Cold Cast Bronze
Cold cast bronze is a popular casting method used to achieve a cast bronze look. Generally, this technique requires liquid plastic (e.g., EasyFlo 60), brown dye (e.g., PolyColor Brown), and bronze powder. These ingredients are mixed together (at the appropriate ratios) and cast in a mold. Once the material has cured (15-30 minutes if using EasyFlo 60), it is removed from the mold. The cured piece is burnished with steel wool to expose the metal particles, and a patina is often applied.
Sculptor Cheri Rekow created this cold cast bronze piece [Figure 1]. She made a rubber mold of her original clay sculpture and then used it to cast the plastic:
Figure 1: Cold Cast Bronze [you can find a cold cast bronze tutorial here]
Cheri used EasyFlo 60, a fast-setting polyurethane plastic, as her casting material. It has a mix ratio of 1A:1B by volume, a pour time of 2 – 2.5 minutes, and a demold time of 15- 30 minutes. It naturally cures to an off-white color.
Faux Finish Bronze
Cheri made a second casting, but opted to create a faux bronze finish [Figure 2] instead of using the cold cast bronze process. The title of this piece is “Reflection”.
Figure 2: Faux Bronze Finish on EasyFlo 60 Casting
The Faux Bronze Finish Process
A small amount of Brown PolyColor dye was added to the EasyFlo 60 liquid plastic before casting.
PolyColor dyes can be added up to 3.0% by weight. The image below shows what EasyFlo 60 with 1.0% PolyColor Brown and 3.0% PolyColor Brown look like when cured:
Learn more about PolyColor dyes here
To achieve the faux bronze finish, this artist loosely followed the suggestions of a process found in A Living Canvas: Create Stunning Faux Finishes & Murals with Paint by Curtis Heuser. He used the technique on a plaster ceiling medallion.
Based on the tutorial in the book, the first step in the process is to paint a base coat onto the piece. Author Curtis Heuser uses a dark rich brown in a satin finish (French Roast by Sherwin Williams). Allow it to dry and then dry-brush the entire piece with a metallic bronze-toned latex paint (Modern Masters Metallic Paint in Antique Bronze) using a 2″ chip brush.
The second step is to add an accent color. Using a small artist brush, dry-brush some of the raised decoration with gold metallic acrylic paint.
Cheri varied the recipe slightly and completed the following steps:
- In the first step, she substituted the bronze metallic paint with copper (Illusions Translucent Metallic Techniques Finish in Copper by Sherwin Williams).
- She used metallic gold as the accent color for the second step.
- As a third step, she brushed more dark brown paint into the crevices and rubbed raised areas with a cloth while it was still wet.
Visit Cheri Rekow’s Sculpture Blog Here: http://sculptureplus.blogspot.com/
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