Students use drills and screws to anchor the legs of their armatures to a wooden base. They will paint their wooden bases to keep them from warping. The legs and screws will be caulked for added strength.
Students are introduced to clay, clay tools, and clay sculpting techniques. They will prepare rags, plastic wrap and bags before they start to use the clay. The wood base is then covered with a layer of clay.
They will cut their animal silhouettes out of paper and use them by attaching them to bamboo skewers and positioning them behind the armature by pushing the skewers into the clay base.
In this way, they can make sure they only build up their sculptures to the correct profiles for their chosen animal. They will then fill in their armatures with clay. They create volume with clay and work on getting the left and right sides symmetrical.
Students will use references from Antoine Louis Barye and other animaliers to help them add realism to their works of art. Students draw animal muscle shapes onto their sculptures to create more detailed forms.