For our Final Major Project (FMP) I am (gulp) making a stop animated short film. This is pretty much influenced by Czech filmmaker Jan Švankmajer and the Brothers Quay. I came across the Brothers Quay through their work with His Name is Alive during my time with the 4AD record label a million years ago, and through researching them, Jan Švankmajer who makes very witty films with more familiar domestic objects. The theme is about collecting and display cabinets so first things first-make some puppets.
I made this nice clay head prototype (above) but recreating this in miniature was disastrous and I couldn’t get the same detail in clay. I decided to make some paper mache dolls instead but couldn’t get the look right. Initially they were too wacky and I finally settled on less expressionist faces with no big hair (apparently there is self portraiture in puppet making!)
Coral Man was supposed to be a full bodied puppet but after seeing a figure with coral hands in a book about the Wunderkammer I decided to make my own. Anyway, after 3 weeks of puppet making-they are all done, a dozen puppets in total consisting of figures, animated jewellery boxes, walking eggs and and I’m even paying homage to Švankmajer’s tongues, though with Plasticine and not real meat!