Picture of Kitsch figure sculptures

Think of these sculptures as the acceptable face of the garden gnome, kitsch to the point of good taste, we want them gaudy, creepy, tastelessly ostentatious and indoors.

They are three dimensional cartoons performing one-liner jokes. Basically it is art that is understandable and affordable to the person in the street. They are a backlash against the stuff that passes for art in fancy galleries and costs a fortune to buy.

I have made some of these sculptures life size but that starts to get a bit expensive and they can take over the house. These we are about to make are no more than 21cm in height and the materials are cheap and easily obtained. Also they are not delicate things, the main body is held together with coat hanger wire and cloth, so they will bounce!

If you can, think of an idea where the person in the sculpture is doing something unusual; remember we are not after Michelangelo type accuracy here, the more like a caricature the better.

The illustrations are in chronological order but some of the items are different unfinished pieces. Unfortunately I didn't not have the foresight to photograph the sculptures in progress, but I will for future projects!

Step 1: Supplies and tools

Picture of Supplies and tools

As you go along you will accrue and adapt tools but these are the basics.

Photographs and/or sketches of your subject
Wood for base, approx 14 cm square x 2 cm deep
Paints, acrylics, enamels or your decorating left-overs
Gloss varnish
Wire mesh: approx 5mm gauge
Gaffer or masking tape
PVA glue
2 cm panel pins
Scrap jewellery.
Bits of old toys (look in the bottom of a kids toy box!)
Various wire oddments, i.e. cables, fuse, picture hanging, clothes hangers etc
Strips of cloth (lots, cotton is best for soaking up the glue)
Good paintbrushes
Quick drying modelling clay

Wood drill
Utility knife
Wood chisel

And bags of creativity, not pictured (if I could instructable this I would be very rich)
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ok.... so it's me again-I just am blown over by your creations!  Re-looking at your Instructable has brightened my day! Where are your pieces shown?  are they for personal enjoyment, or are they for sale/ 
Chris Bilton (author)  porcupinemamma4 years ago
Thanks so much for you encouragement, they are all up in my attic at the moment, maybe I should start getting rid of them, I would give them all away to a good home.
Cheers, have a safe Christmas and an indestructible instructable new year my friend
I would give them a safe and loving home! We could arrange a meeting with a social worker to see if she agreed. We live in a smoke- free pet -free house ;0( the dog went to doggie heaven)
I could pay for the postage too! They are too wonderful to live in an attic. All the best, Lyn
Chris Bilton (author)  porcupinemamma5 years ago
Thanks for your kind words, all the sculptures are made just for fun and are at my home on the shelves. If anyone was intersted I could be tempted to sell them.
Beautiful pieces, and wonderful instructable! Your sense of humour gives the little characters life. I'm quite smitten with Vincent!
Chris Bilton (author)  made in canada4 years ago
Thank you, I try to give them character, who knows, maybe film animation next !
Chris Bilton (author) 5 years ago
Come on folks, lets see those santas, made our special way!!! Happy Christmasto all fellow modellers!!!
Add a Canadian fan to your fan club :0)
kolowinter6 years ago
It is obvious that you put an incredible amount of detail, humor, creativity, whimsy into your art. It was a pleasure viewing your contribution. Thank you for sharing your "secrets".
Exactly as kolowinter said. Thank you for sharing!!!
Sunny1246137 years ago
this is really cool!!! I wish that I had the supplies to do so:(
Chris Bilton (author)  Sunny1246137 years ago
don't worry Sunny, you might one day, cheer up
really?because I love art and have many ideas on a sculpture...
Chris Bilton (author)  Sunny1246137 years ago
sounds like you're a true artist!
thanks! I love sketching and making and creating sculptures,but I just need some clay(I do all of my work at school)
Chris Bilton (author)  Sunny1246137 years ago
Schools the best place to learn, keep it up and as you progress your skills will automatically improve.
thank you for the wise advice! (does a small bow)
Chris Bilton (author)  Sunny1246137 years ago
No problem, pleased to be of help, take care out there and always listen to your mom. Good bye now, (gives a wave of the hand and walks into the sunset)
goodbye friend! *wipes a tear*
esen7 years ago
they are amazing.Im trying tomake dolls them.How can you make their dolls? Have a good day
Chris Bilton (author)  esen7 years ago
Thanks Esen for the kind words, by dolls do you mean soft toys?
Nearly Ill put their picture .They are Anatolian Dolies.you can see them from www.womanspace.blogcu.com
Chris Bilton (author)  esen7 years ago
Hello Derya, I like you dolls, they are wonderful, looks like you could easily make some of these in cloth, have a go and see!
This is a big surprise.You found me at my space.I liked it.Im trying to make faces and hand from clay but I should learn alot of technic and I cant find pushmolds in Turkey.shortly thank you my friend
Chris Bilton (author)  esen7 years ago
It can also be difficult finding the right size push-moulds. Try practicing making hands/ fingers with any sort of quick drying clay. Make lots of them then just pick the ones you think are the best. Evening classes in pottery might be an idea; they may let you make them there, it might be worth asking. Good luck Derya 'my new friend', hopefully we can communicate on myspace!
Mr. Big7 years ago
Hey... Thank you very much for this Instructable!

I'm trying to make a figure! I'm now in the 3rd step. =D It will be a mime.

Tomorrow I'll buy the wire mess to continue to the 4th step.

Now you know you have a fan here in Venezuela. =D
Chris Bilton (author)  Mr. Big7 years ago
Oh wow! this is so cool, please let me know how you get on, I really wish I could be there to help, good luck Mr Big and keep in touch.
I have a question. =) How did you hold the wire mess?
Chris Bilton (author)  Mr. Big7 years ago
I use thin wire (the type florists use) to bind it all together. Or forget the wire and use lots of glue soaked cloth, PVA adhesive dries rock hard so in a sense the wire is made redundant. In the past I've used any old bits of string or Knitting wool (I raided my mother's supply, its a better use than making her wooly cardigans!) In the end use what you can get your hands on, its only the top layer that has to look neat, what goes off inside doesn't really matter (hey that sounds a bit like me!!) I hope thats helped, if not comment me back and I'll have another go, all the very best man and keep in touch.
Oh, yes... I used Knitting wool to hold the wire mess, and it's perfect. Now, I'm waiting the fabric that my grandmother told me she will give me, to cover the skeleton of the figure. My mother brought me elastic bandages, but I don't know if it is going to work. I have some photos of my figure. Tell me if you want to see them. ;)
Chris Bilton (author)  Mr. Big7 years ago
Elastic bandages are good, as long as you don't stretch them too much. Just put plenty of glue on and it will be fine. Sounds like all your family are helping out Mr Big. That always helps when gathering material, well done. Yea! I would love to see some photos of your figure, that would be great, thanks for keeping me up dated. Good luck mate.
Hahahaha... I just stay at home (6 days of "vacations" because of the referendum) and my mum bring me all I need. Hehehehe...

I bouth cold porcelain to make the face and some parts of the clothing.

These are the links of the photos: http://i23.photobucket.com/albums/b375/jmgrandeboggio/1.jpg
Chris Bilton (author)  Mr. Big7 years ago
Excellent Mr Big,the armature is looking better than the one I did at that stage! Can't wait to see the finished piece. "Cold Porcelain" sounds very professional, your mums doing a fine job with those supplies! You say you're making a "mime" artist, what a brilliant idea, no doubt it will speak volumes on your artistic skills. Six days vacation sounds just the right amount of time for making this, good luck mate.
Kaiven7 years ago
Chris Bilton (author)  Kaiven7 years ago
Thanks cows, to me 'wows' are worth a thousand 'awesomes'. Really it true, getting feedback is like you getting your cud to chew back on, we all need it man ... er I mean cow
lol thanks
HamO8 years ago
Awesome, well done instructable! Thanks for sharing.
Darkshot HamO7 years ago
o.O why you always say "awsome"? O.o
HamO Darkshot7 years ago
EXXXXcuuuuuse Meeeeeee!!!!
but I usually say "Awesome"
Darkshot HamO7 years ago
O.o yes i know but WHY.. o.O
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