Since it is the silver anniversary of the AAC, we want every aspect of this year’s Nationals to special. So we went in search of unique and special trophies. We wanted to find something that was Agility related, rather than just getting another type of cup.
What we discovered was that there does not seem to be anyone in the World who is actually making trophies that have dogs doing anything even remotely agility related… well there is a greyhound type dog jumping onto a fence like jump, and there is a company in England making agility equipment. But no dogs, so it is a bit static.
So, not to be deterred, we approached a number of sculptors who had a good eye for animal anatomy, and asked them if they would consider doing something for us. It would have to be designed, molded, cast etc. Most of them were not interested in working within our budget. BUT we did find one sculptor who was intrigued by our request. He loves dogs, he prides himself in the correctness of the anatomy of his sculptures, and he was interested in producing the only trophies of their kind in the world.
Here is a bit about the Canadian sculptor…
- Eleven years of work with a Local History Museum in the creation of well over sixty statuettes
- Responsible for provincial history plus the creation of artwork for a Natural Science Museum
- The creation of 70mm & 90mm master figurines for sports trophies
- The creation of 54mm master figurines for a model soldier manufacturer
- The creation of a master figurine and fifty moulded and painted reproductions for a law enforcement training facility
- The illustration and authorship of human anatomy and `how to’ articles, as published in an international hobbies magazine
- 22 Years of mould-making experience
- Sculpture of figurines for a Toronto based toy manufacturer
- The creation of two 1/9th scale equestrian sculptures commissioned for presentation to the Toronto Mounted Police.
He has not done dogs previously but specializes in horses, which are anatomically pretty similar, and he was very excited to work with us to create some dynamic Silver trophies of a Dog going over an A-Frame for this year’s National Winners!
He will be sending photos of the work in progress. It should be exciting to see them coming together!
Here is the first photo, of the dog in the first stages of development.
Things are going just fine. I am a perfectionist though and all has to be right. The first pic shows the first two attempts and the blocking in of the skeleton. The third sits in my car and was too large skeletally for a border collie, but the second photo shows the final which I am finishing off at the moment. The white streaks are made by a dremmel tool to signify fur and the tail awaits detail.
As I said the A-Frame shape as pictured is too low and I will be making another with horizontal slats, which will be much thicker, slightly taller and as drawn in the sketch, so as to support the dog’s weight and for strength purposes.
In a past e-mail you mentioned that is was important that the sculpture not be too small, so I researched and this sculpture of the dog is in between the 1/9th to 1/8th scale, so that when positioned next to a sculpted human, a 6 foot man would stand 8-9″ tall. The A-frame is also symbolic and in this sculpture and represents both the frame and the letter ‘A’ for agility, however in terms of base size, should I create a scale frame, the dog would have to be half its current size and look like an ant; too small, a joke in some folks eyes perhaps. In addition, experience with liquid plastic, which is what I am using, has shown that vulnerable points, which in this case are the ears, have to be reinforced with fiberglass, and the legs with 14 gauge wire, as the artwork is not being encased with an acrylic dust box; ear reinforcement is not possible with a sculpture half its size and the whole thing would be far too brittle.
Update: Apr 15
(My email to sculptor…” Thanks Charles, I am sure it will be great! Just want to ensure that it looks more like a Border Collie than a Wolf, even though they are probably structurally pretty similar 🙂 ”
Response: “Thanks, my wife commented on that, so I modify, which I am doing right now, watched by the cat Smudge”
Update: May 14
Just an update on my progress. Apart from backings/supports, the moulds are now ready and I will be commencing the moulding process this weekend. There are a total of 6 moulds in all, two for the dog and the rest for the A frame and plinth. Making the moulds often takes longer than the artwork, which was the case in this instance. I will be sending a pic of the first one.