Simple or complex, exotic or familiar, sculptures are highly individualised pieces of artwork that allow their creator to make a statement about the way he sees the world. Working with metal wire is an ideal way to make one-of-a-kind masterpieces. The wire is flexible and can normally be bent repeatedly until it looks "just right." Most metal wire is inexpensive, allowing the artist the luxury of making mistakes without having to replace costly material. Wire can be screwed, glued, stapled or welded together to give different looks to each piece. It can lie flat against a wall or jut out in three-dimensional fashion.
- Skill level:
- Moderately Easy
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Define your metal wire medium. Material choices range from common metals such as steel, iron, copper and zinc to more exotic and valuable metals such as gold, silver and platinum. The warm, bright red of copper might be matched with the coldness of black iron and the mellowness of yellow gold.
Choose the gauge, or thickness, of the wire you will use. Wire comes in diameter sizes that range from finer than human hair to an inch thick or more.
Pick a style for the sculpture. It can be free-standing wire with no other materials except for the attachment point to the wall, or it can be placed against and around a structural anchor such as a wooden base or backing, or a stone bottom with the wire inserted into the stone.
Find a shape or pattern that interests you and play around with it to see what modifications you can make that creates an attractive shape. Shape the wires to repeat the pattern or perhaps to contrast against it.
Use the wire to encourage the passing eye to follow a flow that leads to a surprise, or an unexpected turn that then leads somewhere else.
Add material as you desire to create a look. Wood and stone are rustic and imply a back-to-nature look, while plastics and shaped metals create a more urban, industrial look.
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