Thanks for the straight facts on the volatility of working with these.
I wasn't exactly sure about the trade-off in toxicity between thermoformed versus castable plastics. I've got a decent heat gun, but I'm doubtful about whether it is suitable for anything beyond working with wax. As you noted, the prices have gone up, indeed. This all might prove too costly for experimentation for the time being.
I had no idea those materials were the most difficult to weld! In all of the foraging I've done for more information, the consensus seemed to point to relative ease. Thanks for the heads-up, and I'll certainly have a look at PVC.
Many thanks for those great links. I've yet to find much in the way of "plastic" sculpture. My primary interest, for now, is to gauge the durability:cost from those plastics being used in sculpture. Another problem is trying to avoid creating objects that look like assembled waste-plastics.
I don't mind working with either castable or sheet-form plastics...as long as I can achieve the desired results
A few years ago, I made maquettes of large, articulated curves that taper to a point out of saran wrap. I'm looking to replicate these pieces in a material with enough opacity to support digital content projected onto the surface. What I really appreciated about working with the Saran wrap is how quickly I can create these objects. With a basic armature and expanding foam, (dotted along said armature to provide traction for the wrap) I was able to achieve some impressive results. The current issue is finding a suitable, more durable material.
Thanks again for all of your insights!