counter free hit invisible
Show Schedule
Portrait Busts
Pet Portraits
Figure Sculpture
Work in Progress
Mini Demos
Instructional ebook available for portrait sculptors
Portrait Sculpture Simplified
"Portrait Sculpture Simplified"
Procedures & Fees
Base Making
Web Design



  Portraits In Clay

Sign Guestbook


Customer Feedback and Reviews

eBook released 10/17/2003

Simply superb
By Theoni Lussos
Heidi is a full time software technical writer and that comes in handy with this easy to read book on portrait sculpture. She really delivers the goods when she says it is "simplified" but not stupefied...she starts literally at the beginning and goes through the tools of the you need a kiln? No. Do you need a modeling stand? Yes. Carving tools and calipers? At least some to start. She discusses the various Types of clay and their uses including Sculpey III -- which is what brought me to this lovely book and their conditioning; needs for armature for support of the sculpture necessary so you get that 3D look without tons of unmanageable clay. Finally as we get to the "meat of the book" she discusses the various dimensions, how to ensure accuracy and the various tricks for photographing the subject. It's a great book for sculpture but I must admit a portrait painter could learn a trick or two from her as well. Heartily recommended.



WOW Heidi !   I received your CD the other day and have spent every spare minute reading and learning.It is just WONDERFUL!  There is so much information, and detail, and great tips and techniques – you’re amazing!!  I loved every single page and I know it will become indispensible.  I can’t wait to put it all into practice – next project I intend to make a mould (using your demo) and take several castings to try out different ways of patining (?) again using your instructions. You deserve immense success and I’m sure you will get it.

Thank you once again - Tricia, United Kingdom


I am an avid fan of yours. I found you on the net years ago, bought your book and it has been my bible ever since. I have been very successful in reproducing my work to family and friends. I am ready to move up to the next step. I did a sculpture of my father using your 2 piece mold instructions. Have you written a book yet on multiple molds to cast a sculpture? -

Chris, TN


" I ordered this for doing a new head during winter from WED clay. First impression is that I got a very helpfull book from Heidi Maiers. Heidi is of proffesion a technical writer (software documentation). So she knows how to write a book, and that shows up.
She did document her proces and the tools she uses very accurate and clear, in such a way that other people can reproduce the proces (though IMO for sculpt you need a gift to realize a good sculpt) .
Any way I think it will be very helpfull, and due to her alternative process without the need to cut the portrait in 2 halves to hollow it, it will reduce the risk on breakage during firing in the kiln a lot ".

Frederick H., Netherlands


Six months have passed and I'm still loving the book. I've made two small portraits out of super sculpey and premo which came out great as per your instructions and I'm now making moulds for both for cold cast bronzes which I'm quite excited about.

The book has definitely spurred me on to try things out. Without it, everything would seem a bit daunting. I'm eventually looking to go onto some half size figures and I know I'll still be using techniques from your book for many years to come - money extremely well spent!

Kent, United Kingdom



"The most helpful charts I've found are in an E-book titled Portrait Sculpture Simplified by Heidi Maiers. Chapter Three in that book has some of the best information I've found on portrait sculptures."

Alan J.



Just a word to thank you and express my appreciation for your excellent book, Portrait Sculpture Simplified. This is my first attempt at sculpture and probably the last. You folks are a different breed.

There was some satisfaction blended with joy, frustration and flaws. Without the help of your book, the sculpture would not have been completed. Indeed, so much information - sculpey clay, light magnifier, dental tools and materials, illustrations and all. So, it's only fair for you to see how you have helped people. The attached photographs are for that purpose. By the way, I now have a new appreciation for the word "oops".

Many thanks, press on - Sincerely

J. Tardy, West Virginia



I'm an old retired Brazilian engineer who spends the most part of the time in sculpturing and woodworking. I'm now writing you because I'd like to tell that I spent the last two days integrally in reading your marvelous book PORTRAITS SCULPTURE SIMPLIFIED.
I'm so astonished at the content of your book that I couldn't wait to write you, even before reaching the end of the work.
Since I'm not an artist, but only a self-taught person who loves arts in a general way- and sculpture in a particular form- and likes to study this subject- I've been reading a lot of literature of all kinds, but sincerely I've never found a so didactic, simple and clear book like yours.
I congratulate you for the quality of so many important and instructional knowledge on the sculpting area and the invaluable tips, certainly fruit of the so many years of hard work, and maybe a few trials and errors. The whole content come, in good time, in benefit of the happy sculptors who may have the luck of reading the excellent book.

Congratulations for your brilliant skill and talent and my respect for not keeping for yourself the so much knowledge you've transmitted to so many people that can improve and preserve, this fabulous thing that is sculpting.
Marco Guimaraez, Brazil



I received the book and CD yesterday and I'm very pleased with them. I've got many other books on sculpture but they lack the detailed step by step practical guides like the ones you and your husband provide. If you haven't already done so I'm sure it'd be taken on by a mainstream publisher/distributor as there's just nothing out there like it and I would never have found it if someone hadn't pointed out your website to me. This book should definately be readily available in every library and bookstore.

Robert Storey - Kent, United Kingdom



I must tell you that of all the books I have collected on sculpture, yours is the one I find myself referring to most often.

Mary Shortridge



I became interested in sculpting about a year ago, and was very lucky to come
across your site. I just wanted to thank you for the great information on your
site and on your CD wich I bought a couple months ago. I had zero experience
with sculpture, and the way you laid out the entire sculpting/casting process
was a great inspiration for me to give it a try myself. You have been of great help to me.

I'm a chemistry grad student, so having sculpture now is just a great diversion
for me when I should be in lab! We seem to have a dearth of art professors here
interested in realism, so it's a great help to connect with people like you on
the web. Thanks for the inspiration!

Dan, Student at Yale University



I've been amazed by your work for years. I purchased the CD from you site some time ago and find that it has been the biggest help to me so far in my attempts at sculpting. Thank you for offering such an indepth study.

I would love to take a workshop with you. Actually watching you as you work and be able to the get your direction on my work would be invaluable. Please keep my address should you decide to do a weekend workshop.

Peggy, Oklahoma


I have to give you a huge thank you as without your how-to pages I wouldn't have known where to start at all as the basic technical skills are not being taught in the universities at all in the UK (that is a bit of a generalisation I think but quite close to the mark). I have just finished a fine art degree where I basically had to stumble my way through, and I am now hoping I am getting somewhere.

Kelly, United Kingdom


This is among the very best instructional texts I've read, in ANY medium. Heidi's writing is articulate, easily understood, and is lushly illustrated in every detail. It is truly a landmark reference book.

I have a background in portait painting, and I am enthused and encouraged to work in 3D by Heidi's patient and enthusiastic teaching style. Buy this book.

Christine Saper - Heirloom Portraiture



I just received your CD, which is hands down one of the best instructional books I've ever read, and I've read  a LOT of them.  Having finished most of the first read-through, I plan to go to MarJon Monday, get some stuff, and follow all your instructions every step (up to the firing part:, which I have no interest in trying to do at any foreseeable time) )

I cannot express how very excited I am about working in 3D. I've also enrolled in your beautifully executed Forum, and will read everything that has been posted.

I'd like to see about whether arranging an apprenticeship/ instruction/coconsultation with you would be possible. Also, I think you should teach at the Scottddale Artist's School and I told them so.

Chris, Phoenix Arizona



Hello Heidi,   Received your book and CD today ( Monday ) and have already read the book and viewed the cd...absolutely wonderful, everything explained in perfect detail.All of the questions I had regarding the earthenware clays were answered. I would heartily recommend this book to anyone, beginner to advanced just for the volume of information contained from your experience. You have covered it all here. I just now need to get the clay and get to work..:-)..Many thanks, your work will be an inspiration for me. 

Alan Davis, Toledo Ohio


Hi Heidi, just for you to know that I bought your Ebook and I just receibed it, I started to read it. You did a very good job.

Carlos Rodriguez, Mexico



Thanks again for all the good work you do for people like me with your website, and thanks for all the incredibly useful information in the E-book. It encouraged me to attempt a second portrait. I was happy with my first attempt that I did from information I found on your site…this second one, with the advantage of your book, is ten times better.

I did a test as you suggested and I’m really glad I did it your way as the seams came out almost perfect…no trouble cleaning them up. And, of course, there was no clean-up needed on the clay and it was so much easier to attach the shim. I’m very encouraged by this second project even though I can see lots that I could have done better. I honestly couldn’t have achieved the improvement if I hadn’t taken advantage of all the tips in your e-book. I found so much useful and practicable information at every stage of the process.


John Williams, United Kingdom.



Thank you for producing your wonderful book on CD- It has been an invaluable resource to me as I begin sculpting again after several years away.  My inlaws gave it to me for christmas and it has been a great resource.  Do you happen to have any tips on sculpting children- especially very young children? Any tips you have would be greatly appreciated. 

Thanks again for your book- It has really "held my hand" as I begin working in sculpture again.

J. G. , Gainsville, FL



Just received the CD, its great!
Can't wait to go look at it for the 10th time.
learning things on there i never would've found out just online.

Daniel Choe, Colorado



Received the disk and had enough time to scan thru it,  looks like a wealth of info that I'll be using for a long time.  I appreciate your work as a sculptor which is why I bought the disk.
Frank Moran, Oaklahoma



Thanks for sending the book and CD so quickly. I am pleased with the quality of your product, and have already found the information helpful, even though I haven't had the time yet to read the entire book.

Bari Read, Arizona



I have just purchased your really wonderful book, Portrait Sculpture Simplified, I feel like I have you looking over my shoulder. The confidence I now have to form clay has all come from the pictures and explantions in this book.

Have you written any more books or made a Video or CD of your work? I would be interested to buy any of these..

Many thanks,

Wilfred England



I got my book and CD a couple of days ago. I am really interested in the section about ceramic patination and creating the mount. I've worked almost exclusively with oil-based clay and I never understood why sculptors worked with water-based, but now I get it. Thanks.





I just wanted to let you know that I received the CD. It had been held up by customs over here. I've had a quick look through it and I'm really pleased to find it every bit as good as I was hoping it would be. It will be extremely useful to me. It's very well written and easy to follow. Thanks for all your help.

John Williams.
 Kendal, United Kingdom



I think that your book is wonderful! I use my color CD as my reference copy and my black and white copy as my working copy - - the one that inevitably will get full of clay. Thanks so much for writing and publishing your book.

Marian, MA



The book is very well done, congratulations and thank you. I wish I had something this well done when I just started.

R. Becker

Poway, CA



Hi Heidi-  I'm someone who bought your CD book and use it all the time as a refernce.  I've just gone back to your website and found the mold making/casting demos and they're terrific.  I live in a black hole here and am trying to teach myself.  Your information is generous and really helpful.  Thanks.




I,ve bought your CD through The Complet Sculptor web page. It was very interesting and helping for me. I was totally focused into ilustration, drawing and painting when town hall and neighbours (this is a very small place near Guernica, Basque Country, Spain) decided to build a monument. Someone told it should be an easy work for me and without any other experience I accepted.

So as I think without your CD it should be impossible to create something "serious", I wish to give you my thanks for help.

I,m sorry about my poor English. I know that I need to improve. Hope you can understand all what I mean.

Kind regards,
J. Carlos Glera



Heidi, this CD is great I haven't stopped sculpting busts since I got it. I work with wax because I can't stand sagging it drives me nuts. I must try the 80% bust, I've been working in miniature and it's really challenging.Well thanks again, and let me know if you come out with any more e-books.

Thanks again,


Twin Falls, Idaho



"That tip came from Heidi Maiers e-book. She has a lot of little gems that I picked up on. I love referrring to her e-book when I need to for reference. It stays in my lap top."





"If you're looking for an in-depth Step-by-Step (and I really mean that), then you can't miss with the eBook by Heidi Maiers "Portrait Sculpture Simplified". The techniques she shows are World Class. I have never seen a more thorough demonstration on how to make the head than this. I have the CD version and I'm thrilled. The techniques are as applicable to large sculpture as they are to small scale. As an example of the Step-by-Step, she doesn't just show you the lips and say ok cut here and smooth that. She shows you the whole process on how to do it and gives you other examples to reference as well. It's like those in-depth "How to Draw" books, but for sculpture".


Will Pettee

San Francisco, CA



For the past year I have followed your work and you have been a great  inspiration for me. I bought your e-book about 6 months ago and I  have studied it chapter for chapter, using it as my teacher. I am  truly grateful for your talent and that you have passed it on to  others like myself.


South Africa



I've been working in clay for about two years. I purchased your DVD last year and find it invaluable. Great information and instruction. What I'm hoping is that you might offer workshops in person also. I try to carefully choose one or two of my favorite sculptors workshops to attend for my vacations.





I found so much useful information in the patina lesson (and I love your work) that I decided to invest in the rest of it. I have at least 15 books on sculpture but they don't put it simply and really include what you need exactly to do it. 

It's nice to be in a class with an instructor but they just fix my errors and I have to watch carefully to learn anything. It left much to chance. Not to mention I am forced to their limited studio time. Doing this at home in my own work shop will lead to much better sculptures. Especially now that you answered at least 50 questions I had. Thanks so much for providing this on the net!

Sheila Anderson



First, I'm a big fan. I have gotten alot out of your GREAT step by step instructions. I teach Sculpture and I have learned alot form not only your work, but by your clear instructions. Thank you. 





I've been using your book chapter! (Lesson #2) It's packed with stuff I need to know! had been working on a head before I downloaded it but was able to make corrections according to your instruction. Will start my next head following your information from the beginning. Have been telling my clay colleagues about your book!





I just got your CD Heidi and have been reading it today. I haven't finished it yet, but what a lot of great information presented in a very clear and easy to understand manner. Thanks for writing it!





I have your eBook and found it to be an excellent resource with the most informative step by step instructions on how to sculpt that I have ever seen (and I have seen a lot!).

I admire your talent and and your willingness to share your knowledge -- I only wish that I found out about you sooner!


Bay Area, California



Thanks Heidi,

I haven't had a chance to read all of it yet but I want you to know that I think it's terrific.  you've laid out the basic proportional rules in a more clear way than I've seen before.  I love that the text supports the visuals rather than the other way around - so clear!  Good job!


Fresno, California



Just wanted to tell you how much I appreciate your e-book (and now your website).  I refer to the book often, and I will be sure to check your site regularly to see what new information it contains.

Thanks very much.




My E-Book arrived in the mail today and I have quickly scanned over it. One word. Outstanding !! You have done a really fine job with this presentation. 

Thank you very much for taking the time to send it out to me and also for answering my questions. I'm sure I'll have a few more as I progress down the sculpting road. I can now spend the next while combing over the vast amount of info contained on the CD. I am very glad that I contacted you and thank you very much again. 

Looking forward to seeing your next site updates, and future e-books. Keep up the great work, 

Kevin Johnson

Courtenay, Canada



Hi Heidi,
I received the CD today! (ordered Saturday, received 2 days later on Monday) Now THAT is great service! Thank you so much, I have already found your ebook helpful. It is also a delight to read/view. Wonderful work.


Belleville, MI



A few weeks ago I ordered and received your e-book. From the bottom of my heart I want to thank you. I am also a sculptor. I specialize in bas-relief. Your work is exquisite and I love it. I printed all of the chapters and put them in two binders. To me they are such treasures. I have looked for the longest time for help in soooo many of the areas that you covered in the material.

Your book exudes the love, joy, and passion for sculpture I once knew. Your own joy poured from the pages. At a few moments, ( excuse me for this, I'm an artist) the love of sculpture that I could feel returning made me feel to weep. It is like someone finding their lost love. It is beautiful. Thank you for your generosity and the sacrifices you and your family have made in order to bring such a work to life. Those pages mean a lot to me.


Victoria Stautzenberger 

Fort Worth, Texas



I am an Australian artist and my art practice is focused primarily on portrait sculpture. I am also head of the Sculpture department at Adelaide Central School of Art.I am considering applying for a Churchill Fellowship to further my knowledge of the teaching and practice of portrait sculpture. I found your site, and have bought and greatly enjoyed your ebook

J. Martin from Adelaide,




Just received your book Portrait Sculpture Simplified and to say it is fantastic is an understatement. have printed the first five chapters and already made three armatures. look forward to completing the first clay piece. PLEASE ADVISE WHEN EVER AN UP DATE IS AVAIL. THANKS AGAIN

Bill Langendorf



Dear Heidi,
I just purchased your e-book, Portrait Sculpture Simplified.  Thank you so much for writing it!!
Your book is fantastic and very helpful!  I was stunned by your amazing work.  If you ever come out this way and have workshops, I would love to attend!!! Your book is a great help to me.
Thank you again!

Lisa W 

Victoria, B.C. 



I have received the ebook and am very happy with it. I now need to print it and get going on my next portrait. 


South Africa 



Just wanted to let you know that the disk arrived. Thanks for the prompt shipment. Looking forward to not being intimidated by clay.





I have been look at my ebook on sculpture and when I have time I am going to start another bust with the help of your book. It is great. I love it. Thanks again.





I recently purchased your electronic book from The Compleat Sculptor.  Though I thought it would be most useful on modeling techniques, the information on mold-making and patination is currently the greater area of fascination.  It was a wonderful purchase.

Mark V., New York




Your CD provides a lot of great information for artist. I will be adding your web site, CD along with Sculpt Nouveau's web site  to the list of info on the syllabus handout for the portrait class I teach. 


North Carolina


I've enjoyed reading and looking at your book over and over. I've just finished my first head.  I also would like to  try figure sculpture. Do you plan to do a book on figurative sculpture as well?  Thanks so much.

Neil Fryzer 

New York 



We just returned from a lovely weekend in Portland and your CD was waiting for me. Thank you! My hubby has already printed a few pages, just to whet my appetite, and it looks great. I'm eager to read the whole thing and will get it printed today so I can. My first impression? Very professional! So know I'm pleased you sent the CD so quickly.



My gosh! Your book is terrific! I'm really impressed with the style and content. You deserve to feel proud of yourself. You are obviously a gifted, talented sculptor. Thank you for sharing your CD with me.


Christina Poshusta 

Newport, Oregon




Got it. Read it. Love it. Thanks again.


T.T. in Texas



I just received my copy of your e-book. It's great, so much great information. Thank you for sharing your wealth of knowledge with those of us who are just beginning. Your chapters on proportions are great, I saw right away some things I need to start doing in my work. Thank you also for keeping the cost low enough to make the ebook available to everyone. I love your work and will be returning to your site often. Keep up the great work.

B. W. 




Got it..THANKS!! Photos really nice... almost as good as being there.

J. G. 



Thank you. You are giving value that pretty much doesn't exist anymore and any "lesson" book will always carry more value. What would you give for a seminar or workshop with only a fraction of the information you are providing? Your book is well worth every penny and probably more. Looking at other comparable books (which there are not many) that are sold out there, I can easily see this book split into two volumes and sold at $50 a piece.


D. Reynolds



Site created and maintained by Heidi Maiers