Karl Kofoed is an illustrator, designer, and art director with more than 25 years of commercial art and marketing experience. In his second career as a Science Fiction illustrator, he has created The Galactic Geographic, an amazing look at alien worlds that runs as a regular feature in Heavy Metal magazine, and is documented on his website.
Speaking about his Polymer Clay diaramas, Karl says...
"My diaramas are an extension of an illustrated feature that ran in Heavy Metal magazine in the late 70's. Titled collectively The Galactic
Geographic series, the series is now continuing the that magazine.
Click Any Image for a Larger View
"The diaramas attempt to accomplish in 3-D what my painting did in 2-D:
Credible views of alien worlds."
Extra - Thoughts on Construction:
When I was a child I loved to play with miniatures and would play
outside. In the mosses and other tiny plants I saw a microcosm of the
larger natural world. So, when I began producing miniature dioramas, I
tried to incorporate natural plants to make them look natural. My
training and experience as an illustrator has helped me make them seem
|The Airwhale was detailed in a six-page "article" called the Passing of the Airwhales" The diarama was meant to emulate a museum exhibit of the future called "Airwhale Feeding Ground".
||The Tsailerol piece, the blue tripodal critter is a lifeform I worked out
for my series in Heavy Metal magazine. I refer to them often as "the
nearest thing to humans we've found in the galaxy"
|The "Redspike", the first of my dioramas, depicts a slug-like critter
crawling through its habitat; a swamp. I took a quick 33mm slide of it
before it sold at a Phila. Sci Fi convention art show. It is the only
image I have of it and I apologize for its poor detail.
||"Mars Relic" describes this piece perfectly. Surely a dome would be
built near the site of such a discovery. This piece is an example of
several 'landcape' pieces that represent larger scale viewpoints. I have
done similar pieces showing lunar and Martian scenes.
|"Planis Seafloor" is also a Galactic Geographic place. The sea floor of an all-ocean planet.
||The "Lotus Eater" is one of the most dreaded creatures we've found. He's
Most of my pieces are produced in the following steps:
Cover a piece of hardwood with acrylic gesso. Let dry (Gesso helps
sculpey to stick to the wood). Next, put a layer of sculpey over the top
and sides of the piece and begin detailing. When finished the work is
baked and detailed using acrylic paints. I find that Mat Finish acrylic
medium is an all-purpose glue, paint, and glazing material. I use gloss
medium to make some details look wet.
I sometimes encase the pieces in plastic boxes. Getting the boxes made
and put together cleanly is probably the hardest part of the whole
Read KARL'S Interview here!