the other day we spent a day with friends, food, flowers. we got to 3 porch farm and got to work. we harvested, photographed, arranged, and then i decided to do some plaster casts. it had been a while since i had worked with plaster in this way, but it was fun.
what you will need:
clay (to make your mold)
a scrap piece of cloth
a stir stick
4 paint sticks
-place your scrap fabric over your board; you may tuck the edges under the board if you wish
-roll out a slab of clay; you want it to be about 1 inch thick
-take your natural ingredients and arrange them onto the clay, texture side down
-carefully roll them into the clay
-when all of the ingredients are equally rolled into clay, carefully remove them
-place 4 paint sticks into the clay to create a border for your piece and act as a barrier for the plaster
-pour some plaster into the bucket; you will need enough to cover your entire piece, so mix more than you need
-add water and slowly stir with a paint stick. this is good to do outside so you don't directly inhale the plaster (or, you may wear a mask)
-add more water until your mixture is the consistency of pancake batter
-let sit for 30 seconds to a minute; it will begin to feel warm
-pour half of the plaster into your mold
-gently place a screen that is cut to the size of your mold on top of the first layer of plaster and tap into plaster with a paint stick. this helps to get air bubbles out
-pour your second half of plaster and tap again
-let rest and dry for about 30-45 minutes. you want your plaster to feel cool to the touch, so if it is still feeling warm, let rest for 15 minutes longer. (this step may take longer depending on the humidity in the air).
-finally, flip your piece over. I like to use another board to remove the mold
-you now want to let dry out for several days. the water in the plaster will very gradually evaporate and your plaster piece will harden.
-you then may paint it, or leave as is!
photographs by rinne allen and words by kristen bach