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Using a wet clay is a natural starting point in sculpture and the most common of all modelling materials due to its versatility and the ability to kiln fire and make it permanent. There are a broad range of other materials available to sculptors like the non drying clays Chavant NSP and Newplast which are firm oil based clays suitable for modelling fine scale and very high detail, modelling wax and casting wax which also hold fine detail and can be used in further techniques such as the ‘lost wax’ process for casting bronze and other metals. Polymer based clays like Super Sculpey™ and Milliput are widely used in model making and small decorative sculpture due to their tooling and detailing characteristics.
Modelling materials can be a personal choice and with the differences in hardness and modelling characteristics there should be one to suit everybody.