Some of my favorite dinosaurs are Ceratopsians. This post describes the creation of my triceratops sculpture. It was my first attempt at something large, and still has great sentimental value to me even though I would now do it much differently. It mad the trip to Columbia and is currently in my backyard.
I started in November of 2010 with a few pieces of the frame from a treadmill. In this picture (December 2010), I've added some pieces of a furniture dolly (green), a piece of exhaust pipe, part of a lawnmower engine, the handle bars from my daughter's first bicycle (pink), and some braces or something from an outdoor playset. I used a piece of steel rod to form the arch of the back.
The rough front feet/forelegs (December 2010). The bottoms of the feet are made from stove burner grates (purchased at the Ann Arbor ReUse Center for a few dollars). The foreleg segments are pieces of exhaust pipe braced with bars from a fireplace grate. The pink pieces are more bicycle parts with some kind of auto steering parts (?) stuck in them. Also - brake shoes.
I supported the body with jackstands so I could attach the front legs and start to figure out what I was going to do for the back legs (December 2010). I used a pair of brake rotors for the front "shoulders", and pieced together the basic shape of the back legs with some pieces of treadmill frame, a pair of MacPherson struts, and some other odds and ends. This photo also shows some pipes and other things added to the body to start filling it out. I added some chain to the "backbone" because I thought I would like the texture it added. I was wrong. I removed it later.
I braced the legs with a bunch of pieces of rod I cut from an old farm gate (December 2010). After I convinced myself that it wouldn't collapse, I removed the jackstands and started fleshing out the body. Work slowed to a trickle during January and February: it was too cold in the garage and I had other things to do.
The first part of the head was formed from this H-shaped piece of exhaust pipe and the handle from a lawnmower (March 2011). I made the head detachable so I could work on it more easily, and so I could take it with me if I had to sudently flee.
I found some kind of old Dremel saw in someone's "free" pile following a yard sale (March 2011). I cut it apart and used it to form the maxilla and mandible of the head. This photo shows the attaching of a piece of steel rod to form the edge of the frill.
This photo shows the artist standing with the foundation of the head (March 2011). Those are chair legs standing in for the horns.
The head in progress (April 2011). The frill is being filled in with odd pieces of sheet metal. The red pieces are from the cover of a charcoal grill that I dragged out of the woods behind the high school. This photo also shows the mandible moved back - I was trying to get the characteristic triceratops overbite.
The head: finished (May 2011). I was pretty happy with this.
One of the last things I did was attach this bottle opener. It was a keychain that came with the AC/DC "Bonfire" box set that a friend got me for Christmas one year. I like that it turned an otherwise useless sculpture into a tool (May 2011).
The triceratops finally moves out of the garage (May 2011).
The triceratops at her post, guarding the iris (May 2011). The gray pipe on the right rear leg is a piece of a satellite dish I found on the railroad tracks.
Eating a dandelion (May 2011).
Right side (May 2011).
Left side (May 2011). The tail is also detachable.
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