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Interesting facts about Puppet, Puppets, Puppet masters and Puppeteers

Updated on June 5, 2015

Listed bellows are different types of puppet

1 sock puppets

2 carnival puppets

3 body puppets

4 marionette puppets

5 glove puppets

6 rod puppets

7 clay puppets

8 objects puppets

9 tickle bug puppets

10 string puppets

11 push puppets

12 toy puppets and animal puppet

Interesting facts about Puppet, Puppets, Puppet masters and Puppeteers

Facts about puppets

Puppets have been around for a very long time dating far back as fifth century BC (5BC) and can be traced to several ancient texts and works like the Xenophon, different dynasties, cultures and countries have had the puppet tradition well over a thousand years making it one of the oldest art form of expressionism. Early Roman Empire and ancient civilizations all had pupating cultures that were used for entertainment, information and sometimes political satires.

Puppets are usually given names, characters and personalities to make them more believable, fun and easier for children to relate with, making some puppet characters very loveable are enduring and timeless in their appeal.

Puppets

Puppets are mainly models of objects, animals or a person that can be animated through manipulation either directly or remotely, the movement of the puppet is engineered through strings like that of the marionette or direct motions through a hand placed within the object. The person that manipulates the human like actions of the puppet is the puppeteer while puppetry is basically the art and skill of making a puppet.

Disney muppets

Disney mupepts
Disney mupepts | Source

Puppet forms

There is no hard and fast rule in making a puppet which gives the puppet makers a blank canvas with many opportunities; early Indian puppets were made from clay dolls while areas that had bamboo created stick puppets, or bamboo puppets. Humanoid puppets have only one characteristic they should have the human form which includes eyes, nose, a mouth which is usually made wide and the head large or big. Some puppets have torso, arms and legs incorporated into the design making them more realistic.

Animal puppets need to resemble animals, if they are birds, snakes or lions the only criteria are that animal puppets should be recognizable as a particular animal. The puppet form needs be easy to handle flexible, have definite characteristic should be colorful and fun.

Puppet master

Puppet master are puppeteers who have the prerequisite skill to maneuver the puppet thereby giving them a life like appearance, with certain kinds of puppet very little skill is required. But others such as string puppets, Muppet puppets like those used by entertainer such as comedians, and ventriloquists need to effectively synchronize mouth and body movement to give a convincing performance.

Puppeteers learn a whole range of movement depending on the type of puppets he needs to master, some become proficient with stick control panels while others learn the use of rod controls or specific arm movement.

The range of movement also depends on the way the puppet is constructed, puppets that are made with joints especially in the arms, neck, and knees often have a wider range of movement than those without adjustable limbs.

Top puppet master go through many years of training before mastering the technique involved in manipulating certain types of puppet, puppetry is the act of making puppets which range from the simple to the outright complicated puppet.

A Puppeteer

A Puppeteer
A Puppeteer | Source

Carnival Puppets

carnival puppets
carnival puppets | Source

Sock puppet

Sock puppet
Sock puppet

Types of puppets

There are many types of puppets and most are categorized by the medium they are built from, they could be made from Styrofoam, synthetic material, plastic, paper, wood, clay, clothing objects or cardboard.

Carnival puppets

Carnival puppets are one of the most common puppets around, they are large and usually depict famous television characters and are usually manipulated by two or three puppeteers, Brazilian puppets especially during their yearly carnival are sometimes manipulated by several puppet masters and sometimes motorized equipment because for their huge sizes.

Carnival puppets can also be made man-sized with an exaggerated head which the puppeteer wears; this carnival puppet is sometimes called a body puppet. Large conglomerates and top entertainment cooperation’s use this kind of puppetry for advertisement purposes, entertainment and merchandising.

The sock puppet

The sock puppet is also very common because of its practicability, it is very easy to make and requires very little skill to manipulate, and the puppet has a limited scope of movement because it is manipulated by one hand and is subjected to side, up and down movements. The sock puppet is made by getting an old sock; adding buttons for eyes, then gluing a head of hair attach the ears if you wish and outlining the mouth.

After creating the puppet which should take less than ten minutes the puppeteer puts his hand in the sock and presto you have a sock puppet. By moving your fingers inside the sock the sock puppet appears to talk.

How to make a glove puppet

Glove puppets and marionette puppets

The arm puppet is quite innovative yet simple to manipulate, the arm puppet needs two puppeteers to operate convincingly, but there are also one armed puppets. In order to manipulate the arm puppet convincingly the puppeteer puts his arm in the puppet which is made to cover the entire arm, then the second puppeteer acts as an appendage which usually is an arm or a foot that has been skillfully incorporated into the arm puppets design.

The two puppeteers work the puppet simultaneously offering the audience a wider scope of movement and a lot more realism, arm puppets is very popular and entertaining.

Marionette puppets

The puppeteer that manipulates the marionette puppets needs to have developed a number of skills, the marionette puppets have been used for outdoor entertainment especially in children’s parties for hundreds of years. They are string manipulated puppets that are basically controlled through string attached to the puppets at specific body parts.

The strings are attached to the puppet and then fastened to a horizontal control bar which the puppeteer skillfully turns to create the illusion of movement; the control bar can also be vertical but the outcome is the same.

To create lifelike movement in the marionette puppet the strings are attached to certain parts of the puppet, the string attached to the head gives the head movements, while the knee string control the legs, the hand strings control the arm of the puppet, the marionette could be made jointed for more maneuverability.

Vietnamese water puppets

Vietnamese water puppets
Vietnamese water puppets | Source

Vietnamese water puppet

The water puppets originated from Vietnamese rice fields and are entrenched in the culture and traditions of the people, the puppets are very interesting and they act out various social, cultural and economic themes giving life to their art form.

Water puppets are made out of wood and they are supported by stick or rod under the water which gives them their graceful movement and stability, the depth of the water theater usually does not exceed four feet (4ft) which gives the puppeteer enough room to manipulate the delightful puppets

The Muppet puppet

The puppet favored by ventriloquist or dummy is a one hand puppet manipulated by the entertainer, the puppet could by a hand puppet, glove puppet or even sock puppet depending on the performer’s preference. The ventriloquist throws his voice while mimicking mouth movements of the dummy to appear as if the puppet is talking.

These types of puppet are very common with entertainers and are usually given unique characteristic and personalities, the Muppet puppet is a show business icon. The ventriloquist’s puppets can also be table top puppets giving the comedian or performer the mover ability of placing the dummy on his knees, a table or the edge of a box.

Ventriloquist dummy can be made by trimming a Styrofoam into a big head, spraying adhesive or using glue to gum the fleece or velvet material on the cut eyes and large floppy mouth. The puppet arms are traced out cut, sewn filled with foam and attached to the body. Then the puppet can be fitted with a t shirt or small baby’s cloths and stuffed with foam to add form and realism.

The puppeteer can then control the dummy by putting an arm in the back to move the mouth which is now covered in black and red material to look like a real mouth.

Muppet

Muppet
Muppet | Source

Object puppets, and shadow puppets

Puppets can be objects

Object puppets are puppets made out of any available object, they could be a mixture of odds and ends or the same item, and the puppet can also be drawn on a surface or hand. Object puppets are like freestyle art anything goes as long as it is given some characteristic that define the puppet.

If you arrange a bunch of tin cans in a particular manner and are able to manipulate them by means of strings, rod or attachment then you have created an object puppet.

Shadow puppets

Shadow puppets a silhouette forms cast against a translucent screen by a light source which could be diminished intensified or retracted to give the impression of form, structure and detail. The shadow puppet is usually a detailed cut out figure. The silhouette forms performed before an audience in the form of shadows, but Motekar shadow puppets are highlighted with dyes, tainting, colored lightening and other clever gismos.

Rod puppets

There are the two kinds of rod puppets the complex rod puppet and the simplified rod puppet, the simple ones are just the puppeteer arm which acts as the body and the puppet has a head. More complicated rod puppets have rods attached to specific regions to mimic movement. Both types can also have strings connected to a control stick or rod.

Rod puppets re manipulated by wood or metal rods and have a limited amount of movement.

Types of Puppets

hand puppets
other types of puppets
 
sock puppets
Vietnamese water puppets
 
finger puppets
muppets puppets
 
glove puppets
object puppets
 
hand puppets
stick puppets
 
 
rod puppets
 
 
shadow puppets
 

Toy puppets

Toy puppets are specially made puppet toys that can be made out of a diverse number of materials such as plastic, foam, synthetic materials, and wood, they may stay true to actual puppetry rules or the manufacturer might introduce new own elements.

The performance of the toy puppet could be enhanced through mechanisms or manipulated by hand, the design imagination and practicability rests on the designer’s vision and functionality. Toy puppets can be finger puppets, body puppets, hand puppets, rod puppets or object puppets, the toy maker might even make the parts so you can have the pleasure of assembling them before use.

Finger puppets

Finger puppets are simple puppets that fit unto your finger, they can be made from cloth material paper or any fabric, the puppet should have facial characteristics, which are a mouth, eyes, pinned or painted ears and could have a tiny cap.

The puppeteer has limited movement of the finger puppet which is restricted to the total movement possibly by a finger, they are fun easy to make and require a little originality and imagination. A puppeteer can have a finger puppet on all his fingers a single gloved arm if he so chooses.

Other puppet types

Some other puppet types include the tickle bug which is more or less a hand painting, the push puppet, the string puppet similar to the marionette, and the toy puppet. The animal puppet is a puppet that represents the image of an animal and can be manipulated by string, hand, glove or rod.

There are many types of puppets most of which are made by hand through cutting, using adhesive, stitching, sewing and coloring. The materials used range from wood, bamboo, cloth, foam, velvet, cardboards, and paper.

Conclusion

Constant innovation in puppetry continually pushes the boundary and redefines the limits of puppet evolution, making them more realist independent of the puppeteer and almost becoming mechanized robots. Each puppet has a different character which makes puppeteer create fun personalities, giving it longevity and enduring favor with its teeming audience.

Puppets have been here a long time and would be with us for many more years to come.

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      (the real) Angelina Jolie 6 months ago

      Hey world,

      I think puppetry is a fascinating, and underrated form of art! I would love to hear you guys' opinions.

      Email me @angelinajolie@studiofanmail.com

    • profile image

      nobody 2 years ago

      hiii world

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      SPIDERMAN 3 years ago

      HELP ME I NEED TO MAKE A PUPPET

    • profile image

      jackson 3 years ago

      i think puppets are cool