Armature for lower half only.
Form is hand built, roughed out with clay modelling tools when firm,
then carved with loothed plaster working tools at leather hard. When a
section is fully resolved, the armature is pulled out.
The finished section is fired and then put back on the armature, so the
next level can be built up on that. Finishing work can be done on a
more stable platform.
I try the new section on for size periodically. (There is not much
shrinkage between leather hard and bisque fired.
Typically, things get urgent towards the end, as they clay gets tired
of rewetting, and cracks appear.
After all is bisque fired, the piece is assembled. Gaps and cracks
are filled with plaster and spackle. It remains divisible for casting,
to preserve crevices and undercuts.
I usually paint the terra cotta original, but for this heavy fragile
work I showed a synthetic cast. I paint it with casein, building up
many layers of washes.