Monday, December 8, 2008
I'll post more when I have something more completed.
Sunday, November 9, 2008
I've included pictures of Juan Pancho with his new owner and his classmates
First I made a hat out of interfacing. This was a challenge but patience and perseverance paid out and I was satisfied with the shape. Next came covering the hat with fleece. The crown I covered with black and the brim I cover with white. I chose the white to make the hat stand out from the Rhino Beetle itself. Then I added a badge to the hat and it was done.
I'm not settled on the badge but it was the only one that I could find in the house so it will do until I can find one I like better. I need to find one so that I will have one for her hat and a matching one for her chest.
Sunday, November 2, 2008
So without further ado here is Solomon Gets Wise ...
Tuesday, October 28, 2008
Aside from the accessories needed to complete her police officer persona she is complete. Honestly, she was a challenge and a lot of fun. Some aspects of this build were much more challenging that previous builds I have done.
Tomorrow I'm planning on shooting some video of Richelle and several other puppets from the Joshua Junebug menagerie. I'll be posting the results of that as soon as they're available. Until then here are some pictures of the complete Rhino beetle.
Tuesday, October 14, 2008
All that's left are the eyes, the hands, the legs, attaching the head into the body (right now its just sitting in place) and some accessories.
Tuesday, October 7, 2008
Tuesday, September 30, 2008
Sunday, September 28, 2008
Monday, September 22, 2008
He's a bashful, slow moving, slowing talking, slow everything classmate of Joshua Junebug and his bug friends. Through Seth, Lilac Hollow is going to learn that good things come even to those that don't hurry and scurry around.
Tuesday, September 9, 2008
Sunday, September 7, 2008
It was fun building a people puppet after all the bugs I've been building. But never fear, the next two puppets I have to build are bugs: a slug name Sylvester and a rhinoceros beetle named Richelle.
Friday, September 5, 2008
General information about the puppet you see that the body and head are constructed of 1/2 inch foam. The mouth plate is made of 1/2 inch foam reinforced with 6mm Foamie craft foam. Finger tubes are installed on the top and bottom jaw to give maximum control of the puppet and the head and body are fully lined. The posable hands are made of 17 gauge wire sandwiched between 1/2 foam and the arms are filled with poly fiber. The mouth is covered in red blizzard fleece and the remainder of the puppet is covered with brown anti-pill fleece.
I would definitely be interested in what you think of the puppet. Thanks.
Thursday, August 21, 2008
I have been asked to build a puppet for a friend that is an elementary school teacher. She has left the design entirely up to me and I have decided to take this as an opportunity to create the pattern for the generic puppets. Hopefully in the next few weeks you'll be able to check back and see the results of this puppet build and it won't be too long after that that I will be offering the pattern.
Just to warn you though there will be a small cost if you wish to get a pattern for yourself. This way I'll be able to come up with some money to cover all the puppet projects I'm dreaming of. I haven't figured out all the particulars yet but we'll keep you posted as things progress.
Right now I busy thinking through and mapping out the themes and lessons that will be taught in the course of the program. There will be two puppet segments in each of the programs one set in Lilac Hollow and the other in the Bible. My thought is that I will use the Lilac Hollow characters to act out the Bible story.
I'm also thinking of putting together a package of scripts, DVD's, Music and craft ideas so that I can market the VBS program to churches. Right now I trying not to think too much about the scope of the project because I don't want to become overwhelmed.
First I'll write the scripts, then I'll record the videos. We'll see what happens after that.
Monday, July 28, 2008
Friday, July 25, 2008
I've decided that Adam and his family are going to be latino. This gives me the opportunity to introduce additional cultural elements to the Johsua Junebug series. At the same time accents are very helpful in generating new voices.
Thursday, July 24, 2008
If you would like a higher resolution copy of this pattern I'd be happy to email one to you.
Wednesday, July 23, 2008
The bulk of the mechanism is made out of 1/2 inch pvc tubing. The spring is a section I cut from a old fashion screen door spring. this spring is secured by forcing it into the top of the pvc tubing. The bottom jaw is made out of a wood dowel whittled down so that it would fit snugly into the spring. The trigger is made from a 1 inch dowel. I drilled a 3/4 inch hole through the dowel and then carved the dowel down to prevent finger pinching and cut a grove to prevent pressure points on the fingers. 14 gauge wire secures the trigger to the bottom jaw.
The mechanism works great. I think I'll probably use this design for all my new rod puppets.
Thursday, June 5, 2008
I painted it with high gloss, Rustoleum, water base paints. Their selection of colors is limited but by mixing them together I was able to get basically any color I wanted. All in all I very happy with the result.
Friday, May 30, 2008
Below is a line drawing of what the background will look like. I plan to paint the back drop with some nice bright colors.
I'll be painting the scene on 4X6 foot canvas which I've primed to ensure the canvas doesn't soak up all the paint.
Wednesday, May 21, 2008
I do have some preliminary sketches of the school house background and plan to post them after I refine them a bit more.
Thanks for your patience with me as I balance try to keep my life in balance.
Monday, April 28, 2008
Saturday, April 26, 2008
I made a bow out of some of the fleece I had used for the construction of the head and body. I simply glued a bunch of dots onto some fabric. Then I took the fabric and folded it in thirds. Next I pinched it in the middle and sew a small band around the middle of the bow. And there I had a polka dotted bow.
Just tonight I made the hands and arms and attached them to the puppet. The hands are made of polyurethane foam with 18 gauge florist wire inserted to make them posable. This I covered with fleece by tracing the hands onto the fleece and extending the arms from the wrist. I then folded the fabric onto it self and sewed around the lines leaving space to insert the foam hand into the fabric. Once I had sewed the gap shut, I stuffed the arm with poly fill and sewed it to the body.
I'm very pleased with the look so far. What I have left to complete this project is to add the legs. I'm still trying to decide whether or not I need four legs of only two. Below is a picture of Taylor so far. Enjoy!
Wednesday, April 16, 2008
Friday, April 11, 2008
For the thorax of the body I cut off a 6 or seven inch piece of the tube and removed four darts from each end. Then I glued the darts closed thus creating a taper at the top and bottom of the thorax.
The abodomen was a little trickier to make. I wanted the abdomen to extend at an angle from the thorax. To do this I took the remaining foam tube and cut an angle in one end. then I removed four darts from the angled end of the tube so that when they were glued shut the abdomen would match up with the thorax. I made sure to make the front dart long enough to allow the rod mechanism to exit the body of the puppet. Then I attached the abdomen to the thorax. Finally I removed eight darts from the tail end of the abdomen so that when I glued them together they would completely close the tail.
And wahlah. It was done.
Monday, April 7, 2008
The first part I made was the mouth. The way I build a mouth is to cut out the palate of the mouth from 1/2 foam. I then reinforce what becomes the top and the bottom of the mouth by gluing on 6mm craft foam. To this I add tubes made of 1/2 foam. Usually these are finger tubes but in this case they will recieve the top and bottom mouth bars on the rod mechanism. These tubes are then reinforce with fabric. The last thing you want is the tubes coming unglued in the middle of a performance.
Once the mouth was made I was then able to trim and shape the top and bottom bars on the rod mechanism.
Next came the construction of the head. I used 1/2 foam and a pattern of my own design. I've made a few puppets with other people's patterns before so I had a fairly good idea how to get the shape I wanted. I just had to do a bit of fussing to achieve a product I was happy with. If you're just starting out building puppets I recommend using someone else's pattern as a starting point. I've put a list of some links to free patterns which are currently available on the web. These are great for getting you started. Once you feel like you understand how foam works you can get creative and make your own.
As you can see with this head I made the top and bottom separate. I did this to make it easier to insert the rod. It turns out that this was unnecessary as the rod comes in and out with the head completely assembled.
Below are pictures of the head with the rod inserted. The first is with the mouth fully open and the second is with the mouth closed.
Thursday, April 3, 2008
Well, I thought about the problem and came up with a different way of getting the action. First, I left the mouth bar exactly as I had originally made it. Second, I repositioned the trigger underneath the handle. Third, using a wire coat hanger, I made a rod that ran between the trigger and the back end of the mouth bar. I ran this wire rod through some refrigerator tube to keep it from flexing when the trigger is actuated. Fourth, I moved the spring so that one end hooked directly to the back end of the mouth bar. The other end of the spring was attached to the rod with a screw.
Below are some picture of the finished product. I am fairly confident that this rod mechanism will be able to stand up to use. This rod also doesn't have any wires that would have to be worked around when installing the rod into the mouth of the puppet.
Wednesday, April 2, 2008
I've begun the construction of my next puppet, Taylor Termite. I've included a sketch of the character to give you an idea of where I'm going with the build. The character of this puppet is a kindergarten age "child" termite. I want the puppet to be much smaller than either Joshua Junebug or Prof. Inch were. As a result, the puppets head is going to be too small for a persons hand. The solution is a rod mechanism to opperate the mouth.
Below is a picture of the rod mechanism I built for Taylor. I made the rod using a 24" - 1" maple dowel. I cut a slot into one end of the dowel long enough to accomodate the action of the mouth bar. The mouth bar is held into the rod using a wood screw which also serves as a pivot point. I used steel guitar strings for the wire. There is an 11 lb spring for tension on the wire that closes the mouth. I am using some refrigerator tube to contain the wire along the rod. The trigger control for the mouth is a dowel secure with a hinge. (In the future I plan to attach the trigger the same way I attached the mouth bar.)
Sunday, March 30, 2008
As I was developing the Joshua Junebug and friend characters I decided that I needed to have a character that was the voice of wisdom for the stories. I had already decided that I didn't want to have the parents appear directly but felt that I needed some adult presence. Eventually I decided that a caring and knowledgable teacher would be just the right character. Since all the characters are bugs a bookworm type creature seemed logical so I decided that he would be an inchworm
At the time when I began making puppets, Prof. Inch was the character that I had the clearest idea of what I wanted him to look like. As I was making the puppet and playing with the character it seemed natural that his almost too perfect grammar would come packaged in a german accent. While a few adjustments have been made since the initial sketches I am very happy with the outcome of this build
The next character I will be making is in honor of my eldest daughter. She asked that I design a character for her. All the characters have names that begin with the same sound as the creature they are. So her's would have to begin with a "T." So was born ... Taylor the Termite.
Friday, March 28, 2008
The entire process of the build is documented on the forum at puppetsandstuff.com in a tutorial call Joshua Junebug. The following link will take you to that tutorial.
In my next post I will introduce you to Professor Ichabod Inch.
Thursday, March 27, 2008
The inspiration behind these stories was my Mom, who at the time was fighting terminal cancer. My mom was one of the best readers I've ever heard. She just had a gift for making the story leap off the page when she read to you.
Well, I had written four stories when my mom passed away. And with her passing I lost my enthusiam for writing the stories she had inspired. Now, three years later, I'm inspired to take those stories up again. I've discovered the magic of puppets and I want to adapt the stories I've written into puppet scripts and flesh out the story ideas I've had and turn those into puppet scripts as well. Eventually I want to have both a collection of chilren's stories and a puppet show directed toward kids.
The setting is Lilac Hollow. Here Joshua Junebug and his friends play together, pull pranks together, go to school together and sometimes even fight together. In the mix of all these bug children is Prof. Inch. He is their teacher and the only adult that appears in the stories. Prof. Inch answers their questions and asks a few of his own as he helps Joshua and his friends learn about life and how to live peacefully with each other and prepare to live with God.
Right now I'm busy building puppets and sets and writting scripts (all things that are new to me). I hope those of you who tag along will enjoy the journey. Along the way I'll leave postings about lessons I learn regarding everything involved in producing your own puppet show.
Tuesday, March 25, 2008
I was designing an avatar for a puppet forum I'm a member of and wanted to use my family crest. To this crest I added a monster puppet that was peeking out from where he was hiding behind the crest.Later as I was trying to come up with a name for the line of puppets and puppet resources I'm developing I decided it would be fun to match the name to my avatar. I thought of Hiding Monsters and Bashful Monsters. Both of these fit but then I thought that some children might be frightened by monster and I didn't want to frighten my primary audience.Then I thought, Bashful Puppets. It fit the avatar and avoided possibly frightening some of the