Creating large sculptures
For a large sculpture the artist will usually prepare small study models until the pose and proportions are determined. An intermediate sized model is then constructed with all of the final details. For very large works this may again be scaled to a larger intermediate. From the final scale model, measuring devices are used to determine the dimensions of an armature for the structural support of a full size temporary piece, which is brought to rough form by wood, cardboard, plastic foam, and/or paper to approximately fill the volume while keeping the weight low.
Finally, plaster, clay or other material as described above is used to form the full size model, from which a mould may be constructed. Alternatively, a large refactory core may be constructed, and the direct wax method then applied for subsequent investment. Before the availability of modern welding techniques it was usually necessary to cast large sculptures in one piece, with a single pour. With the availability of welding, a large sculpture may be cast in pieces which are then assembled and permanently joined.