I am working on the puppet for my new film. So far I just have the armature with the head and hands (which are both removable). The armature is cabled aluminum wire, with epoxy putty and square brass stock. The head and hands are latex buildup, the head has a movable jaw as well as movement in the brow with replacement eyelids. The beard is fake hair glued on and lightly colored with some paint. The face and the beard aren't quite finished yet, just some small adjustments to clean it up a bit better. As I make progress I will continue to post images, also if anyone has any thoughts or tips, that is welcome too.

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Very nice!
Good face, and a great job on the hair!
Just read your post again, I thought the face must be sculpey, but I see it's latex, so I'm impressed with the finish you got on it. The hands seem a bit lumpy, so how did you avoid that on the face?

I did a lot of tests with it, and I also may have gotten lucky. I soaked the foam with liquid balloon rubber and sort of sculpted into place and dabbed on more layers after that, trimming and filling any bumps or dents as i went along. The hands probably need a little more finessing, but I wanted them a little more rough than the face.

Great look to it. 

The face looks very good for build up. I really like the texture of the beard and hair. What kind of hair did you use?

Nice looking puppet.

I like that you are getting into the latex puppet construction

I added the foam onto the armature. Since I can't sew, a friend of mine is going to make the costume, are there any tips or tricks anyone has that I could tell her about making clothes for a puppet?

Try to use a thin fabric, not the same material you might use for a full size jacket or trousers. Remember the thickness of the fabric, and the coarseness of the weave, should be scaled down a bit, not just the size of the garment. I like cotton more than synthetic fabric because you can dampen it and scrunch it to get some natural looking wrinkles at the elbows. The thickness really comes into it when one seam crosses another, like a collar joined onto the neck. You can get 6 layers of fabric, and it gets really thick and lumpy. Actual suiting material comes up like it was made of old horse blankets. You won't get a true scale, material 1/6th the thickness, if you could get it at all, would be too see-through, but just look for lighter fabric that looks good.
Loose clothing tends to flap around a bit when you grab it to animate, so you often see very close fitting clothes on the characters in feature films. Sometimes the figure is sculpted fuller so it has the shape of the clothing, and the costume can then be fitted tightly and still have the shape of the garment, not a superhero's spandex suit that is shaped more like the body.
the foam on the legs of your puppet is more like trouser legs, without tapering in for thin ankles, and that might be better for fitting fabric trousers over the top. To fit tight sleeves on, you need to be able to remove the hands and put them back after the shirt or jacket is on. Or, sew up the final seam with the garment around the puppet.
I don't do either of those things, so I do get a bit of clothing twitch. But usually I can live with it.
I make clothing pretty much like the real thing, only smaller and maybe simplified a bit. Most of it can be sewn on a machine, but putting sleeves into arm holes needs to be hand sewn when you are doing itin puppet scale.

I don't know if you've tried it yet, but there's something called "Model Magic" that works a treat for making build-up heads. It's a fluffy marshmallowy material and you can scupt it and it dries in the air to a foamy feel. It won't bend, but it's just great for creating forms and then either painting them in acrylics or dipping them in balloon rubber mixed 50/50 with acrylics.

This looks great, though, as is- especially knowing that you didn't use Model Magic!

WICKED

Ian Timothy said:

I added the foam onto the armature. Since I can't sew, a friend of mine is going to make the costume, are there any tips or tricks anyone has that I could tell her about making clothes for a puppet?

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