Normally, molding a head can be difficult, but this method is simple and easy. With the use of paper mache, or plaster strips, you can make a 2-part mold, and you can even do the entire process by yourself. And, as always, without spending too much money. It should take about 45 minutes to make the head mold, and then another half an hour to make the clay copy.
Here's a video tutorial you can follow, or watch as an introduction to the overall process, including both Part 1 and Part 2. The step-by-step Instructables are more detailed and have more advanced tips and recommendations.
Step 1: Materials Needed
- Plastic Wrap
- Duct Tape
- Paper Mache (newspaper and flour-water), or plaster strips, and a bucket of water
- Hair Dryer
- Modeling Clay
- Styrofoam Head
- Plastic Wrap
Total cost of materials (not including materials I already had lying around) would be $3 for the foam head, and about $10 of clay. A craft store would be the place to find the clay, plaster strips, and foam head (be sure to take advantage of the usual "40% off one item" coupons). Plaster strips are good to buy in bulk, from Amazon or eBay, or another online store. You'll need a lot of them for the entire process. A good price is around $50 for a 20 pound box.
Notes about clay:
There's a large variety of clay to choose from. My attitude is; whatever is cheap and gets the job done. For me, that ended up being a 25 pound box of pottery clay for $10. It was alright, but maybe a bit too wet and soft. Oil-based clay is better for sculpting, but more expensive. When we get to the step of adding clay to the mold, I'll make further suggestions.