what is casting?
Casting is the process of using skin safe alginate to capture the human form.
Is it safe?
I use alginate made from sea weed. It is a non-toxic and non allergenic moulding material safe to use on any part of the body.
WHICH materials Do you use?
I use 3 main materials for casting:
Alginate: A skin safe medium made from seaweed (Dentists use it to make moulds of your teeth) This forms a gel-like skin over the model capturing shape and texture including wrinkles, prints and skin pore.
Mod-roc or Plaster Bandage: This is used mainly in making the support jackets that support a skin mould.
High stone content Plaster: Used as a casting material to make the copy of the subject.
how long does it take on the day?
The actual casting takes a few minutes for a dip cast but longer for a torso or several hands together. I suggest allowing at least one - two hours for a sitting to allow for a relaxed introduction and preparation.
Where is your studiO?
My studio is in my home in Romford Essex.
CAN YOU DO HOME VISITS?
It is always cost effective to come to my studio. Although sometimes I understand it is not possible to travel - restricted mobility, illness etc. Whenever I am able, I will travel to your home, hospice, hospital or funeral home, to cast with a loved one. Please contact me for a quote to travel to you.
CASTING THE DECEASED
A cast of clasping hands with your loved one or a simple hand cast can be a symbol of your loved one to treasure always. A cast can bring comfort as you touch and hold for years to come.
It is always an honour to cast a loved one and can be so poignant after a death has occurred.
As this is a distressing time please be aware I will need some information before I can cast.
I will need to know the location of the deceased and if they are to be moved.
Your relationship- permission from next of kin/family.
Where the casting will take place- permission and cooperation from the hospital/hospice or funeral home for the casting to take place.
The window of time available and condition and position of the body.
I may need to know the cause of death - sadly I am unable to cast your loved one if they died or were suspected to have a contagious disease.
Please contact me to discuss options and I will do all I can to help.
what happens if my child screams?
I will, with your help attempt to make every casting an enjoyable experience for your child! For small babies a feeding time is often the best time to cast as baby is relaxed and sleepy.
The best age for casting newborns is around 3 weeks old.
Although casting is not painful some older children will be reluctant to put their hand into a pot of gloop and hold still while it sets. There are many ways to distract while we cast! Sometimes singing or having a biscuit or treat is enough to give us time and leads to a successful cast. And if you wanted to you can 'practice' at home with your young child popping their hand in warm custard or corn flour mix to play with mess and get them used to the idea!
Every situation is different and unique and I will always do my very best to make it work.
How long TILL we get our final product?
Larger casts can take several weeks or even months to dry before they are safe to finish, but most baby casting can be ready in six weeks.
WHERE DID YOU TRAIN?
I worked with the very talented CJ Munn at Rockabelly Lifecasts to learn the craft of casting. I have since joined the Association of Lifecasters International.