In anticipation of our upcoming mystery box project, I went on a hunt around Norwich for the cheapest place to buy certain armature supplies after watching an interesting video on YouTube by character animator Michael Parks, whose resume stretches from Robot Chicken to Pixar. His advice was to build an aluminium base and build on that first with epoxy putty for the bones and then strips of fluffy upholstery wadding wrapped in pre-wrap for joggers.
I really like the finish he’s created using the pre-wrap over the fluff, changing how tight he wound it round to give the limbs shape.
Another thing I noted was how he crafted the armature’s hands, the same way I’d been shown at the BFI Animation camp. The interesting thing he did was attached the hands by creating two hooks out of the two lengths of wire used to make the arms and poking the fingers through them before clamping them in tight with some pliers.
On my mission round Norwich, I found the cheapest place for Milliput (green grey) was Thorns for £2.50, a whole pound less than Jarolds across the road. Thorns also worked out best for pre-wrap equivalent tape in the end as Boots and Superdrug only supplied premium stock. Superdrug, however Superdrug did pick up the slack with some good cotton fluff strips in place of wadding.