4.16.2006

My First Puppet Head


I realized today that I have not really shared too much about the creation and features of the little girl test puppet, so let's recap & take a closer look...I sculpted the head out of plasticine originally, then made a mold, and a plaster copy of the head...then I took both heads, cut them in half along the scalp, and sculpted the clay face onto the plaster scalp...I carved holes in the plaster scalp for the plasticine pigtails to attach... then I used the plaster face to sculpt five sets of replacement eyes using an air-hardening clay called DAS, which I used years ago to modify custom Buffy figures, and also to turn a mannequin into the Joker...the stuff dries unbelievably hard, the Joker mannequin has fallen flat on his face onto concrete from a standing position (did I mention my evil cats?) and survived completely intact...

ok...each hardened eye was then painted and mounted in pairs on little plastic pegs...a couple sets have broken a few times so next time I'll use armature wire to connect the two eyes together...the eye pair then slips into a slot in the clay face, which is hidden by a little DAS nose on a peg... the picture to the right has a light wash of white paint on the face, cause she got dirty...

Building a new girl puppet is a priority for me right now, and I plan to use a lot of the same techniques to build her...I want to keep exploring the plaster/clay mix, I have this affinity for plaster, I just love everything about it...carve it, paint it, sand it, mold or cast with it, and best of all its messy :P...I love the replacement eyes, not as big a pain as I thought initially...actually they are easier to deal with than the eye beads I used for Pandora...I plan to make a couple dozen sets, looking in different directions, different eyelid shapes, emotions, etc...at this point I'm thinking I want to keep her eyebrow-free, and try to get expression from the eyes themselves...the upgraded puppet will also have tie downs, so I can finally start really experimenting with walks/runs...

Other Jenny Priorities--
--more snapshots, little clips like the moody one in the post below...probably tomorrow
--the script--all this time I've been thinking 'finish those storyboards', because I am a visual thinker, but with a script, I can describe the story, hammer out the details, and THEN explore the story visually, which seems like the natural way to do things...special thanks to Shelley Noble, and the post of her Halfland script, for delivering this simple revelation...an extra bonus, with the script posted here, I can share my vision for the short as a whole without giving away all of the juicy visual info....after all, I want there to be SOME mystery for all of you when the thing is finally done...
--miniature-scale set--a tiny version of the entire set, with elements that move around (groups of trees etc) so I can get a clearer vision of how the completed set should look...will probably end up as a wall-hung shadowbox, or even to do some distant shots for the short...started blocking it out yesterday, roughly 1/8th scale...the pier in reality will be about 4ft x 1 ft, the scaled version will be about 6" x 1.5" if my math is correct...

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