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I'm Richard Michaux. I am an artist with a love of Santa Claus. I want to make sculptures of him for you this Christmas. Read more

Pittsburgh, PA Sculpture
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Funded!

This project was successfully funded on September 21, 2012.

I'm Richard Michaux. I am an artist with a love of Santa Claus. I want to make sculptures of him for you this Christmas.

Pittsburgh, PA Sculpture
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About this project

My work has been multi-faceted over the years, ranging from painting and drawing to carving and sculpting.  But no matter how focused I am on any particular medium, I always find time to make a few Santa Claus faces each autumn.  This year, I am looking to Kickstarter to allow me to expand my reach and make more sculptures for more people, all over the world.

I will make as many sculptures as are pledged for in the next 30 days, be it one or a thousand, and will have them ready for you this holiday season.

The Process

The method I follow for creating Santa faces is an artisanal approach that dates back thousands of years.  By incorporating modern-day materials and mixing components to this time-tested process of sculpting, molding, and casting, I'm able to produce a lightweight, durable and intricately detailed sculpture that can be showcased indoors or outside and will last for decades.  

Because each piece is hand-crafted and hand-painted, it contains variations that differentiate it from other pieces cast of the same exact mold. This means each piece created using this process is an original work of art.

Sculpting 

Each Santa face has its origins in the face of someone I've encountered, whether they are a friend, a family member, or someone I've passed on the street.  Bit by bit, these inspirations are incorporated into the piece and as the plasticine clay takes shape on the board, the character of the face is revealed. 

Shaping a Clay Santa
Shaping a Clay Santa

Creating the Mold

When I'm satisfied that I've captured all of the details of the facial expression, I construct a wooden housing around the piece and prepare it for a poured plaster mold.  The video below gives a brief glimpse into how this is done.

After the plaster has dried, I remove and rework the clay. Then I repeat the whole process once more with a synthetic, tin-based silicone rubber mold that will allow me to cast multiple versions of the same Santa face.

Casting the Sculpture

Up to this point, it's all been prep work. Only once I mix the resin and pour it into the rubber mold does a chemical reaction occur and the sculpture begin to materialize. I use synthetic resin because it is weatherproof, lightweight, stronger than concrete, and can be painted easily.

Pouring Resin into the Rubber Mold
Pouring Resin into the Rubber Mold

Applying the Patina

Almost done! After the resin has been given time to cure, I remove it from the rubber mold and apply a patina, which is several layers of primer and paint that give the piece a protective finish as well as a rich color.  

Below are a few examples of a finished Santa Claus sculptures.

Santa Claus, 2009
Santa Claus, 2009
Santa Claus, 2010
Santa Claus, 2010
Santa Claus, 2011
Santa Claus, 2011
Santa Claus, 2012 (Unfinished - I need your support!)
Santa Claus, 2012 (Unfinished - I need your support!)

Funding

Your backing for this project will help to offset the raw material and production costs for making multiple Santa Clause sculptures, including:

  • plasticene clay
  • plaster 
  • tin-based silicone rubber
  • synthetic resin
  • paint and primer

Gratitude

Thank you for viewing this project. I sincerely appreciate all of your encouragement, support, and feedback. I look forward to being a special part of your holiday season this year!

- Rich

FAQ

Have a question? If the info above doesn't help, you can ask the project creator directly.

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Rewards

  • You selected
    Pledge $5 or more

    0 backers

    Thank you! As a showing of my gratitude, I'll give you access to exclusive project blog content and place your name as a Faces of Winter backer on my website, artbymichaux.com

    Estimated delivery:
  • You selected
    Pledge $25 or more

    0 backers

    Receive an Art by Michaux t-shirt.
    (Canadian backers, please add $5 for shipping. International backers, please add $10 for shipping.)

    Estimated delivery:
  • You selected
    Pledge $50 or more

    3 backers

    Take your pick from one of my limited edition black & white prints found here http://artbymichaux.com/black-and-white.htm
    (Canadian backers, please add $5 for shipping. International backers, please add $10 for shipping.)

    Estimated delivery:
  • You selected
    Pledge $300 or more

    9 backers Limited (11 left of 20)

    Limited Early Bird - Receive one hand-crafted, hand-painted Santa Claus sculpture (approximately 16" tall x 10" wide x 4" deep) Thanks for your support! THESE WILL BE READY FOR CHRISTMAS 2012!! (Canadian backers, please add $20 for shipping. International backers, please add $30 for shipping.)

    Estimated delivery:
  • You selected
    Pledge $450 or more

    1 backer Limited (9 left of 10)

    Limited - Receive one hand-crafted, hand-painted Santa Claus sculpture (approximately 16" tall x 10" wide x 4" deep) THESE WILL BE READY FOR CHRISTMAS 2012!! (Canadian backers, please add $20 for shipping. International backers, please add $30 for shipping.)

    Estimated delivery:
  • You selected
    Pledge $600 or more

    0 backers

    Receive one hand-crafted, hand-painted Santa Claus sculpture (approximately 16" tall x 10" wide x 4" deep) THESE WILL BE READY FOR CHRISTMAS 2012!! (Canadian backers, please add $20 for shipping. International backers, please add $30 for shipping.)

    Estimated delivery:
  • You selected
    Pledge $1,000 or more

    0 backers

    Receive two hand-crafted, hand-painted Santa Claus sculptures (approximately 16" tall x 10" wide x 4" deep) THESE WILL BE READY FOR CHRISTMAS 2012!! Great for a gift! (Canadian backers, please add $20 for shipping. International backers, please add $30 for shipping.)

    Estimated delivery:
  • You selected
    Pledge $1,350 or more

    0 backers

    Receive three hand-crafted, hand-painted Santa Claus sculptures (approximately 16" tall x 10" wide x 4" deep) THESE WILL BE READY FOR CHRISTMAS 2012!! Great for gifts! (Canadian backers, please add $20 for shipping. International backers, please add $30 for shipping.)

    Estimated delivery:
  • You selected
    Pledge $1,750 or more

    0 backers Limited (5 left of 5)

    Receive a one-of-a-kind Santa Claus sculpture, made from a throw-away mold (which means I won't use a rubber mold - you'll be the only person in the world with this Santa Claus face!). Specifically for Kickstarter backers. THESE WILL BE READY FOR CHRISTMAS 2012!!

    Estimated delivery:
  • You selected
    Pledge $5,000 or more

    0 backers

    Receive a Santa Claus sculpture in bronze. Specifically for Kickstarter backers. THESE WILL BE READY FOR CHRISTMAS 2012!!

    Estimated delivery:

Funding period

- (30 days)