View Full Version : Product Information Tip of the Week 9/29/10

Blick Art Materials
09-29-2010, 09:58 AM
Basic Mold Material Guidelines
Art reproduction is a popular means to mass produce original work, whether it be for conceptual installation pieces or simply for the necessity of having multiples of the same work. Mold making offers sculptors a means to recreate an original without sculpting multiple pieces.

Selecting Mold Materials
Choose the appropriate mold material as it will have lasting effects on the replication. Make sure the mold is compatible for the material that will be cast into it for longevity and proper curing.
Note: in most cases, a release agent is required to prevent materials from sticking together.
Gypsum, silicone, alginate, latex, and wax are amongst the most popular mold materials.
Gypsum: works well for a number of casting agents including clay and other gypsums, such as Pottery Plaster (Plaster of Paris) and Densite Plaster, which is a fine grade gypsum. Gypsum can be fired and used for repeated castings. Although, it will start to break down as it dries out.
Silicone: probably the most universal mold material, because it resists sticking to most surfaces.
Silicones may be used with most casting agents including gypsum, resin, urethane, wax, and even chocolate and other food applications. Silicones are heat resistant up to 400F and can withstand repeated castings, making them ideal for long term use.
Alginate: skin safe, this one time mold material is ideal for casting body parts and even dental impressions. Gypsums work well inside the alginate cavity.
Latex: good for molds that require flexibility, most latex may be brush applied to the surface as a one part mold, which lends itself to a number of surfaces including those that cannot be disassembled on architectural elements, such as pedestals and detailing on picture frames.
Wax: commonly used for jewelry investment or other lost wax applications. Wax may be melted and brush applied to a surface as well as carved into for sculpting.

For further assistance using art supplies, feel welcome to contact our Product Information Department at
1-800-933-2542 or e-mail us at info@dickblick.com (info@dickblick.com). Hours of operation: M-F, 8:00am-5:30pm CST.