Sculpture Artist Makes Incredible Realistic Busts of Movie Villains
Joop Bongaerts has created a host of amazing lifelike figures from Blockbuster hits including Planet of the Apes, Harry Potter and Lord of the Rings. The artist has been working on re-creating characters and creatures into life like statues for the past two years and has set up his own business, Joop Bongaerts Creations.
The self taught artist describes the five step process it takes to bring these figures to life, with some pieces taking more than a month of full time work to complete.
Joop, from the Netherlands, said: “Some characters take a lot of time to get right due to the complexity of the design or because you have to make a likeness, that alone can sometimes take up to about 120 hours. It is a five step process to create these busts, which starts with sculpting the basic shapes of the character or design.”
Joop said: “I try my best to create the character or design in front of me as realistic as possible. Starting with the basic shapes, then refining the anatomy and skinfolds to finally detailing the skin with textures, then I move on to moulding.”
After sculpting and moulding, Joop then moves on to casting.
He explains: “Casting is the more technical side of the process. With the casting I decide what the material and look of the final bust will be, I for example use silicone for creating a realistic looking material for the skin. I will pour and slush through the mould for several layers to get the right thickness. After this I pour resin and rigid foam behind the flexible skin to make sure the bust is strong and will keep the shape of the original sculpture.”
Next, Joop is ready to paint his creation.
He said: “Once the cast is removed from the mould I can start painting the skin. With different washes and tones I try to achieve the complex pigment of real skin and if the character has hair I need to punch all of these hair into the skin individually.”
After a long and detailed process, the final steps include inserting the resin eyes and denture, making the clothing, styling the hair and overall final detailing. Joop is private about the cost of his creations, as they differ in price due to size and artistic complexity, but he did say that the bare materials cost hundreds of pounds per piece.
He said: “The costs of these busts are dependent on the character.
“Mostly it depends on size, the bigger the character the more material is needed, but also complexity is important. If I have to add all kinds of armour for example that means making lots of individual moulds for these parts, again creating more material costs. So it is hard to say exactly but it goes into the hundreds at the bare least.”
Joop has an exciting future ahead of him and hopes to try and work on more realistic art.
He said: “I am very interested in the larger than life realistic art. Nothing is more difficult than recreating the human face, so seems like the logical and most exciting next step for me.”