January 3, 2017: Puppet Physics

Ladymakers Erin Salter and Lauren Cage explored the translation of movement through the mechanics of puppetry. First, moms and daughters learned about a few different kinds of puppets. A rod puppet is constructed around a central core. Appendages are attached to that structure and controlled by separate rods. A pull string puppet (or jumping jack) is a figure with jointed limbs connected to a single pull string. When the string is pulled, the limbs move. A marionette is a figure with limbs attached to separate strings controlled from above.

After handling samples of these puppets and examining their mechanisms for movement, moms and daughters began planning their own puppets – each with its own story. What kind of motions and expressions would the puppets need? Which style of puppet would best tell the story? Which materials might bring the puppet to life?

Once they had selected their supplies, moms and daughters began creating their puppets.

Moms and daughters explored many different ways to build joints and control movement.

At the end of the evening, girls took the microphone to describe their puppets and stories, and then gathered for a group shot.



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