Profession puppet designer

Puppet designers design and create puppets and manipulable objects for performers. Their work is based on research and artistic vision. Their design is influenced by and influences other designs and must be conform with these designs and the overall artistic vision. Therefore, the designers work closely with artistic directors, operators and the artistic team. Puppet designers make puppets and manipulable objects out of a variety of materials, and may build robotic elements into them. Puppet designers sometimes also work as autonomous artists, creating outside a performance context.  

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Personality Type

  • Artistic / Enterprising

Skills

  • Understand artistic concepts

    Interpret an artist's explanation or demonstration of their artistic concepts, inceptions and processes and strive to share their vision.

  • Create puppets

    Construct hand, string, rod and shadow puppets from materials such as wood, papier maché, Styrofoam, wires, metal and rubber, using hand and machine tools.

  • Monitor sociological trends

    Identify and investigate sociological trends and movements in society.

  • Use communication equipment

    Set up, test and operate different types of communication equipment such as transmission equipment, digital network equipment, or telecommunications equipment.

  • Develop design concept

    Research information to develop new ideas and concepts for the design of a specific production. Read scripts and consult directors and other production staff members, in order to develop design concepts and plan productions.

  • Analyse the scenography

    Analyse the selection and distribution of material elements on a stage.

  • Perform quality control of design during a run

    Control and ensure the quality of design results during a run.

  • Communicate during show

    Efficient communication during live performance, anticipate any possible malfunctioning.

  • Analyse a script

    Break down a script by analysing the dramaturgy, form, themes and structure of a script. Conduct relevant research if necessary.

  • Verify feasibility

    Interpret an artistic plan and verify whether the described design can be executed.

  • Coach staff for running the performance

    Give instructions to all team members about how they should run the performance.

  • Gather reference materials for artwork

    Gather samples of the materials you expect to use in the creation process, especially if the desired piece of art necessitates the intervention of qualified workers or specific production processes.

  • Safeguard artistic quality of performance

    Observe the show, anticipate and react to possible technical problems, ensuring optimal artistic quality.

  • Design puppets

    Design and construct puppets and movement control mechanism, based on sketches and/or scripts, for artistic and entertainment purposes.

  • Sew puppet clothing

    Sew clothing for puppets by hand or machine.

  • Adapt existing designs to changed circumstances

    Adapt an existing design to changed circumstances and ensure that the artistic quality of the original design is reflected in the final result.

  • Develop design ideas cooperatively

    Share and develop design ideas with the artistic team. Conceptualise new ideas independently and with others. Present your idea, gain feedback and take it into account. Make sure the design fits with the work of other designers.

  • Analyse the artistic concept based on stage actions

    Analyse the artistic concept, form and structure of a live performance based on observation during rehearsals or improvisation. Create a structured base for the design process of a specific production.

  • Propose improvements to artistic production

    Assess past artistic activities with a view to improving future projects.

  • Study media sources

    Study various media sources such as broadcasts, print media, and online media in order to gather inspiration for the development of creative concepts.

  • Monitor developments in technology used for design

    Identify and explore recent developments in technology and materials used in the live performance industry, in order to create an up-to-date technical background for one’s personal design work.

  • Meet deadlines

    Ensure operative processes are finished at a previously agreed-upon time.

  • Update design results during rehearsals

    Updating the design results based on observation of the stage image during the rehearsals, especially where the different designs and the action are integrated.

  • Research new ideas

    Thorough research for information to develop new ideas and concepts for the design of a specific production based.

  • Translate artistic concepts to technical designs

    Cooperate with the artistic team in order to facilitate the transition from the creative vision and its artistic concepts to a technical design.

  • Analyse score

    Analysing the score, form, themes and structure of a piece of music.

  • Present detailed design proposals

    Prepare and present detailed design suggestions for a specific production to a mixed group of people, including technical, artistic and management staff.

Optional knowledge and skills

use personal protection equipment analyse the need for technical resources work with respect for own safety lead a team labour legislation keep personal administration organise resources for artistic production update budget copyright legislation work safely with machines document your own practice provide documentation draw up artistic production