I make stuff, it’s what I do.I’m an explorer of many mediums and I have trouble settling down with one art form. I started with illustration and comics and moved to model building and sculpture, then to doll making, and mechanical engineering. That experimentation eventually lead me to puppetry.
It is an art that encompasses all others, synthesizes all my various interests–drawing, painting, writing, sculpting, carving, film making, acting, engineering, lighting, set design, sound, sewing, fashion, general crafting and most of all, storytelling–all into one place. Puppet shows are a way for me to contain these interests and focus them. The result is a blend of aestheticism and technical pragmatism creating visuals purpose built to convey narrative.
Puppetry is a very broad art form. Essentially, any object manipulated by a person could be considered a puppet; but I've always been drawn to challenge, and Marionettes are considered by many to be the most challenging form of puppetry. For me that makes them the most rewarding. But another thing I like about the medium is collaboration with others. I like putting on complex shows with many moving parts requiring many people to work together, like clockwork.
I like writing with other writers. Composing settings and environments with teams of talented artists. The marionettes get passed from hand to hand during a show, every puppeteer silently communicating with each other even while speaking lines aloud for the audience.
Part of that collaboration is between me and the audience as well. We can't see one another during a performance, but I am listening. We use live dialog and sound effects in our shows. I am listening to how the audience reacts to each moment and I am tailoring the pace of the show for a particular audience. It's a different show every time.
I'm also a teacher. I run marionette building workshops over periods of weeks with hand-on training for students but there are more students than I can teach. I want to give this art form to others.
I have produced patterns and templates for others to use, so they can skip some of the difficulty and frustration I had while learning this craft. Eventually I want to publish a book.
I also hope to use this platform to help me produce future plays and stories which I have been working on for years, but never had the resources to manifest. I have at least four, future, live theater performances I've been working on and a couple of YouTube shows I've wanted to make.
I want to thank you in advance for giving to my Patreon. It assures this art form, and my particular take on it, will continue.