Saturday, February 12, 2011

Day #9: "Marshmallow" Baby Robins

Model Magic Marshmallow
Today was a traveling day! We had sold-out performances at the McLean Community Center for their "Day of Puppetry." There were puppetmaking workshops and TWO puppet shows. We performed "African Trickster Tales" and Drew Allison of Grey Seal Puppets performed "Tangle of Tales."

It's always a treat for us to be able to see other puppeteers perform and catch up. Drew is a great puppeteer and puppet builder -- super nice guy!

Of course, there was still the need to build a puppet...and I had a plan!

It evolved this morning. I heard birds chirping out the window. Thoughts of Spring danced in my head. Before going to bed, I had packed a little bit of Model Magic as a special treat for the girls. Model Magic is very portable and non-messy; it is on our list of "car-safe" activities. As I thought about the birds, I imagined little baby robins with their mouths open wide...and how it would be fun to recreate them as little finger puppets from the model magic.
Our younger daughter

We left the house shortly after 9AM for our afternoon performances. The girls were thrilled with the model magic and began making all sorts of stuff. The material reminds me of slightly stale marshmallows in terms of consistency -- but it's not sticky and doesn't get all over everything like real marshmallow would. (My older daughter decided to make a few marshmallows to demonstrate the similarity.)

I made two baby robins and a plump, juicy worm. My older daughter made a little nest for them.

You CAN do art anywhere!
Photographing this in a moving vehicle was tricky. Well, making this in a moving vehicle was also tricky! But it's also a really strange snapshot into what life is like as puppeteers on the road with children. I like how you can see Sam driving, the scenery whirring by, our younger daughter's feet propped up, and little fingers at work in the background!

The worm did not survive the truck...

The surprising side note regarding today's puppet is that it has influenced my new show, "Little by Little." I just added on a short bit (that I really, really like) about a robin and a worm thanks to today's puppet.


  1. It is a pretty cool snapshot of life on the road... I am so sorry I haven't gotten anything done, I've been... really sick. I just went downhill after I got home I guess.

  2. Brilliant! The eyes on those robin chicks are just perfect, what a great detail. I also love the idea of using Model Magic in the car.