nick barnes puppets

designing and making puppets for contemporary theatre

Photos and videos explaining how we designed and built the sea turtle puppet for The Life of Pi.

The sculpted puppet prior to painting

The puppet is built around this plywood skeleton which supports the plastazote and houses the fin mechanism

Plastazote is inserted between the plywood shapes and sculpted to provide a base for the shell shapes

The Underbelly is attached to the bottom of the structure

The fins are attached to plastic supports which connect directly to the mechanism

How the puppet was designed and how it works…

Duplicate tail fin copied from the original

The mechanism assembly

Click on the video to see the fin movement


Puppet Design Nick Barnes & Finn Caldwell

Associate Designer Caroline Bowman

Lead Sculpter Oli Simonon

Puppet Makers
Richard Gray
Suzanne Law
Chelsey Lee
Charlie Tymms