While I am primarily a visual and performance artist who uses puppetry and performing objects, from time to time I work in puppetry for film, television and the web – on other people’s music videos, pitches, commercials, and films.
On these projects, I have experience animating robotic servo-controlled puppet faces for “Team America-style” marionettes, hand-mouth “Muppet-style” puppets, marionettes, toy theatre style puppets and other harder to categorize kinetic objects. Here are some examples:
In Dave Made A Maze, a frustrated artist must be rescued by his friends from a bloodthirsty Minotaur in a supernatural world of the cardboard fort he built in his living room. For this film, giant oragami cranes in one of the rooms of the maze.
For Gender is a Construct, Do-Si-Do, a Funny or Die video that received “immortal” status, I was an associate producer and puppeteer. As associate producer, I advised the production on shooting for puppetry and helped assemble a team of puppeteers. In Gender is a Construct, the caller of a puppet square dance struggles with the modern politics of gender and sexual identity.
In TaylorMade’s “Stakeout” and “The Pull Over” commercials, I operated the faces of “Team America” style marionettes in the likeness of professional golfers with with radio controlled servos.
In The Kickstarter Song, a satyrical music video that poked fun at the underbelly of crowdfunding, I performed hand-mouth puppets for the camera.
In the official music video for Ben Taylor’s Not Alone, I performed marionette-controlled sock puppets. Not Alone, directed by Trish Sie (Pitch Perfect 3), follows a lonely sock who searches everywhere for a soulmate. Not Alone, was released online and twice screened at the Brooklyn Academy of Music for their Puppets on Film series.
I was one of the puppeteers in Calling Occupants of Interplanetary Craft, a puppet film directed by Tim Lagasse and Martin P. Robinson. In Calling Occupants, a music assembly in which school children attempt to contact extra-terestrial life goes horribly wrong. Calling Occupants was created during the 2010 National Puppetry Conference at the Eugene O’Neill Theater Center.
I operated toy theatre style puppets (hand carved Sicilian bottle stoppers) and assisted as set decorator. In the Bottle Stopper Project, life is good in an Italian bar until there is a break in reality.
For The Circus, an eBaysodeTM (a pitch for eBay), I animated objects (bears on spinning balls, members of a monkey band, and other assorted toys).
For the official music video for Sea Wolf’s Winter Windows I animated the leaves of a forrest, and operated some hard to categorize puppets (including flying books, a spinning globe that transforms into a feline, a table that transforms into some sort of mammal, and a suitcase that transforms into a turtle).
Beyond my MFA degree at CalArts in puppetry and object theater, I have also trained for five years with the Jim Henson Company on hand-mouth style on-camera improv and puppetry and for 11 years at the National Puppetry Conference at the Eugene O’Neill Theater Center during which I gained experience with table-top puppetry.