This is my first attempt at a torso sculpture and I’m really pleased with how it turned out. Working with clay sculpture is a big departure for me. My work for the past few years has been based in digital compositions where the image is mediated first by the camera lens and then by the computer screen. Working with my hands directly onto the sculpture and seeing the effect of my hand’s pressure, the mark of the sculpting tool and the abandonment of working directly from my gut is liberating.

Both sculptures in the photo are plaster casts made from an original sculpture in clay. Mine is the brown sculpture which I based off of the white sculpture, a study by Geemon Xin Meng. I finished the sculpture with various layers of acrylic paint which I sponged on. The undercoat is metallic bronze paint. I sponged on top of that a warm brown made by mixing Hooker’s Green with Raw Sienna. I made various samples ahead of time on bits of discarded plaster to test the effects of the paint layering.

Our bodies tell a story of our lives — where we’ve been hurt, where we hold love, signs of childbearing, signs of age. These sculptures create a narrative of a life which you can hold in your hands, feeling every bump, the years made tangible.