Thursday, 30 April 2009

Cleaning up

Judy is out of the mould, and this half is being cleaned up with a riffler.

Wednesday, 29 April 2009

Judy moulding...

Judy moulding in the palm of my hand. You can see the roughness of a raw untrimmed moulding. A scalpel and some rifflers later and this will be a polished thing...

Monday, 27 April 2009

Papier mache in a mould

This shot shows half of a puppet head that has dried in situ in the mould. Note the border of papier mache overlapping out onto the mould body. This is deliberate, as the overlap gives you something to lever out the moulding once it is dry, without pulling or levering the moulding itself, and acts as a handle.
This means you are less likely to break it or distort it when you pull it out. The picture shows two modelling tools slid under ready to start levering out half of Judy's head.

Papier mache shrinks as it dries, and for this reason you should not pull the moulding out if it is not completely dry. If it is still wet and it dries out of the mould, it will distort.
Just because the overlap is dry, do not assume the whole moulding is. The overlap will almost always dry faster than the rest of the moulding, especially if it is a deep mould, or you have layered many layers in one go.

Friday, 24 April 2009

Small puppets, big hands

Having set up a challenge to make Punch and Judy smaller than they should be, it now falls to me to make them work.

However, I can't use my hand to control a glove puppet in the same way if it is too small to get one's hand in. Normally, a glove puppet is controlled directly by the forefinger (inside the head), and the thumb and middle finger (one inside each arm) . This gives an immediate and very subtle level of control, and instant reaction and expression.

The question is how to keep the expressive nature of a glove puppet when you can't get you hand in it? Stealing from hinged shadow puppets, it would seem some sort of jointed skeleton is required...

Here is an initial drawing of how this might work

Wednesday, 8 April 2009

New video available about putting a puppet head together

The latest offering is this video that shows the process of constructing one of the puppet heads, the Salesman. It shows the technique starting from two halves of a head made as mouldings from a plaster cast of the original model, cut in two. It shows how the moudlings are trimmed, the edges cleaned up, and how they are put together to make the head.
This follows on from the video that shows mould making for the Salesman, and is about what to do with the mouldings from it

First pass at making Judy

Here is the initial Judy head. I am trying to capture the continuous sense of shock and exasperation here.