Along with the many stock pieces of bronze sculpture we carry, we often get requests for custom work for a piece we do not.
Unlike going to a local or national artist, we don’t try and give you something done in our “style”. That is to say, we don’t surprise you at the end with a piece you may not like. This is because we ensure that you are in total control of the process from the wax model all the way through to the final patina — In a sense, YOU are the artist, we just facilitate your creativity with someone else’s hands.
The first step in the process is to get a quote based on some guideline questions we go over with you. Height, width, depth, subject matter, pose, bronze quality, etc. are all things that need to be listed so we can give you the most accurate quote possible. Once the quote is given and the price is accepted we get a deposit, non-refundable, that covers the artist and wax model fees.
The next step is getting reference materials for the piece you’d like done. We often get requests for sculptures of people or animals, and it cannot be stressed enough that the more reference we get, measurements and pictures from many angles, the better your piece will look in the end, and the smoother the overall process will go. If we receive a single photo the size of a stamp it becomes extremely difficult to deliver the sculpture or statue you envisioned.
Once we receive the reference materials for the piece the wax modeling process begins. The artisans we have will use that reference to create a 1:1 scale version of your piece of art. Progress reports are made with pictures to show how the statue or sculpture is progressing. It is at this time when you really get to become a part of the creation of the piece. What you see is exactly what you’ll be getting, so if there’s something you’d like to be changed, ie. a hairstyle, shape of the eyes, etc. this is when you would let us know.
Again, the more detailed you are, the better off the finished piece will be. Only you can convey what you’re thinking, so it’s important to be clear as to what you’re looking for.
After the initial changes are made we’ll go through the process again until you’re satisfied with the model, within reason. I say “within reason” because we can’t make infinite corrections or the piece will never get made and nobody wants that to happen.
Once you sign off that the look of the piece is to your satisfaction, we then begin the next step, the mould process. A mould is made of the piece from which we will cast the piece in bronze. The next step is the casting. This usually takes a few weeks and is very labor intensive, as the piece must be broken down in to parts with each part being cast separately. Once the different pieces are cast, the piece is reassembled and welded together to make your finished piece. The welds are smoothed and the piece is given a uniform look.
The final step is the coloring process, or patina. You get a say in this step as well, as we can have the final version colored almost any way you’d like. The traditional patina for bronze is a chocolate brown however, verde (antique) green is also a popular look and multi colored can be done as well to add depth and detail. The pieces can even be painted with a special paint that adheres to the metal which would give you the ability for more vibrant colors.
So, from start to finish, you’re really in control which means no surprises or artist egos to worry about. And, best of all, you won’t pay “artist” prices either. We can truly make your vision a reality, a one-of-a-kind custom work of art for you and your family, business, school, or club to be proud of for many, many years to come.