Sets and Puppets

  • I've decided to put together some examples of sets and puppets for my portfolio/a pitch I'm writing. I sculpt with polymer clay, and I thought it would be a fun way to write a children's book. I love Chris Sickels, Samantha Cotterill, and Maggie Rudy.

    So I figure 'why not try to tell stories this way since I already have learned so much about sculpting characters?'...

    Well. It is crazy difficult. But, I've started to put some stuff together and I'm going to use this current lockdown to really give this a shot. I'll share my progress here in this thread.

    Here is the beginnings of a little funeral home parlour I've put together today. I bought doll furniture from a lovely older lady at my local flea market. The walls are painted foam board, the carpet is felt, and there is patterned paper as a wallpaper.
    Im going to build a coffin, some flowers, make paintings for the wall, add light fixtures (that hopefully really work) and a whole bunch of other stuff as I go.
    Also, stop motion-style puppets.


  • Made some more progress today. I painted a little Thomas Kinkade painting for the funeral parlor, and I started a puppet. The puppet is probably too tall, but I'll make more.


  • This looks promising and fun! Well done! I’ll be back!

  • @powsupermum Thanks! It's definitely a learning experience.

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  • @kylebeaudette very cool! Have you seen @EliaMurrayArt 's work? She has done a couple of epic puppet sets for the forum contests and posted a step-by-step here earlier this year.

  • @Lucky-Platt i did, yes! Amazing stuff🙏

    I'm realizing that stop motion puppets look good in...stop motion.

    This set just doesnt work for a children's book because it's so static. No matter how I angle my camera, its looking like a little community theatre play.
    Chris Sickels makes this stuff work by having his image completely planned out, same with Maggie Rudy. Also, both of them ensure there is lots of handmade whimsy dripping from each scene.

    I just built a set and hoped to find the shot. I could make a little movie, but I'm not seeing much good kidlit potential. Not with how I did it, anyway.

    I think I'll shelve this idea for a while. It was fun though, and I learned lots!
    I turned my little puppet into a Star Wars character because...I have issues.

  • @kylebeaudette this is totally amazing.. did you check out the Mouse Mansion books... they create an entire set that they use for their children book.. its amazing.. its even open to public for visits..

  • @Rekha-Salin-0 wow, had not seen the Mouse Mansion stuff!! So cool. Very Maggie Rudy, but also different.
    Another key ingredient is natural lighting, which is on display in those Mouse Mansion books.
    I had planned to have some light fixtures that gave off real lights using some little LED's I bought, but I'm so not adept that making circuits work that it just seemed impossible.
    I think open windows in the model with soft table lights go a long way to bring life to these types of projects.

    I think the next time I do this it will be a tighter image, with less scenery built that would go unused.

    Here's a Maggie Rudy exampleDDVWN7UUIAA11GI.jpeg.jpg

    A Chris Sickels

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    Another year, another attempt at making little sets and sculpts to make a book out of.
    This attempt will focus on my 'Neblings' characters that I've been working on. Gross little imps, living their gross little lives. Snapshots of life in their Nebling village, like the smurfs but awful.
    The set I'm working on first is 'Father carves up the delicious roast spider, and serves to his children the green gunk inside her.'
    or something like that.

    Here's the Neblings:

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  • This is looking so cool!!!
    My university degree is actually sculpture, but I haven't sculpt anything since I finished the degree. We had a class where we made some puppets for stop motion, and is so fun. I just felt a bit of nostalgia with this thread.
    Your characters are really interesting. Creepy, lolol, but interesting. 🙂 They're expressions are also very good.

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    Having some professional photos taken tomorrow, but I finished the characters and set today. IMG_20210707_224623_986.jpg IMG_20210707_224623_844.jpg

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