Laura talks to Nick Rule about his jewellery, sculpture and how he learnt to make tiny things!
I remember the first time I saw Nick Rule’s work– I was amazed that human hands could make anything so tiny and delicate. It is no secret that we love miniatures at Eclectic Ladyland so I was chuffed to have the opportunity to talk to him about how and why he makes the things he does!
How did you get started making miniatures?
I started making them when I was studying jewellery at the Learning Connexion Art school in Wellington. Everything is on a miniature scale in jewellery and I wanted to make a cool gun for a sculpture of Furiosa I was working on.
What are some of the other things you make and how did you get started doing those?
I make candles & figurative sculptures. I got into sculpture when I went to Cut Above Academy in Auckland, my teachers were making these awesome busts and things on the side and that’s what inspired me.
I then got into candles by mistake after making a mould of Ludo from Labyrinth and realising I couldn’t afford resin, I found a candle and tried melting and pouring that instead and it turned out really cool. I also like using wax because it’s better for the environment.
How did you learn how to make all these different things?
I guess I learnt a lot from my teachers at Cut Above. I also worked at Weta Workshop for a little while which helped with mould making. The Learning Connexion was where I learnt jewellery, ceramics & wax to bronze sculpture which was really interesting.
Can you describe some of your processes? Do you start out with a drawing—where do you get your ideas from?
Yeah– I start with a drawing, then I get lots of references from different angles which makes it much easier, then I build a figure out of clay using wire armature, I make the ribcage, pelvis and head first then add muscles and detail after.
Whereabouts do you do all your making?
At my house or at Workspace Studios in Wellington.
What do you find inspiring?
I find tattoos, rockabilly stuff, 20s to 50s fashion, movies and WW2 inspiring.
What is it about tiny things that you like?
I’m not sure, I always liked making tiny things. It doesn’t take up loads of space & the engineering side is fun for me, like little moving parts and stuff.
What do you do with your time when you’re not making stuff?
I like building and riding BMX trails in the woods in my spare time, I also like hanging out with my girlfriend and my cat.
What plans do you have with regards to making stuff?
I would like to make more jewellery and mini WW2 sub machine guns and just get better at making stuff!
You can find Nick’s work here–