A Quick Guide to Sculpting Chibi Girl Figures with Air Dry Clay
A Quick Guide to Sculpting Chibi Girl Figures with Air Dry Clay 318

In the last chapter, we showed you how to sculpt a cute anime boy figure step by step, and a lot of people were happy to give us feedback, which helped them a lot. Our studio was very excited about it, so we decided to continue with this chapter, introducing the use of air dry clay in sculpting chibi girl figures.

This chapter will focus on chibi girl head-to-body proportions, the use of acrylic paints, and clay flower decoration. This chibi girl is characterized by a modified Chinese Tang suit and lotus flower hair ornament, which gives her an ancient charm. Lotus flowers are used as the pattern decoration for the costume, as well as lotus flowers and tassels for the hair ornament and costume.

List of Materials & Tools Required

Sculpting Tools

4.0.1 Tools
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Face moldcraft scissors, modeling ball toolsdetail needlerolling pinscircular cutting toolbladescarving modeling toolpressure platecraft carving knife, B-7000 glue, tweezersegg-shaped auxiliary and plastic clay sculpting tools.

Decorative Materials

4.0.2 Decorative materials
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Semicircular pearls, bubble beads, fine copper rods, and metal petals.

Coloring Tools

4.0.3 Coloring Tools
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Acrylic paintacrylic paint brushpastel seteyeshadow brush, Pencil, eraser.

Clay & Color Mixing

4.0.4 Clay
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Used skin, red, blue, yellow, black, brown, and white clay; in addition, gold resin clay was used to craft props, which can be replaced with yellow.

  • Mix yellow, white and red clay together to create light yellow clay;
  • Mix white, blue and red clay together to create light blue clay.
  • Mix white and brown clay to create light pink clay.
  • Mix black, white, and brown clay to create dark grey clay.
  • Mix red and blue clay to create reddish-brown clay.

Main Part of Sculpture

Sculpting the Face

1. Prepare the face mold, knead the skin clay into a pointed teardrop shape, align the tip with the nose, press the clay into the mold and flatten it, leaving some clay at the top.

4.1.1.1 Making Face
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2. Pinch the reserved clay to pull out the clay from the mold and cut off any excess clay.

4.1.1.2 Making Face
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Sculpting the Legs

1. Roll the mixed light blue clay into two drop shapes, making sure to maintain their equal sizes.

4.1.2.1 Making Legs
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2. Use a round bar to press inward and create a circular indentation at the bottom of the pants.

4.1.2.2 Making Legs
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3. Rub your fingers back and forth on knees to adjust the shape of thighs and calves. After sculpting both legs, check to see if they are symmetrical.

4.1.2.3 Making Legs
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4. Bring her legs together and adjust them into a forward stepping position. Cut off any excess clay. Use a detail needle to press on the crotch area and then use your fingers to flatten and smooth out the hip area.

4.1.2.4 Making Legs
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5. Take skin clay and roll it into a teardrop shape. Cut off any excess clay. Use the pointed end as the girl's foot. Repeat the process to create the other foot, ensuring both are the same size.

4.1.2.5 Making Legs
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6. Press the pointed end that was just cut onto the footpad, flatten it, then use two fingers to pinch one side to create the sole, and finally use your fingers to rub back and forth on the ankle. The feet are now ready.

4.1.2.6 Making Legs
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7. Roll out the pre-mixed blue clay into thin sheets.

4.1.2.7 Making Legs
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8. Use the blade to cut one side neatly, use the circle cutting tool to cut an arc on the neat edge, and then cut the other side neatly, spacing the arcs a distance apart as you cut.

4.1.2.8 Making Legs
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9. Align the circle of the sheet with the instep, wrap the small foot with the sheet, close the sheet at the heel, and finally cut away any excess clay pieces. Crimp the edges of the shoe with the sculpting tool.

4.1.2.9 Making Legs
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10. Take some pink clay and roll it into a long strip according to the length of the small feet, then flatten it. Align the small feet that were just covered with the shoe uppers on all four sides of the pink sheet, stick it on, and quickly lift it up.

4.1.2.10 Making Legs
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11. Take a small piece of reddish-brown clay and stretch it out to form a thin, long strip. Cut out a section with the desired length as needed.

4.1.2.11 Making Legs
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12. Wrap a thin strip around the shoe opening starting from the heel.

4.1.2.12 Making Legs
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13. Place the sculpted little feets in your hands and cut off the excess. Pinch the legs and glue the cutout little feets to the cuffs of the pants.

4.1.2.13 Making Legs
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14. Roll the light yellow and reddish-brown clay into thin sheets; use a blade to cut the clay neatly and join them together. Cut out dual-coloured clay sheets as needed.

4.1.2.14 Making Legs
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15. Judge the opening and closing of the clay piece based on the cut and sew of the garment. As shown in the photo, the seam for the pattern on the pants is centered on the outside of the leg (and the seam for the ochre trim on the shoe is centered on the heel).

4.1.2.15 Making Legs
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16. The seams of the clay pieces can be covered with decorations, as in the picture, the trouser cuffs are the ones covered with ochre spikes. Considering that this is a Tang suit, the garment is decorated with disk buttons, peace buttons, lucky knots and spikes. First, use an carving modeling tool to press a notch under the seam, and then attach the spikes that have been made

4.1.2.16 Making Legs
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Sculpting the Body

1. Roll the well-prepared light blue clay into a drop shape. Use your thumb to press and flatten the rounded end, then use your fingertip to press inward and create a concave indentation.

4.1.3.1 Making Body
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2. With the help of an egg-shaped tool, clay can be made into a smooth and even arc shape, which can be used for sculpting hair clips and skirts. First, place the pre-shaped torso with the concave side down on the egg-shaped tool, and use your fingers to craft the skirt from top to bottom. Then, press and mold the torso with your fingers to create the desired shape.

4.1.3.3 Making Body
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Tips: Note the back curve when sculpting the torso, with a concave waist and a streamlined forward curve in the front chest.

3. Remove the torso from the egg-shaped auxiliary and cut the skirt into a smooth, rounded shape.

4.1.3.2 Making Body
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4. Based on the three-head proportion, cut off the excess part of the trunk and then use a detail needle to press out the fabric wrinkles, which spread from the inside outwards.

4.1.3.4 Making Body
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5. Pinch the shoulder with your index finger and thumb to create a flat edge to the shoulder.

4.1.3.5 Making Body
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Sculpting the Clothes

In this section, you need to apply acrylic paints to draw patterns on air dry clay, which you can learn more about this post (A Quick Guide to Painting Flowers with Acrylics on Air Dry Clay).

Sculpting the Lace

1. Make the hem of the skirt in the same way you made the cuffs pattern, starting at the center of the backside in a circle around the hem.

4.2.1.1 Making Clothes
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2. After attaching the clay sheet for the skirt, pinch it with your fingers to adjust the rise and fall of the skirt.

4.2.1.2 Making Clothes
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Sculpting the Coat

1. Roll out a thin sheet of light yellow clay and use a round cutting tool to cut out an arc-shaped notch.

4.2.2.1 Making Clothes
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2. Centered contrasting curved notch, use a blade to press a straight line, then cut a curve from the edge to the straight line.

4.2.2.2 Making Clothes
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3. Align the prepared sheet with the front chest, stick it to the trunk, and use your fingers to pinch the shoulders to make the sheet stick tightly to the trunk. Finally, remove the excess clay by cutting it off.

4.2.2.3 Making Clothes
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4. Based on the garment's cut, trim off the excess clay on both sides of the coat.

4.2.2.4 Making Clothes
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5. Cut a curved notch on a pale yellow square piece of clay, align it with the center of the back, stick it onto the torso, and trim away any excess clay.

4.2.2.5 Making Clothes
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6. Adjust the edge profile of the top with the blade to make it smooth. Then, use the carving modeling tool to pick up the top so there is a gap between the top and the torso.

4.2.2.6 Making Clothes
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7. Shape skin clay into a cylinder, adjusting the thickness to match the neck size. Then, trim one end evenly and stick it on.

4.2.2.7 Making Clothes
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Tips: The seams of the top need to be pasted about the cutting of the garment, such as aligning the opening of the top, collar and front chest in the center.

8. Cut a long, pale yellow thin slice, align the top at the cardigan, and place the slice around the neck. Smooth the seam between the collar and the blouse with a carving modeling tool.

4.2.2.8 Making Clothes
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9. Use red clay to pull out long threads from the neckline to the opening of the sweater and wrap them around the collar. Use a carving modeling tool to press the long thread, making it stick to the collar.

4.2.2.9 Making Clothes
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10. Cover the long thread around the top hem in a circle, then return to the collar and remove any excess clay. Use a carving modeling tool to adjust.

4.2.2.10 Making Clothes
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11. Roll light yellow clay into a ball, then shape it into a teardrop. Repeat the process to create two teardrops of the same size.

4.2.2.11 Making Clothes
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12. Press the cuffs with the modelling ball tool, pressing the cuffs inward to create a circular notch. Then, use the detail needle to push the pleats at the elbow position.

4.2.2.12 Making Clothes
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13. Compared to the length of the sleeves, the cuff is located on both sides of the crotch. Cut off the excess clay and make the shoulder of the sleeve smooth.

4.2.2.13 Making Clothes
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14. Attach the trimmed double sleeves and adjust the arm movements by holding the elbows.

4.2.2.14 Making Clothes
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15. Roll red and light blue clay into thin sheets, then combine them to sculpt long strips. Cut the strips into long pieces using a blade and set aside for later use.

4.2.2.15 Making Clothes
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16. Start sticking the pattern from the center position of the upper sleeve, wrap around the sleeve with a thin sheet neatly, and cut off the excess clay.

4.2.2.16 Making Clothes
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17. Roll the red clay into small round balls, then flatten them. Repeat this process four times, then join the four small round balls together.

4.2.2.17 Making Clothes
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18. Poke a small hole in the middle of each small ball with a dotting tool and attach it to the seam at the cuff.

4.2.2.18 Making Clothes
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19. The colorful edge of the sleeve should face up, aligning with the center. The trim should align with the sleeve seam, and the tassel should be pasted centered and facing down.

4.2.2.19 Making Clothes
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4.2.2.20 Making Clothes
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Sculpting the Hands

1. Roll skin clay into a long strip, then flatten one end. Roll it back and forth at the wrist position to adjust the shape of a small hand.

4.3.1.1 Making Hands
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2. Press the palm with a detail needle to sculpt a nest, cut out the shape of thumbs, and the short, cute, chibi-style little hand prototype comes out!

4.3.1.2 Making Hands
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3. Take the shaping tool and press out the remaining four fingers, using the detail needle to adjust the bend of the fingers to the palm.

4.3.1.3 Making Hands
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4. Place the detail needle in the palm, bend the fingers over, and press the wrist and palm lines with the detail needle, and the little chubby hand is finished.

4.3.1.4 Making Hands
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Sculpting the Head

Drawing the Faces

1. Sketch the facial features with a pencil.

4.4.1.1 Making Head
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2. Squeeze the pigments that you will need onto a notepad.

4.4.1.2 Making Head
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3. Outline the eyes and mouth with a reddish-brown colour.

4.4.1.3 Making Head
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4. Apply a white flat coating on the eyes and mouth.

4.4.1.4 Making Head
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5. Shade the eye with grey to create shadows.

4.4.1.5 Making Head
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6. Use diluted green paint to draw the middle area of the eyeball.

4.4.1.6 Making Head
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7. Use white and green paint to draw the reflection in the eyeball.

4.4.1.7 Making Head
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8. Outlined with black is the crescent-shaped shadow of the eyeball.

4.4.1.9 Making Head
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9. Apply black eyeliner.

4.4.1.10 Making Head
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10. Outline the eyelashes with black.

4.4.1.11 Making Head
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11. Outline the double eyelid with a reddish-brown color.

4.4.1.12 Making Head
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12. Use dark grey to draw eyebrows.

4.4.1.13 Making Head
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13. Apply highlights to the eyeballs using white color.

4.4.1.14 Making Head
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14. Draw three short slanted lines on both sides of the cheeks with red to indicate blush.

4.4.1.15 Making Head
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15. Dip a brush into red eyeshadow and apply a layer of color on the cheeks, nose bridge, and eyelids. The cheeks should have a heavier color than the eyelids.

4.4.1.16 Making Head
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Sculpting the Hair

1. Cut out a circular hole for the neck using a circle-cutting tool. Take some dark grey clay, knead it into a sphere, and adjust the sphere size to fit the face shape.

4.4.1.17 Making Head
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2. Cut the sphere into two halves and use your fingers to mold one end into an even-rounded shape. Then, attach the face shape to the center of the half-circle.

4.4.2.1 Making Hair
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3. Trim the bottom of the dark gray clay neatly, use a plastic clay sculpting tool to sculpt hairline marks on the dark gray clay, and cut out some details.

4.4.2.6 Making Hair
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4. Flatten the tail with a modeling ball tool to determine the basic shape of the head.

4.4.2.3 Making Hair
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5. Thin slices of hair at the temples are half thin and half thick. Use a pressure plate to press out the hair traces.

4.4.2.4 Making Hair
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6. Based on the shape of the indentation, cut the hair into a sheet, then use your fingers to curl the hair ends slightly.

4.4.2.5 Making Hair
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7. When sculpting the bangs, place the sheet on the egg-shaped auxiliary first and press out the curve. Use a plastic clay sculpting tool to press out the bangs, trim off the excess clay after comparing the length of the bangs, and trim the shape of the hair tail again.

4.4.2.6 Making Hair
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8. Fill in the gap between the face and the back of the head with dark gray clay, attach the bangs hair piece and make final adjustments.

4.4.2.7 Making Hair
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9. When sculpting a hair accessory, shape a drop-shaped piece of clay and flatten it. Pay attention to carving the middle part thicker and the sides thinner.

4.4.2.8 Making Hair
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10. Place the hairpiece on the egg-shaped auxiliary and use a plastic clay sculpting tool to sculpt hairline traces.

4.4.2.9 Making Hair
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11. Remove the clay piece and cut out multiple hairpiece shapes based on the indentations.

4.4.2.10 Making Hair
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12. First, in the temples on the sideburns hair piece, and then up the hair piece, paste the hair piece can be adjusted or trimmed after the shape of the hairpiece.

4.4.2.11 Making Hair
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13. From the top of the head towards the ear, stick the hairpiece and create an arch shape at the roots.

4.4.2.12 Making Hair
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14. Use the same method as in step 13 to attach another hairpiece, creating an arch shape and ensuring that the curves on both sides remain consistent.

4.4.2.13 Making Hair
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15. Continue attaching one hair extension piece and adjust its position and curvature after it has been attached.

4.4.2.14 Making Hair
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16. Cut the sheet into two smaller pieces; the sheet should be thin and pointed. Use your fingers to bend the sheet and stick it to the top of your head.

4.4.2.15 Making Hair
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Sculpting Decorations

Sculpting Magic Wands

1. Roll out a thin sheet of pink clay, wrap the copper wire in it, and cut off any excess clay.

4.5.1.1 Making decorations
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2. Knead a white clay ball, flatten it with a pressure plate, and cut the thin sheet in half. Use a plastic clay sculpting tool to sculpte wing marks, and cut out the wing shape according to the marks.

4.5.1.2 Making decorations
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3. Take gold-colored clay and roll it out into thin slices. Cut it into long strips and wrap the strips around a circular-cutter tool. Remove the tool and shape it into a circular ring.

4.5.1.3 Making decorations
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4. Cut a circle on the blue sheet using a circular-cutter tool, then press out three straight lines as shown in the picture, and cut out a hexagonal star based on the lines.

4.5.1.4 Making decorations
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5. Place the hexagram on the ring, stick metal flakes in the shape of stars on the hexagram, and attach a bubble bead in the middle. Cut out pointed pieces from gold foil and surround the ring. The solar wheel is ready for use.

4.5.1.5 Making decorations
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6. Attach the red bubble beads to the ends of the stick, wrap the seam allowance with the gold sheet, attach the sun wheel and the little wings, and the magic wand is ready!

4.5.1.6 Making decorations
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7. Securing her hands in the center of her cuffs with copper wire, and put the magic scepter in her hand.

4.5.1.7 Making decorations
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Sculpting Lotus Flower

1. Take pink clay and knead it into a teardrop shape.

4.5.1.8 Making decorations
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2. Place the drop on your index finger and use a detail needle to press a thin slice through the center.

4.5.1.9 Making decorations
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3. Pinch out a little tip with your fingers.

4.5.1.10 Making decorations
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4. Craft six lotus petals according to this shape.

4.5.1.11 Making decorations
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5. The middle petal is at the bottom; align the two petals to the left and right and stick them onto the middle petal.

4.5.1.12 Making decorations
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6. Continue to stick petals on both sides, paying attention to align them to the left and right, and then stick one in the middle.

4.5.1.13 Making decorations
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7. First, use red paint to outline the texture of the petals, then use a brush dipped in red eyeshadow to color the petals.

4.5.1.14 Making decorations
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8. The image shows the effect after coloring is completed.

4.5.1.15 Making decorations
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Sculpting the Tassels

1. Take red clay and shape it into a droplet form. Flatten the rounded end with a press and carve the marks of a wheat spike with a carving tool. Finally, cut out a strip of clay.

4.5.2.1 Making decorations
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2. Adjust the position of the clay thread and use B-7000 glue to attach a piece of gold foil to the head of the tassel. The tassel is now complete.

4.5.2.2 Making decorations
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3. Install the finished head and adjust the direction or movement of the girl's head by rotating it a bit. Attach tassels to the hair beside the ear, and then attach a lotus flower headdress to the tassels.

4.5.2.3 Making decorations
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4. Stick the lotus flower decoration on the collar with B-7000 glue.

4.5.2.4 Making decorations
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5. Attach half-round pearls to the base of lotus flower decorations and headbands and to the shoes to complete the cute chibi girl figure.

4.5.2.5 Making decorations
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Cute Little Girl Figurine
Cute Little Girl Figurine

Summary

The chibi-style characters are characterized by simplicity and cuteness; by studying and practicing this chapter and the previous one, I'm sure you can quickly master the art of making anime chibi figures out of air dry clay, and after mastering this skill, you can sculpt any figure you like, and mastering this skill can save you a ton of money if you're a collector of anime figures as well!

If you want the challenge of sculpting more complex and difficult characters and are very interested in sculpting scale figures, then you can move on to the next chapter; they will be even more challenging, so grab your clay and tools and let's keep exploring!

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