In the comments section of my last post I was asked by Logan how I sculpted the ruffled collars on my miniatures. I thought the best way to explain was through an illustrated tutorial. As always, if you wish to see bigger images just click on them.
|17th century portrait of a contemporary lady wearing a ruff.|
HOW TO SCVLPT A RVFF
I. a miniature you wish to give a ruff to (I didn't have any, so I used a brass rod instead)
II. green stuff
I. a hobby knife
II. a pointy sculpting tool
As seen in Figure 1.
I. In order for the collar to stay in place and keep its form better while I'm sculpting, I first made this small ring of green stuff around the "neck" to serve as a sort of foundation. I let it cure completely. (Figure 2)
II. Now that the collar had something to grab on to, I dabbed a tiny amount of superglue on it and covered it with a little ball of freshly prepared green stuff. Using my tools I shaped it into a cylinder. (Figure 3)
Then I waited for about ten minutes for the green stuff to stop being so very soft.
III. The next thing I did was grab a knife and roughly define the folds on the top and the bottom of the cylinder, all around. (Figure 4)
IV. Then on the sides, between each pair of grooves I made in stage III., i poked a round hole with my sculpting tool; see figures 6 and 7.
V. Since all this poking significantly deformed the initial cylinder form, I used the flat side of my knife to gently press it back into shape. (Figure 10)
VI. As it was expected, this damaged the look of the folds a little bit. So I picked up my pointy sculpting tool again and redefined all the folds. (Figure 11)
* * *
As you can see, it's not that difficult. It just takes a lot of going back and forth towards the end. You can use this technique to make a ruff of any size and diameter (for very big diameters you'll need a bigger underlying support, though). You can also use it to make a tutu ( useful for circus-themed conversions, for example). I like to put ruffs on the Countess' spirits.
Thank you for your attention and I hope you find the tutorial useful. If any of you readers have a more sophisticated technique for sculpting this, I would much appreciate your advice. : )