Gifted English sculptor David Winter is regarded as one of the foremost creators of miniature architectural structures. Born 1958 in Catterick, Yorkshire, David was inspired by his Mother, famed British sculptor Faith Winter. It was in her studios that David inherited his creative skills. Initially making pottery and decorative tiles, and then on a joint venture with John Hine making heraldic shields. These were not successful but proved useful in attracting David to design on a minute scale. He and John experimented and in 1979 the first David Winter Cottage - 'The Mill House' was produced. David's work found instant acceptability when they started to offer them to selected shops in Great Britain and later in North America. Provencial 1 Production began in the coal shed at the foot of David's parents' house. John Hine did the talking and selling. As David's, and associated craftsmen and craftswomen's skills increased over time, so did the popularity of the cottages. In 1981 larger premises were found at Borden, and then later to Eggars Hill. He has received worldwide acclaim.
Inspiration for David's models comes from a variety of sources; old books, manuscripts, etchings and real buildings all play a part in the evolution of an idea. But, the final shape and form of the sculpture comes firmly from David's imagination. From the moment that David completes an original wax sculpture untilthe piece is ready for purchase in a shop, t is not a vestige ofany form of equipment involved; everything, but everything is done exclusively by hand. The chosen master mold maker has the technique to be able to make a replica of David's original in a hard and durable material that will be a reference for ever. After the master moldmaker has finished, it is passed to the production moldmaking department to translate the work into molds that reproduce David's original into the quantity that the collectors require. This is also a highly developed skill and involves the most sophisticated disciplines. Once production molds have been made, they are passed to casting. The production molds are filled with liquid gypsum and "worked" to make them reveal all of the details without any air holes or blemishes. The hardened, unadulterated, pure white gypsum cottages are then passed to the home painters.
The David Winter cottages are made of crystacal, a form of natural gypsum which has a fascinating history. T are many grades of gypsum and unfortunately the pure white, top quality gypsum (from which the crystacal is made) comes from the very bottom of the quarry, underneath several seams of inferior quality gypsum. Under the subsoil is the third grade quality gypsum which is used in the building of industry and then one has to dig down a further hundred feet through layers called thumblers and gr...
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