I haven’t been hanging out in any of the digi-art forums or chats in ages, because I’m currently hooked on sculpting figures with Super Sculpey. Anyway I’ll share my bookmarks and remind you of some things.
First up. [http://www.artdolls.com](http://www.artdolls.com) is a site where you can get a polymer clay called ProSculpt. It's supposedly better than Super Sculpey, and comes in a variety of flesh tones. I haven't tried it though, so I'm not going to vouch for it. If you've chosen polymer clay, try baking test bits at varying temperatures. All ovens aren't callibrated equally.
The best support for a sculpt while it’s baking(the heat softens even polymer clays, so they need some support) is polyfill…a.k.a. pillow stuffing. You can grab a big bag of the stuff for a couple bucks at a fabric store.
IMHO the tools are just as important as the clay. Seems the discussion is still very much about which clay to use. Tutorials seem to help choose tools, but my favorites don’t seem to get mentioned much. They’re silly sounding but work well. A set of small crochet hooks from the 99 cent store, a round end yarn needle, a metal dental tool, that’s basically a bent hook on each end, with one end sharper than the other, a long sharp pick from the hardware store, and my hands. Plus I now keep a package of baby wipes handy, and a bottle of 91% rubbing alcahol handy. The baby wipes take lint off my hands and keep the clay clean, the rubbing alcahol helps to smooth the clay once sculpted. And don’t forget about soft brushes. I like a particularly soft double ended makeup brush, but whatever works for you works for you.
Okies now here’s a list of links, warning, they’re pretty girly. That is to say, when I ran searches for sculpting tutorials, most of what I found, and was linked to from the sites were doll making tutorials, but the cool part is they’re all figurative, and more or less of humans and human type creatures. Still if you don’t like fairies, angels, mermaids, or babies, try to just think of them as tips for sculpting what you do like. Warning Cutesy Girly Stuff ahead: StudioWillich I just love what that woman can do with a wooden spoon:P, Sculpting Tips Tutorials, Portraits in Clay by Heidi Maiers - Portrait sculpture (busts) by commission in clay or bronze got the best tip ever from her, which is to constantly turn your piece so that you can tell how it looks 3 dimensionally, Wefting Hair Just in case one of your characters has hair, EF_Tutorial.pdf (application/pdf Object) good for info on keeping clay and work area(even if it’s just a corner of an otherwise messy room clean and dust free, plus some sculpting tutorials with photos.
Okay here's a handy tutorial for making acrylic eyes :) surely it will come in very handy indeed :) [Casting Eyes for Taxidermy Hide tanning and Taxidermy](http://www.hidetanning.net/TaxidermyEyes.html) [Live Model Book](http://www.livemodelbook.com/) several good sized photos, warning nudity, for anatomical reference, [FALCON WING PHOTOS](http://www2.ups.edu/biology/museum/wings_Falconidae.html) Actually I believe there's still a link there for all sorts of birds' wings. Excellent reference, and scientific, but know the wings are no longer attatched to the birds, so if that sort of thing bothers you, just try to skip it. [Tutorial1.jpg (JPEG Image, 700x4050 pixels)](http://www.fairysong.com/tutorials/Tutorial1.jpg) A rather nice hands tutorial, it's adaptable to paws and claws, and if combined with Jill Willich's fingernail tutorial, you can make some very fine realistic hands.
Oh, I forgot to tell what I use to soften hardish sculpey(I don’t believe it ever dries out completely without baking), Lamp oil. That’s what I use. It’s ultra-pure, made of 99% parrafin, and seems to not react with the clay, and the very low temp which the clay is baked at. One person told me to use a bit of cooking oil, another baby oil, and yet another, lighter fluid(also mentioned in one of the above links), for some reason I didn’t like the sound of those(cooking oil doesn’t dry or burn clean, baby oil feels gritty to me, and lighter fluid well, I don’t know, I just didn’t like the sound of using lighter fluid).
Oh, and if you plan to cast your pieces choose your clay carefully, that is to say, decide what you want the mold to be made of then choose your clay. Some clays react poorly to different mold materials.
A last link(hope it still works, I’m bad at just using google:P) anyway, http://www.fxwarehouseinc.com they have clays and tips for mold making, plus helpful staff and a message board