An Interview with Andrew of Andrew’s Clay Creations

Over here at Captain Wells Studios we are starting a new series of posts. We are very excited to share with you the many amazing artist that we meet! I had the distinct privilege of getting to talk with Andrew Schmidt of Andrew’s Clay Creations. I met Andrew when I attended my first convention ever! He is not only an amazing artist but just an amazing individual as well! What Follows is our Q&A:

Captain Wells Studios: Tell us a little bit about yourself and your art.

Andrew: I am an artist based in Broken Bow, Ne. I make sculptures out of Polymer Clay, Worbla, and felted wool. I love comic books, video games, super hero movies, and all things involving giant monsters. I love creating monsters and other creatures, either based on ones from pop culture or something from my mind.

CWS: Currently you sculpt from Polymer Clay, Worbla, and felted wool. What is your preferred material to sculpt with and why?

Andrew: I really don’t have a preferred material. If I sculpt with clay for several hours a day it is really hard on my hands, so I have found that if I switch between the different material it gives my hands a much-needed break.

CWS: How long have you been creating?

Andrew: I have been into art my whole life, but I have sculpting regularly for the last 7 years.

CWS: Why/how did you choose to become a sculptor?

Andrew: My decision to make sculptures instead of 2D was mainly because I thought 3D art seemed easier. I don’t necessarily have to worry about shading something, because lighting will do that for me. I don’t have to worry doing foreshortening, because how I position the sculpture will do that for me.

CWS: What’s your motivation when you create?

Andrew: Movies, Comics, and mostly other artists motivate me.

CWS: What are the links to any websites and/or social media you have? I know you are doing many awesome things ! 

Andrew: My main focus right now is my YouTube channel – https://YouTube/users/Andrewsclaycreationsandmore
But I can also be found on Facebook –
https://www.facebook.com/AndrewSchmidtClayCreations/

CWS: You said you are focusing a lot on your youtube channel right now, so what can a viewer expect to see on your channel?

Andrew: A large variety of content. Right now I have several time-lapse videos of some of my smaller sculptures, Creation Spotlights of some of my other creations, convention videos, and few more informative videos that don’t fit into these categories

CWS: What are you working on? Any cool, new things coming up?

Andrew: Right now I am working on my first cosplay piece out of Worbla. My next big art project I want to try to make is a life size Mer-Man bust also out of Worbla.

CWS: Is there any other material you hope to tackles as a sculpture?

Andrew: I did get a 3D Pen this year, and have only had a little bit of time to mess with it. I certainly would like to create some more things with it.

CWS: How can fans get your work? Do you display anywhere?

Andrew: I do several conventions a year, that I announce on my Facebook page. I also sell my One Eyed Blobs in my Etsy shop here: https://www.etsy.com/shop/AndrewsClayCreations

Currently I do not display anywhere, but if I do I will let you know.

CWS: Where do you see your art/business in 5 years? What is your goal?

Andrew: I would like to be able to do this full time. I would love to create my own line of monsters.

CWS: Do you have any advice for any artist wanted to get into sculpting?

Andrew: Like anything else you start, it takes practice, and never be afraid to fail. Also, start with something you love. Too many times I have been asked to make a sculpture, and my heart wasn’t in it. Not only did it make the sculpture less fun to create, it also showed in the end result.

Thanks Andrew!

If you have any other questions for Andrew reach out to him!
What other questions do you want answered as we continue our new series?
Thank you for stopping by!

 

Sketchbooks and Why You Should Keep One

I will honestly say that I was never big on keeping a sketchbook until I got into college. All throughout high school my sketchbooks were part of my homework routine from my art classes. I had the mindset that sketchbooks were only for art assignments or to draw in. Even in my college drawing courses my sketchbooks were only used for the weekly assignments.

It wasn’t until my first painting course that I was even introduced to how varied a sketchbook could be (I know I was very closed minded). Suddenly my sketchbook was used to not only work on concept ideas for paintings but it was also an area where I kept notes on painting techniques. I kept detailed notes not only on my progress but on what brushes I used for certain areas and what paint color and mediums I applied. I was not exactly sold on using a sketchbook in this way when I started. My painting professor showed me just how useful it was and just how closed minded I was being.

I had just finished a portrait that I was extremely fond of (read I actually liked it and thought it was worthy to be called a painting). I received some great feedback from my professor and he was excited to see the rest of the series come together. Then as he walked away he said those dreadful words that would haunt me for the next 2 semesters “Doing it once is easy, I hope you remember how you did it”. We were actually required to keep notes but mine were spotty at best. I honestly couldn’t remember what some of the color mixtures were or what colors I had used in some layering. I spent the next 9 paintings trying to capture that what I had in the first one. All I can say is my notes got a lot better but I never did create a portrait that had the same feel.

Here is my portrait that inspired better note taking!

When I teach all of my students either are given a sketchbook or in my private classes they make one. We have a nice discussion on what sketchbook are used for. These discussions always amaze me with how much smarter my students are then I was! So here is the top 5 uses that are typically brought up in those discussion.

Testing out some watercolor layering
Testing what the watercolors actually look like on paper

 

 

 

 

 

1. To create art: to practice your craft

Keeping a sketchbook allows you freedom to create art. What this looks like is a little different for everyone. Keeping a sketchbook though allows you to go back and track your progress. You can see how far you have come. Practice makes better! There are so many sketchbook challenges out there that I would recommend taking on one of those challenges.

2.  To plan out ideas for projects

A sketchbook is a great place to make plans and develop ideas. As a teacher I make my students do numerous thumbnail sketches before deciding on the direction to take for their projects. What I have noticed is that most of the time my students rarely go with their first idea. This is not just for painting projects or drawing projects. I used sketchbooks with my pottery and sculpture students.

3. To freely express feelings

No one needs to see your sketchbook except you. This is a safe place to write, draw, paint, or even scribble your current mindset. Think of a sketchbook as a visual journal. I have a journal I keep at my bedside for just this reason. Well that and it seems like my best ideas come to me when I am right about to fall asleep!

4. To try new concepts or practice new techniques

I love trying out new things! I also hate trying out new things! I get into a technique and medium that I find comfortable and seem to just stay right there. I love to learn though and so I go to conferences where new and different techniques are being used. I also get to try out new materials and its fun and frustrating all at the same time. Sketchbooks should be a place where you can go and take some paint sticks and try them out or use some colored inks and different brushes and see what you can create. So what I am really saying is TRY NEW THINGS! You might find your next comfort art.

5. To keep notes on current projects

As I shared earlier this one took some time for me to get used to. I find keeping these notes invaluable now. I take better notes as I am learning a new concept or working with a new medium. I am very good at keeping notes on the colors and mediums I use for almost every project.

Writing down some sculpture ideas for a wind-chime

Once again thanks for taking the time to stop by! I would love to hear what your favorite uses of a sketchbook are. Do you have any favorite sketch challenges that you participate in?

Go Make Art!

I am great at making excuses for not producing and practicing my craft. My family needs me, the paint needs to dry, I need to rearrange the studio, oh look I am almost out of paint, I only have 2 hours, I can’t find what I was working on…. and so on and so on! There are many things that can hinder the ability to make art but we either let those hindrances stop us or we find ways to overcome so that we can create! I have put together a few things that have helped me be more proactive in making art. I hope they also help you!  Continue reading “Go Make Art!”

Artist in the Making

Now that Heather has had a chance to introduce herself, I will take a swing at it.  I am Aaron, the “Captain” part of Captain Wells.  The origins of that nickname is a long (and old) story that I’m not sure many people remember at this point.  Though there are a significant number of people from college who don’t know my actual name, and just knew me as Captain.

Continue reading “Artist in the Making”