Animation inspiration

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Dolls and puppets aren’t that different, right? So for your continuing education, today I present a link with a bunch of pages about building stop-motion animation puppets. You might find a new kind of armature you’ve never thought of before, and there are several links to discussions of materials that are rarely used for dolls, like latex and silicon. Take a look around and see if you don’t get some new inspiration for your dollmaking.

Link via Shelley Noble at Notes from Halfland.

Handmade Puppet Dreams

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Visit this site when you have some time on your hands. Handmade Puppet Dreams is a collection of short films made by young, independent artists and featuring real-time puppetry with a focus on character. My favorite one is Harker, in Volume II, but be prepared to spend fifteen minutes or so doing nothing but staring at the screen!

Have a great weekend!

Anna Abigail Brahms

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Anna Abigail Brahms came to dollmaking from puppet theater, so it’s no surprise that her portfolio stil includes some puppets. Her dreamy sculpts are reminiscent of Renaissance paintings; they are true examples of dolls as fine art. Her work is exhibited in galleries all over Europe, including Brigitte Hess Gallery, and has also been displayed in Christmas shop windows at Tiffany and Saks Fifth Avenue.


This week’s links were brought to my attention by Pepper Hume and others on the Dollmakers List. For more information about marionettes and puppets, including organizations near you, visit the Puppetry Home Page.

Uwe Sorensen

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Uwe Sorensen makes only 35 or so puppets a year in his studio in Hamburg, Germany — but then, it takes time to develop so much personality! These puppets have complicated, realistic costumes, and their faces just make me laugh. Sorensen’s sculpting style reminds me of the traditional cartoons you see in the New Yorker or other magazines. Visit his site and see for yourself.

Beatissima marionettes

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I love seeing an ancient tradition, like marionettes, translated into modern culture like this. Poland-based Beatissima‘s puppets are highly realistic art dolls with strings. They have funky, modern costumes and recognizable portrait faces. The thing that really surprised me was to realize how small they are. Most marionettes are around 35 inches tall, but these little guys are only 15 to 20 inches!

The marionettes of Prague

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And now for something completely different — To make up for the irregularity of my posting lately, I’m going to post a different marionette maker every day this week (can you tell I’ve just figured out how to schedule my posts?).

Tradition seems like a good place to start, so check out Czech Marionettes, a company that represents several of Prague’s traditional puppet makers. Their handmade puppets are beautiful and feature professional-style controls. Some of them have amazing articulation — the wizard in the black robes above has poseable eyes.