Wax retouching is the first step , in the process of artistic foundry, in which the artist can work side by side with artisans . After the wax is created , it must be retouched to erase the little defect that come from the mould. In fact even if the mould is perfect it creates some unavoidable errors. For example the line of junction between the different parts of the mould. If the mould is old the situation is generally worse, but anyway what is on the wax will be on the bronze, so you have to work with wax and warm tools to correct.
by the way you can do your model directly in wax. sometime that can be useful if the piece is an experiment and you want to use the advantage of the wax as a working material ; you can easy make structures and modify them in wax, cut , bend, joint, liquify and obtain interesting solution on the surface. then you can make a mould out of it or, if you want to take a little risk , cast it directly .
Now, our wax have a particular characteristic: it is hollow inside. I mean that , using the shell casting process, we don’t need to put refractory inside in phase of retouch . So if the artist want to modify the wax substantially ( bend an arm, substitute a hand or the head or a part) with our help he/she can do it. We can also assemble some middle-size waxes to show the general outlook of to the final result of the bronze.
Naturally we can also do all the process by ourselves, but in this phase, especially if is the the first time we work with an artist, we really appreciate the presence of the author that can suggest us what kind of surface, what kind of style of retouch we have to do to satisfy him .
That have the collateral effect to create a personal relationship between the artist and the artisan, and sometime funny things happens when the language are different….. but we will discuss about that in a specific post.
There is a third option that is useful sometime: with the help of technology we can put on a web check (skype, facetime, viber or simply HD pictures via Dropbox), but that can be done for each phase of the process.