer and sanding, spraying and sanding, until I was happy with it. Finally the piece was ready for approval!!!! I took a set of turnaround pix and some close-ups and sent them to my Art Director for approval, and from there straight to Epic Games for final approval. Luckily, the approval process was one of the fastest I ever had!!!! Epic didn’t ask for modifications, so my AD was happy and I was even happier. After a month and a few days, I had finished one of the most intricate and detailed pieces I’d ever done.
9: The base was sculpted by Peter Jirles, who sculpted the bases for the other figures in the series. The final product was done in cold-cast platinum and cold cast bronze, which really heightened the sculpture’s details.