A young budding artist in Chatham, and a huge Stan Lee fan, turned his grief into an artistic tribute to the comic book icon.
Caleb Lewsaw, who just turned 12 on Friday, is a big fan of Spiderman comics and the webbed hero’s creator, Lee, who passed away recently at the age of 94.
Saddened by the news of Lee’s passing, Lewsaw decided to sculpt an image of the man from clay – in amazing detail.
“I’ve been interested in superheroes for a long time. My favourite is Spiderman,” Caleb said. “I’ve been interested in ComiCon since I got my Big Brother Dave, two or three years ago. I really got to like Stan Lee and when he died, I cried for about an hour.”
He said he was working on a school project to make a coral reef from clay later on, and he was watching some YouTube videos, including one that had a picture of Stan Lee so he used that for his inspiration.
Caleb traced the outline with wire for the figure and then added the clay and all the details to make a very life-like figure out of clay, complete with a watch, buttons, hair and mustache that looks a great deal like Lee.
“Caleb has been a ComiCon fan, and was very sad with the passing of Stan Lee. Yesterday he made this clay figure, using a picture he found on the internet. For his age, I can’t believe the detail. Teeth, buttons, belt loops, hair, glasses; it’s amazing for his age,” his mom, Bonnie, said in an e-mail to The Voice. “With today’s technology, our kids lose out on creativity. I limit his tech time, so he gets very creative.”
Reading comics is one of Caleb’s hobbies and he has started a collection of the original Spiderman series.
“Of course, I only want the old Spiderman ones written by Stan Lee because those are my favourite ones and he’s my favourite writer too,” he said.
Learning how to sculpt on his own, Caleb said he will probably want to pursue art classes in high school as part of his future career choice.
“I was thinking of three things to be – comic book artist and comic book writer and an archaeologist,” he noted.
He said his comic book drawings aren’t that great yet, as he rushes those drawings, but he hopes to improve as he learns more.
For the clay figures, Caleb said he learned how to make them through watching YouTube videos, and completed a Terracotta Warrior for a project at school that turned out well. He prefers his own clay that he can bake so the figure comes out hard.
The 12-year-old student at Winston Churchill School is interested in many creative pursuits, including making his own card games and card packs, as well as 3-D printing and using an enlarger to paint his favourite movie characters on his bedroom wall.
His mom has gone all out to encourage Caleb’s creativity, including a “man cave” room where Caleb has a “museum” of Lego projects he has worked on over the years, as well as a cozy space for him to watch his favourite movies.