WhiteWater is often a hive of activity with busy painters, helpdesk analysts, engineers, welders, architects, accountants, slide path designers, and many more hard at work everyday. They are the people behind the award-winning attractions we make and the reason why WhiteWater is the leader in our industry.
Each month in 2018, we want to showcase one of these very talented people whose work behind the scenes has helped to make WhiteWater the fun, dynamic, and creative place it is today.
This month, we start with Ping Tsang, a very talented sculptor, who with his skillful precision brings Styrofoam to life.
Taking Styrofoam and paint, along with a few other ingredients, the artistic people behind our Theming department transform AquaPlays and rides from steel and fibreglass into immersive worlds such as jungles and tropical islands.
Since joining the team in 2005, as a sculptor, Ping has helped to create these colourful and vibrant landscapes by carving everything from birds and Mayan gods to alligators and our very own Tom the Turkey.
If you asked Ping what a typical day looks like for him, he’d modestly tell you that he follows a daily routine, punctuated by his favourite coffee break at 9 AM. His schedule, however, may be the only thing typical about Ping or his day. We wanted to share with you a little bit about Ping and how he came to be the master sculptor he is today:
Where are you from?
I was born in China but moved to Taiwan when I was two years old. In 1996, I made the move to Canada.
How did you get into sculpting?
When I was living in Taiwan I worked at the movie production company, Central Motion Picture Co. My job was to sculpt movie props and paint movie sets. I’ve been lucky enough to have worked in this industry for over 20 years.
What’s something people might not know about sculpting?
Often, we get drafts of the things we’re sculpting, but sometimes we don’t. When we don’t, the sculptors must separate sections of the objects, visualize them, and draw the different parts to size, before we can start sculpting. This requires a lot of estimating and it isn’t as straightforward as people think.
White alligator waterslide at Audubon Zoo, New Orleans, LA
What is your favourite project you’ve worked on at WhiteWater?
All of them. The more difficult a project is the better. I’m very passionate about sculpting, so I enjoy the challenges that come with it. I enjoy working on very complex projects because I feel a great sense of accomplishment afterwards.
One of the most memorable projects I’ve worked on was a 30-feet-high white alligator The sculpture was so large that I could only work on it in individual 6-feet pieces at a time, starting from the top and slowly working my way down to the bottom.
Ping’s love for painting can be seen in the murale painted in the Theming department.
If you could switch your job with anyone at WhiteWater, what would it be?
I love my job as a sculptor, but if I were to choose another department to work in, it would be painting. In Taiwan, I was trained at the Fu-Hsin Arts School and then went to the National Taiwan University of Arts where I developed my passion for sculpting as well as painting. When I worked in the movie industry, I painted many movie backdrops.