Well, I finally finished a special order for my friend Jannis. She has 2 beautiful boxer dogs, Sassy and O'Malley, and wanted me to make 2 necklaces with their names and their heads. I've had a bit of experience sculpting specific dog breeds (Affenpinschers, Brussels Griffons, and Westies), so I had a good idea of how to get started with this project. The first step is research. I study the AKC website for the particular breed, as well as breed specific websites in order to get the anatomy and proportions just right. It's amazing how different each breed can be, and even the little differences matter. Next I study pictures of different boxers and note the similarities and differences. Since I was sculpting 2 specific dogs this time I got several good pictures of Sassy and O'Malley from Jannis. I use a combination of the written descriptions and the pictures as I'm sculpting. Since Jannis wanted name pendants, I did these first (that was the easy part!). I used silver clay for one and gold clay for the other. I cut the shapes with scissors that make different patterns, then stamped the names with rubber stamps, then filled the letters with blue and red embossing powder before I baked the pendants. For the dos I created the basic shape of the skull and muzzle, then added the details on top of this. I had to be sure to get the colors and stripes just right. Sassy and O'Malley are twins, and there are very subtle differences in their coloring, size, and expression. I like the way they came out. I hope I managed to capture their individual personalities. I think it helped that I actually know the dogs on a personal level. Here are some pictures of the finished product.
-Michelle of CreativeCritters