Thursday, 31 August 2017

September Puppet of the Month - Mel the Cow

How did you get your name "Mel"?

Charlie named me after a friend of hers, Mel. Mark wanted to call me Daisy. I play the part of Milky White in Citizen Puppet. 

That sounds complicated...

Actually "Citizen Puppet" is changing to "Citizen Jack" I think. Although it's not a final decision yet. It keeps going backwards and forwards. It might be "Citizen Jack - A Puppet's Story". So... yes it's complicated. We're in development so things keep changing around. 

You weren't in the first version of the show were you?

Well exactly! The new version is going to be even better. There are going to be 25 puppets including a talking cow - me. 

What do you say?

I just try to tell my side of the story, what I know, which is mainly about when Jack sold me for beans. People don't think about what a risk he took when he did that, the gamble. Usually he is portrayed as dumb, but he knew what he was doing I think. And I talk about my life after that with the butcher. 

Do you make any cow puns?

Of course, but I don't milk it.

Charli - puppet maker

What's your name and where do you come from?

I’ m Charli and I’ m from Bremen, in Germany

Who is the cow?

That’s a good question. I think no one really knows yet, she could have so many different characters. I like to call her Mel, I gave her this little mark that says that she is from the same part of Germany where I come from, but I actually think she is British

How did you come to be making a cow at Blind Summit this summer?

I actually study in Salzburg in Austria and as we  got summer holidays at the moment I asked if there might be anything to do I could help with during this time, and happily there was Mel

What are the challenges of making a puppet cow and how did you tackle them?

I think what made it so difficult at the first place was that I never properly looked at a cow before and there are no references running around in your everyday life in London, other then with a human head..
There are many cow photos on the internet, but not of the same cow from every angle, obviously.. and as all the cows really look quite different that was a bit confusing.

But then I bought a little 3D toy cow and just stuck to her as reference. That was really helpful

Have you made other puppets?

Just one. A hairy little hipster inspired by a friend of mine. I also made him at blind summit at the beginning of this year.

What do you like about making puppets?

I think it’s a good mixture of creative designing and the actual making. It combines fantastic thinking and naturalistic precise copying in a way- and I love tiny details and that there is space for those in the puppet world

What tip can you give someone who wants to make a puppet?

Think before you cut. Actually always think first!.. Don’t rush, Don’t get lost into details before you got the actual shape right. Keep in mind that someone also needs to play with them

Would you like to say anything else?

It really was great fun making Mel, I’m very thankful for the opportunity and I really hope I might have the chance to make another puppet in the future