Meeting the Puppet Challenge…at long last

It seems like ages ago when Clive Hicks-Jenkins sent out a puppet challenge (HERE)to the folks who follow him. My natural inclination to jump right in has been thwarted by my keen phobia of the third dimension. I am a painter and I have had very little luck with fashioning objects in the round. I allowed myself some slack in that puppets can be crude and terribly effective, but still…

I had been ruminating about how I wanted the figures to present themselves, oil sketches, watercolor drawings, on and on, just not putting idea to armature. I ended that this week and the following is the unfinished results. Once again I am working with archetypes from the  Popol Vuh, the Hero Twins,  their slain father,the Maize God and the Axis Mundi (the World Tree)plays a supporting role.

starting off with an idea for the Hero Twins (detail from one of my watercolor paintings),


a quick sketch to figure out logistics


the armature-I love this image


working out the figures in ever reliable Sculpey


thus far, I ran out of aforementioned Sculpey, off to supply shop…


I used fine steel wool , applied to uncured medium, it bake right in perfectly.

Before the heroic fellows there was fittingly the World Tree. I had dreamt of this Axis Mundi , putting dreamscape to panel.


it was just a matter of applying wire and tin foil to an old can ; kindergarten craft class at its most lively.


I enjoyed playing with a form, gnarly trees with anthropomorphic features that I frequently employ in other disciplines; all with the aid of  ubiquitous Sculpey.


IMG_4868primed and ready…


now, off to supply store, yoga and then puppetry.

Be well,Lg




Author: babylonbaroque

I am a painter and printmaker working towards creating a body of work that reflects my own developing aesthetic. New work ,first link. The second link is an on-line portfolio.

4 thoughts on “Meeting the Puppet Challenge…at long last”

  1. This makes me want to get out that unopened package of Sculpey and make something! I’ll refrain for now. Too many other irons in the fire…..but what fun this is! Are you planning a show or video?

  2. hi Carla,
    I undertand irons in the fire but sculpey is play time, so when you have the chance…
    and yes, will figure out how to produce a little short video; set designing right now- Geo.Méliès be warned!

  3. wow, these are really looking fantastic, you’re instantly awesome at it, how unfair is that?? sculpey sounds like a miracle tool, i’m so happy you put up the progress shots, they’re very helpful to me…. i’m fascinated with your tree, too, excellent!

    1. Dear Zoe, you are very kind, I see clumsiness you see awesomeness, I will take your attitude over my own, so thanks.
      sculpey is great, give it a shot, super to work with, bake it in your oven @ 275 degrees, 15-30 minutes and voila, little figurines. You can build up with armature and tinfoil, to conserve medium and allow for even baking. Then you can paint it. Would be curious to see what you come up.
      be well,

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