Step 3: Covering the Sculpt with Plaster

Start off by sealing your sculpt with a clear spray paint, or a lacquer. This will seal the clay, and make it much easier to remove from the plaster mold. Wait for it to dry before proceeding.

Notes about plaster:
I'm using plaster of Paris for its low cost and ease of access. It can be a little "soft", and not too durable for detailed work like this. A stronger plaster like hydrocal is usually used for this process. If you can afford the cost, go for this higher quality plaster. But for cheap DIY projects, plaster of Paris should work just fine.

Mix some plaster with water to a thin consistency and brush some of this onto the sculpt, ensuring to completely cover small details, like wrinkles or ridges. This is called a beauty coat. We cover these delicate details first to make sure they are properly transferred to the mold. After that, you can mix a thicker batch of plaster and spread it all over the mold. I just used my hands. Tap the head a bit to get some air bubbles out.

To get more plaster under the chin, wait until most of the plaster is somewhat dried, and then turn the head upside down and cover the lower parts of the head. You'll want at least 1/2 inch of plaster covering the whole sculpt on the first layer.

To build up the mold, I used alternating layers of plaster and plaster strips; I'd lay on a layer of plaster, and then add a layer or two of plaster strips. I knew that plaster can be fragile by itself, and so these plaster strips were a good way to add durability to the mold. Add more plaster, then more strips. Repeat. I did this until the mold was over 1 inch thick. Then let it dry, for at least an hour or two.

When disposing of excess plaster, do NOT pour it down the sink; it can harden and clog the piping.
What's the point of casting a replica of your head? It looks like the inside of the mask would be where the clay is and you lost all of your own defintions
Thank you so much for this instruct able!! I was really nervous going into it cuz it's my first time making a latex mask and other instructable have more steps and what not but my mask came out exactly how I wanted it! One word of advice though for anyone else using this is make sure that your clay sculpt has no cracks in it and when you make the plaster old over top of that, make sure the first layer of plaster is as smooth against that sculpt as possible because my plaster had a couple spots that weren't as tight so the latex seeped in and was tricky to pull out of the mould. Over all I highly recommend this instruct able!!!!!
I've noticed on some of your mask you just paint the latex right onto the clay. On others you make a mold then pour the latex in. Which one is an overall better quality?
How did you make the ears and the nose? Did you put holes in them and then attach them to the mask so the liquid latex could seep in and make the ears
Can't you just fill a regular batman Halloween mask with clay modify it and just sculpt the rest?
great work. sucks it fell over. keep up the great work.
Amusing for someone who looks like Harvey Dent to become batman. <br> <br>But seriously, good Instructable. Lots of pictures.
where can i buy liquid latex?
Holy Silicone Batman! Looks great!!! Very Nice Job!

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Bio: I've been making movies as a hobby for nearly 8 years now, and I've always enjoyed the fantastical and imaginative. I occasionally take ... More »
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