Step into the Puppet Womb

Posted by Steve on Jun 24, 2010 in Production, Workshop | Subscribe

Being one of 6 to 9 young adults cohabiting in a huge ramshackle house has its ups and downs.  The dishes don’t get done and someone keeps shattering the wineglasses, but at least we’ve got a whole spare room to make puppets in.

Albeit the shittiest room ever.  There she blows — there on the left — with a Zissou stencil guarding the door.  Knocked together by previous halfwit tenants in the corner of the garage, broken windows with a scenic view of the laundry machine, low ceilings, no light; our Puppet Room is little more than a dingy cave.  But it’s our dingy cave, dagnabbit, and you’d best believe we filled it with awesome.

Here’s the main work station.  This old elementary school teacher’s desk is the first thing I bought when I moved to SF.  It’s simply massive and it’s got a super sturdy pop-up typewriter/sewing table secreted behind false drawers on the right side.

We made the shelf the puppets live on from scrap materials floating around our garage.  It’s nice to have them lord over us like that, vacant eyed task masters, staring down at us as if to say, “Back to work now, hipsters.  You’ll see your friends again when you’re dead.”

I keep their legs in a cupboard.  From left to right: Patches, James & Orly.

Swinehopper and Awesome would be the best of friends.  Complimentary color sense, complimentary nonsense.

Please excuse my portrait of Patrick Wolf (collaged out of glitter and glue glossed fabric), I’ve still got to polish off his unicorn heart.  Also, please note: In olden times even Gangy and Pop Pop were down with snuff.  Lorillard’s Snuff, getting your grandparents giggly since before you was born.

On the other side of the workshop, we’ve got our auxiliary workspace (under my portrait of John “The Coleopterist’s Delight” Lennon) and a shelving unit made out of free planters from Craigslist screwed onto the wall.  Note also the head of the James prototype mounted to the wall and the golden curtain leading to my bedroom, where wait wonders untold.

The 2nd work desk doubles as bulk storage for myriad types of paint, colored pencils, modeling clay, plaster, silk screens, A/V gear and my sewing machine, Betsy.

Close up on the planter shelf, where we’ve got oil paints and metallic pigments as well as miniature paper set models and Andy’s prototype puppet heads from all those many long months ago.

From these careful models, our children came to be.

Finally, blocking out one of those useless windows to the garage, is an incredibly poorly constructed cabinet, which some prior residents perminantly installed.  We’ve got it stocked with our overstock of the fleece, felt and fabric that made our puppets so lively and dapper.