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2nd Soap Challenge - Sculptured Layers

Cal Petrusma

Another month, another soap challenge :-) This month's challenge is to create a soap using templates. The idea is to create a design in layers, make templates, then drag these along the various layers of soap to create an image. Hmmm...sounds complicated...& tricky!

I spent a lot of time looking for possible images. I love landscapes, so that was the first thing I looked for, but there might be a lot of landscapes (as this technique is perfect for them), & I wanted to do something a little different. But I also didn't have a lot of time as I was flat out getting ready for my first market during most of the competition time. Unlike last month I would have 2 days at most to make my soap. Then my son suggested doing the ocean floor! So I started Googling 'ocean' & 'clipart ocean'. And while I found quite a few of the ocean floor, it was the sunset over the ocean pictures that really got my attention. Also, one with a killer whale breaching. So I decided to combine several images into one.

So this was my basic idea. It had to be fairly simple as soap is not the easiest medium to sculpt with! Also I needed to build the soap from the top down - its easier to make a trench in the soap than a mound, although this design has both. The templates are cut from cake card.

Plenty of colours & my 'map' ready to go

Plenty of colours & my 'map' ready to go

I made up my main batter & then coloured & scented each different layer as I went. The main batter needed to stay fluid, but the coloured part needed to set up quite quickly as each layer needs to be able to firm enough to hold its shape.

The black getting away from me a little 0_0

The black getting away from me a little 0_0

Its a very messy business!! I also didn't have a lot of opportunity to take photos as I was covered in soap batter & didn't want to get it all over my phone!

When I first cut this soap the sun was orange, not yellow! It was supposed to be yellow - I'd used yellow mica!! So I decided to make another one, learning from the first try & making the sun into the moon instead - white I can do! I also changed the whale into a mountain & island as that was the other option I had at the beginning.

Similar, yet different. Notice there are 11 templates here!! So much for simple. Adding the moon's reflection added an extra layer, but I wanted to see if it were possible. This time I was a little more patient while waiting for the batter to set up a little bit & read a few pages of a book to keep myself from impatience while waiting!

This one was a bit neater because due to being patient - it actually took me two and a half hours to complete the soap! As well as at least another couple of hours cutting out the templates.

The first soap - "Whale Breaching at Sunset", scented with Green Tea Fragrance Oil (which may not match the theme but its a gorgeous scent!) And the sun eventually turned yellow!!

The second - "Tropical Moonrise" scented with Passionfruit & Papaya Fragrance Oil - a little more fitting perhaps, also a gorgeous scent

Ok - so I kinda like this - the moon's reflection worked better that I'd thought but I'm not too happy with the islands. If I had time I might have made another soap, with the whale & sun but adding the sun's reflection....

So, I decided to go with the first one (particularly as killers whales are one of my favourite animals!). I added some birds using Activated Charcoal paste as paint as I'm fairly sure that would have been nigh on impossible with soap!