Take a peek backstage with Props Supervisor Faye Armon-Troncoso – In this video, Faye brings us backstage (and onstage) to show off some of the props for Westport Country Playhouse’s production of Romeo and Juliet.
Adam Savage Explores the Props of Blade Runner 2049! – Everyone’s favorite prop aficionado meets with prop master Doug Harlocker in this video. They take a look at all the whiz-bang gizmos and gadgets in the newest Blade Runner film.
Sketch Your Way to Better Designs – Christopher Schwartz discusses why he carries a spiral-bound notebook with him at all times and how it helps him solve tricky fabrication and construction dilemmas.
Blakes7 Bracelet. Make your own – Take a step back to 1978 when Blue Peter, the famous BBC children’s program, demonstrated how to build a sci-fi prop from the Blake’s 7 series.
The store bought items used as sci-fi movie props – In theatre, even the lowest-budget show will demand actual antiques and designer furniture. In film, apparently, you can just talk into a lady’s razor and call it a communicator.
Carpenter makes on-stage magic for actors, and cross stitches horror scenes – Mike Gerlach, props carpenter for Syracuse Stage, talks about the various things he’s had to build over the years.
“It’s a tool to tell the story…” Bernadine Cockey: Props Master! – The Idaho Shakespeare Festival props master discusses her job and shows off photographs of some of her work.
Stranger Things Product Placement: The Definitive Guide – The Dieline looks at all the vintage packaging found in this amazing show, both real and imaginary. As a bonus, many of the boxes and labels are flattened out, so you can print your own!
Finally, it must have been artisan week on the internet. We have a bunch of articles dealing with other theatre craftspeople outside of props. You can Meet the People Behind the Santa Fe Opera’s Amazing Hats, discover Broadway’s Dirty Secret: How an Artisan Turns Costumes From Riches to Rags, and learn The Many Secrets and Sequins of William Ivey Long, Broadway’s Costume King.
The Broadway Bullet podcast is back and Jay Duckworth comes with it. Jay is the props master at The Public Theater; he talks about propping Hamilton, Fun Home, Shakespeare in the Park, and pretty much every other show that everyone is talking about.
The Creators Project takes a look at Paul Rice and the stunning raven mask he made for True Detective season 2. They show the whole process from concept art to the final piece, which had 15-20 raven feathers per square inch, all individually attached. The article says the mask was made from “silastic”, which is a real material, but I wonder if they meant “Celastic”, which is what it looks like it was constructed from.
About a month ago, I shared a video of the UNC Chapel Hill costume shop and their enviable project of recreating sci-fi costumes for the Museum of Science Fiction. Now, La Bricoleuse has a behind-the-scenes photo-essay of the first project, a flight attendant uniform from 2001: A Space Odyssey.
Finally, what grooming products do film and television characters use? Born Unicorn is a blog which chronicles all the lotions, shaving creams and other products which show up on screen.
The costume department at UNC Chapel Hill is building replica costumes from sci-fi films for the Museum of Science Fiction. Check out this short video of their envious task as faculty, staff and students reconstruct a flight attendant uniform from 2001, including 3D-printing a Pan-Am badge.
If you have not yet “liked” the Society of Properties Artisan Managers page on Facebook, now’s a good time. They’ve been featuring photos and descriptions of the prop shops from theatres across the US. It’s great to see the differences and similarities of how we all set up our spaces to do our jobs.
Blaine Gibson, a sculptor of figures at Disney Parks, passed away recently. Gibson was responsible for many of the Parks’ iconic figures, such as the pirates from Pirates of the Caribbean, the ghosts of the Haunted Mansion, and those children from It’s a Small World.
Finally, this is from nearly a month ago, but Volpin Props has the beginning of a great step-by-step write-up for a Garuda’s Spine bow from Final Fantasy. This massive weapon has tons of detail, and it is great to see all the photos of it coming together.
One of my favorite movies as a kid was The Rocketeer. Valor Design has constructed a stunning replica of the film’s rocket pack completely from scratch. Check out the progress photos from the build, as well as pictures of the completed prop.
From Make Magazine, here are six things you need to know to start welding. It’s a bit more of a guide on how to buy your own welder and choose which process you want to work with; it’s much more helpful to learn on a variety of machines before plunking down cash on your own setup.
Propnomicon points us to this great UK website called Bob’s Bits, which sells and rents all manner of sci-fi props and set dressing. Their stuff ranges from futuristic alien to military to Victorian medical.
Finally, BBC Travel visits the abandoned mill town from the first Hunger Games film, just two hours from where I live. Of course, filming moved to Atlanta for the subsequent films, because North Carolina mucked around with their film incentives program. The photographs are pretty haunting, and the whole thing is for sale too, for the die hard movie memorabilia collector.