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Grimaces and Grins

Facial Construction with Eleanor Crook

“Supported by a bursary from a-n The Artist Information Company”.

Day four and a move on to sculpture, wax and the teachings of Eleanor Crook. Eleanor has great knowledge in the field of anatomical waxes. A specialist in this area she has worked for various universities, museums and medical foundations constructing scientific, historical, educational and artistic wax models.

Today was spent learning about, and apply in modelling wax, the muscles of the face. One by one we applied areas of (wax) muscles to plaster skulls, whilst Eleanor explained and demonstrated (much to our delight) the facial expressions that would be produced by each muscular action. Grimaces and grins accompanied the extensive learning today as well as sneers, frowns and pouts. This thorough overview of the facial structure, normally hidden by human skin was deeply informative, and as with preceding days on this course dealt with anatomy so much better than could have been done via a textbook. My understanding of the look and function of muscles including the overall depth of facial soft tissues will be invaluable to my future understanding and handling of both 3D and 2D materials when used to describe the face.

Eleanor’s approach to teaching is deeply engaging. Her ability to make the process come alive was fascinating. As well as the contextual background Eleanor shared with us work she has been engaged with, past and present. This helped link the historic and scientific implications of the skills she uses with the artistic talents she brings in to play when working around Europe exploring old wax collections and adding to culminated knowledge of wax, it’s inherent modelling properties and its continued medical, historical and artistic value.

#Professional Development Bursary.

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