Saturday, 28 December 2013

Puppet head

This post will just go in to a bit more detail about the puppet head, I won't post any steps because the Joshua Flynn's blog already has a great step by step guide that I followed here. So if you're interested in making something like this yourself just head over there! Making a head with replaceable features is definitely hard work, and knowing how hard it is now I'm not sure if I'd choose this method again, but it just looked like so much fun and the end product looks so slick that I couldn't resist trying. The mouth and brow pieces snap on and off with magnets, and it's just too fun to switch them.

Here you can see my first attempt at the head, unfortunately I took it all the way to casting before I realized that the face pieces fit too loosely on the main head. As a design choice, I emphasized the gaps between the facial features instead of trying to hide them and end up a line running across the character's face (since I wouldn't want to edit it out in post), however I didn't realize at the time that this would make the pieces be able to tilt side to side, especially because the main head piece was just a smooth when I tried some pieces out with the magnets that secure them, they shifted, meaning the face would jitter a ton when it came to animating... so I restarted:

This time around I reconstructed the main head shape so that the mouth pieces fit snugly in place, and the nails in the mouth/forehead pieces that attach to the magnets had more plastic to be adhered too.They don't even really need the magnets, but they definitely don't hurt.

The neck was an interesting endeavour, since I didn't want any seam between the head and the neck, the neck and back of the head are one piece of silicone, with the armature running through it. The main plastic head piece then slots into the neck and back of the head. 

here you can see the molds and the face pieces, with sculpy expressions sculpted and baked on, ready to paint.

And the final product! More professional looking expression pages are to come, but here you can see me messing around with different angles and filters, since the film will largely be in black and white.



Monday, 23 December 2013

Alarm-clock Helmet

Unfortunately I forgot to take progress photos of this, but here is the alarm clock/helmet that will sit on top of the characters head. The "cork" part at the bottom pops off so it will look like it's inserted inside the head, when really there is just a k&s tube that slots in to the top of the head. The hands on the clock move, the bell will shake side to side, and the hammer and wrench move in and out!

Since this is added weight on the puppet, it was made to be as light as possible, everything you see is either made of cardboard or polyurethane foam, except the bell and the heads of the tools, which are small bits of sculpy.

Sunday, 22 December 2013

Picture Frames

Here are some photos of the picture frames which will hang on the wall behind my character...

They are quite easy to make, the basic frames were cut out of foam board, and split down the middle to allow for the "glass" to be a little bit separated from the photo, just like a real frame.

Then it's just a matter of spray painting them black. Glass was made from the plastic that comes with most electronic packaging, then sprayed with spray adhesive and dusted with baby powder, to give it that worn and dirty look.

Add some dry brush and voila! Now printed photos will be attached to the backs of these, and they will be hung on the wall.

Saturday, 21 December 2013

Thesis Film Puppet

  Wow so it has been forever since this blog was updated, but I figured it's time I start up again, and what better way to do so then by making a huge post on my 4th year films puppet! So without further ado... here it is! about 90% complete that is... Still needs finger nails and some dry brushing on the hands/back of the head.

I need to give a LOT of credit to the amazing blogs of Nathan and Joshua Flynn, as they posted some incredibly detailed tutorials/progress posts that I followed for most aspects of the puppet, with some variations to fit my films needs. Instead of walking you through my process you should head over here: if you're looking to make one of these bad boys yourself. I'm just going to toss in some of my advice based on issues I came across.

Here you can see the laying out of all the pieces for the armature, in order to get the k&S tubing to slot together, hammer tiny bumps into the larger pieces and they will fit nice and securely, just don't over do it or the smaller pieces won't fit inside at all.

 Here it is after assembling everything and securing all pieces with epoxy. To get the wire to sit nicely, I found that putting some epoxy putty inside the tube, then inserting the wire, then sealing it with crazy glue worked great. Epoxy adhesive works really well too.

 I wish I took a picture of the puppet bulked up with upholstery foam, but here are the beginning stages of bulking. polyurethane foam is used for more solid pieces (ribs and hips). It's a very good thing I made all these pieces replaceable too, as it turned out that the legs and anles of this puppet weren't strong enough to support his body when one foot was hovering off the ground, so I had to whip up some new ones. Once you get the hang of it making replacement parts can be done pretty fast too, I was able to make an extra set of legs, feet, arms, and 3 sets of hands within a day.

A shoe. Yet to be polished/painted. These new feet have two magnets in them for extra support, one in the heel and one in the toe, with a joint in between for hopefully more realistic walks.

So there it is, I'm going to be updating this blog frequently with all things film related, and probably go into more detailed posts about this guys head and clothing. I've got a whole phone full of photos, it's time they saw the light of day.

Saturday, 9 March 2013

Bankrupt On Selling

And all of the buisnessers in their unlimited hell
where they buy and they sell
and they sell all their trash to eachother
and they're sick of it all
and they're bankrupt on sellin

Gotta love musical inspirations! This one courtesy of Modest Mouse

Monday, 25 February 2013

Slew of New Characters

In a last minute desperate attempt to beef up my portfolio I did a ton of characters. Barnacles was inspired by Ugly Casanova and 1945 was Neutral Milk Hotel, with a bit of this old book I loved as a kid in there as well.

Thursday, 17 January 2013

Stop Motion is STILL Hard.

This one turned out okay, I'm satisfied enough given that the puppet wasn't the easiest to work with. Definitely learned some lessons.