Materials – Torso

If you have any questions about materials, contact or JJ at

Torso Armature: The torso armature is comprised of (1) a 3/4 inch thick, 16 x 18 inch plywood base board, (2) two strips of 3/4 inch plywood “feet” can be added to the bottom of the board (so you can easily pick up and move your piece to and from the storage shelf), (3) a 3/4 inch diameter by 24 inches long threaded metal pipe and pipe flange secured with screws and bolts to the center of the board, and (4) two wood cross pieces attached to the pipe with twine to hold the clay in place (JJ will provide wood cross pieces and twine). All armature materials can be purchased at most hardware stores. You can also order a torso armature from Paul (

Clay: Bring 3 bags of water clay that you are familiar with and like to use. For ease of use, Soldate 60 is recommended for beginners. If you plan to fire your piece, you might try a terracotta clay such as Red Sculpture (EM-234) or 8-11 RED 35 (IMCO). Best place to buy clay is Clay People in Richmond. Avoid buying water clay at chain art stores (e.g. Blick) that is often old, dry, and hard (unusable). You can also order any water clay available from Clay People at cost through Paul (

Miscellaneous: Bring a spray bottle (for water), thin plastic bags (e.g. dry cleaning bags), and one large thick garbage bag to cover and keep your piece moist and in working condition.

Tools: The best sculpture tools are your hands and fingers. Bring and use tools that you like. If you are new to sculpture, buy just a few tools to try, such as large rake tools, a wood knife tool for drawing and cutting, and various wood modeling tools to press and rake the clay. JJ will also go over options for tools at the first class. Best place to buy tools is Douglas and Sturgess in Richmond (and SF) or online from SculptureHouse. Clay People also has some tools. Experienced students may like some wood modeling tools from Tiranti. Examples of tools:

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