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Joe Blow (Part 1 – Maquette for Stop Motion Puppet)

Hi, friends,
After a long break, I am returning to my studio and starting a fresh project.
Joe, also known as Joe Blow, Joe Bloggs, Juan Pérez, Вася Пупкин, and so on.

Joe will be 9″ tall, cartoon style male character, on a steel ball-socket Humanly Posable armature (new kit, named “Joe” coming soon).

So – making a maquette first.

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At first I did not see the point of making a maquette, with me being the concept designer, sculptor and puppet-maker all in one bottle, but Facebook people brought many good reasons for it being quite useful. Here is their reasoning, summarized.
– a rough sketch before making the final puppet, which will allow to iron out kinks.
– sometimes it’s difficult to flesh out a design until it is in 3D. 2D designs are never quite the same.
– it also be used to cast a mold so the puppet can be replicated.
– most art starts with a rough sketch of some sort. You have an idea and you explore it. It’s a step that shows you that the idea you have in your head may look or sound different when you attempt to bring it into reality.

So, will make a maquette.
As usual, I will be using the stuff we sell at Morezmore (www.morezmore.com).

Aluminum wire 3mm and 1mm
cut 30mm brass square tubes 5/32″
cotton-covered finger wire 30 ga
4″ round wooden base, second quality
wire cutters, pliers, drill, ice pick, x-acto knife and other tools
Sculpey Ultralight Polymer Clay
skull mold

For the maquette’s wire skeleton, I am using Morezmore Modular Brickhouse armature – if you are interested in step by step description.

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Wrap the wire around your pinky finger, going to the palm loop, 4 times. Take off your finger…
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you will have this. Flatten the loops.
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Twist each loop into the finger.
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Bake at 275 degrees F for 15 minutes for each 1/4″ inch thickness. I baked the armature and the skull for 30 minutes, then pulled out the armature and baked the skull for additional 10 minutes. Worked great – fully cured, nothing burned. Ultralight is not only light, it is a bit flexible, very easily cut, carved, sanded and drilled.

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I really could have done a better job filling that skull mold. But as it will be hidden, I am just going to let it be as it is.
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I need to glue the hands, feet and the head to the square tubes.
Any strong epoxy glue would do, I am using Magic Smooth
Magic Smooth is a companion product to Magic Sculpt with a gel-like or vaseline-like consistency. It is is a two-part epoxy gel, it comes in 2 containers.
Very useful product anytime you need a very strong glue at a spot where the working surface is small and the grip must be strong (consider repair of a broken porcelain figurine, for example). Vaseline-like texture allows for it to get into smallest cracks as well as adhere tenaciously to almost any surface, including glass and metal. It is also great for filling small holes, anchoring nails, screws, rods, as well as miscellaneous household repairs of china, porcelain, dolls, etc.
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Some carving to make my armature a bit more symmetrical.
Stretch foam
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Fabritac glue – a permanent adhesive, crystal clear gel, that is washable. Very useful. Every Morezmore doll and puppet was wigged, dressed and accessorized with the help of this working horse of a glue. One of the great things about it that is can be diluted with pure acetone – in case you need it to be more liquid.
As far as stretch foam is concerned, stretch foam and fabritac were born for each other. Not too much glue though, because Fabritac dissolves and fuses stretch foam together. The white is medical cotton balls.
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Head.
Deepen the sockets. Shave off those chiselled chin lines to shape the skull for my character.
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Delrin balls, 7mm.
More info about Delrin Eye Balls for Stop Motion Puppets.
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Living Doll polymer clay and roller

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Polymer smoothing oil, smoothing brush and finger palette Joe is ready for the oven.
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Translucent Liquid Sculpey”, smallest cat tongue smoothing brush and finger palette
Translucent Liquid Sculpey is liquid polymer clay, after baking it coats the surface of the wire and allows the polymer clay to stick to the wire nicely.

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Joe’s personality is starting to shine through.

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Shoes. I need to make these snow shoes on the left look like something like those penny loafers on the right.

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Make the flat bottom and bake.
General foot shape.
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Paper towel and pins.

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Leather (old leather gloves work great). If shopping, look for glove lambskin or thin lambskin remnants.

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Other supplies: Fabritac glue, toothpicks, small sharp scissors.

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Thin cord or shoe lace.

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Extra fine brush #0000 and acrylic paint to accent the seams
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Continues on Joe Blow (Part 2 – Maquette for Stop Motion Puppet)

One comment on “Joe Blow (Part 1 – Maquette for Stop Motion Puppet)

  1. […] Continues from Joe Blow (Part 1 – Maquette for Stop Motion Puppet) […]

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