Friday, April 25, 2008

San Francisco: Last Day

Today was my last full day in San Francisco shooting the last few demos for my course. More hard work animating puppets under hot lights...quite tiring but lots of fun. Today I was visited by none other than the tech editor for my book, Lionel Ivan Orozco, armature-builder for Nightmare Before Christmas and countless other productions, and master stop-motion guru behind StopMotionWorks! We have corresponded by e-mail for years but had never met in person before today, so we had very animated conversations over lunch about stop-motion and I signed his copy of the book. Very nice guy, and we got some nice pictures with our puppet creations (his are the beautifully crafted ball-&-socket armatures.)

Having done my job and ready to relax, my original plan was to get over to see the Pacific Ocean, but was advised that it would be way too cold in the evening and would take a very long time to get there and back. I was a bit disappointed at first to change my plans but was happy to end up at Pier 39 and Fisherman's Wharf instead. After all my hard work I treated myself to a nice seafood dinner followed by just wandering around the shops and soaking in the scenery. The pictures speak for themselves...I really want to come back with my family here someday. That was the only good thing missing.


Ryan McCulloch said...

Beautiful man! That's a block a way from my old home. I used to go sit with the sea lions in the middle of the night when no one was there, have them all to myself.

Anonymous said...

Hey Ken,

You got to meet LIO!!! Awesome. I always knew his bark was worse than his bite. :)

It's great to see you playing with different techniques, I might even have something to add to your knowledge-base.

Tip: With cotton (or aluminum "tin" foil), duct tape, and 1/16" wire, you can make the understructure of a puppet (rolling up duct tape strips for bones directly on the arm wires), then skin the result with liquid latex and paint it. Sure, it's less spongy, but the result is closer to working with a plastic puppet, with the benefits of having contact points you can grab on the limbs, as well as a flexible skin.

Hope this is useful to you, I still have the first wire and duct tape armature I attempted with the latex painted over it as a skin. The flesh seems to outlast the wire inside!