Cold porcelain can be used to sculpt faces and figures, but you have to know how to work with the cold porcelain paste. Our resident expert Sangeeta Shah says it all depends on what products you use and what climatic conditions they are working in.
Here is the original query from Florence who says: - "Thanks for the cold porcelain information. I have been playing around with and like to make figures with it. The problem I am facing is that when it dries, the facial expressions get distorted (disappearing ... sort of) because outside is drying faster than inside. I have to keep forming the mouth and nose again. Do you have any advise regarding this? Florence"
This is Sangeeta's reply:
The first solution to this problem is the cold porcelain paste you are using. The cold porcelain paste should be firmer in order to hold onto the shape.
Secondly, when you sculpt the face try not to make the whole face out of cold porcelain paste. Use a Styrofoam ball or foil and then cover it with cold porcelain paste over it giving it details.
What is happening to Florence is the cold porcelain paste has a tendency to shrink depending on the ingredients used to make the paste. So when you are sculpting the face and in the drying process the moist pastes inside towards the core is pulling the outer surface making it distort.
This should only be happening if your paste is not firm enough though. For making flowers the cold porcelain should be soft, but for sculpting and figurines the paste should have no
additional water in it
This is what I feel. I could be wrong but this is the best I could think of. I do not make a lot of sculpting but I have tried it a bit. Let me know what cold porcelain you use and how you make it so I can help you further if you need help. I have adapted different recipes for different applications so let me know how you make your paste.
====================================Follow up question by Florence:
I have remade the paste and got rid of the water in it. It works well now and now it is firm and the features stay. Unfortunately as with a lot of things, another itty-bitty problem has cropped up. I think it is because it dries up too fast and cracks when I am forming limbs or hands. I have tried kneading it with cold cream but somehow it doesn't really work although it does work when smoothing out tiny cracks. Is it necessary to use Pond's cold cream and not other creams?
=========================================Answer by Sangeeta:
Yes, too much cream will make your paste crack. I prefer using Nivea or ponds cold cream You should choose a cream without lanolin.
Please let me know the recipe you are using so I will be able to give you more specific reasons if so in the paste recipe. If the cracks are very small they can be filled in and smoothed out the surface with a tiny drop of water. Hope this helps. Let me know your results. If any further help needed let me know.