With just under 3 weeks until we open, we are thrilled with Maurice’s progress from just a cardboard cutout to almost full fledge dog! Here’s what we’ve been up to.
After the papier-mâché step, I let Maurice’s head dry for 48 hours. Because the puppet is going to be an active member of our ensemble, I wanted to make sure the head stayed as strong as possible. To reinforce it, and to begin to add our furry texture, I began the painstaking process of tightly wrapping Maurice with a dark twine. Each strip was cut to perfectly fit along one side of the head, so that there would be an equal seam. All in all, this process took days and caused one or two (or 5) hot glue burns on my leg. It was worth it though, as I am thrilled with how scruffy he is beginning to look.
When he was covered, I wanted to make sure he retained his dog shape. I built up the brow line to allow his eyes to have a more sunken effect. I then struggled artistically for a few days about Maurice’s nose. I made 3 or 4 mockup noses in various materials, but nothing was feel right, so for now, I am allowing the twine that is wound up in his snout area to represent a nose. Maurice then got a coat of paint to cover up any holes or glue strands
From face, we then moved to body!
I did the same technic of balling up newspaper and wrapping it in masking tape to form the shape of he body. Because it is going to be covered by fabric though, I did not papier-mâché, though I realized my fabric is quite sheer, so I painted him brown. To be honest, the body alone reminds me of a prop Thanksgiving turkey- which is rather endearing.
After measuring the fabric, I attached one side to the head and tada! This is where I am leaving you today- an unpainted, but rather dog-like puppet has arrived.
In tonight’s rehearsal, Maurice is going to make his debut. I am going to be working with Brooke, our puppet op, on the mechanics of puppetry. I have been preparing all sorts of dog videos that we will watch to study the head and body movements. Because of Maurice’s role, one of the most important lessons is how dogs smell- they truly lead with their nose- so we will be looking at that! More updates soon…
Managing Director, Co-Founder, Wannabe Props Wonder Woman