Jake is hands-on with his work at every step of creating bronze – designing, sculpting, mold making, waxing, casting etc… All sculptures are cast in silicon bronze using the lost wax process technique. It has the ability to maintain excellent details, readily accepts a good range of patina treatments and stands up well under harsh conditions with a very good resistance to corrosion. Jake works closely with bronze foundries taking part in whole process, paying special attention to details. Each artwork is a unique composition, so each step of the lost wax bronze casting process requires forethought.
Every inspiration starts with detailed work in clay…
To produce a sculpture using the “Lost Wax” casting method takes considerable time and effort which is not fully appreciated just looking at the finished article. In order to prepare the original clay sculpture for molding, it will be dissected by cutting the clay. Then the rubber mold material is applied in a certain way. Once the rubber mold has been completed, a plaster or fiberglass “mother” mold is applied to the outside which will preserve the integrity of the rubber mold. After that, the original piece has to be removed from inside.
Lost Wax Casting
From this mold a wax pattern is produced. The pattern is then coated in ceramic, which, after it has dried, is shock burnt out at 1000 degrees celsius. The wax is lost and a shell remains. Into this shell molten metal is poured. Now a way pattern will be poured by building several layers of the hot wax within the rubber mold. It is very important to note that the wax pattern is a hollow duplicate of the original. The wax is lost and a shell remains. Into this shell molten metal is poured. After cooling, the ceramic shell is smashed to reveal the sculpture now cast in bronze. This method ensures the originality of each piece.
Chasing and Patinating
The bronze is then finished using techniques which include sandblasting, chasing, patinating and polishing. In all, over 20 separate operations are used to produce an original work of art in bronze