Sculpting is the most basic skill there is for puppet makers. It might seem complicated but there are a few tricks that you can use to be an expert in no time. Everything from reference materials, transferring measurements, smoothing and more are covered.
Clay puppets animate nicely when you use lead wire. The reason for this is the lack of memory (or spring-back) that occurs with lead wire. Aluminum is the second best choice, but will be more of a chore to animate. In this tutorial, Marc Spess goes through all the steps of how to cut and adhere all the parts for a successful armature.
These two videos will get you on the right path, especially if you want to learn to animate using plasticine oil based clays. A lot of the information is outdated, especially when it comes to using modern digital cameras and computers. The second animation update video covers the new advances, but the animation techniques will never change even into the future.
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