Making a Plaster Mould

For my final rotation workshops I was set to do slip casting. Initially I was not really looking forward to this because I thought it would end up being a massive faff. However I did not find it a faff and I really enjoyed the actual slip casting.

The first and potentially most difficult thing to do was choose what object I wanted to make a mould of. I initially chose the three items below; an egg, a piece of an ammonite with iron pyrites on it and a scarab beetle.

I decided to use the egg but decided against using the fossil and scarab because I was worried about them getting damaged.

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My egg, scarab and fossil.

Once I had chosen what I wanted to make a mould of, I made a clay block that would be level to the middle of my egg as shown below. I also made a funnel type shape so that there would be a space to pour the plaster.

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My egg is almost ready to pour plaster onto, I just need to put the wooden slabs around it.
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I put the wooden slabs around my object and I used some clay to seal everything so that none of the plaster leaks out when I pour it.
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The next thing I did was mix the plaster. My main issue with this was that I mixed it for too long both times and so the plaster was a little too think each time.
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I poured the plaster onto my object and clay and waited 20 minutes for it to set.
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I took the clay off the sides once the plaster had set.
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I took the sides off and ended up with this.
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I used a surform to smooth the edges out so it fits together properly and looks tidier.
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I used a coin to make some notches so that my mould would fit well and stay together.
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Once I had my notches, I dusted off the mould and I used some soft soap to prepare it for putting the top layer on.
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This is my two part mould, the top just needs smoothing out.
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My finished mould ready to make slip casts. Unfortunately the top is a little messy due to me taking too long to mix the plaster but it should work just fine.

 

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