Anyone who has met me, has usually met 1 or 2 of my puppets. I have always been fascinated by puppets. I grew up on Sesame Street (my favourite characters were Ernie, Big Bird and Oscar) and re-runs of the Muppet Show but I was taken by my mother and grandparents to see a wide variety of puppet performances as a child.
I have always wanted to learn how to build puppets but as a kinesthetic learner and very little information on the web and in books on how they are built, I needed a puppeteer to show me. Purely by accident at Canberra’s wonderful Bus Depot Markets, I met my teacher Marie Martine Ferrari of Ferrari Puppets. It was the one and only time she had a stall at the markets to promote her puppet making workshops.
She taught me how to make latex rod puppets, large latex hand puppets and Muppet style puppets using patterns given to her from a masterclass she attended run by the creator of the muppets- Jim Henson!
My teacher is now retired and I am continuing the tradition through teaching the skills of building and basic performance to children and adults. The tradition of Western puppetry is that a master puppet builder and puppeteer passes their skills to an apprentice.
I have just started building a new puppet out of foam and I will blog about it soon!