even more set building

ok faithful readers….it is once again time to start building yet another set…I am currently making a very short lip sync film with the woolly monster puppet on the last set you guys watched me build…I will let you know when that is completed.. I have shot about 250 frames out of about 700 and it looks great…

but anyway during the day (since I only animate at night to help eliminate flicker) I am working on my next film and for that I need a new set…I was thinking something along this idea “a faithful castle gardener has a secret spot that he plants leftover plants and plants that just didn’t make into the official castle formal gardens… his private area has a small pool surrounded by rocky walls…it will have small garden areas, a pathway, a wooden set of stairs, and multiple levels that the puppets can interact on. “

ok,…that is what I have so far as ideas….first thing we need to do is tear down the old cave set from the “the third necessity” film…

the above photo shows some leftover pieces of styrofoam and some old glue marks from the set…the photo below shows most of the foam removed and the ugly walls that are left…these proved to have so much glue and other stuff on it that I just removed the walls and turned them around and re screwed them in place…the sides and back are 1/8″ plywood that I had screwed to the puppet stage to make the set taller for the cave film… so all of that glue and stuff is not on the stage walls but on the thin plywood… so I was able to just take them off and turn them around so the clean side is now facing us.

Once the set was pretty clean I took several pieces of new styrofoam from a ceiling fan install I did, and cut them to a rough rock like shape and hot glued them in the set. I kinda let the rocks find their own shape  and didn’t really force anything. Once I had a general idea of how it was going together I started applying strips of paper dipped in plaster of mache to cover up the seams and holes in the rocks. And of course I ran out of plaster of paris so I dug around my shop and found some thinset mortar used to apply ceramic tiles. I mixed this up just like I normally do with the plaster. I made it about the thickness of pancake batter and dipped my strips of paper in it. The paper came from an old sketchbook with notes and ideas from my very first film. I pulled out any sketches and took some of the scrap paper to use as my paper mache.

The white is styrofoam and the green is the thin set mortar. The photo below shows the set sitting atop my table saw in my shop so you can get a sense of scale.

This is one side of my shop, notice how everything is perfectly organized, neat, clean and put away…Hehehehehehehehe, that was a good one… Actually you can notice how one side of the workshop doesn’t even have a wall. Not too much inclement weather here so I haven’t bothered yet.

So, I am going back outside now and do some more paper mache work. Plenty of little gardens and pools and rocks to create.

Go ahead, make a mess, have some fun.

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