Bringing your puppets to life – “Oh, but I could never do that!”
Creating the illusion of life is easier than you think with Folkmanis® Puppets. The number one rule, is that there are no "rules" to puppeteering our puppets. Just have fun! But in case you'd like some tips from the pros, we have lots of them!
Product Demonstration Videos
Most of our puppets have demonstration videos located their product description page. To see the demo select the puppet category: Hand, Stage, Little, Character, etc. and then select the puppet thumbnail to see if there is a puppet demonstration video available. Click here to visit our Youtube channel to see all of the puppet videos in one location.
Folkmanis Puppeteering Tips
With puppet in hand, proceed to the nearest mirror to try it on for size. By following these few tips, you’ll soon convince friends that you’re a natural puppeteer.
Insert your thumb in one paw, and the little finger in the other. This leaves three fingers for the manipulation of the nose and/or mouth. NOTE: even if you’re right-handed, you might find your left hand more relaxed for puppeteering (or vice-versa.) This is a common experience, and one we can’t explain.
With the animal on one hand, hold it in the crook of your other arm. This gives your puppet a nice nest and conceals the secret of your participation. Remember that nothing looks more awkward (or unconvincing) than a puppet perched on the end of an extended arm and hand.
If your puppet has a snout (bears, beavers, raccoons, skunks) two twitching fingers will produce a wiggling nose.
Have your puppet crawl up your shoulder, tug at your sleeve, scratch, twist around, or hide in the crook of your arm.
For animals with tails, nest the puppet on your free arm, extending your fingers of that arm toward the elbow of your “puppet arm.” Position your thumb under the base of the tail and move it up and down to swish the tail.
The sea otter, small panda, and cats look particularly endearing on their backs, in the crook of your arm. From this position, have them gaze at their audience, occasionally hiding their eyes behind their paws, scratching, or nestling down for a snooze.
Props like rubber balls, oranges, small mirrors, cups, or wrapped candy will awaken the natural curiosity of your animal.
Insert your whole hand through the hidden sleeve of the larger, cuddly animals for animated head action.