Work on the Viking Mythos project continues. One of the nice things about a suitably vague concept like this is that I can break it into a lot of smaller pieces and work on them as I have time.
Last night I started sculpting a Viking-style Deep One fetish. Conceptually, it's a magical artifact used for summoning and protection from the Deep Ones. Given the close relationship between 10th century Norse culture and seafaring it would be a handy item to have.
The stylistic inspiration is this statuette of the Norse god Freyr recovered near Rällinge in Sweden and currently residing in the Swedish State History Museum. The second photograph is by Christer Åhlin at The Museum of National Antiquities.
The rampant penis removes any doubt about this being a fertility idol. I did find it interesting that the beard pulling depicted is also sexual. Depending on the expert talking it's symbolic of sexual wantonness, masturbation, or homosexuality. I'm sure there's a wag out there ready to suggest that on a good night it's all three. Heh. Given the Deep One propensity for inter-breeding with humans, sometimes willingly and sometimes not, it would be a waste not to incorporate some of that beard imagery.
Here's the first pass at taking the statue, more particularly it's head, and translating it into a Deep One. I just wanted to get the general look down, so this is very rough and totally asymmetrical. Now it's a matter of refining this basic shape into a final form.
There are two tools that are going to be really important heading into the next stage- calipers and silicone shapers. For a hack sculptor like me calipers make spotting asymmetrical details a lot easier. Once I've identified two symmetrical points I can go in with metal tools and refine each side into a mirror image of the other. That step will leave tool marks, something silicone shapers are ideal at removing. Their soft, flexible heads are perfect for removing imperfections and creating smooth, flowing curves.