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Where Are You Now?

Jonathan Higgins

Joni Higgins

BTEC Design Studies 1992

Joni has been sculpting professionally for more than 21 years. Since 2003 he has run his own studio, Model Creation, which has produced merchandise and collectable figures for many leading brands including, Disney, Warner Bros, Marvel, DC Comics, Hello Kitty and Ricky Gervais's Flanimals.

For a few years now, he has been creating his own figures inspired by the 1920s art deco period. Recently he has been developing a more realistic look to his work.

After studying fine art and modelmaking at the University of Sunderland, Joni became senior sculptor at a Hertfordshire modelmaking company, producing merchandise for the TV and film industries before setting up his own company.

The Sunderland graduate said: “My early pieces were influenced by the 1920s Art Deco movement: an era I love for the style, form and detail of its fashions and designs.

“Today my influences come from many different sources - from everyday situations, as well as fashion and photography. With my latest pieces I aim to capture a moment in time in intricate detail, with a contemporary and realistic look and feel.”

Joni continued: “I'm continually experimenting with new moulding techniques and materials in order to make my pieces stand out.

“I helped create the latest incarnation of the Cybermen for Dr Who and also produce merchandise for films and TV, including Disney, Twentieth Century Fox.”

Asked about his biggest achievement to date the artist commented: “I did a project with Ricky Gervais making a collection of Flanimal Collectable figures from his book.”

On the other side, talking about his biggest challenge he said: “My latest project was a big challenge. I had to meet eight models around the world, bringing to the attention that they are more than just clothes horses for fashion designers but real people.”

Joni still recalls the great time he had at the University of Sunderland. He said: “Our tutor was an ex advertising model maker so he had a wealth of knowledge, although he would make us solve the problems on our own to give us a greater learning before he passed any of that knowledge on to us.

“I enjoyed the course immensely. I was able to explore any avenue I liked so I made life difficult for myself by making an animation for my final project!”

Joni has sold work in England, Europe and America. He is a member of the Surrey Sculpture Society and the Herts Visual Arts group. 

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