Choice of material
So for my final piece, I knew I wanted to use metal for the domes as it is stronger and heavier which will compliment the concept of the piece, making the body disform. I also did experiment using plastic, however I did not think this was heavy enough nor strong enough for the body as it easily broke apart.
Therefore I began to look into different types of metal and I came to the conclusion to choose between brass and copper as they are two good quality, slightly softer metals, and I did not want to use aluminium as it would not looks good quality and it is unable to be soldered if needed. I decided to go with copper as I liked the colour on the body, rather than the brass as it stood out slightly more and I wanted it to blend more with the skin. Copper is also slightly softer and easier to handle, which will make it easier for me. Conceptually, copper is good for the bones therefore I thought this linked in well with the idea of the spinal bone structure as it relates to support.
'Copper is an essential trace mineral that has only recently been found to play an important role in bone health maintenance.'
When choosing what to use around the neck, I wanted to use something very skin-like. I looked at leather but I thought this was too think and stood out. Therefore I experimented with latex sheet and also used liquid latex which I decided to use for my final piece due to the texture and its flexibility to stretch around the neck. I also used latex tubing for the attachments as it is stretchy and this is key for movement.
I experimented with two types of attachments for my piece to see which would be more secure and aesthetically pleasing. I first used a coper wire and spiralled it tightly around the latex tubing in order to secure it. This worked best out of the two when looking into functionality as it help the tubing exactly right and also complimented the spherical form.
The second method was cutting out a rectangle in the copper and bending it round the two tubes in order to clasp them tightly. This didn't work so well as the latex tubes were more likely to slip out, however I did really like the minimal aesthetic.
I did think I could use a cylinder copper tube, however I think it would be too difficult to fit the two latex tubes inside, and I also more like the idea of making the attachments myself.
As I purchased specifically copper 6mm eyelets, I could not find a tool anywhere in order to attach the two sections properly. Because of this I had to try out different methods to see what would work best and most professionally. I experimented using the clamp to crush the two pieces together, the hammer, and also the pliers. In the end I used the clamp to attach the pieces then adjusted the eyelets shape with the pliers. It was difficult to try and get the pieces to a high quality attached, however in the end they managed to be securely attached to the latex and metal, holding the piece together.
I had to experiment with the latex a number of times until I got the right look I wanted. When I first tried it, I realised I had done too thick layers as they did not dry properly. Due to this, I therefore used a brush in order to brush thin layers which I layered on top of each other for a long time in order to make a thick neck piece which has to be durable. I was happy with the final outcome from using the brush strokes compared to the pouring, as it created texture which highly related to the skin as it had irregular markings and depths to it.
So when I first began creating the dome shapes, I thought I would be unable to create a accurate dome shape as every time I tried using the special metal shaper, the edges would fold around each other and would create a kind of scruffy look which I didn't want as every other smaller dome would be exactly right therefore I did not want the bigger one to be different. Because of this I decided to have the biggest dome flat, until I started experimenting with the sand bag ad the metal sphere. I managed to create an accurate dome in the end with the biggest circle which I was really happy about even though it took a very long time, as each time the edges would begin to disfigure I would have to flatten them using the sandbag and also the spherical metal mould. It took a very long time however I was really happy that I managed to avoid having to make the first biggest domes flat, or disfigured.