tilpmade - PINOCCHIO puppet!
I was commissioned to build a fully articulated Pinocchio-puppet for a theatre production in Aachen, Germany.
The difficulty was to make the puppet extra light for the puppeteers, so the direct animation on stage wouldn't be difficult - while still having a wooden appearance.
For the majority of the 2h-play the puppet was animated by 1 puppeteer, more intricate scenes involved up to 4 puppeteers.
I designed the puppet to be permanently 'naked' on stage, so the wooden character would always be present. To help the puppet come alife i built in eye mechanics and mouth movement, and of course the nose could grow up to 3 times in length of its original size. I added magnetic connecting joints to the Pinocchios heals so the puppeteer was able to attach her own feet to the puppet and make him walk across the entire stage like a child.
I carved head and body out of wood, sculpted details around the eyes, made silicone molds and cast the entire body in lightweight polyfoam. The wooden appearence is completely painted on the foam with acrylic and alcohol based paint.
Trailer of the show with puppet scenes: