XPT 2018

Scene from The Boat of Bones

Scene from The Boat of Bones

I recently returned from a week-long trip to Atlanta, and I'm already missing its fiery heat (late May in Ontario is sweater weather, this year). I was in Atlanta because had a stop-motion film in Xpermimental Puppetry Theater (XPT) at the Center for Puppetry Arts. I love being part of XPT for many reasons. The puppetry is innovative and interesting, the show is wonderfully put together by Tim Sweeney and Wade Tilton, the environment is supportive, and I get to hang out with puppet/mask people and talk puppets and masks for a whole week, which are two of favourite things to discuss. Also, I'm quite taken with Atlanta - it's a great city.

So for better or worse, I made a film called The Boat of Bones. It's based on a dream that I had when I was a kid.  I've never made a film before, I've never done stop motion before. It was hard. I wasn't thrilled with my puppet or puppetry, but I learned heaps and I found the whole process intensely interesting. I'm immensely grateful to XPT for giving me the opportunity and necessary deadlines to motivate me to make BoB. The week after I finished the film, I said I'll never do it again, but you know, I might. 


Two Big Puppets

In the fall, I was hired by the Calliope Collective in Kingston to design two huge puppets for a winter solstice festival. Members of the collective assisted in the building on a weekend in early December. The Oak and the Holly Kings wound up being about 10' tall each, and each puppet was puppeteered by three people. Josh Lyon, one of the members of the collective, made a video about the puppet-making process and about the festival itself.