Friday, August 16, 2013

Completing the World of Warcraft Pandaren Wedding Cake topper

To see how this all started check out post one, two, three, and four in this series.  Here's the final installment of my work in progress posts for the World of Warcraft Pandaren wedding cake topper.  In the last post I showed you how I finished sculpting the pretty Pandaren bride.  The poor groom was still headless at that point, but here you can see what he looks like with a good head on his shoulders ;)
And here's a shot of what he looks like from behind.  I textured the eyebrows,  hair, and beard and gave him a topknot as well.
After a final smoothing the wedding cake topper was ready to be baked.  I baked this one all in one shot, rather than doing several short bakes before the final longer bake.  When I'm working with white clay I try to just do one bake since the clay can sometimes darken with multiple bakes.  And since I used foil armatures to fill the larger parts, rather than solid clay, baking the piece for an hour and letting it cool in the oven was completely sufficient.  After the sculpture was cooled I mixed pearlizing medium with high gloss glaze to add a pretty shimmer to the bride's dress.
I used acrylic paint to add the gray stripes under her eyes and painted her nose and both their mouths with black acrylic paint.  I also added shine to their eyes and noses with a coat of high gloss glaze.  The final touch was to seal the entire piece with several layers of matte glaze.  This helps protect the sculpture and makes it easier to clean.

This wedding cake topper measures about 4 1/2 inches wide and 6 inches tall and is actually quite lightweight, especially considering that Pandaren are very solid, thick creatures.

I'm very happy with the way this piece turned out and I hope to get the chance to sculpt more Pandaren, as well as other World of Warcraft characters, in the future.  I really enjoy creating wedding cake toppers because a wedding is such a special event, and the cake topper is a lasting reminder of that very important day in a couple's life.  And don't forget, I'll sculpt just about any character you've got pictures of, so just contact me at if you'd like me to create a customized cake topper for your wedding, anniversary, birthday, or other celebration.
Thanks for following another creative adventure with me!
~Michelle of CreativeCritters

Monday, August 5, 2013

World of Warcraft Pandaren Wedding Cake Topper Work in progress- the groom gets arms and the bride is completed

 Progress on the World of Warcraft wedding cake topper is moving forward and the sculpture is nearing completion.  To see how this all started check out posts one, two, and three in this series.  In the last post I showed you how I dressed the bride and groom , but neither had their arms or heads yet.  Now you can see how the Pandaren groom's hands and arms started out.  I used a wire armature bent into the proper shape and sculpted the gray and black polymer clay fingers and hands onto the wire.  They're still a little rough in this picture, but you get the idea.
Next I sculpted the arms and added cuffs to the black tuxedo jacket.  The cuffs also help secure the hands even more firmly to the arms.  I left enough wire sticking out of the shoulders to insert into the groom's body. 
I did the same thing with the bride's arms and managed to to arrange their arms so they were holding hands.  It took several tries to get this right, but I managed to achieve the look I wanted.  This is a very sturdy sculpture as well.  Not only do the arms have wire armatures but I also pressed them against the bodies wherever possible, forming one solid piece.
The next step was to sculpt the bride's head.  Although I've never sculpted a Pandaren before, my years of experience sculpting a variety of animals came into play and I was able to create a female Pandaren in polymer clay without too much difficulty.  I also had several good pictures to go by, which always helps.
Here you can see that I've added her hair, put a purple (polymer clay) bow in it, and inserted a pair of hair sticks.  I also added gray piping to her bodice and gray details to the shoulders of the dress.  The piping helps distinguish the white dress from her white flesh and the shoulder details not only add a bit of color but also help attach the arms even more firmly to her body.
And here you can see what she looks like from the back.  I used thin strands of clay to create her hair and styled it into a bun encircled with a gold band.  Making hair in this manner does take quite a bit of time, but I just love the way it looks- so much more natural than a sheet of textured clay.  At this point the sculpting phase is finished for the bride.  Once I'm finished sculpting the groom I'll bake the entire piece then do some detail painting. 
In the next post I'll finish sculpting my Pandaren groom and I'll be able to share the final cake topper with you.  Thanks for joining me in this creative World of Warcraft wedding cake topper adventure! ;)
~Michelle of CreativeCritters