In 2002 I started Shadows of the West and began prototyping yard and garden decorations. Over the next several months I set to work carving out a series of highly detailed LIFE size yard shadows from clay. All of the molds, jigs and tooling necessary for production were then made in house. I purchased a thermoforming machine and started churning out product. It's a quite interesting process to see in action. A thin sheet of plastic is heated up by a large bank of ceramic heaters, then it is dropped down to the molds where a vacuum pulls the plastic down over the mold and a part is formed. The whole process takes about 2 minutes to make the part. A 3 axis CNC cutting machine was then used for the final trimming.
Click on any photo to see the detail of the different yard shadows.