Frequently Asked Questions
Q. Why have a body cast done?
A. People have body casting sculptures done for a variety of reasons. Some want to preserve in three dimensions the appearance of their bodies (portraits, torsos) and others want to capture a moment in their lives that is special to them (pregnant belly casts, hands). These reasons have a lot in common with why people would have a portrait made (for themselves or as a gift) or take a photograph of a particular occasion.
Q. How long does it take?
A. The length of time for a body casting appointment depends on the size of the mould to be taken. Hands can be done in less than 30 minutes. More complicated moulds such as torsos or portraits can take more than one hour including preparation time.
Q. How long do I have to hold a pose?
A. Usually we can complete a mould for a torso (chin to mid-thigh) in less than 30 minutes. Portraits, or smaller body casts take between 20-25 minutes. During most of this time you have to hold very still so the mould does not distort. We have props and supports to assist you in holding a pose and, in addition, we will help you select a pose that will not be too difficult to hold.
Q. I would like to give my partner a gift that is something more intimate. What part(s) of the body can you mould?
A. We will do body casts that fall into the category of “erotica”. Basically, this means if you are willing to expose it and are capable of holding it still….we can mould (most) any part of the human body.
Q. I have sensitive skin. Are the materials safe? Will they irritate my skin?
A. All of the materials that come in direct contact with your skin are non-allergenic. However, we usually test a small portion to make sure you will not have an adverse reaction to the alginate. You might notice some skin redness after the mould is removed, but this usually subsides within a few minutes. We have a shower in the studio for customer use to rinse off any residual material.
Q. Can I bring a friend along?
A. Feel free to bring a friend or your partner along. We have had boyfriends, girlfriends, family members and children come along to watch, help decide on a pose and take pictures.
Q. What is the cost?
A. The cost of a body cast depends on the final size of the sculpture and the material that is cast. During your consultation appointment we will discuss your needs and provide you with a free written quote.
Q. How do I prepare for a casting appointment?
1. Do not apply any skin lotions prior to your appointment – some lotions are not compatible with the moulding materials.
2. Wear loose, baggy clothes for at least 2 hours prior to the session. No bra or elastic waist bands as these will leave marks in your skin that will appear in the finished sculpture.
3. Bring along a hair tie. A shower cap is provided.
4. Remove all jewellery (including earrings). Simple rings like wedding bands are OK. No bellybutton rings.
5. If you are having a cast taken with a g-string or bikini, note that the garment may be damaged in the process.
6. Body hair – for men wishing to have a front or back torso cast, you may wish to shave, wax or cut your hair off as the hair can distort the mould. For the same reason, women or men having a nude torso cast will need to shave, wax or cut their pubic hair. Fine hair is OK, as we do have a release cream that we smear over fine hair. If you are prone to rashes after shaving, then do this a few days beforehand.
7. We welcome you to bring your partner or friend for the session.
Q. What can I expect to happen at the casting?
A. When you arrive we will discuss the pose for your sculpture and the position you will be required to adopt while your mould is being cast. You will then change and assume the chosen pose. Each moulding session takes between 20 – 30 minutes depending on the size of the cast.
Creating these wonderful pieces of artwork does take time. The cast itself takes 5-7 days to dry (depending on the weather). Only once this drying stage is completed are we then able to finalise your cast’s preparation so as your requested finish can be achieved. Generally, it is between 7 to 21 days before your completed sculpture can be picked up.
Q. What can I expect with a hand sculpture?
A. This procedure is far less involved than a body casting. Once you have made your appointment allow for a 20 – 30 minute studio session. The initial moulding process only takes 4-5 minutes. With smaller children it is our experience that they do require a slightly longer time as we do like to talk them through a “dry run” before taking the mould. A range of colours and finishes are available for your sculpture and engraved plaques are also available on request.
Q. How detailed are the sculptures when cast?
A. We mould the body using alginate which is a seaweed based product that is liquid when applied and quickly hardens to a soft rubber. It captures all your skin’s details, including tattoos, hair follicles, wrinkles, moles, scars, etc. We can remove any unwanted bits afterwards and smooth anything off if you wish – just ask us.
Q. What do you cast the sculpture in and how durable is it?
A. We mostly use a range of white gypsum-based casting materials, which cures to a granite-like hardness. They are not weatherproof. If you want an outdoor sculpture we will use either a resin based material like Forton MG or cement. With care, the sculptures will last for centuries.
Q. What is the best time to have a Belly Cast made and what should I wear?
A. That’s up to you and depends on how much shape you want the sculpture to have. About 32 to 34 weeks is good. The larger your belly the more your baby is moving around and reshaping your belly from moment to moment (it’s important to stay really still for a little while!). This might affect the end result, but some clients like all the tummy bumps!
Is your question not answered here?
Feel free to contact us to ask any other questions.
We can also discuss any concerns at your initial consultation. This will enable us to complete your sculpture and achieve your ultimate desired effect.