Interviews of the Sculptors Legend #5
|Lucas Pina, Me, Valentin Zak, and Ivan Hortal|
That’s why you speak French! I didn’t explain it!
I met Allan in an edition of the Golden Deamon with Jeremie Bonamant, he hosted me in his house, and I lived with him for a week with him and his wife.
Unbelievable! How long ago?
About 8 years old, I think.
They helped me find a home there, and they were incredibly kind and hospitable.
At that moment I was starting to sculpt, but not very well.
Seeing Allan, his whole library, and seeing him work was a unique experience.
Seeing his discipline and his way of working was very educational for me. These are things that inspired me deeply and I wanted to follow what Allan did, regarding the books, the personal library, and documentation, etc … etc …
I will never stop thanking him.
I keep it in my heart.
I would love to meet him in person, but we haven’t met yet. Not much goes on exhibitions outside France. I hope to see him one day, it would be magnificent for me.
We met at Monte San Savino in 2018, since you won the Best of Show at the fair.
It was a beautiful experience for me. I was very excited for you.
Did you expect it?
Many have asked me. Honestly, I never expected it.
Also, I think this was a great thing for us sculptors because never a Best of Show was given to an unpainted figure
It has been shown that sculpture can be considered a finished work and that it does not need to be painted.
Tell me something about your training, what did you study?
I studied Fine Arts at the University of Valencia.
How many years does it last?
It should be 5 but I finished it in 8.
Well me too 🙂
Except that I did a year of Erasmus and this counts because I repeated some subjects such as the live sculpture of the human figure with clay.
This gave you a lot of experience right?
Yes, but it is never enough.
At the time, I liked to paint miniatures, but I never thought about the sculpture of miniatures.
In Fine Arts University you do not only study sculpture, but also something else. no?
Yes indeed. Sculpture, Painting Drawing, and Art History, etc … etc … and also 3D modeling.
When did you think of doing only sculpture?
More or less when I met Allan, who inspired me a lot and liked to convert figures.
I made great figures, and asked me. “why don’t you do the same with a smaller size?”
And so I tried, and I liked it very much.
I thought that what I was doing in the Fine Arts I could apply it to the world of Miniature.
The things I learned applied them to the “aesthetics” of the miniature world.
For example, a miniature was not often seen smiling.
So I started making busts that smiled, with different expressions or poses.
So you learned traditional sculpture and applied it to miniature sculpture.
Yes, it is an academic approach.
Do you think it is more difficult to sculpt a large or small sculpture?
It has been a long time since I sculpted something big.
It’s not the size.
Miniatures require less space and armature is easier to make. It is more stable.
In large sculptures, you have to be careful of this, for example. The weight is different.
Is the material very different too?
Yes sure. Clay, plasticine.
And after university did you immediately think of working with miniatures?
I met Juan Dìaz and his wife.
He is a sculptor, and so is his wife.
And they asked me to carve a miniature for the brand they worked for.
Was it the first miniature you made?
Yes, but I said no. I thought my level wasn’t good for doing this. I had to improve further.
How many years ago?
7-8 I think
So they insisted and I accepted.
What was the first you sculpted?
I believe he was a warrior of about 30 millimeters.
At a certain point, however, you decided not to accept more commissions and only dedicate yourself to Spira Mirabilis. Why this thing?
Working on what I like, that’s what everyone wants to do. Furthermore, I am not in a hurry and I can work as I want. I have no deadlines.
Then I have my wife who helps me a lot. Invoices, shipments, packaging: she does it all.
You are very lucky! I do everything myself! 🙂
Yes, you’re right, it’s a lot of work.
Then my wife really likes packaging, and he also thinks about what type of packaging is suitable for the type of sculpture.
She is also the artistic director, she gives me ideas, advice. We always talk before doing something.
Did she also study art?
Yes, two years.
Tell me something about your daily habits. How many hours per day you work?
Initially 8 hours a day.
Aren’t they too much?
In the beginning it costs a lot to do it, but in the beginning, this discipline gives good results.
Did you tell me it takes a month to sculpt a single bust?
Yes, even more.
I could complete it in two weeks but then I spend another two weeks to fix it, smooth it, touch it up, this takes a long time.
You have an idea, however, you change often while you work.
yes, I always do.
If I don’t like something, I change it while I work.
What time do you get up?
At first, I worked 8 hours a day, morning and afternoon.
But now only in the morning.
I get up at the same time to do gymnastics and train and around 9 I start modeling.
Normally from 9 to 14:00, 5 hours.
Do you listen to music while you work?
Yes, always. I listen to podcasts and classical music.
In all these years I have known many sculptors and I have seen their studio.
Every time I see your studio it is always clean, tidy, tidy. But is it real or is it just for taking pictures ?? 🙂
No no, sometimes I do it for the photo. 🙂
But I like being tidy and not working with too much stuff.
However, between one job and another I always clean the table, also to tidy up my ideas.
Do you have a mentor?
A professor in Fine Arts Univesity I met gave me a lot of inspiration.
He was very academic, working hard, working a lot.
Then or received the help of many people, many sculptors, and others who gave me advice.
You are very lucky. For example, Raul (Latorre) is one of the “fathers” of miniature sculpture, he started practically before everyone else.
So you’re lucky! 🙂
Here in Italy, we don’t have many miniature fantasy sculptors, we are very few.
Let’s talk about technique: what is your favorite material for sculpting?
I have always used SuperSculpey Firm, then Pedro Fernandez advised me to mix it with Fimo, in order to have more flexibility.
I liked to try something new, but if something works, why change it? It is a waste of time.
I use a lot The mix of Valentin Zak, (Beesputty + FIMO)
yes, Only Super Sculpey Firm is too hard and also fragile
What is your favorite sculpting tool?
Many say that your sculptures are beautiful to paint.
What do you think makes your sculptures beautiful to paint?
You don’t put many details, you put them where you want, not always.
Yes, I do it voluntarily. Because I am a painter and I think how the painter would like it.
I have to give the painter the opportunity to do his job.
When I model I try to smooth the sculpture as much as possible.
Daniele, Congratulations also for your sculptures. You are always improving and you are contagious. Your passion and your desire to transmit the sculpture. It’s a nice thing.
THANK YOU LUCAS, YOU’RE THE BEST 🙂
-Found Miniatures (Daniele)
-Spira Mirabilis Site (Lucas)