This stunning heron was sculpted from a single piece of serpentine stone, in Zimbabwe, by Shephard Deve. The beautiful colors emerge when polished with floor wax. The sculpture is first shaped, using a combination of chisels, rasps (files), and sometimes a grinder. At that point, the stone is just a greyish/whitish color. Once shaped, the sculpture will still be rough because of the rasp’s rough teeth, so the next stage is sanding to get the texture smooth. Each grit of sandpaper, from the roughest to the finest, is used until the stone is super smooth. When the sculpture is all shaped, it is all that greyish/whitish color. The piece is then washed, heated with a fire, or blow torch, and then, when hot, the floor wax is applied, usually with a brush. Since the stone is hot, the wax melts into the stone, and then when it cools down, the polished area is buffed out with a cloth, bringing it to a shine. The white areas making up the pattern of the feathers are actually also stone, but are from the white dolomite stone, which was ground up into a powder, mixed with epoxy, and inlaid into the brown stone.
Because each piece is created by hand, and the coloration in each stone is different, the sculpture you are looking at is exactly the one you will receive. Please keep in mind that because these are natural stones, there are always flaws and imperfections. We have taken the clearest photos possible to show everything, but we believe that is also the beauty of these sculptures, that they were not produced in a factory, but rather by actual people, using natural stones quarried in the hills and mountains of Zimbabwe.