Airball Sculpture Project at The Costumer's Manifesto Costume Design & Construction I Airball Sculpture Project (5D+10C)
Airball is a method of making large strong sculptural objects like hats, masks and props, that are also very light weight and cheap. Airballing simply consists of sculpting an object out of foam (usually mattress type foam) and covering it with a skin of cheese cloth and glue to form a somewhat stiffer stronger surface that takes paint well. You can use this skin covering method on cardboard, crumpled newspapers taped together, and other light but weak bases as well. The number of objects one can make this way are innumerable, and you may choose to design and make any sort of costume property using this method that you see fit. Below are a sample of some objects we at UAF have made with this technique.
craft felt sculpture techniques. The central banana is foam, with an airball skin, the coconuts are foam with a craft felt and glue covering, and the head cap and banana peel are also craft felt.
This Statue of Liberty mask, made by Kelly Stables
Yahoo Nation, has the crown of spikes done with cardboard, covered with an airball type skin. The face is
plaster bandage, foam, and a skin of plaster bandage over the foam.
Make a sketch of the costume property (mask, hat, cane, etc.) that you wish to build to work from. Using foam, cardboard, crumpled paper, hot glue and/or masking tape, build a light weight 3-D sculpture of the costume property. This sculpture need not be strong at this point, but should be lightweight.
When the shape is to your satisfaction, coat the object with acrylic glaze, white glue or flexible glue, and stick cheesecloth over it. Depending on the shape of your object the cheesecloth may be put on as a single sheet, or cut into smaller sections which overlap.
Using a craft paint brush, tuck the cloth into the crevasses, and overcoat with more glaze or glue. Dry.
Paint the completed object.
When it is finished, photograph the object as jpeg files and post them to your File folder at the class
. Post a message to the group letting everyone know you have posted these pictures so you can get feedback.