Casting penguin footprints on the Island of South Georgia

Before a six week visit to South Georgia in January 2010, I sent down 15kg of casting power along with all my art materials on a container ship to the Falkland Islands our point of departure.

I intended to cast footprints of the various birds and mammals, that of an albatross being the ultimate prize.

Due to the constantly wet conditions it proved very difficult finding suitable prints and the albatross cast was not to be.

Our time at Gold Harbour however, did provided the perfect conditions to collect a series of plaster casts of penguin footprints.

Gentoo Penguin footprints – Bronze resin cast.

Getting these cast was a full days work, first finding good prints and then guarding over the plaster as it dried. If you turned your back sheathbills would come and investigate.

I was concerned they would jump in the plaster and get it on their feet! Elephant seals didn’t show much respect for the project either.

At home in Devon, I found the plaster dried in about 30minutes. In the very cold climate of South Georgia the plaster took up to 2hours to dry sufficiently before I could move it.

King Penguin footprints – Bronze resin cast.

Casting footprints at Gold Harbour