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Staffordshire Hoarder

On this page you can follow the  making of The Staffordshire Hoarder step-by-step.

Staffordshire, Hoard, dragon, sculpture, Andrew, Bill, art

After the initial concept sketch, as you can see, the sculpt pretty much starts with a big blob of wax and some bent wire!

Staffordshire Hoarder work in progress wax sculpt

Starting to block in the shape of the dragon

Work in progress image of Andrew Bill's latest Dragons from British Folklore range - Staffordshire Hoarder

Wings and tail next. Wire and aluminium mesh to give the wings their form.

The mesh is now cut to give the wings their shape.

The dragon's limbs are now blocked in to create the form and pose. You can now begin to see how the finished piece is going to look.

Staffordshire Hoarder dragon wax model

Wings fleshed out with Sculpey polymer clay

Started to flesh out the base design.

Andrew Bill, Staffordshire Hoarder dragon wax

Hoarder and me (for scale)

Staffordshire Hoarder dragon wax
Staffordshire Hoarder dragon wax

Miliput claws used to block in feet

The devil's in the detail!

The finished piece

The painted piece

Lichfield Cathedral portrayed on reverse side

The curved strips of pattern on the base represent the field in which the Hoard was found.

Wording on certificate

The Staffordshire Hoard was found in 2009, scattered just below the surface of a field at Hammerwich, a village on the south-eastern verge of Cannock Chase, near to Lichfield. More than 3,500 pieces, of what archaeologists call "warrior bling" - sword, shield and helmet mounts - was discovered by a local metal detectorist. The Saxon hoard was nearly all gold, more than six kilos, with a small amount of silver.

The pieces are nearly all broken and twisted, wrenched from their original mounts, and assumed to be booty. 

The Anglo-Saxons believed dragons had the gift of vision, wisdom and prophecy - dragons were considered the guardians of all knowledge and wisdom.

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