Old Dog – New Tricks

Oh yes, I do admit I have a tried and true method of producing an armature. It works well and has been easily assembled and very serviceable. But there has always been a problem with changing the elevation of the piece without changing the sculpture itself. I’ve lived with that issue for a long time and just added clay to the top of the piece or the bottom. Not a very elegant method of fixing a too long legged horse or a dog not tall enough. So after reading some tomes pertaining to making sculptures I thought I might as well change my armature habit.

In this alternate method of armatures for four legged animals the entrance point of the armature into the beast could be from above or the side rather than directly under the animal. I was intrigued. Since I really don’t like welding an armature because lots of figuring on exact sizes doesn’t mean it’s perfect. I still want the option of adjusting things slightly. It has to be changed by cutting the steel and re-welding it with a very meltable and flammable foam model close by. You can do it, but not always easy. And it again solidifies a design that may need to be adjusted just a bit later. Same problem. So, I drew up a solution and went to the hardware store armed with a drawing and the hope somebody could point me to the parts I needed.

Threaded rod is what I was after and they had a big selection. I needed the right diameter that would fit into a sleeve of hollow steel. I found it. Next I needed a method of holding the threaded rod at the height I’d want it to be. I found that too. The only hitch was how to control the upward movement of the rod. I have that solution by drilling the steel hollow piece and threading that hole. Then a screw can be threaded into it and tightened against the rod. Viola. I can move it at my pleasure. Now I will see how comfortable I am with a new tool in my artist tool box. We’ll see if you can teach an old dog new tricks.