Many of us have played with clay, squishing it between our fingers, sculpting it into dogs and blobs and snowmen.

But few have gained true mastery—the ability to transform a shapeless lump into something distinctly lifelike. In this short video, you can watch French sculptor Philippe Faraut slowly and methodically breathe life into water-based clay. His precision is one achieved through years of close study and practice. One wonders what kinds of creations he once made with Play-Doh.

Faraut turns this…  (Photos: Philippe Faraut/Screen Shot)

… into this. 

Faraut works with clay, wax, stone porcelain and bronze. His portraits and figures are extraordinarily diverse and expressive, testament to his travels among many different cultures across the globe. He teaches the art of sculpture to different groups of students, and thanks to videos like this one, we can get an inside glimpse as well.

Every day we track down a Video Wonder: an audiovisual offering that delights, inspires, and entertains. Have you encountered a video we should feature? Email