Good Morning all - thanks for taking the time to read my post.
I'm working on my first real stop motion. Everything is going pretty well but in the tests that I've done the last couple of days I notice one of my biggest problems is that my puppets clothes shift slightly in many of the frames.
Do any of you have some tips and tricks to keep the clothes in place or more rigid - anything? I have a feeling someone with some experience might be able to weigh in.
In one scene he is wearing a night shirt. I sewed some wire down the seems of said shirt, but it doesn't keep the shirt still enough in the middle or at the sleeves. I was considering starching the clothing so that it becomes a little more rigid, but I'm not sure that that would work at all.
That's always going to be a problem if you use real fabric for clothes. And sometimes the wires actually work against you, depending on where they're located. If there's a wire that you end up touching when you grab the puppet to animate it, then you'll accidentally animate it every time you move him.
Let's see - methods to minimize clothing twitch, in no particular order..
Don't use fabric, mold the clothes as part of the puppet. Obviously too late for that one, and it might just not be what you want to do. But you can do a sort of hybrid method too, say real fabric for sleeves but everything else molded in latex. Alternately, similar to your starching idea (which I think is a good one) some people paint a thin coat of latex on one side of the clothes. I'm not sure about the logistics of this one - how to make sure it ends up drying in the right shape and doesn't stick to the puppet and become part of it.
You can spot-glue the fabric to the puppet in certain places, like the chest or entire torso, parts of the arms away from the elbow and shoulder (where it needs to bunch up and wrinkle when it moves) etc.
Or you can just be extremely careful where you grab the puppet - and also maybe glue the clothing down at those points. These methods are somewhat similar to what's done in 'claymation' like Wallace and Gromit, where the chest and pelvis of the puppet are made of a hard substance that doesn't move when grabbed, and only parts of the arms would be made with plasticine (though of course later they switched entirely away from plasticine and used silicone instead).
Another possibility is to use thicker fabric in places and make the clothes tighter where you don't want them to twitch around.
Or there are the more drastic methods - like switch to only animating Lego, or make the move to CGI!! Hopefully you don't end up going that far though!
Thanks, Strider! Really appreciate you taking some time to answer.
The starch works pretty well. It certainly doesn't keep the clothing from moving, but it does make it much much more easy to shift them back to where they were before. They seem to keep more of shape memory with it. I think I could use even more and they would move less. I can't exactly imagine how the latex would work. My puppet's skin is latex so I feel like a latex lining would really stick and be a mess when he changes outfits (next time maybe there will be less outfit changes and they can just be molded on to him).
Every scene I shoot I'm finding more and more things that need to be secured to the set and puppet a little better. Learning the hard way, I guess.
Right now I'm having trouble keeping blankets on his bed on perfect place. Those will be starched and tacked to the bed better next time.
I haven't tried this myself yet, but I was taught that spray gluing a very thin layer of upholstery foam to the underside of your fabric would help it retain it's memory. I'm planning on trying this out soon with my puppet which wears a blouse with puffy sleeves.
Do share if you've found a technique that works, I would love to see!
Hey there, just shinning in my two cents. im also working on a stop motion project, currently in planing stages still;
i have not tried these yet nor have i experiment with it/them yet but i've heard that with 'Isle of Dog' stop motion movie they've used very thin rolled sheets of lead. im a little iffy on this one because 'lead'. would have to do more research and if any safety precautions need to be taken.
The other that I'm planing on doing is very fine wire mesh, more fine than a kitchen mesh colander. again, i'll have to research on this more, maybe even get a sample size and experiment if it'll work. a good search on amazon with 'stainless steel filtration cloth' gave me some good choices.
hope this helped!
You can get aluminium flashing, which is similar to lead without the health issues. I generally find some aluminium armature wire, mostly around the edges of the fabric garment, lets me animate it. But it is not all that good at preventing movement, it mostly just lets you do it deliberately and in a more controlled way.
I have painted latex onto the inside of some fabric clothing in spots where I could not help touching it, and that does help make the cloth pop back to its original shape.
Just noticed this is a 5 1/2 year old thread, but closing twitch still is and always will be a problem, so doesn't hurt to revisit it.