Apologies for not posting anything in such a long time. A lot of things have happened over the last few months. My brother and I have both graduated from university, gone on vacation with the family and interned on a big stop motion film currently in production in London. It was an amazing experience and now that I'm back I feel inspired to continue working on our own film and put into practice all the things I have learnt. So, It's time to zap some life back into this blog, commence re-animation and bring it back from the dead!
With the help of Nathan (my hunch backed assistant) we will assemble the parts we have already collected and continue work on the project.
Theatre Usher Head Sculpt
As promised (a long time ago), In this post I'm going to be talking about the development of the theatre Usher, taking over from where Nathan left off. The body and cloths are mostly completed, I'm going to be working on the head sculpt and a few finishing details. You can see Nathan's work of the Usher puppet HERE.
To keep the weight of the head down I decided to sculpt the back half of the skull using Sculpey Ultra light clay. This was then covered with a thin layer of grey Super Sculpey to finish off the form and add small details.
To reduce 'boiling' on the Usher's coat, I attached a sheet of thin foam to the inside of the jacket to stiffen it up yet remain flexible.
In the picture below you can see how the head attaches to the body using K&S square brass tubing. The collar and buttons have also been added.
In the following picture you can see the beginnings of the plasticine face. The Sculpey eye sockets and rectangular pegs help the plasticine attach to the solid back section of the head. The face is sculpted around the eyes and the face is broken down into sections depending on what parts need to be removable. Although the face can be sculpted into any expression, sometimes it is easier and quicker to sculpt a selection of mouth shapes that can be swapped out and smoothed onto the face.
Below is the finished head sculpt with the mouth piece missing.
For the first shot featuring the Usher puppet, I sculpted three different mouth shapes to be swapped out at different stages of the shot. Each mouth was re sculpted each frame to help them transition into each other.The picture below shows how the mouths slot on.
I didn't have time to take any picture of the Usher after he was finished so here are a few pictures of the puppet on set.
The green screen in the background will be used to extend the set digitally.
a small prop cigar was also sculpted from Sculpey with a pin to keep it in his mouth.
Here the expression has been changed. The Usher's nose is different on this puppet from the referance above. during the film the Usher is hit in the face with a door. This flatterns his nose, a look he is stuck with for the rest of the film. So for this first scene the ushers nose start's out normal... but by the end...
Thats all for now. I'll have more updates soon including more info about the sets and filming.
Thanks for looking.