Introduction: How to Make Your Very Own Cyclops Kitty!
Finalist in the
Play With Clay Contest
This adorable little Cyclops Kitty is surprisingly simple to make, and makes an adorable companion for all of your adventures!
Lanyard String (Or other "whisker-like" material)
Marble, Bead, or Taxidermy Eye
Step 1: Step 1: Concept & Base
The first thing you need is to decide how you want your kitty to turn out, you can make him sitting or laying instead of sitting like my kitty. Having this little rough design of how you want your creature to turn out always helps in the long run.
Now that you know how you want yours, it's time to make a base for it. I always get compliments on how light my creatures turn out, and that comes from using a tin foil base, it also cuts down on the amount of clay you use in the long run.
For bulking it helps to crumble your tin foil before you use it, so bunch it all up and then un-crumple it before you get to making your base.
For my base I almost fully detached one section of the tin foil as the head part, but left a tiny bit to make sure my head would stay on my body, and also so my kitty would have a skinny neck. An alternative way to do this is to crumple your foil into a peanut shape, you get a thicker neck but the result is very similar. Try to keep the shape of the head and body close to what you have in your sketch.
Once you've got it the way you like it get your marble or bead, or what ever you want to use as the eye and press it into the tin foil making an indent, this is so the eye isn't too bulgy. If you have a flat backed eye you can skip this part.
Step 2: Step Two: Mixing Your Color & Putting on the First Layer
Next thing you need to do is decide which color you'd like your kitty to be. As this kitty isn't your average house cat the options are endless. My kitty has a sibling who is a blinding bright orange, so I decided to do her in a complimentary light blue.
Condition and mix your clay until it is one solid color, make sure you have more than double enough to cover the base of your kitty as you will need extra to make the limbs and accents. It's better to have extra than to get halfway done and realize your kitty will only be able to have three legs! Cut the clay you've made into two chunks, one for covering and the other for the limbs.
If you have a rolling pin roll one of the balls of clay out so you can get an even coverage over your base, much like laying fondant onto a cake. Make sure you don't catch any bubbles under the clay because those will cause trouble when you bake.
You can also flesh out any parts that you couldn't make with the foil, I wanted to give my kitty cute chubby cheeks. So I rolled two small balls out and blended them in to form little cheeks.
The best thing to do now is bake you creation, or let it dry if you are using air dry clay. This will give you a solid foundation for the other parts of your kitty, and ensure that you don't damage what you've done so far. (I happened to skip this this time around regretted it because I had to keep manipulating and fixing the clay that I had already placed.)
Step 3: Step Three: Eyes and Legs
Take a very small bit of clay from the second ball and separate it into two small half circles. Flatten these down and make sure they are long enough to wrap your eye, they don't need to be very thick, in fact they should be quite thin but just enough to wrap around the eye. This step can really give different emotion to your kitty using the eyelids, for mine I did a wide eyed awake semi-happy looking emotions, but you can make your kitty say different things with the placement of your eyes. After placing your eyelids blend the over lapping clay until it's smooth.
Now this isn't pictured but the best thing to do now is take your second ball of clay and separate it into three smaller balls. One of them will be used for the arms, the second for the legs, and the third for the mouth ears and tail. This is important so you don't end up not having enough clay for something you'll need.
Take two of the balls and separate them into logs.(If you want thicker hind legs you can take about a fifth off of the arm logs and add them to your leg logs.) Take the arm logs and pinch and flatted about one fourth of the arm, this will be your kitty's foot. Then bend the foot over so that it is 90 degrees from the rest of the leg. Using a toothpick or a sculpting tool, press in two lines into the foot to create toes.
For the back legs take the log and flatten one half of the leg into almost a rounded in the middle patty, this will be the thigh of your cat, then fold the other half of the leg to be at a 90 degree angle. Slightly flatten this foot part and add toes like you did to the arms.
Attach the legs by blending only the back of the thigh into the side of the kitty. Do not attach the front legs.
Step 4: Step Four: Accents, Legs, and Tail
(I accidentally did this after I put the ears on.)
The next thing you want to do is decide what color belly and fur accents you want on your kitty. You can leave this part out if you want a single colored cat, but I love when kitties have an underbelly. This is also a chance to make your kitty striped, polka dotted, or add different designs with a different color onto the fur.
All I ended up going with was the underbelly, but I showed one way you could apply the stripes to the face using long thin triangular strips.
After adding the belly you can attach the front legs by blending them into where would be the shoulders, sit your kitty up and make sure his paws all lay flat on the surface before you attach them so you kitty can stand on it's own.
Then take a third of the clay left and make a tail for your kitty, blending it into the behind of your kitty and sticking it lightly to it's back.
Step 5: Step Five: Ears & Mouth & Nose
Now that we've done the head, shoulders, knees, and toes, and we've taken care of the eyes, we go to the ears and mouth and nose.
Once again we've come to a very expressive part of the cat, the ears, cats put their ears back when angry, point them up when they're curious, and express many other different emotions through their ears. Also many different breeds of cats have different shaped and sized ears, a cool example is a Scottish Fold who have very small folded ears.
To make your ears you want to take about one half of the clay you have left and make it into two small, flat, rounded triangles. You then want to slightly curve them, I just curve mine around my finger. Cat's ears are cupped and this makes them much more realistic than flat triangles. Find how you want to place your ears and smooth them into the back of the cats head.
One of what I think is the cutest feature of a cat are their adorable little mouths, often depicted like such, ":3" This little three shaped mouth adds a lot of realism to your cat. To create this take your remaining clay and roll it into two little balls, flatten them a bit and place them a little ways under the eyes, but not all the way at the chin, think approximately the middle of this area. If they look too big downsize a bit until they look good in the area. Then blend only the tops of the balls in. The more you leave unblended the happier your cat will look, you can blend in more if you want a pouty or angry cat.
You can then add little teeth like I did by making tiny cones and sticking them behind the unblended part of the mouth, you can also add a tongue if you want your cat to be silly.
For the nose you want to make a tiny triangle out of whatever colors you want, I used pink because I love kitties with pink noses. Then take a toothpick or sculpting tool and add indents in the bottom two sides of the nose, this adds a lot of realism as well becoming the nostrils. Place your nose right where the two balls come together at the top of the mouth.
Step 6: Step Six: Whiskers and Decorations
This next step is one of the most defining characteristic of a cat, their whiskers. My in real life cat is even named Whiskers because of his white whiskers against his black fur stand out so much!
I really like the way this landyard string works as whiskers for these kitties. Determine how long you'd like your whiskers to be and cut three pieces. If you want thicker whiskers you can cut six pieces instead. For the thinner whiskers cut your sections of lanyard in half, for my kitty I cut mine at an angel to make tapered whiskers, you can cut it straight across (like I did for my other kitty) for straight whiskers.
Then push the whiskers into the mouth of your kitty and then take them back out, (if you are using air dry clay you can leave them in) so that they wont melt in the oven. This leaves space for you to glue them in after you bake your kitty.
You can then add any decorations of embellishments you want, for my kitty I made a simple collar and added rhinestones into it, and made her a little bow to let the world know she is a girl. You can add anything your heart desires, a super hero cape, a top hat, glasses(or eye-glass in this case), just make sure whatever you add can withstand baking before you add it to your raw kitty.
After you have everything you could ever wish your kitty to have, follow the baking instructions for the clay you are using, or let your creation air dry if you are using air dry clay.
Step 7: Step Six: Replace the Whiskers & Done!
Now that you kitty has baked, and cooled, you can glue it's whiskers back into their places.
You can also paint the cornea/pupil onto your kitties eye if you picked a marble or bead that you wanted to paint, and seal it with a gloss. I just glossed my kitty's eye so she could have a full black creepy eye.
You can also paint on any details you think your kitty needs like fur designs, anything you want!
It's best to seal your kitty but it's ok if you don't, I used matte acrylic sealer that comes in a spray can, to protect my kitty from getting damaged.
Now your kitty is complete!
Take care of your little kitty, take it's on adventures, make one every color of the rainbow, make an armada of kitties to rule the world with!
All hail the power of the CyKitty!
We have a be nice policy.
Please be positive and constructive.