Props and SFX Guru, Jennie Marino, will present “Don’t Miss” Storied Show & Tell/Seminar – If you are in Burlington, NJ, on May 20th, be sure to check out this lecture and workshop by Jennie Marino. She has built props, puppets, and masks on over forty-five Broadway productions, as well as countless Off-Broadway and television shows. The event is about an hour-and-a-half from NYC, but it is only a short hop over the river from Philadelphia if that is your home.
First things first, a lot of you have noticed that the original publication date for The Prop Effects Guidebook has come and gone, but you still cannot order it. It turns out there was some problems with the printers, so the book needs to be reprinted, meaning its release is postponed for the time being. So sorry! If you come to USITT, my publisher will have one copy at their booth you can look through, or you can hunt me down and I will tell you everything that is in the book.
‘Props’ go to Wheaton: Exhibitions celebrate stage, movie, TV artistry that usually goes unnoticed – Last week I was in Massachusetts for the opening of the “Props and Fine Art from Movies, Television and Theatre” exhibition I was a part of. Besides my props, it also features work from Jay Duckworth, Ross MacDonald, and Carl Sprague, who were all at the opening with me, as well as Randy Lutz, Buist Bickley, and Annie Atkins. The show runs through mid-April, so check it out if you’re in New England!
The Goblet of Fire – I did not realize that the original Goblet of Fire from the Harry Potter films was carved from a solid piece of English Elm by the Head Propmaker. Many of the film’s actual props are on display in London at the WB Studio Tour. Unfortunately, this link does not go into too much detail into the Goblet’s construction, but it’s still pretty cool.
Last night I sent off the final manuscript for my next book, The Prop Effects Guidebook. It is all about making your props move, burn, sing, bleed, and break. When you combine it with The Prop Building Guidebook, you will have a pretty complete education as far as constructing props goes.
The book does not come out until March 2018, and we still have a lot of work to do in terms of copy-editing, layout, and proofing. But I wanted to share a few of the photographs I have taken specifically for the book just to give you a taste of what is coming.
I talk about a variety of fake fire effects you can use when your theater does not permit real flame.
I give an introduction to electrical components and wiring your own props, and provide a brief introduction to the world of Arduino and other microcontrollers.
What would a prop book be without talking about blood?
Lighting is probably one of the most common tricks a prop needs to do, so there is a thorough introduction to all sorts of tiny lights. I do not think any prop book has covered LEDs before, and I also touch on fancier lights like EL wire.
No matter how fancy theatrical foggers get, dry ice still gives me such a visceral thrill. It’s so simple and elemental, but so magical. This book touches on all the traditional tricks too, because you do not always need a high-tech solution, and you do not always have the budget for the latest gadgets.
Making and finding props for theatre, film, and hobbies