Meet Schnug-He. He's a stop-motion puppet I'm going to be using for section breaks in the film. He'll be a part of short 10 or 15 second animations with his nemesis Rhumbah. There will be more about these animations later but right now I wanted to take you through the steps of creating him.
First some sketches. This is where I was trying to find out how I wanted the character to look.
Here is a simple turn around I would use for the design and armature layout.
From here I made the armature. This technique I learned from Becky Wible-Searles in my Stop-Mo classes at SCAD. It's simple 16-gauge armature wire twisted for durability and a plumber's repair epoxy to form the stiff welds. This works to create a skeleton or armature that I can pose.
I made this using foam rubber and contact cement. It is a technique I learned making hand puppets. You cut the flat foam rubber in shapes that, when glued together create the forms you see.
Now I covered it with a material called antron fleece or Muppet fleece. It comes in white but was dyed to this color.
I didn't have to cover the entire puppet because it would be wearing a robe over most of its body. Many times when I use the antron fleece I use a sewing machine but this time I was able to do this with only a hot glue gun.
Here's the robe. Made with regular material and a sewing machine.
A lot happened after this step. The details came with a few mistakes followed by creative problem solving. Here's what came out.
What came out was kind of a rabbit/insect/dinosaur/cyborg/Jedi alien.