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Do it yourself – head moulds

27/02/2014

For anyone that is interested, here’s a quick tutorial for how to make a head mould from a live model.

You need:

  • 500g de alginate
  • 4 packs of plaster bandage
  • 250g de plaster
  • vaseline
  • dracalon / Exhaust filter

The first step is to cover the hair of the model with a silicone cap so that alginate does not get grabbed. It should be of silicone and not fabric as the fabric has the same problem as the hair: it clings.

Then spread all exposed parts of the head with a generous layer of Vaseline, with special care for eyebrows, eyelashes and sideburns. Not only Vaseline prevents the alginate clinging to the hair but also ensures more comfortable removing of the mold for the model.

Mix one part of alginate with water in a small container, such that to use all the material before becoming hardened. The ratio is 1 part alginate for 2 parts water. If you have some grains, no problem, but if you want to be homogenous, use a roads beater. Please note: the alginate has a very short working time, about 5-10 minutes.

Start by applying the paste on the back of the head, from the top down, so that you have a layer about the same thickness. When starting behind ensures that the time that the face is covered is smaller and thus less discomfort for the model.

Aplicação do alginato

Aplicação do alginato

While the alginate is not completely cured, apply dracalon, so that part of it becomes embedded in the alginate. These fibers will provide a place of imprisonment between alginate and plaster.

Aplicação do dracalon

Aplicação do dracalon

While the alginate  cure, cut strips of plaster bandage that you think you’ll need and place a container of warm water on hand. The warm water accelerates the hardening of plaster. Soak the bandages in water and remove excess water. Apply on the alginate so that the entire surface is covered.

Aplicação da ligadura de gesso

Aplicação da ligadura de gesso

While leaving the plaster to dry somewhat, apply a layer of vaseline on the edge of the back so that when removing the mold it does not have undesirable prisons.

Repeat the same procedure for the front face. Pay attention to the eye area so as not to create air bubbles between the alginate and the skin. Let the nose to the end, but do not cover the entrance to the nostrils.

Aplicação alginato

Aplicação alginato

Aplicação alginato

Aplicação alginato

Aplicação alginato

Aplicação alginato

Apply a layer of dracalon and place strips of bandage. Leave the nose free. To strengthen the two sides of the nose, cut a small piece of bandage and twist once in order to make the shape of a bow tie. Apply over the nose to hold the two parts.

Apliacação ligadura de gesso

Apliacação ligadura de gesso

Apliacação ligadura de gesso

Apliacação ligadura de gesso

While the bandage is hardening, you can apply a thin layer of plaster to strengthen the whole structure, being careful not to cover the junction of the two parts. So that the drying of plaster is fast, put the plaster in a glass and top up with water only until you fail to see the plaster surface. Mix by hand until no lumps and apply over the bandage.

After the plaster is hard, you can remove the mold. Do not forget: keep talking to the model and explain what you are doing. This way the model remains relaxed and the process is less uncomfortable.

To remove the mold insert your fingers at the junction between the two parts along the entire length so as to release the mold from the head and allow the entry of air. Ask the model to inhale through the nose and exhale through the mouth.

Retirar molde

Retirar molde

The end result is a very detailed mold of the head. Please note that the alginate decomposes and deforms fairly quickly, so it is not advisable to keep it a long time before taking the positive.

Molde

Molde

Positivo em gesso

Positivo em gesso

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