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Axel the Axolotl by Lluhnij Axel the Axolotl by Lluhnij
This is my entry for :iconcatharsisjb:'s contest (making a sculpture with polymer clay on the theme "Water Life").

Please full view!

I thought for a couple of days about the subject, and then got it: what could be better than a weird kind of salamander that spends its entire life cycle in water (instad of getting out of it as an adult), to represent the concept of "Water life"? :aww:

In facts, Axolotls keep for all their lives the external gills, that are typical of tadpoles.
There are also dark grey and brown axolotls, but the albino version in the most common among the "pets" of this species.

Real axolotls have slightly smaller limbs, and are a bit more slender (not much, they still look pretty goofy), but having to make it with polymer clay made me go for a "baby-proportioned" one.

It took a lot of work to make this one, I think something around 20 hours or so, but it was lots of fun... I used to play with polymer clay a good number of years ago, and had forgotten how nice it can be... and also, I didn't know that it can also be very hard and nasty, if you let it into a closet for something like 10 years (no jokes, I have some packets that say "1995"... ^^; ).

Anyway... the core is made with wire and tin foil, whereas all the body, gills and eyes included, are made of polymer clay (Fimo and Cernit, also mixed together).
I added powder makeup to give some soft shading to the body, and glossy varnish to make the eyes more alive.

Well, I hope you like my new little creature, and please wish me good luck for the contest! :D :giggle:

(p.s. this is a WIP of this work: [link] )
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Daily Deviation

Given 2010-02-15
From suggester: "Axel the Axolotl by *Lluhnij is simply amazing. It looks realistic and playful, with movement you can almost see. Its subject matter is also an interesting thing that you don't see every day." ( Suggested by DiscordantDoodler and Featured by Thebuild )
:iconnutbuckets:
Nutbuckets Featured By Owner May 17, 2015  Hobbyist General Artist
Arrrgh i love it, would you make one of these on commission? I have a wild type axolotty :> 
Reply
:iconlluhnij:
Lluhnij Featured By Owner Feb 21, 2016  Professional General Artist
I'm sorry I've been away for deviantart for many months and saw your comment now. 

If you're still interested, yes, I can do commissions! :)
(Please in case you are, send me an email, to info@neraluna.com, just to be sure that I read the message!)
Reply
:iconblazing-earth-dragon:
Blazing-earth-dragon Featured By Owner May 21, 2014  Hobbyist Traditional Artist
Really good job I thought is was real
Reply
:iconthecastlevaniachapel:
SO I HEARD YOU LIKE MUDKIPS? 
Reply
:iconemmalotl:
Emmalotl Featured By Owner Nov 1, 2013  Professional General Artist
Wow, amazing use of clay! Love it... whatever I make with clay fails so bad haha. :D
Reply
:iconunagitakanashi:
UnagiTakanashi Featured By Owner Aug 27, 2013   Artist
saw tis whle browseing and thought "wtf?! your not supposed to take axolotls outta the water or they'll....oh wait its fake" lol good job on making it realistic enough to fool me XD
Reply
:iconcalypsoeclipse:
Calypsoeclipse Featured By Owner Mar 2, 2013  Student Traditional Artist
I have to axolotl questions.:|
Reply
:iconmkmdragon:
Mkmdragon Featured By Owner Dec 31, 2012
How much do you want for this item?
If your willing to sell it to me, you can name your price...
Or, we could bargain for it... Please?

I'm a huge collector of this type of thing.
Reply
:iconsteampunkjellyfish:
SteampunkJellyfish Featured By Owner Dec 14, 2012  Hobbyist Artist
i would have called it Aristotle ;)
Reply
:iconavatartaggerung:
AvatarTaggerung Featured By Owner Jul 18, 2012  Hobbyist Traditional Artist
impressive
Reply
:iconzveruwka:
zveruwka Featured By Owner Apr 25, 2012
I WANT IT I WANT IT I WANT IT
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:iconxzanaith:
Xzanaith Featured By Owner Aug 23, 2011
I think axel's really cute.I had one as a pet about 12 years ago.I think you did a really great job,good luck!
Reply
:icondlemr:
DLemr Featured By Owner Jul 22, 2011
omg my first axolotl was called Axel xD
Funnily enough it was when I thought they were just called walking fish, before I know the real name axolotl xD
Reply
:iconleonoradarkling:
LeonoraDarkling Featured By Owner Jul 6, 2011  Hobbyist General Artist
Wow! That is several shades of awesome! You gonna make him some buddies?
Reply
:iconshexlay:
Shexlay Featured By Owner May 6, 2011  Hobbyist Digital Artist
wow its so cute... i think... yea im gonna go with cute lol
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:iconterrythefemalebp123:
TerrytheFemaleBP123 Featured By Owner Feb 21, 2011
Actually they can go through metamorphosis where they lose the gills and turn into the regular looking salamander, but it's rare.
Reply
:iconkillermuesli:
Killermuesli Featured By Owner Oct 28, 2016  Hobbyist Artisan Crafter
They have a thyroid deficiency which makes them biologically unable to spread hormones responsible for their metamorphisis. They never do it.
Their are human experiments on axolotls in which one has injected the hormones so the axolotl would grow into an adult mole salamander.
Reply
:iconfrenchpuma:
FrenchPuma Featured By Owner Jan 14, 2011
AAAAAAAAAAAWWWWHHHH :3
Reply
:iconxxxnachogrlxxx:
xxxnachogrlxxx Featured By Owner Jan 11, 2011  Student Traditional Artist
MUD PUPPY!
I love it, beautifully crafted.
Reply
:iconfietdapowah:
fietdapowah Featured By Owner Dec 29, 2010  Student Traditional Artist
8D THIS IS SO COOL!
Reply
:iconkawaii-japan-fan:
kawaii-japan-fan Featured By Owner Dec 19, 2010
it looks so real!
Reply
:iconkiger8kiger:
kiger8kiger Featured By Owner Oct 13, 2010  Student General Artist
It looks so real :|
Reply
:iconriotgirlckb:
riotgirlckb Featured By Owner Aug 20, 2010  Student Traditional Artist
lol i wanted to get a boy and call him Axel but i got a girl so i called her Harley i love them they are soo cute she is my baby :D
Reply
:icondilopsaphoo:
Dilopsaphoo Featured By Owner Aug 11, 2010
Oh my dear. this is adorable. I want one of these so bad, and when I move I might get one, if I do I should show you a picture of him. :D
Reply
:iconin-the-picture:
In-the-picture Featured By Owner Jul 16, 2010  Hobbyist Photographer
:hexentanz::frog::hexentanz::iconfrogmusicplz::hexentanz: Love it :hexentanz::iconfrogmusicplz::hexentanz::frog::hexentanz:
Reply
:icondeadbyday:
deadbyday Featured By Owner Jun 11, 2010
This looks awesome! I love axolotls, and this one you've created is absolutely adorable. :heart:
Reply
:iconlilah66:
lilah66 Featured By Owner May 25, 2010
This is really good it looks like something you would find for sale at a science store for top dollar. I would buy one myself as I have always admired/liked Axolotls, great job it looks like its alive :D
Reply
:icondimetrodondanya:
DimetrodonDanya Featured By Owner May 12, 2010
AXOLOTL!:dummy: My favorite animal. When I was browsing, I thought you had just taken a picture of a real axolotl.:D Excellent work, ma'am.:worship:
Reply
:iconviergacht:
Viergacht Featured By Owner May 10, 2010  Professional General Artist
Awww, I used to have one of these (Leonard). You really captured that dopey expression they have! great work.
Reply
:iconamaya-ruki:
amaya-ruki Featured By Owner May 9, 2010  Student Artist
so cute I love them
XD great name you named the poor axolotl after axel the pedo-lech XD
Reply
:iconinsanegelfling:
InsaneGelfling Featured By Owner Apr 1, 2010  Professional Photographer
Fantastic sculpture but your information is slightly wrong.

Generally Axolotls will keep their external gills for their entire life and never leave the water. However they have the ability, if the water levels drop (or iodine is added to their environment for some reason), to retract their external gills and continue life on land as other salamanders do. The truly fascinating thing with Axolotls is that if the water levels rise again they can revert to their juvenile state, regrowing their external gills and returning to a fully aquatic existence.
Reply
:iconpaganfiresnake:
PaganFireSnake Featured By Owner Mar 31, 2010  Professional Photographer
Wow he is so cool.:) Looks a lot like my real Axolotl.:)
Reply
:iconpichinayu:
pichinayu Featured By Owner Mar 18, 2010  Student General Artist
ooohhh!!! I love these things! I wanted to have one as a pet, but they were too expensive...(you can buy about 300+pcs of primo clay for that cost.) very alive looking you did! it really captures the essence of a true salamander axtooo...uhm...whatever.

you're good at using sculpey clay...I sucked, that's why my dad threw my sculpey away without me knowing.....wahhh
Reply
:iconreminiscentrain:
ReminiscentRain Featured By Owner Mar 16, 2010
I love this!!! I've wanted an axolotl for so long. :'( This looks perfect. great job :D :w00t:
Reply
:iconliothekingkun:
LioTheKingKun Featured By Owner Mar 9, 2010  Hobbyist Photographer
I love these little creature. I've always thought that they were so adorable! The sculpture is wonderful, by the way.
Reply
:iconaquariuswolf:
AquariusWolf Featured By Owner Mar 3, 2010
Excellent work on this. Looks a lot like Necturus. Very cute :)
Reply
:iconkaapioesikko:
KaapioEsikko Featured By Owner Feb 24, 2010  Student Digital Artist
Oh my go...
That is so real life it even makes me shiver.
Just ammazing!
Reply
:iconpootsforever:
Pootsforever Featured By Owner Feb 22, 2010
I smell mudkips in here.. ohwait

But really, I've never seen anything like this. It's pretty awesome, so smooth.. Axolotls are an interesting bunch, and I'm glad they're getting some deserved attention. :] Go
Reply
:iconnovroz:
NovRoz Featured By Owner Feb 18, 2010
wow...you made this!! amazing detail
Reply
:icongreatestkia:
GreatestKia Featured By Owner Feb 18, 2010
This is so cute and really well done!
Reply
:iconcastledean:
CastleDean Featured By Owner Feb 18, 2010
What a cool creature.
Reply
:iconnotnights:
NotNights Featured By Owner Feb 17, 2010  Hobbyist General Artist
It looks cute!
Reply
:iconnebride7:
Nebride7 Featured By Owner Feb 16, 2010
Fabulous!
Reply
:iconophelia-overdose:
Ophelia-Overdose Featured By Owner Feb 16, 2010  Professional Artist
cute ^.^
Reply
:iconzuleru:
Zuleru Featured By Owner Feb 16, 2010  Student Traditional Artist
its adorable:D
Reply
:iconknopfimperator:
Knopfimperator Featured By Owner Feb 15, 2010
WUUUUUUUUUUUAAAAAAAAHHHH!!!!!!
my lovly pet! *sing a song of love*
and the figure is perfekt.

i make out axolotl characters for my comic. ^^
Reply
:iconars-nova:
aRs-nOVa Featured By Owner Feb 15, 2010  Student General Artist
What a coincidence, I just finished a digital painting of an axolotl just yesterday. [link]
Reply
:iconraptorbane:
Raptorbane Featured By Owner Feb 15, 2010  Professional Digital Artist
It's a real life Mudkip!


Or a Wooper :<
Reply
:iconninacortex666:
NinaCortex666 Featured By Owner Feb 15, 2010
Woow nice job =D
I hope u win the contest! Good luck ^^
The sculpture is so perfect, in the pics looks like its moving x33 Congrats for the amazing job and for the DD ^^
Reply
:iconalinavgo:
AliNavGo Featured By Owner Feb 15, 2010
I like this animal… strange and captivating: it’s like some kind of unrealistic thingo… no doubts, nature is the best when it comes to design the most incredible creatures.
Reply
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